When dressing your baby to be indoors, dress him the way you would like to be dressed. If your arms and legs are covered, cover your baby’s. When dressing your baby to go outside, he will usually be comfortable if he is wearing one more layer of clothing than you are. The important thing is to dress your newborn so he is comfortable: not too hot, not too cold.
Make sure your baby’s outer clothing is loose, comfortable, and large enough for his diaper. While his umbilical cord is healing, make sure his diapers and clothing are not too tight across the umbilical cord stump. Some disposable newborn diapers have a cut-out in the front. This cut-out keeps the diaper from rubbing on the stump and lets the air in. If the diaper does not have a cut-out or your use cloth diapers, fold the diaper under the stump until it heals.
Rashes are common in newborns because their skin is so sensitive. Finishes on new clothing and soap residue on used clothing can cause rashes. To help prevent rashes, wash and rinse well all of his clothes, crib sheets, and towels before your baby uses them for the first time.
Washing baby’s clothes and diapers
For the first six months, wash your baby’s laundry separately from the rest of the family laundry. Washing his laundry separately prevents the spread of germs from the family laundry to your baby’s laundry. Use a mild detergent that won’t irritate his skin. Do not use fabric softeners in the washer or dryer.
Wash cloth diapers separately from his other laundry. When you change a cloth diaper, shake or scrape loose poop into the toilet. Then rinse the diaper in the sink. Soak poopy diapers in disinfectant along with wet diapers in a diaper pail. Wash cloth diapers in hot water, and rinse them twice to remove all soap, urine, and poop.
Be careful not to put disposable diapers in the diaper pail with cloth diapers—they can end up in the washing machine. When changing a disposable diaper, shake or scrape the loose poop into the toilet. Then wrap the disposable diaper with the soiled area to the inside, fasten it with one of its sticky tabs, and throw it away.
Caring For Your Newborn
Table of Contents
Caring Begins at Birth
Your Newborn’s Hospital Check-up
Ten Fingers and Ten Toes
Special Care for Your Newborn
When Your Newborn Cries
Changing Your Newborn’s Diaper
Feeding Your Newborn – breast or bottle feeding
Feeding Your Newborn – spit ups, weight gain, BMs
Bathing Your Newborn
Dressing Your Newborn
Shhh!! We’re Sleeping
Keeping Your Baby Safe
Your Newborn’s Admirers
Taking Your Newborn Out
If Your Newborn Gets a Cold
If You Have Questions
When to Call Your Pediatrician
Take Care of Yourself, Too