Dr Chua shared these handy tips with all the couples on how they can be prepared for the arrival of their newborn baby:
1. Importance of Skin-to-skin Contact
- Calms & relaxes your baby.
- Regulates your baby’s heart rate & breathing.
- You baby adapts to life outside the womb better.
- Stimulates an interest in feeding.
- Regulates your baby’s temperature.
- Stimulates hormones to support breastfeeding and mothering.
2. Importance of Sleep
Newborn babies do not understand the difference between day and night. However, parents can teach their babies how to differentiate between day and night. You can do this by talking to your baby, playing with them and keeping your house bright during the day. At night, you should keep lights dim and speak softly and calmly.
3. Having a Bedtime Routine
It is important to do the same thing each evening when preparing your baby for sleep. You should put your baby in the cot when he/she is sleepy but still awake.
You should take turns with spouse when doing the bedtime routine so that your baby sleeps when either of you put him/her to sleep.
4. Understanding Feeding Cues
There are some actions your baby would do that indicate he/she is ready to be fed. Here are some cues you might observe in your baby and what they might mean :
I. Early Cues: Interested in Feeding
Stirring, mouth opening, turning head/rooting.
II. Mid Cues- Interested in Feeding NOW
Licking, increasing movements, hand to mouth
III. Late Cues- Calm me then feed me
Crying, agitated movements, face turning red
5. Preparing Baby Carriers
When buying a baby carrier, these are some important things to take note of:
- Proper and healthy hip positioning for your baby.
- It has proper head support for your baby.
- Fabric does not cut into your baby’s face.
- In your view at all time.
- Your baby’s face, nose and mouth are uncovered.
- The carrier has broad, padded shoulder straps that go across your back and a broad waist strap.
6. Preparing a Car Seat
If you are a regular driver and plan on transporting your baby in your car, a car seat is a must-have. Here are some key pointers you need to keep in mind:
- Secure the car seat well.
- Holding or placing your baby on your lap is NOT SAFE.
- The safest place for your baby’s car seat is the back seat away from active airbags.
- Ensure the car seat is well-padded.
- A rear-facing car seat is recommended for newborns.