mum smiling and playing with her baby

By Dr Janice TUNG, Associate Consultant and Associate Professor Tan Thiam Chye, Visiting Consultant, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, KK Women's and Children's Hospital

What's Happening to Your Baby?

It's normal to feel a little overwhelmed by your baby's cries, especially as you're getting used to your new role as a mum. Just remember that babies cry in order to communicate their needs. Understanding your baby's crying cues can help teach you whether your newborn is hungry, tired, uncomfortable, colicky, or just wants a cuddle. Some babies just cry more than others, and 15 to 20 percent have bursts of inconsolable crying that can last hours.

Try breastfeeding, swaddling, or taking breaks with your partner and family members to ease the load. Your baby's eyes are focusing better and may even follow you if you move from side to side. Although it's best for baby to sleep on the back, time on their tummy while awake is good to strengthen the neck musclexs and reduce the flat spot on the head.

What's Happening to You?

Hopefully you're in the swing of breastfeeding now and your breasts are no longer swollen. Mastitis, an infection of the breast tissue often due to blocked milk glands, can happen at any time so make sure you fully empty each breast before offering the second to your baby. Watch for symptoms of fever, redness over the breast and breast pain. If you're having problems with latching, positioning, expressing, cracked nipples, or general fussiness, it might be worth consulting a lactation nurse for help. Your perineal area might still be a little tender and swollen, so hold off any physical activity and sex until advised by your doctor.

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