​Bab​y is Home, What to Expect?

Y​ou have been waiting for your baby’s arrival and he/she is finally here. Here is a guide on what you can expect to happen at the hospital and later at home. 

Baby — What He Would Go Through 

  • ​​At delivery, your baby's cord blood will be screened for thyroid disorder, a common correctable endocrine condition, and for possible G6PD deficiency, a common medical condition that can result in easy breakdown of red blood cells leading to jaundice (yellowing of skin) in the newborn period.
  • Your baby will have his weight, length and head circumference measured at birth. ​​
  • His temperature, breathing rate and heart rate will also be noted.​ 
  • ​​Your baby will be given a vitamin K injection to prevent the possibility of bleeding. 
  • A doctor will give your baby a thorough check-up within the first 24 hours. 
  • Your baby will be given his first immunisations: Hepatitis B (first dose) and BCG. 
  • He will also have a newborn hearing screening, before ​he is discharged from the hospital.​
  • ​It is recommended that your baby be screened for common metabolic conditions before his/her discharge from hospital. Do check with your doctor regarding this test. ​

Mummy — What To Expect and What To Do 

  • If you and your baby are well after the delivery, do allow your baby to have at least an hour of skin-to-skin contact. Place your baby on your chest soon after birth. It keeps your baby warm and encourages him/her to suck. Guide your baby when he/she shows signs of readiness to feed. Your baby’s suckling reflex is most intense in the first hour after birth. 
  • You will be able to rest in the labour ward (or observation ward if you had a caesarean) before being transferred to your room. 
  • If you and your baby’s condition permit, it is recommended that your baby room-in all day. This will facilitate breastfeeding and promote bonding. Allow your baby to suckle on demand. 
  • Make the most of your time in hospital to learn how to breastfeed properly. The nurses and lactation consultant are there to help guide you and your baby at latching and to ensure that the process goes right.
  • Check the timing for babycare workshops provided by the hospitals on breastfeeding and bathing your newborn. Attend these sessions with your husband so that he can learn to help with caring for the baby. 
  • You will have bleeding (lochia) for a few weeks. This is normal. But if you seem to be bleeding excessively, alert the doctors or nurses. 
  • If you have difficulty passing urine or having pain, get help. 
  • You can usually go home 1-3 days after a normal delivery. If you had a caesarean, you may go home after 3-5 days. 
  • You will see your doctor again 4-6 weeks later to check that the episiotomy wound has healed well and that you are coping well with motherhood. A Pap smear will also be conducted. Notify the clinic for a change of appointment if you are having your period. You may wish to discuss contraception with your doctor at this time. 
  • ​At home, make sure that you eat healthy meals and get proper rest.​ 

​​Smoke-Free Environment

​Provide a totally tobacco-free environment for your baby’s well-being. Opening windows and doors do not protect your baby from second-hand smoke as toxins from tobacco smoke (now known as third-hand smoke) settle on surfaces such as sofas, curtains, carpets as well as clothing and hair can take a long while to go away. These toxins may get into your baby’s body though contact while he plays or crawls or while he is being carried by a smoker. 

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