With contractions comes the breaking of your water, launching you into a whole new level, a change in status. It is a joyous feeling, family and friends around, giving their support.
Honestly, taking care of a newborn could seem overwhelming, the fragility, the tenderness. That is why we love the African culture, “ we have what is called ‘omuguo’ and ‘olójòjò’ in the Igbo and Yorùba land respectively, in Nigeria.
This is where the wife’s mother or mother-in-law comes to stay with the couple for at least a month. This is in order to assist the new mother take care of her newborn till they believe she is strong enough to carry on, on her own.
This is a wonderful period, where all you need to do is sleep, eat, breastfeed your baby, do some little exercises around the house and watch your mum take care of you and your baby.
You have been taught a lot at the hospital coupled with research. The difference is, they handling the child gives you so much confidence that you can do it as well.
Child care is a delicate job, women get really nervous when it comes to the umbilical cord. Once a child is born, and the umbilical cord is cut, there is a part left still attached to the baby which is supposed to fall off on its own.
How well you care for this, takes off any risk of your newborn getting an infection.
The following tips will help:
• Avoid taking it off, it is meant to fall off on its own. It could start to bleed if you take it out forcefully. Leave it be.
• Avoid covering it up with the baby’s diaper. Once you put the newborn’s diaper on, you could fold the top of the diaper in so as to not cover the cord. Also, wear the newborn free clothing.
• Keep umbilical stump dry always.
• Do not use soap or alcohol to wash, clean cord with a wet washcloth, and dab dry with a clean cloth.
When caring newborns, one needs to be observant as well, so when you notice an unusual change in your baby’s body or behaviour, you can report to your doctor immediately.