The postnatal period refers to the first six weeks of a newborn’s life. At Dignity Health, a medical care provider, usually a doctor, nurse, or nurse midwife, provides postnatal care in the Sacramento region at our Family Birth Centers to ensure good health for the newborn. After you are home, you and your partner can continue your newborn’s postnatal care.
Our experienced obstetricians and staff at Dignity Health offer trusted postnatal care that is based on you and your baby’s unique needs and situation. We help mothers recover from childbirth and provide personalized care for your newborn. Find an OB near you today to see how we can support your growing family.
What to Expect from Newborn Care at Dignity Health
Postnatal care in the minutes following your baby’s birth helps our doctors evaluate any potential problems that need prompt treatment. This includes tests to measure the baby’s heart rate and breathing. Other procedures and tests will be done in the hours and days to come. Any serious issues can be promptly treated at our state-of-the-art NICUs.
Because postnatal care occurs over the course of several weeks, a provider may examine your baby in your nearest Family Birth Center, in a doctor’s office, at home, or over the phone. Proper postnatal care — from both you and your baby’s doctor — helps ensure your newborn will be happy and healthy in the days, weeks, and years to come.
What Postnatal Care Involves
Our postnatal care for the newborn immediately after birth typically includes:
- Skin-to-skin contact with the mother during the first hour of life
- Attempt at breastfeeding during the first hour of life
- Newborn screenings such as blood tests, a hearing test, and a critical congenital heart defect test
- Vaccinations and special eye drops or ointment to help prevent infection
- Complete physical checkup from the pediatrician you have chosen within the first day of life
Postnatal care in the following days and weeks includes:
- Bonding, which includes eye contact, talking and singing to your baby, and skin-to-skin contact
- Frequent diaper changes, especially right after bowel movements, and treating diaper rash with warm baths and diaper cream
- Feeding every two to three hours, and a possible lactation consultant if you’re breastfeeding and have trouble getting your baby to latch properly
- Sponge bathing until the umbilical cord falls off and until the circumcision heals, if your baby had one
- Bathing your child two or three times a week
- Well-child exams (checkups) at one week and one month after birth to provide necessary vaccinations and measure your baby’s growth and developmental milestones
As we’re dedicated to your complete well-being, you can count on Dignity Health to support you during every stage of your pregnancy, childbirth, and beyond. Ask us about our parenting classes and other resources to help prepare you for a new baby. Dignity Health Family Birth Centers provide exceptional services for postnatal care in Sacramento, CA and surrounding areas.