When new mothers have their baby often friends and families’ reactions (not intentionally) are to spoil the precious newborn and to forget about mum herself. This Christmas, why not be that friend or family member that makes mum feel special too? Below are some ideas of what you could do or buy. Pamper hamper for the new mum Why not buy a luxury hamper packed with decadent goodies to help ‘mum’ feel special? Or you could do it yourself – buy a basket and fill it with special items such as a luxury bath robe, toiletries and things you know that they love. Alternatively pay for mum to have a massage, and babysit whilst they go! DIY ‘helper’ certificates for new mums All new mums like to be helped (even if they say they are ok!), so why not give vouchers for services that you will do or have someone else do such as a cleaning voucher, babysitting duties, pedicure, and cooking? Any new mum would be very appreciative of this gesture. Give the new mum something sentimental There are lots of personalised items available to buy that would make lovely keepsakes for a new mum such as a nice necklace with baby’s birth date and name on or birth posters, photobooks. I found some great ideas on Pinterest – see here. Hair makeover for new mums For those mums that are not really into massages and pedicures a hairdressing voucher is another great and functional idea to give as a gift giving mum a new hair cut and some pampered time. Food delivery Cooking especially in the first few weeks is not usually on the radar for many new mums as there is so much else going on, so a great present if you aren’t a lover of cooking is to send food via a food delivery service such as UberEats or Foodora.
Whilst looking after your new bundle of joy is crucial after giving birth – so is looking after yourself. Each pregnancy and birth will be very different, and your body will react differently as it gets back to normal. It is important to give yourself time to recover. In this post you will find some helpful information on how to recover after the birth of your baby. Physical changes to your body Giving birth is not like the Hollywood films show it, and once your baby is born your stomach does not immediately shrink back to what it was. It can take time. Your uterus will contract for a number of days after the birth, especially each time baby feeds. This may cause some discomfort, and it can take up to 8 weeks for it to shrink to its pre-pregnancy size, so do not be concerned or feel pressured to get your weight down too quickly as it is not safe and not healthy to do so in the weeks after giving birth. In addition, depending on how you gave birth will depend on the recovery and period of time. If you had a natural birth, you will probably find that your recovery is much quicker than if you had a severe perineal tear or caesarean section, and your mobility and general ability to do day-to-day activities may be longer after a caesarean. You may also find that in the first few days after giving birth when your milk ‘comes in’ that you may experience tender breasts which can be treated using ice packs or a warm shower. Body discomforts Haemorrhoids can be experienced during and after pregnancy. These haemorrhoids can cause significant discomfort. They can be treated with witch hazel or cream that you will be able to get from your local pharmacy. Alternatively chat to your Obstetrician who will be able to provide alternative recommendations if needed. Constipation is another common side effect of giving birth. Pear juice is a great option to help keep the bowels moving, as well as drinking plenty of water and a fairly […]
Congratulations on the new addition(s) to your family. You’ve been through (up to) 9 months of pregnancy, and you’ve just had your baby. Here’s what to expect next broken down into some simple points: Straight after the birth You might get the shakes Many women get uncontrollable shakes after the birth which are a result of your body’s hormones and/or the anaesthetic. They tend to go away within a few minutes, but this is all perfectly normal. Spend time with your baby It is at this time that you will be able to spend some intimate time with your baby. This is actually the time that they will be the most alert, so it’s a great time for skin to skin time and to start to try breastfeeding as this helps the uterus to start contracting and to help reduce any bleeding. Your obstetrician or midwife may also massage your belly to ensure that your uterus is contracting well, and check on any vaginal bleeding. You may experience contraction-like pains for the first couple of days after the birth, especially whilst breastfeeding and if you are a first-time mother. This is all perfectly normal. Stitches Vaginal and perineal tears can occur during the birth. Your Obstetrician will perform any stitches needed just after the birth before you go back to the maternity ward. The sutures are absorbable and will dissolve over a couple of weeks, and do not need to be removed. Checks Your baby’s Apgar score will be recorded after the birth to check their overall well-being. Your baby may be given vitamin K and Hepatitis B injections with your consent. Hospital stay The duration of your hospital stay may depend on how your birth was and whether it was a natural birth or Caesarean birth. The midwives will help and advise you on how to breastfeed, and give you some tips on looking after your baby. This is a good time to get help with getting your baby to sleep and in a routine whilst surrounded with help. You may notice a few things with you and your […]
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) (or cot death as it is also known) is the sudden unexpected and unexplained death of a baby aged between 4 weeks – 1 year. It generally happens when a baby is asleep in its sleep environment. In 2013 in Australia 117 babies died suddenly, and of those deaths 54 were identified as SIDS. Despite these deaths, SIDS is rare and the risk of your baby dying from it is low. The cause of SIDS is unknown but the risks can be reduced by: Using a cot that meets Australian and New Zealand standards AS/NZS 2172:2003, and not co-sleeping with your baby or on a sofa, armchair or letting them sleep in a rocker Not smoking whilst pregnant or after the baby is born, and not letting your baby be in an area where someone else is smoking Keeping all toys, blankets (tucked in half way down the body is ok), pillows away from where the baby is sleeping. Practise safe wrapping techniques or use a sleep suit to keep your baby nice and snug. Red Nose has a great brochure on safe wrapping Not putting a baby to sleep on its tummy or side Keeping the area where your baby is sleeping nice and cool, and not too hot Keeping your baby in your room where you can keep an eye on them when they are very young Breastfeeding your baby, whilst this is not always possible this is another practise that is potentially shown to reduce the risk of SIDS Not letting your baby sleep in an area near to pets or other children If you have any concerns whatsoever do not hesitate to speak to your Obstetrician to discuss further. For more information about SIDS visit the Red Nose website (formerly SIDS and Kids)
Preparing for your new baby arrival is a fun time, and some pregnant women go into their ‘nesting’ phase getting everything ready before baby arrives. Depending on your personal preference, it might be a very simple set up you want to go with, or if you are a bit more extravagant – it can be a real quest to create the “perfect nursery”. Below are some ideas/tips that you might want to consider: Change table A change table and equipment to change your baby, as well as get rid of things such as nappies, are important to have on hand when setting up your baby nursery. If that is where you are going to be changing your baby then this needs to be in your nursery. Change tables can be bought very cheaply from stores such as Target and Big W or specialist baby shops, and often have shelves underneath the table where you can store all your essentials such as wipes, nappies and nappy rash cream, etc. Nappy bin If you are using disposable nappies then it is really handy to have a bin to put them in near to your change table. The pedestal ones can work a treat. There are more sophisticated nappy disposal systems if you want to spend more money. Black out curtain Once your baby is in their own room it may take a little while for them to settle, and being in a bright room can keep them awake, so consider investing in a black-out curtain or buying some material that when put over the curtain makes the room completely dark. Electric candles/light Sounds silly but having a dimmed light/candle is a really useful thing when needing to check on your baby in a dark room but not wanting to disturb them. The electric candles such as the Enjoy Candles brand are great as they are low light but give you enough to see and not disturb your baby, or alternatively a small portable LED light would do the same. Feeding chair A nice comfortable chair is a great idea for the nursery […]