Are you a first-time momma and feeling a little overwhelmed with all that you “need to know” for the arrival of your newborn?
No need to worry! First of all, it’s true when they say that babies do not come with instruction manuals. That’s because every baby is oh so very unique and so is each and every environment they are brought into. Nonetheless, with time and experience, we’ve been able to track a few consistencies with newborns in the first couple month and we’re here to share them with you!
Newborns and sleep
We’re sure you’ve heard by now that new moms are typically low on sleep. Reason being that newborns, up until 3 or 4 months, still wake every 2-4 hours to eat given their small tummy size. And if you’ve chosen to breastfeed your babe, this will break up your sleep immensely. With this said, a newborn typically sleeps between 14-17 hours a day, which means there will be opportunities for you to also catch up on a few moments of sleep throughout the day if your body allows.
Keep in mind, trying to implement a sleep schedule too soon could affect your milk supply and your baby’s growth. Especially in the first 1-2 months, it will be important for your baby and body to self-regulate.
Breastfed babies should eat as much as they want at this age, but a general rule of thumb is roughly 12 to 32 ounces of breastmilk a day, or 16 to 32 ounces for formula-fed babies. Breastfed babies will nurse eight to 12 times in a 24-hour period. Since it’s hard to tell how much your baby is drinking, look for eight to 10 wet diapers and five dirty ones a day. Formula-fed babies this age will take 2 to 3 ounces per feed, for a total of 16 to 32 ounces over 24 hours, and eat every three to four hours.
Did you know?
Your baby will lose weight after birth. Nearly all newborns will leave the hospital or birthing center weighing less than when they first checked in. Most babies will have regained or surpassed their birth weight by 10 to 14 days of life thanks to all the feeding they’re doing — whether that nutrition comes from the breast or the bottle. Your baby will grow 4 to 7 ounces a week for the first few months.
Vitamin D for Baby
Your pediatrician will recommend you give your breastfed baby (and possibly your formula-fed baby) 400 IU a day of vitamin D in a supplement starting in the first few days of life. Happily, most infant vitamin drops are tasty, so many babies take them without trouble. If yours isn’t thrilled, try giving the drops right before a feeding.
If you’re a sleep-deprived momma, we’ve got great news for you! In this coming month, your baby will be starting to learn and understand the difference between night and day. Because of this, you can expect your little one to start sleeping more in the presence of darkness (typically 8-9 hours per night, although not all at once) allowing you to fall back into a little normalcy with your personal sleep routine. In total your baby will still require 14 to 17 hours of sleep over a 24-hour period, so expect him or her to also take between 3 and 5 naps during the day, too.
Your baby is probably now the expert eater, taking in a total of 12 to 36 ounces of breast milk or around 18 to 32 ounces of formula each day. Feedings should be spread out to every three to four hours or so (probably a little more spread out at night), though demand feeding is still the way to go, especially for the breastfeeding babe.
With all of the eating, your baby will be averaging a few bowel movements a day and about 8-10 pees. Note: Breastfed babies tend to poop more in volume and in frequency than formula-fed babies. You’ll also want to be sure to change frequently as the best prevention for a diaper rash is a clean, dry bottom.
Look Out for Baby Smiles!
This month is your baby beginning to smile. It’s common to see a smile in response to your voice, smile, some music or other familiar sounds that he or she may enjoy. You may find it beneficial in this time to keep note of the sounds that calm your baby so that you can recreate them when you need it most!
About 40% of babies develop infant acne, which may begin as early as 2-3 weeks of age and stick around until 5 or 6 months. In most cases, these tiny bumps are a result of your hormones still circulating through your baby’s bloodstream. Baby acne is absolutely harmless and will go away with time. We strongly recommend the avoidance of squeezing or applying any creams. You’ll simply just need to keep the areas of baby acne clean with water.
Have more questions? Our unique membership model is set up so that our patients and families have 24/7 access to their pediatrician via text, call and email so that you can always have your questions answered when you need them most. To get started with concierge pediatric care for your child, call us today at (832) 940-2262!