Home Sweet Home
Going home is exciting, but for new parents it can also seem like a pretty daunting task. Birthways offers classes and extensive resources for parents, including breastfeeding support and First Nurse, a free 24/7 call service staffed by registered nurses for those middle of the night questions that may arise.
Below we’ve picked a few topics that may help you along the way. We’ve also created a Frequently Asked Questions page for things not mentioned below.
Bringing baby home
Infant and child car seats can save your baby’s life, so it’s important that you follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for the seat you’ve chosen when it comes to installation procedures. Remember that infants should be placed in rear-facing car seats, and a rear-facing car seat should never be placed in the passenger seat. You can read more about car seat requirements and proper positioning of your baby in our Child Car Seats article.
"All the ladies are so nice there. I just love it.
They treat you with respect and are understanding.
They do whatever you need."
- Aime, Birthways mom
Keeping baby healthy
There are a number of reasons your new baby should be vaccinated against diseases, but we know that questions may still arise, so feel free to read up on Questions Parents Ask about immunizations. We also know that the number of immunizations a new baby needs can be a little overwhelming, and hard to keep track of. Your doctor will help you, but the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has also put out an immunization schedule to help you with what each vaccine is for and when your baby should have it.
Keeping baby safe
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) is a concern for all parents of newborns. It’s unexpected and sudden, and typically cannot be explained. There are, however, some things you can do to keep your baby safe while they sleep, which you can read about in our article on SIDS.
Birthways also sends you home with what’s called a sleep sack. It swaddles your baby and keeps them warm. It also replaces loose blankets in their crib, so it keeps them safe too!
The next six weeks
The period after you give birth, the postpartum period, is an exciting time. While you are getting to know your new baby, your body is recovering from pregnancy and birth. As you care for your baby during this time, you also need to know what changes to expect in your body and remember to care for yourself.
More than baby blues
It’s completely normal for you to feel tired and overwhelmed when you get home, but postpartum depression (PPD) is different. It seems to be caused by changes in hormones, and the stress of a new baby can also play a role. It’s nothing to be ashamed of, in fact nearly 15% of women suffer from PPD at one time or another. The important thing is that you seek help if you suspect you are suffering from it. Learn more about the causes and the symptoms of PPD.
Your brainy baby
Raising Readers, Mary Greeley Medical Center's early literacy program, partners with a variety of local organizations to promote reading and language skills in young children. A Raising Readers volunteer visits each new mom in the Birthways unit to enroll families in the free program. Families receive a Books for Babies bag provided by the Ames Public Library, which includes a board book for the baby and information about library and parenting resources.
Wondering what percentile your baby is in for height and weight? Curious as to what they’ll be doing at 3 months? Or 6 months? Our Infant & Child Calculators have your answers!