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Taking care of a newborn baby in the first few days after birth


Expectant mothers preparing for the arrival of their little one often wonder how to care for a newborn in the first few days. In this article, we will try to cover this topic as thoroughly as possible and tell you about the daily routine for taking care of your little one, taking into account the differences between caring for baby boys and girls.

How to care for a newborn baby girl in the first few days

First, some general information that applies to all babies.

To help your little one adapt to their new environment as quickly as possible, it’s important to establish a proper daily routine for sleeping, feeding, bathing, and going for walks.

During the first few days of life, your newborn will mostly sleep. Imagine this: out of 24 hours in a day, your baby will spend 16 to 20 hours sleeping! Of course, most of that time will be at night.

Here are some other important things to know about caring for a newborn baby girl in the first few days:

  • Feed your baby girl on demand, but try not to overfeed her, especially before bedtime.
  • When it comes to going for walks, you can take your baby outside after 7-10 days of birth. However, this can vary depending on the weather: if it’s too hot outside (the thermometer reads above 30°C) or if it’s colder than -10°C, it’s best to wait before taking your baby outside.
  • Choosing the right clothes for newborns is also important. Opt for clothes made from natural fabrics. They are hypoallergenic, absorb moisture well, allow air to circulate, and are comfortable and soft for your baby to wear. Perfect for your newborn!

Bathing is another important aspect of properly caring for a newborn baby girl.

Should you bathe your baby before the umbilical cord stump falls off? Unless your doctor advises against it, it’s safe to bathe your baby.

Ideally, you should give your baby girl a bath on an empty stomach before bedtime. You’ll need a small bathtub, a towel and knit baby clothes, baby soap, and a thermometer to monitor the water temperature. The water should be around 34-37°C.

Don’t close the bathroom door, as this could expose your baby to sudden temperature changes when you exit the room.

After birth, your daughter’s milk glands may increase in size and become slightly reddened, and she may produce something similar to colostrum.

This is a natural response to hormonal changes after birth, and it will resolve on its own within two weeks. You should be concerned only if your daughter’s milk glands are excessively red and she produces too much colostrum.

Due to their anatomical structure and the risk of vaginal infection, special attention should be paid to caring for a newborn girl’s genitals:

How to care for and clean your baby girl:

  • Water should be directed from front to back, or from the vagina to the buttocks.
  • Clean only with running water to minimize the risk of infection in the pelvic area.
  • Start by drying the area around the vagina, then the labia, and finally the buttocks.
  • Protect your baby’s bottom from irritation, rash, or diaper rash by cleaning her after she poops.
  • Mothers report that in the first few days, baby girls may have gray or grayish-brown smegma on their labia. This is a natural secretion called smegma. If there’s too much smegma, prepare some boiled water and cotton swabs and carefully clean your baby. Keep in mind that smegma is thick in consistency and difficult to wash off the skin.

Caring for a newborn boy in the first days after birth

The first care for a newborn boy is very similar to what is relevant for girls.

We won’t repeat ourselves and focus on the specific aspects of caring for a newborn boy that will differ from what we wrote above.

Talking about bathing:

  • If according to the rules, girls are washed from the belly towards the back, then for boys, it’s the opposite: they are washed from the back towards the belly.
  • Newborn boys may also have smegma. Make sure it accumulates in the area of the foreskin: excess can cause infection.
  • Be careful not to damage the foreskin: don’t apply force to move it. In many babies, it may not move at all. It will be normal later on.
  • Start by washing all the folds in the upper part of the legs and around the baby’s genitals, and finally, the buttocks.
  • You can use powder: apply it to the folds, buttocks, but avoid getting it directly on the penis.

Another important aspect of caring for a newborn boy from the first days is related to the use of diapers.

The little one may go to the bathroom immediately after you remove the diaper. This happens due to temperature changes.

And also, don’t believe the myths that diapers lead to overheating of the testicles. If you choose the right breathable clothing for the newborn, overheating won’t be a problem.

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