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May 28

9 Common Questions from New Parents

Photo of newborn baby feet

Common questions from new parents with answers from our Pediatric Providers Paula D. Brenn, MD, FAAP and Atley Aaron, CRNP, MSN, CPN.

  1. When will the umbilical cord fall off? Usually the cord will fall off within the first 2 weeks of life. Until it falls off, it is important to keep the cord clean and dry.
  2. How should I dress my baby? The general rule of thumb is to dress your baby in 1 layer more than what you are wearing. If you are going outside, it is also beneficial to put a hat on the baby since their head is proportionally larger to the rest of their body.
  3. Can my baby sleep with me? Unfortunately, no. In order to keep your baby safe and decrease the risk of SIDS/suffocation, it is recommended that your baby sleep alone in their crib. It is also recommended that a baby always sleep on their back with nothing else in the crib, other than a firm mattress.
  4. How do I know if my baby is getting enough breast milk/formula? You will know your baby is hydrated by the number of wet urine diapers you change daily. After the first few days of life, your baby should be having at least 4-6 good wet diapers daily.
  5. How often should my newborn be feeding? Breast milk is the best food for babies but if not possible for any number of reasons, then standard infant formulas are an excellent choice.  Newborn infants will feed up to 12 times per day, or at least every 2-3 hours.  This is usually consistent with “whenever they want to” or on-demand feeding.
  6. Is my newborn sleeping too much? Most infants will sleep up to 3-4 hours at a time and wake up to feed naturally.  They will have some awake and alert periods but will generally sleep up to 16 hours per day and that is completely normal.
  7. Does my baby need vitamins? Breast feeding babies are given a supplement of Vitamin D because breast milk does not give enough of it.  Formula fed infants do not require any supplement because the formula is fortified with all the vitamins needed.
  8. Can I take my baby outside? After the initial newborn period, we encourage you to take your baby outside for walks to enjoy the fresh air and the outside sights and sounds,  dressing your baby in one more layer than you are wearing.  We always encourage you to avoid crowds or large gatherings of course.
  9. When does my baby start getting vaccines? The initial vaccine is usually given in the newborn nursery, and we start the regular sets of infant vaccines in our office at the 2-month visit.  At each following visit, we always inform you and schedule an appointment for the next set.

Learn more about our pediatrics team.