Say hello to your bundle of joy

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Information & Advice

WrittenbyParenting Clubon27th November 2008


Say hello to your bundle of joy

What a difference a day makes... what to expect on day one with your little one

Say hello to your bundle of joy

What a difference a day makes... what to expect on day one with your little one

Mum of two Zoe says

"People talk about an immediate bond but I didn't instantly feel that with my first baby; in fact it took about six months for me to really feel that I had made a connection. Everyone is different and you'll find your own way to become close."

The waiting is finally over and your beautiful baby is here. We'd bet our bottom dollar that after giving birth you're exhausted but exhilarated, overjoyed but a little apprehensive. You've spent nine months planning for this day, but exactly what happens next?

Day One can be a mix of getting to grips with the practicalities of looking after a tiny newborn and spending time getting to know each other - all while you try and catch up on some rest! Here's a taster of what to expect in those first hours.

Getting to know you

Bonding with baby

It's likely you'll have the opportunity to have skin-on-skin contact with your baby as soon as possible after delivery. Holding baby close to you will help to soothe, calm and warm them as they adjust to their new surroundings. This can be a bonding experience for new mums and it's often the time when you'll be able to breastfeed for the first time.

However, don't worry if you don't feel an instant bond with your baby, not everyone does!

Umbilical cord care

Shortly after the birth, the midwife will clamp the umbilical cord close to the baby's belly button with a plastic clip. It's then time to cut the cord and this is often something your partner will want to do so they can get involved. The cord will take about a week to dry out and drop off and you should keep the baby's navel clean and dry until this happens.


Dad-of-two Matt says

"For hours there was nothing I could do but watch and support my wife, but finally I had a role to play when I was able to cut the umbilical cord - it was a magical feeling."

Feed Me!

If you are breastfeeding, first milk (known as colostrum) will be readily available so you can give your baby their first feed. The midwife can help your baby latch on correctly as it can be tricky to start with. At this early stage your baby might want to feed every hour - it's tiring but take heart from the fact that the more they feed, the more milk you produce!

As you continue to breastfeed it's not unusual for your breasts to leak so think about getting some breast pads.

The Department of Health recommends breastfeeding exclusively for the first six months.

Testing, testing

Soon after delivery your midwife will give you a quick examination to check everything is okay and some routine tests will be carried out on your baby. These are nothing to worry about and your midwife should have discussed them already with you. These tests may include:

  • Vitamin K: Given by injection or orally, vitamin K helps assist baby's blood clotting
  • A heel prick test: To check for rare illnesses
  • Hearing test: To make sure there are no problems with hearing



Baby firsts

Mum of one Louise says

"Before I had my daughter I'd never changed a nappy in my life! It might seem daunting at first but within a really short space of time you'll be doing it with your eyes closed! Don't worry if the first one falls off, you'll have lots of opportunities to practise getting it right."

There are lots of 'firsts' with your newborn and two that come around pretty quickly are changing their nappy and bath time. If it's your first baby and you've never changed a nappy before then you're not alone!


Eventually bath time with your little one will become lots of fun but the first few times you bath your newborn you might feel a little apprehensive. Often the hospital will show you how to bath your baby so you can have a practice before you have to go it alone at home!
Here are our top tips on bathing your baby in those first few days:

  • Top and tail: You don't have to fully bath your baby every day, you can wash their face, neck, hands and bottom before bedtime this is known as - topping' and 'tailing'
  • Use cotton wool and warm water to clean your newborn
  • Choose a time when your baby is awake and content -they'll enjoy their bath time so much more!
  • Babies only need bathing two or three times a week, but if they enjoy it (and you do too!) love your bath time every day

Enjoy those amazing few hours and days with your little bundle of joy as you get to know each another and start your new family life together.



Read more like this:
Soothing strategies
Off to the land of nod
Breastfeeding experiences

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Say hello to your bundle of joy

What a difference a day makes... what to expect on day one with your little one

The waiting is finally over and your beautiful baby is here. We'd bet our bottom dollar that after giving birth you're exhausted but exhilarated, overjoyed but a little apprehensive. You've spent nine months planning for this day, but exactly what happens next?

Day One can be a mix of getting to grips with the practicalities of looking after a tiny newborn and spending time getting to know each other - all while you try and catch up on some rest! Here's a taster of what to expect in those first hours.

Getting to know you

Bonding with baby

Bonding with baby

It's likely you'll have the opportunity to have skin-on-skin contact with your baby as soon as possible after delivery. Holding baby close to you will help to soothe, calm and warm them as they adjust to their new surroundings. This can be a bonding experience for new mums and it's often the time when you'll be able to breastfeed for the first time.

However, don't worry if you don't feel an instant bond with your baby, not everyone does!

Umbilical cord care

Shortly after the birth, the midwife will clamp the umbilical cord close to the baby's belly button with a plastic clip. It's then time to cut the cord and this is often something your partner will want to do so they can get involved. The cord will take about a week to dry out and drop off and you should keep the baby's navel clean and dry until this happens.

Feed Me!

If you are breastfeeding, first milk (known as colostrum) will be readily available so you can give your baby their first feed. The midwife can help your baby latch on correctly as it can be tricky to start with. At this early stage your baby might want to feed every hour - it's tiring but take heart from the fact that the more they feed, the more milk you produce!

As you continue to breastfeed it's not unusual for your breasts to leak so think about getting some breast pads.

The Department of Health recommends breastfeeding exclusively for the first six months.

Testing, testing

Soon after delivery your midwife will give you a quick examination to check everything is okay and some routine tests will be carried out on your baby. These are nothing to worry about and your midwife should have discussed them already with you. These tests may include:

  • Vitamin K: Given by injection or orally, vitamin K helps assist baby's blood clotting
  • A heel prick test: To check for rare illnesses
  • Hearing test: To make sure there are no problems with hearing

Boots cotton wool Boots breast pads Newborn baby nappies Boots maternity pads

Baby firsts

There are lots of 'firsts' with your newborn and two that come around pretty quickly are changing their nappy and bath time. If it's your first baby and you've never changed a nappy before then you're not alone!


Eventually bath time with your little one will become lots of fun but the first few times you bath your newborn you might feel a little apprehensive. Often the hospital will show you how to bath your baby so you can have a practice before you have to go it alone at home!
Here are our top tips on bathing your baby in those first few days:

  • Top and tail: You don't have to fully bath your baby every day, you can wash their face, neck, hands and bottom before bedtime this is known as - topping' and 'tailing'
  • Use cotton wool and warm water to clean your newborn
  • Choose a time when your baby is awake and content -they'll enjoy their bath time so much more!
  • Babies only need bathing two or three times a week, but if they enjoy it (and you do too!) love your bath time every day

Enjoy those amazing few hours and days with your little bundle of joy as you get to know each another and start your new family life together.



Read more like this:
Soothing strategies
Off to the land of nod

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