Welcoming a new baby is an overwhelmingly joyful occasion but also demands a certain level of adjustment, not only for mum but for the entire immediate family; and with May marking both (US) Mother’s Day and International Nurses Day, the team at Emirates Home Nursing has new mums very much front of mind.
It’s important to understand the demands that having a new baby in the home places on parents. Emirates Home Nursing recognises this and that’s why, working with mums and families, we have identified the areas where a little extra hands-on help can really make a difference.
SUPPORT FROM DAY ONE
A full suite of newborn services is available, which includes bathing and clothing little ones, umbilical cord and circumcision site care, nappy changing, bottle preparation and sterilisation, assisting with breastfeeding as well as giving advice on breastfeeding, feeding times, and how to know when the baby is full.
“Another key area is skin and eye care, with a host of common skin conditions affecting newborns. These include desquamation, cradle cap, milia (white bumps), miliaria (heat rash), newborn acne and rashes such as eczema,” explains Mary Jane, Neonatal Nurse, Emirates Home Nursing.
“Eye care is equally important, and this includes checking for problems such as watering eyes, crusty eyelids or crossed eyes, and common eye conditions in newborns include infant eye infections, blocked tear ducts and leukocoria (white pupil),” explains Anna Loraine, Neonatal Nurse, Emirates Home Nursing.
And who doesn’t need help in establishing feeding and sleeping patterns – ask any sleep deprived new mum! Says Anna: “Our nurses teach mums how to recognise signs that their baby is tired, such as rubbing their eyes, whining, crying, yawning and stretching a lot, or losing interest in people and their toys.
“She will show your baby the difference between night and day, with super helpful tips such as keeping the house and bedroom light and bright in the daytime and changing the baby into pajamas to mark the beginning of their nighttime routine – and show them that it’s the end of the day.”
Health and safety advice rounds out the sleep support services, with Emirates Home Nursing staff also on hand to establish a safe sleeping environment.
PEACE OF MIND
Newborn consultations are another way in which the teams provide invaluable early days support. With a quartet of one-off one to three-hour packages to choose from, new mums (and dads) get expert insider assistance and that all-important peace of mind.
Led by our Clinical Manager who is a highly qualified NICU nurse, and her team of specially trained newborn specialists, this takes place in the comfort of your home and covers multiple health check fundamentals from weight and growth to the maintenance of development records.
Whether you require a one-off visit to get started or feel that you need a little more support, we have flexible packages available to suit both your needs and those of your baby.
The one-hour bronze package covers measurements (weight, length and head circumference), nappy change, a skin assessment, safe sleep technique and vital signs check, while the three-hour platinum packages includes all of the above plus a feeding assessment (breastfeeding, bottle, expressing), establishing routines guidance, medication demonstration, bili check, nursing procedures and feeding tube assessments/demonstrations.
NEED TO KNOW
If I hire a neonatal nurse, do they live in?
No. Our nurses work a maximum 12-hour day so you have the option of day or night shift nurse support, or both if you want 24/7 care.
How long do new mums like myself need the services of a neonatal nurse for?
It’s entirely up to you but most of our clients use our services on a monthly package basis for the first two to three months after the baby is born.
If I’m having a tough time through lack of sleep or for other reasons, or need a nurse to come in at the last minute, is that possible?
Of course! If we have a nurse available we can send them to you with as little as four hours’ notice. If you commit to a longer-term package then the more notice we have, the better. This allows us to plan the schedule and ensure that you get the same nurse throughout your time with us (during her regular scheduled working hours).
How do your nurses ‘educate’ new mums like me rather than simply helping just helping me out?
As we always say to our nurses, taking care of the baby is the easy part. Teaching the mums is the challenge. Obviously, our highly trained nurses do their best to impart years of knowledge and experience, making sure they know what to do and what to look for in different situations. This could be as simple as teaching mum how to differentiate between a cry for hunger and a cry of discomfort.
ASK THE NURSE!
12 May 2018 is International Nurses Day, so we asked our team – many of whom are mothers themselves – for their top tips on caring for the newest member of the family.
BREASTFEEDING: Breastfeeding requires extra calories so breastfeeding mothers should include two to three servings of protein per day in their diet plus lots of vegetables, fruits and water to increase lactation.
NEWBORNS: Did you know that there are no nerve endings in the umbilical cord? So, you don’t need to worry about hurting your baby. Folding the baby’s diaper below the cord will improve air circulation and help keep the cord dry.
FORMULA: Never microwave formula. The microwave heats formula unevenly, causing hot spots that may burn the baby’s mouth.
TEMPERATURE CHECK: Check your baby’s temperature. If your baby won’t stop crying and you can’t figure out what’s wrong, see if they may be too hot or too cold.