Being a new parent can be scary, and it’s important to be aware of the care that your newborn is receiving so there are no surprises.

What to expect shortly after your baby is born

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Regardless of what hospital you choose for your delivery, there’s standard care that your newborn baby will receive during their stay. Being a new parent can be scary, and it’s important to be aware of the care that your newborn is receiving so there are no surprises.

There are also some things that newborns do - like hiccupping or sneezing - that may seem odd or worrisome to new parents. Rest assured: Most of these behaviors are completely normal. But, don’t hesitate to ask your healthcare provider questions if you have concerns. We’re here to answer all of your questions, no matter how small or strange, to relieve any anxiety you may be having as a new parent.

Care that Your Baby Will Receive in the Hospital After Delivery

  • All babies are born with low levels of Vitamin K, so newborns will receive a shot of Vitamin K shortly after delivery. This helps the baby’s blood clot and prevents bleeding due to Vitamin K deficiency.
  • Your provider will rub antibiotic ointment in their eyes - this is simply to kill germs.
  • Your newborn will likely need to go into the nursery up to three times a day, so nurses can check vital signs and do daily weight checks.
  • The provider will also come by daily to check on the baby - this is the best time to ask questions, and as a new parent you’re sure to have a few.
  • Your baby will get a heel stick prick and blood work will be sent to the lab to test for jaundice levels as well as any other diseases.
  • Before discharge, a hearing screen will be performed and your doctor will also recommend a hepatitis B vaccine.

Newborns do some things that seem odd to us. Don’t worry; it’s normal.

  • Newborns will hiccup a lot, even through a feeding. This just helps them move gases around and is completely normal.
  • Babies have small nostrils, but they make a normal amount of mucus - so they all sound congested.
  • Infants may also sneeze quite a bit, which helps keeps their bronchial tubes clear.
  • Your baby’s skin may peel. This is because their body is making new skin. You’ll be tempted to put lotion on your baby, but this isn’t necessary as their skin should clear up naturally in about two weeks.


About the Author

Dr. Graham has years of experience providing comprehensive care to infants, children and teenagers. He is focused on each child’s development and stresses the importance of a continued health maintenance plan throughout their growing years. Dr. Graham is certified by the American Board of Pediatrics. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics.


About Sentara Pediatric Physicians

At Sentara Pediatric Physicians, we understand that keeping your children healthy is more than just treating them when they have a cold. That's why we partner with you through every step of your child's development. And with locations throughout Southeastern Virginia, access to quality care is closer to your home than ever before. Find a Sentara Pediatric Physicians location near you or schedule an appointment today.