Your baby’s first 24 hours of life

Your baby's first 24 hours of life

You’ve undoubtedly thought about and made plans for how your labor and pushing will go, as well as any potential need for a caesarean delivery. Most people, however, do not consider what they might anticipate after the birth of their child. In most cases, it’s a flurry of various testing, procedures, copious amounts of swaddling, practicing nursing, and more. The newborn’s first 24 hours of existence will pass quickly. All parents, though, need to be aware of what to anticipate. Here are the things you can anticipate if your kid is healthy and you gave natural childbirth on the first day of life.


The initial 5 minutes following birth

The doctor will use a bulb syringe to suction your child’s mouth and nose as soon as they are delivered. Any mucus and amniotic fluid in their breathing passageway will be removed as a result. The baby is then typically placed right away on your chest by the medical professionals (if your baby is doing well). When your doctor clamps the umbilical cord (unless you want delayed cord clamping) and cuts the cord, the nurses start examining your baby (or you have your partner cut the cord). 

While they are on your chest, the nurses are evaluating the baby for the Apgar exam. And what is that? The first and fifth minutes of a baby’s life are used for the fast Apgar test. Your baby’s first-minute score tells you how well they handled giving birth, and their fifth-minute score tells you how they’re adjusting to life outside the womb. 

Babies are examined as part of the evaluation: 

  • They will check for your little one’s breathing activity 
  • They will then check your baby’s heart rate 
  • Then their muscle strength 
  • They will check if your baby has an irritation as a reflexive grimace response 
  •  Then your little one’s skin tone 

A scale from 1 to 10 is used to determine the Apgar rating. Depending on the condition seen, each of the aforementioned categories receives a score of 0, 1, or 2. The better your baby is doing after birth, the higher the score. Normal ranges are 7, 8, or 9. They are ratings that let you know your child is healthy.  Since almost all babies lose 1 point for having blue hands and feet, which is fairly normal after deliveries, hospitals will never award your baby a 10 rating. Typically, newborns that are in excellent health receive a score of 9. 

You and your loved ones in the room will gaze at and admire your newborn when your placenta is delivered. Additionally, numerous photos will be shot. If you decide to clean your baby off, the nurses will typically assist you while they calculate the Apgar scores. 


1 to 3 hours 

Many hospitals follow the “golden hour,” which permits babies to stay on the mother’s chest for the first hour of life to breastfeed and engage in skin-to-skin contact. Nurses monitor the baby’s vital signs on the mother’s chest every 15 minutes. 

During the first hour of life, some hospitals will weigh and measure your newborn. Additionally, they will give the baby an antibiotic eye ointment (erythromycin) to avoid eye infections brought on by the delivery canal. In order to prevent blood clotting issues, your kid will also receive a vitamin K shot in the thigh. They will additionally receive the Hepatitis B immunization. Your kid will receive three doses total throughout the course of its lifetime, starting with this one. Additionally, the nurses will mark their feet with ink to capture their tiny footprints. 

Note: To check on the baby’s wellbeing, your spouse should stand where the baby is. Additionally, so that your spouse can take images of your newborn. Additionally, bring a baby book so you may also record your child’s footprints in it. 

Following the conclusion of your baby’s initial testing, the nurse will wrap your child in a blanket to resemble a small burrito. They will then return the baby  to you (the mother) or your partner for them to hold. Before moving to your postpartum room, you will spend a brief period of time together in your delivery room. At the conclusion of the second- or third-hour following birth, that typically occurs. 

Put your kid on your breast  when they are rooting for the breast and making sucking expressions! The more skin-to-skin contact you have with the baby during those early days, the better. Your milk arrives more quickly as a result. 


Hours 4 to 22 

You will be learning how to care for your newborn in your postpartum room at this stage. If you require advice and assistance, your postpartum nurse will assist you with many aspects of baby care. Particularly when your babiespasses its first faeces, known as meconium, they will assist you in changing the first diaper. 

Additionally, your nurse will show you how to breastfeed or bottle-feed your child, how to swaddle them, how to take care of the umbilical cord stump, and how to give them their first bath. 

Every two to three hours, your baby will beg for or demand food. It can be challenging to breastfeed, so make an appointment with the hospital’s lactation consultant. She can make sure the baby  is receiving a healthy latch and that everything is going well. even if you believe that nursing is going perfectly fine. You should still see the lactation consultant, in my opinion. Things can change suddenly, and if they do, you’ll be so glad you had assistance. 


Hours 23 and 24 

Your baby will have been examined by your baby’s paediatrician or a staff paediatrician before the end of the first day. The doctor will check your child’s feeding and breathing, search for malformations and infection risk factors, and make sure they are healthy. Additionally, your doctor will examine your baby  for jaundice. 

High bilirubin levels in your baby’s blood result in jaundice, which causes the skin and eye whites to appear yellow. This indicates that the liver isn’t degrading the bilirubin in your baby’s system. Babies with the illness are typically sent for phototherapy, which uses a particular type of light to aid in the breakdown of bilirubin. Additionally, you’ll be urged to nurse your baby regularly so that they can pass the bilirubin through their stools. 

They will also prick your baby’s heel to check for up to 50 different metabolic illnesses, including as phenylketonuria and sickle cell anemia (PKU). Additionally, the hospital will typically circumcise your son 24 hours after his birth if you have a baby boy and choose to have him done there. (Before making this choice, do some study.) 

So, take pleasure in your newborn. Give them a lot of hugs and kisses. Treasure your family’s first day together. Take into account remaining the three of you and not having any guests. The time passes too swiftly. Whatever decision you make along the journey, be proud of yourself! Finally, after giving birth, you may hold your child in your arms. 

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