Here are some suggestions from Bright Futures experts that may be of value to your family
How You are Feeling
- Taking care of yourself gives you the energy to care for your baby. Remember to go for your postpartum checkup.
- Call for help if you feel sad or blue, or very tired for more than a few days.
- Know that returning to work or school is hard for many parents.
- Find safe, loving child care for your baby. You can ask us for help.
- If you plan to go back to work or school, start thinking about how you can keep breastfeeding.
Getting to Know Your Baby
- Have simple routines each day for bathing, feeding, sleeping, and playing.
Put your baby to sleep on his back.
- In a crib, in your room, not in your bed.
- In a crib that meets current safety standards, with no drop-side rail and slats no more than 2 3/8 inches apart. Find more information on the Consumer Product Safety Commission Web site at www.cpsc.gov.
- If your crib has a drop-side rail, keep it up and locked at all times. Contact the crib company to see if there is a device to keep the drop-side rail from falling down.
- Keep soft objects and loose bedding such as comforters, pillows, bumper pads, and toys out of the crib.
- Give your baby a pacifier if he wants it.
Hold and cuddle your baby often.
- Tummy time—put your baby on his tummy when awake and you are there to watch.
- Crying is normal and may increase when your baby is 6–8 weeks old.
- When your baby is crying, comfort him by talking, patting, stroking, and rocking.
- Never shake your baby.
- If you feel upset, put your baby in a safe place; call for help.
- Use a rear-facing car safety seat in all vehicles.
- Never put your baby in the front seat of a vehicle with a passenger air bag.
- Always wear your seat belt and never drive after using alcohol or drugs.
- Keep your car and home smoke-free.
- Keep hanging cords or strings away from and necklaces and bracelets off of your baby.
- Keep a hand on your baby when changing clothes or the diaper.
Your Baby and Family
- Plan with your partner, friends, and family to have time for yourself.
- Take time with your partner too.
- Let us know if you are having any problems and cannot make ends meet. There are resources in our community that can help you.
- Join a new parents group or call us for help to connect to others if you feel alone and lonely.
- Call for help if you are ever hit or hurt by someone and if you and your baby are not safe at home.
Prepare for an emergency/illness.
- Keep a first-aid kit in your home.
- Learn infant CPR.
- Have a list of emergency phone numbers.
- Know how to take your baby's temperature rectally. Call us if it is 100.4°F (38.0°C) or higher.
- Wash your hands often to help your baby stay healthy.
Feeding Your Baby
- Feed your baby only breast milk or iron- fortified formula in the first 4–6 months.
- Pat, rock, undress, or change the diaper to wake your baby to feed.
Feed your baby when you see signs of hunger.
- Putting hand to mouth
- Sucking, rooting, and fussing
End feeding when you see signs your baby is full.
- Turning away
- Closing the mouth
- Relaxed arms and hands
- Breastfeed or bottle-feed 8–12 times per day.
- Burp your baby during natural feeding breaks.
- Having 5–8 wet diapers and 3–4 stools each day shows your baby is eating well.
- Continue to take your prenatal vitamins.
- When breastfeeding is going well (usually at 4–6 weeks), you can offer your baby a bottle or pacifier.
- Always prepare, heat, and store formula safely. If you need help, ask us.
- Feed your baby 2 oz every 2–3 hours. If your baby is still hungry, you can feed more.
- Hold your baby so you can look at each other.
- Do not prop the bottle.
What to Expect at Your Baby's 2 Month Visit
We will talk about
- Taking care of yourself and your family
- Sleep and crib safety
- Keeping your home safe for your baby
- Getting back to work or school and finding child care
- Feeding your baby
© 2010 American Academy of Pediatrics