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Childbirth and adjusting to motherhood are two of the most transformative moments in a woman’s life. The last thing a Momma needs is to deal with things she could’ve previously prepared for. Especially, if those things have the potential to negatively impact her motherhood journey. Looking back on my journey, there were 5 major things to know before bringing baby home that could’ve made a world of difference. Those 5 things would have prevented a lot of stress and anxiety at the beginning of my motherhood journey.
I created a list to save the next Momma the unnecessary stress. Hopefully it will help prepare you for a smooth transition into motherhood. Check out the list below:
5 Major Things to Know Before Bringing Baby Home
1. Mini Menses
This is something you’d have to keep in mind if you are expecting a baby girl. While prepping to leave the birthing center, my midwife briefly told me to expect to see blood and mucus for at least 3-5 days. This information completely took me by surprise. Imagine my reaction had I not known at all.
Infant girls experience mini menstruation due to excess hormones exiting their bodies. I think this is important to know because there will be extra care involved to maintain proper hygiene. If Dad or any other males will be helping with diaper changes, they might need help to understand the process and how to properly clean them.
Another thing to consider is additional hormones possibly prolonging the amount of time the baby’s body takes to filter. I decided to encapsulate my placenta and consume it after birth. Since I was giving my baby girl breastmilk, the excess hormones made the process slower.
Soon after bringing home baby, you might notice small, firm lumps on your baby’s breast. Don’t worry Mama, nothing is wrong with your baby. This is just another side effect of excess hormones exiting the body.
Engorgement is important to be aware of because, like I previously mentioned, adding extra hormones might prolong the filtering process. This is also important to know because in some circumstances, the baby’s breast may be tender and uncomfortable. You might have to educate others on the proper way to hold the baby while their bodies are regulating. You can also avoid the crying and fussiness that may follow.
Knowing this would have saved me a world of worry and additional calls to my Midwife (Sorry Tasha!). In the case that your baby’s engorgement doesn’t go down within a few days to a week, or they are leaking milk from their breast (Yes, that happens too!) you will want to contact your health care provider.
3. Baby Acne
Another potential consequence of excess hormones, is baby acne. This can be worrisome when you are unaware of what it is. Most baby acne goes away on its own and is nothing to worry about. However, depending on how severe your baby’s acne is, you may need to get doctors and specialists involved.
It can help to prepare for baby acne because there are factors that may cause baby acne to hang around longer, or even make it worse. Those factors can range from diet, allergies, topical products being put on baby’s skin, or even laundry detergent used to clean their clothing.
Creating a skin-care regimen and using the 5 products below, helped to quickly get rid of my baby girl’s acne:
Night- Wet baby’s face with a warm micro-fiber cloth. Put small amount of cleanser on cloth and lather onto baby’s face. Let sit for a few seconds to a minute. Wash off using micr-fiber cloth. Using a cotton swab, spread micellar water on baby’s face. Let dry completely. Rub Aveeno cream on baby’s face.
Morning- Use different, clean micro-fiber cloth to wet baby’s face. Use cotton swab to spread Micellar water on baby’s face. Let dry completely. Rub Aveeno cream on baby’s face.
Jaundice is the yellowing of the skin and eyes caused by the buildup of bilirubin in the blood. It occurs in many healthy newborns. Although infant jaundice is quite common, it can still be kind of scary if it is your first time experiencing it.
When your baby is jaundiced it is important to know exactly what it is because it can affect more than just your baby. Your baby will sleep more while their livers are working hard to filter out the excess bilirubin; waking them can be very hard. As a result of this, they might not eat as much, causing weight issues. Not eating often can cause them to lose their latch. If you are breastfeeding and your baby doesn’t latch well it can tank your milk supply or cause engorgement, or worse, mastitis.
Planning for jaundice can help you prepare properly. There will be extra doctor’s appointments, especially in the case that jaundice effects your baby’s liver and there will be heel sticks, which can hard for some parents. It is also a good idea to have a plan B to maintain your breast milk supply if you are adamant about keeping your baby on breast milk. There may be a need for lactation consultations to reestablish your baby’s latch.
5. Lip-tie, Tongue-tie & Cheek-Tie
All three of these conditions are oral restrictions that can affect your baby’s ability to latch while breastfeeding. If your baby has one or all of these conditions it may not show when they first latch after birth, which can make it hard identify if you are completely unaware of what it is.
It can help to know of these three conditions because in order to correct them, your baby will have to get a procedure done by an Oral Surgeon. Depending on the type of insurance you have, these procedures may or may not be fully covered, which can make correcting these issues very expensive. It can help to talk with your insurance company beforehand and creating a savings fund before your delivery, as to minimize the stress and worry that may come along with dealing with these oral limitations.
I don’t want to fail to mention that these oral issues can affect more than just your baby’s latch, it can affect their speech and their bite as well. It is worth the extra effort researching and preparing for.
If your plan B consists of pumping, check out this post to help you maintain a healthy supply:
There you have it, Momma, the 5 major things to know before bringing baby home. I hope bringing attention to these things will help make your new motherhood journey less stressful by allowing you to properly prepare, mentally and financially. If ever the journey gets to feel a bit overwhelming, try practicing positive affirmations.
Not sure where to begin?
Is there something you wish you would’ve known before bringing home your baby? Help another Momma out by letting us know in the comments below!