Up to the birth of our first baby, a lot of parents spend hours poring over books, reading information online, and attending classes to make sure they are ready when their little one arrives. But as most experienced parents will tell you, no matter how prepared you think you are, that new bundle of joy – and the many situations that come along with them – are going to throw you some curve balls.
Today we’re going to tackle some of the most frequently asked questions new mums have, that not everyone will necessarily tell you about.
The Mummy Tummy – Will It Ever Go Away?
The media has given us the unfair perception that our stomachs snap back to its pre-pregnancy state the instant our baby is born.
This couldn’t be further from the truth.
The average first-time mum will have a more rounded belly for at least six months, and mums who have had several pregnancies can have a rounder tummy for at least a year. If you’re at all concerned, it may be a good idea to check in with your doctor to see if you have diastasis recti, a separation of the abdominal muscles which can be contributing to your “mummy tummy”.
Co-Sleeping – Yay or Nay?
Co-sleeping is generally not recommended because it can be putting your baby in a dangerous situation. One way to keep baby safely nearby during sleep times is to invest in a bedside crib or bassinet.
Is My Baby Eating Enough?
Breastfeeding mums are often concerned about whether or not their little one is getting enough to eat. Because you can’t actually see and measure how much your baby is consuming, it’s natural to be concerned.
First and foremost, don’t count on your pump to help you determine how much your baby is getting at each feeding. Your baby is far more efficient at drawing in milk than your pump, so there’s a good chance the amount you pump is less than your baby receives when they feed.
The best determinant of whether or not your baby is getting enough is if they are continuing to gain weight and have 8 to 12 wet diapers a day. This also goes for formula-fed babies who may not be drinking the amount recommended by the pediatrician.
When Do Babies Sleep Through the Night?
Every once in a while you’ll meet a parent who gleefully boasts that their baby is already sleeping a solid 8 to 12 hours during the night. But contrary to what they may lead you to believe, these babies are few and far between.
Newborn babies typically wake up several times a night. By the time your baby reaches four to six months, they may need only one or two feedings during the night, but this isn’t always the case.
Many babies will start to “sleep through the night” or for six hours or more between nine months to a year. But then again, several will still wake up at least once when they are over the age of one.
Is It Okay for Baby to Fall Asleep at the Breast?
The main concern here is whether or not your baby is eating enough when at the breast. There are some clear signs that your baby is full, like if your baby has an alert expression at the beginning of each feed, if their suckling slows to long, drawn-out drinks, and if your breasts feel softer.
So there you have it! If you ever have concerns about the health and development of your baby, be sure to reach out to your child’s pediatrician.