Baby! Now What?


Pediatricians

Newborn Baby holding hand

Have you chosen your pediatrician yet? Most physicians are chosen based on professional qualifications and reputation in the community. The best place to begin is by asking for recommendations from your Ob provider or obstetrician, family, and friends. Many pediatricians would be happy to schedule a consultation with you prior to delivery. When choosing a pediatrician, consider the following:

Are they on your health care insurance plan?
Is their office accessible to you – in proximity and with office hours?
Do you have similar philosophies about health issues such as vaccinations, preventive medicine, and family relationships?


Car Seat Information

If you have a vehicle made after September 2002, it should be equipped with the new LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children) car seat attachment system. This new anchor system makes safety seats easier to install because you no longer need to use seat belts to secure them. In a 30-mph crash, children may be thrown forward with a force equal to thirty times their own weight. In the case of a 10-pound infant, a crash could cause the infant to be hurled forward with a force equal to falling from a three-story building! Don't forget to buckle up!

More Information:

AAP's Family Car Seat Guide
Kentucky Car Seat Safety Inspection Stations

Child in car seat

SIDS Prevention

Babies who sleep on their stomachs are much more likely to die of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) than babies who sleep on their backs. To reduce your risk of SIDS, always place your baby on his or her back to sleep, for naps and at night. Place your baby on a firm sleep surface, such as on a Consumer Product Safety approved crib mattress. Never place your baby on pillows or sheepskins. Don't let your baby sleep on a couch or soft mattress. Don't overheat the baby during sleep. Do not allow smoking around your baby. "Tummy time" when the baby is awake will reduce the chance of molding of the baby's head.

More Information:

sids.org

Postpartum Depression

For most women having a baby is an exciting time. Although after childbirth many mothers feel sad, angry, afraid, or anxious. Most new mothers, about 70-80% have these feelings in a mild form called postpartum blues or sometimes called "baby blues." The baby blues are a passing state of heightened emotions. Postpartum blues almost always go away in a few days.

About 10% of new mothers have a greater problem called postpartum depression. Postpartum depression is more intense and lasts longer. Women with postpartum depression have strong feelings of sadness, anxiety, trouble sleeping, tearfulness, fatigue, appetite problems, suicidal thoughts or impaired concentration. It often requires counseling and treatment. Postpartum depression can occur after any birth, not just the first.

Find out more about Postpartum depression.