Whether you're a new parent, or a proud aunt or uncle, it can be intimidating to hold a tiny, fragile bundle of baby - especially if you haven’t spent a lot of time around newborns. Don't worry, not every new parent automatically knows what to do! Researching what to expect when you bring your new baby home can ease your anxiety and give you peace of mind as you bond with your new baby. Childbirth classes may cover the basics of breastfeeding and newborn care, and if you'd like more detailed classes about new baby care, you can often find separate classes near you or online.
Here are a few basic steps to help you and your loved ones grow more comfortable:
- Always wash your hands before touching your little one – and make sure friends and family do, too!
- Supporting the baby’s head and neck is key. When cradling a newborn, allow the crook of your arm to act as support. When holding upright, be careful to keep the head and neck area supported with your hand, while your arm scoops up the baby’s bottom.
- Always be extremely careful! Do not shake or move around too quickly while holding a newborn. Sitting while holding the baby is often a safe way to avoid any risk of an accident. ‘Newborn’ is not an age ready for rough play – no jiggling or being thrown up into the air.
- Make sure your baby is securely fastened while traveling – whether it be in a carrier, stroller or car seat. Try to limit rides that can cause too much bouncing.
- Keep them comfortable! You may be asking yourself "why is my baby crying?" A newborn baby can cry for many reasons, but always check to make sure their clothing, diapers and body position are all in a comfortable state. If you have questions about diapering your baby, please consult our diaper fit guide.
- When handling a newborn, be calm and confident. You’ve got this.
Any tips you’ve found helpful when adjusting to a new baby at home? We’d love to hear them!
On a mission to create a more healthy, sustainable, and equitable world for the next seven generations and beyond.