These first days in the hospital are not easy for a first-time mother after giving birth, because there are so many things that she has yet to learn. It’s also hard on a newborn as they have just arrived in a completely different environment. They have many adjustments to make to adapt.
After Giving Birth Care for Mother and Child
What happens in the first moments of life and in days to follow?
First, doctors cut the umbilical cord, and then they remove the excess mucus from the respiratory tract so that it does not hinder the child’s breathing. After that, the newborn gets a few drops of antibiotic drops or ointment into its eyes to avoid conjunctivitis.
A neonatologist performs a daily examination of the newborn. The doctor informs the mother about the newborn’s condition and gives recommendations for after-discharge care. When examining a baby, the doctor pays attention to the color of its skin, the condition of the mucous membranes, the presence of unconditioned reflexes, muscle tone. A hearing loss test is also performed at the hospital. The neonatologist monitors the baby’s heart, breathing, digestion, stool, and urine. In the hospital, they also suggest an immediate BCG vaccination (against tuberculosis).
At the hospital, a doctor or nurse treats the umbilical wound daily. After returning home, the mother performs this procedure. In case it takes longer for the umbilical cord to dry, it can be tied once again. After the umbilical residue is detached, parents still need to take care of it to prevent the area from becoming infected, for example, with the use of brilliant green and hydrogen peroxide.
Doctors weigh the newborn every day after giving birth. Important to mention that during the first days of life, babies actually lose weight. There is no need to be worried. This is simply physiology. Baby’s weight will gradually grow during the weeks to come.
Mother and Child After Giving Birth
Most maternity hospitals let mothers and their children be in a ward together, however only if the baby is perfectly healthy after giving birth. Initially, it is a baby nurse who teaches a newly minted mother how to look after a baby. Later, the mother looks after a baby on her own. In case the mother’s state of health does not let her take care of a newborn, the little one is transferred to a children’s ward.
A joint stay of a mother and a child helps to avoid diseases. When caring for the baby, the mother provides the newborn with additional microflora from her body, thereby reducing the possibility of the baby catching an infection. The main benefit of staying together in one ward is feeding on demand. It helps to establish lactation. Breastfeeding in free mode reduces the risk for mother to get stagnation. It helps the mother to recover faster, which ultimately leads to a quick discharge from the hospital.
Long-awaited discharge after giving birth
If no complications occur, then both mother and child can be discharged from a hospital in 3 or 4 days. The conversation with the pediatrician before leaving the hospital is a must. The doctor brings up the issues of feeding and care. The information about a woman’s state of health, pregnancy, method of baby’s delivery, and carried out activities is stated in a prenatal record. Apart from this, the card contains information about a baby: height, weight, head, and chest circumference, general condition, type of feeding, date of vaccination, medical records, and blood type.
To ensure the continued good health of your child after giving birth, the doctor of a children’s hospital in your district should monitor the condition of the baby, or if you wish, it can be a paid pediatric clinic.
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