WHAT’S COMING NEXT?

2 WEEKS

After losing about 10% of their birth weight, most babies will regain it by 2 weeks of age.  Larger babies may out perform the smaller ones.

One of the reasons for not getting back to birth weight is prescription pain medications that breast feeding mothers may continue to take.  Babies can’t excrete these medications easily and can build up increasing blood levels.  If you need them, take them.  When you can, switch to non-prescription pain medications.

Umbilical cords commonly fall off at 2 weeks, but I will have many babies that will keep theirs until 6 weeks.  Sponge bathe until the cord comes off.  If your child happens to poop all over the cord, go ahead and clean it with soap and water.  Sponge bathing in this instance is futile.

Girls will sometimes have a mucus-like vaginal discharge that can sometimes be tinged with a small amount of blood.  When boys are circumcised without the plastic ring, there may be a small amount of pus on the foreskin.  These are normal events.  If you are not comfortable with what you see, let me take a look.

Avoiding illness is important.  Babies become ill most often when they are exposed to other people (not just kids).  Most of us grew up thinking that babies would get sick if another kid coughed on them, or shared a pacifier, etc.  Although these things happen, that is not how you and I get sick.  We may get an illness from someone who does not even have symptoms at the time that we see them.  Try to avoid contact with others and try to avoid places where people accumulate.  (Shopping centers, restaurants, parties…etc.)  If you must take your baby with you to grocery stores and other public places, go at “off hours” when crowds are not as likely.  Breast feeding, as important as it is, will not shield your baby from most viral illnesses.

Although some people will say that you shouldn’t hold your baby all the time because you will spoil them, I disagree.  If your baby is crying and he becomes calm when you hold him, it was the right thing to do.  Follow your heart on this one.

The idea that babies can soothe themselves when they are upset is like your spouse not being there for you when you are upset.

Go with your instincts.  They were given to you a long time ago and they will serve you well.  There are so many sources of advice (books, videos, classes, friends, TV talk shows) that parents sometimes won’t act on their instincts fearing that they will be criticized for not following the “expert’s” advice.   Use these other sources as a general guide only.