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How to Help Baby Transition From Womb to World

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At birth, your baby moves from the warm, snug and secure confines of the womb into the outside world.

This change of venue is not a small thing and most babies have some degree of acclimation to make after birth.

Welcome your little one to the world by making the transition to life outside the womb smooth, calm and gentle.

 

Things You’ll Need

  • Swaddling blanket
  • Swing or bouncy seat

 

How to Help Baby Transition From Womb to World

How to Help Baby Transition From Womb to World

1. Hold your baby as much as possible in the initial days after birth, advises midwife Suzanne Colson, writing for Midwifery Today. Hold your newborn against your chest so her body molds into the curves of your body to provide strong and beneficial nurturing. Holding your baby close also provides warmth and even “shared breathing,” which can help regulate a newborn’s breathing.

2. Allow your baby to breastfeed as often and as long as she desires. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months. Skin-to-skin contact and sucking helps to stimulate milk supply in the mother and helps establish a strong bond between mother and baby.

3. Swaddle your baby to help keep him warm and secure. Swaddling helps babies calm down, especially in the first days after birth when babies don’t have effective self-soothing skills. Wrap a blanket snugly around your newborn to keep his arms from flailing, advises the Birthways website. Keep the blanket loose enough to enable you to insert two fingers between the blanket and his chest. Do not swaddle your baby’s lower body as a tight wrap around the hips could cause injury, cautions the AAP.

4. Minimize stimulation and activity around your newborn in the first days after birth. The stark contrast between the warm and quiet womb and the bright and noisy world can be overwhelming for newborns, advises psychologist Laura Markham, with the Aha! Parenting website. To minimize your baby’s stress from overstimulation, keep your home quiet and dim the lights in the early days.

5. Use movement to soothe your newborn, advises professor of psychology Darcia Narvaez, writing for Psychology Today. The womb provided natural movement for your unborn as you moved throughout the day and night. Simulate some of this movement by rocking your newborn or by holding her and swaying gently. Place your baby in a swing or a vibrating bouncy seat to also provide soothing movement.

 

Outside the Womb

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