Week 2

Well-visit check-ups, Immunizations and General Health

If you didn’t have your first well-baby check-up last week-good news! This is the week you’ve been waiting for. Sure you’ll get to see his or her new measurements (don’t forget to bring a pen and paper), but you’ll also have a chance to consult with a real live doctor rather than a stack of books or an online forum. However, keep in mind that there is a downside: shots.

Although the vast majority of doctors and the general public believe immunizations are a non-negotiable part of health care, it’s normal to feel a bit overwhelmed when looking at the extensive immunization schedule. Perhaps you’re wondering if any of these vaccines can cause long-term damage:

  • Talk to your doctor about the pros and cons of each vaccine, making sure you understand what exactly your child would be prevented from, and what might happen if he or she wasn’t protected. Here’s our quick guide to all of the immunizations recommended for babies – what they are, why they’re advised, and when to get them.
  • Ask your doctor about an alternative immunization schedule if you’re concerned about the amount of shots.
  • Research both sides of the story. Don’t buy into media headlines and sensational stories – actually read the literature and understand the studies that are cited.
  • Talk to friends and family about your concerns, and see how other parents have handled the situation.
  • Ultimately do whatever you think is best for your child in the long run and understand the implications of your choice.

First Doctor’s Appointment

Baby’s first doctor’s appointment very well might be your first “outing” together, as many new mothers find themselves cooped up during the first week, adjusting to the drastic lifestyle shift. Don’t worry; as difficult and depressing as it feels right now, you will once again be able to leave the house.

Here’s what to expect:

  • A weigh-in. While your baby most likely lost weight in the first few days, he or she should regain their birth weight this week.
  • Pressing on the baby’s abdominal to check internal organs; moving joints like elbows and knees for dislocation; and examining the genitals, hands and feet.
  • Moving the baby around to assess his or her muscle tone.
  • Measuring his or her heigh, weight and head circumference.
  • If you give the green light, the baby might receive the hepatitis-B vaccine if it wasn’t already given in the hospital.
  • Time to sit with the doctor to ask about any other issues or concerns you’re having.

General Health

Let’s be blunt: Taking care of a newborn is scary business, especially if it’s your first time around. Coughs, sniffles, rashes, fevers – and what? Your next doctor check-in isn’t for another month? Not to mention the gripping fear that your baby can suddenly (and mysteriously) stop breathing in his or her sleep, or that you or a caregiver might suddenly snap and accidently shake your baby. Here are the basics in keeping your little one safe and healthy:

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3 thoughts on “Caring for Your Newborn: A complete guide to the second week with your new baby

  1. Nichole Chester says:

    I notice they didn’t mention much about breast feeding. You may want to bring a pump (I have a single one that I pack) nursing pads, and nipple cream. I keep one tube of nipple cream in the bag, along with a handful of nursing pads to be on the safe side. If you are traveling… You may also want to use storage bags for milk and keep an electric bottle warmer in the car (for those times you want a break and others to feed the baby)

  2. Mrs. Kate says:

    Great post and you share good guiding tips of newborn baby care.

  3. Alexis says:

    I take issue with the point about immunizations where ou recommend “know both sides of the story” then recommend reading the literature. If you read the studies, there is only one side to the story, and that is that immunization provides the best protection against life threatening illness and is one of the major success stories of modern medicine. The SINGLE study that link immunizations to autism has since been retracted and the author admitted to fraud and falsifying results.
    This is like recommending that people know both sides of the story as to whether or not the world is round.

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