Need to talk to us?
What can we help you find?
2014 Washington Street
Newton, MA 02462
Open 24 hoursLab Hours and Holiday Hours Vary
307 W Central St
Natick, MA 01760
159 Wells Ave
Newton Centre, MA 02459
111 Norfolk Street
Walpole, MA 02081maps
978 Worcester Road (rte 9)
Wellesley, Massachusetts 02482
Open 24 hours
Lab Hours and Holiday Hours Vary
25 Washington Street
Wellesley, Massachusetts 02481
9 Hope Ave
Waltham, MA 02453
Monday through Saturday: 9:00 am to 7:00 pm
Sunday: 9:00 am to 2:00 pm
Lab Hours and Holiday Hours Vary
When Should I Make My Baby’s First Follow-up Appointment?
Your baby should be seen by a health care provider within 1-3 days of discharge from the hospital.
When Do I Call for Advice or Help?
This is a question new parents frequently ask. When your baby is new, the answer is to call whenever you find yourself worried. In time, you learn to trust your feelings and will know when things are not right with your baby. While you’re in the hospital, nursing and physician staff welcomes your questions. When you go home, please call your baby’s physician.
Care of the Umbilical Cord and Fingernails
After delivery, you will see a clamp on your baby’s umbilical cord. This plastic clamp will be removed by your baby’s nurse 24 hours after delivery.
Care of the umbilical cord in the postpartum period includes effective hand washing and keeping the cord dry and exposed to air or loosely covered with clean clothes, with the diaper folded below the umbilicus. If the umbilical cord stump becomes soiled with urine or feces, then cleansing the area with water is adequate.
As the cord dries and begins to fall off, you may note a small amount of dark red blood on the baby’s diaper or shirt. Call your baby’s doctor if the cord continues to bleed, has yellow-green discharge and a foul odor or your baby has a fever or seems sick.
The best time to trim your baby’s nails is when he or she is asleep. Sometimes the nail end detaches without being clipped and can be easily pulled away. An infant sized emery board works well.
Bathing Your Baby
Newborns generally do not become very dirty. Bathing is primarily a time of enjoyment for the family and a time for happy interaction with your baby. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends only sponge baths until your baby’s umbilical cord falls off.
For cleanliness, we recommend that you wash your baby’s bottom with plain warm water every time you change the diaper. Wash your baby’s face with warm water whenever it’s dirty and shampoo hair two or three times a week. As long as these areas are kept clean, a complete bath can be done as frequently or infrequently as you and your baby wish. If your baby loves the bathing experience, it can be a daily ritual. If your baby is not happy bathing initially, skip it for a few days and try again. A full bath once a week is sufficient for cleanliness.
You may find the following ideas helpful at bath time:
It is not necessary to adjust the temperature of your home when your baby arrives. A helpful guideline in general is to dress your baby in one more layer than you are wearing.
You may use mild soaps, detergents, bleaches, and softeners when washing your baby's clothing. The key is thorough rinsing. You may need to the runt he clothing through an extra rinse cycle. Fabric softeners may reduce the absorbency on home-laundered diapers.
Immunizations are now available to treat almost any “childhood disease.” The benefits of immunization are much greater than the possible risks of the vaccines for almost all people. Because these vaccines are so effective, it is easy to forget how serious the diseases they prevent are. For instance:
Discuss with your baby’s physician the availability of new vaccines.
Massachusetts State Law requires that every child be immunized before entering school and daycare centers. Your baby may receive the first of three hepatitis B shots while in the hospital. The remaining immunizations are available at your baby’s well-baby checkups, at the local health department, or at a community clinic.
The possible risks or side effects of each immunization will be explained to you at the time your baby receives each vaccine. Risks vary, but can include such symptoms as soreness at the injection site, fever, and fussiness.
Keep an accurate record of all the vaccines your baby has received. This record will be necessary if you place your baby in daycare and when your child begins school and even college. This is also a good time to get your own immunizations up to date. As an adult, you will need to have a tetanus-diphtheria booster (Td) every 10 years.
When awake and under adult supervision, place your baby on his or her tummy to avoid the development of a flat spot on the back of the head. This positioning also facilitates good neck muscle rotation and tone and stimulates the development of prone motor skills. Toys and other stimulating objects can be placed in the infant’s field of view to encourage turning his or her head from side to side. You can begin this activity right after birth. Check with your provider.
Pacifiers are only used upon a parents’ request. Each time your baby signals that he or she is hungry, we will encourage you to feed your baby rather than delay a feeding by using a pacifier. When feeding goes well, you are less likely to have problems with engorgement or to have a baby with poor weight gain and jaundice. Some babies still want to suck even following a good feeding. Using a clean pacifier could be an option once feeding is going well and the baby is gaining weight.
Calming and Caring for Baby
Babies cry for good reasons. Crying is your baby’s way of letting you know he or she has reached their limit. Unfortunately, we don’t always understand this form of communication. Common things to check are: hunger, gas, too hot/too cold, and simply needing attention.
Ways to comfort your baby:
Also, just because something didn’t work last time or half an hour ago doesn’t mean it won’t work now. After a while, both you and baby will develop favorite calming methods. At times, you may need to take care of yourself to take care of the baby. If the baby is still crying after trying everything, you could make the baby as happy and safe as possible, and give yourself ten minutes alone in the shower or with your favorite music. Every member of the family needs to help you. Take turns trying to comfort baby. Sometimes, a new person doing the same thing can help calm baby.
Remember, your baby has come a long way from the warm and completely comforting womb. Touching, talking, holding, rocking, cuddling, and stroking are forms of communication. They tell your baby that you care.
Sleep and Positioning
The SAFE TO SLEEP campaign was developed by multiple professional organizations including the NIH (National Institutes of Health) and AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics). During your stay at Newton-Wellesley Hospital, our maternity team will also be sharing and reinforcing this information.
AAP: Safe Sleep Environment for Your Infant
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommendation for safe sleep
Initial Sleeping Habits
Very few babies sleep through the night during their first months of life. Try not to make sleeping through the night your number one objective. Also, don’t compare your baby’s sleep habits to your neighbor’s baby.
With few exceptions, babies need to be fed several times at night to get adequate calories for growth. Recognize night feedings as normal behavior for infants. Gradually, night sleep lengthens as your baby matures.
Helping Your Baby to Sleep:
Taking Your Baby’s Temperature - Is There a Fever?
Many pediatricians will ask you for a rectal temperature reading if you think your baby is sick. Do not use ear thermometers in infants under six months of age. They are not accurate.
How to Take a Rectal Temperature:
When to Call Your Baby's Physician
Discharge Phone Calls
Following discharge from the hospital, you may receive a phone call from one of our nursing staff. The purpose of this call is to find out how you are doing, how your stay was, and to ask if there is anything we can do to improve our services. If you are having difficulties of any kind the staff will refer you to the appropriate resource. The hospital will also seek your comments through a mailed survey, which we hope you will take a few minutes to complete and return. Our goal is to provide excellent care. To do so we need your honest evaluation of our services.
2014 Washington Street
Newton, MA 02462 Get Directions
to analyze our web traffic. For more information about these cookies and the data