Top 10 Questions Asked by Expectant Parents
1) How quickly after we leave the hospital do we need to see our pediatrician?
We generally see newborns 2-3 days after you leave
the hospital. The pediatrician who sees your baby at the hospital will advise you how quickly you need to follow up the day you go home.
2) What tests does the baby need while in the hospital?
In the hospital, newborns have a hearing test, a test for jaundice (called transcutaneous bilirubin,) and a test that checks the amount of oxygen in the infant’s blood to screen for congenital heart disease. If the infant is born early, he or she will also have a “car seat test” to make sure they fit safely into an infant car seat.
In addition to some very small onesies, swaddle blankets, diapers, wipes, and a bassinet, we have a few other items we recommend having on hand when you bring your newborn home: an ointment, such as Aquaphor or Vaseline, nasal saline drops, unscented detergents and soaps, a rectal thermometer and some slow flow bottles.
4. What is the vaccine schedule?
Your newborn’s first vaccine will be Hepatitis B, usually administered in the first 48 hours after birth. There are a group of vaccines given at 2, 4, and 6 months that protect your infant from the following: Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis, Polio, Haemophilus Influenza B, Pneumococcus, and Rotavirus.
In the beginning, we see our patients very frequently. As stated above, the first visit is 2-3 days after leaving the hospital. The next visit is at two weeks, although often we will see the infant at some point between. We then see the baby monthly until they reach four months.
All of the providers at MVP are well equipped to give good breastfeeding advice and support. We also work with a lactation consultant when necessary. With your first baby, it can take 4-5 days for breastmilk to come in; while in the hospital, work with the lactation consultant to make sure your infant is latching well. Once home, keep track of the wet diapers and bowel movements so your pediatrician can have a good idea of how much the baby is eating those first few days. Every person has a different experience with breastfeeding – the providers at MVP are here for you even before your first visit, so please reach out if you are having difficulties with breastfeeding, and we will give you personalized advice as needed.
Infants with fever are usually very fussy and not eating well. Sometimes they are lethargic and difficult to arouse. They often feel warm to the touch. If you are concerned we recommend taking a rectal temperature. It is important you call your pediatrician for any temperature > 100 or < 97.6.
Every practice is different, but most have some sort of answering service or nursing service that screens calls and gets in touch with an on call provider as needed. At MVP there is always a physician or nurse practitioner on-call after hours. For non-urgent matters, you can message us via email or our patient portal. During the day we are always responding to phone messages, portal messages, and emails.
For the first two months of the infant’s life you want to be very careful. Avoid anyone who is sick and any large crowds or gatherings. That being said, you should feel comfortable going for walks or popping into a coffee shop as needed.
Usually, around 3-4 months of age,qu the infant will start sleeping in slightly larger chunks (4-6 hours at a time.) The providers at MVP are always happy to hop on a telehealth call to discuss sleep training if that is something your family is interested in discussing.