Baby guide week five
Your baby is now five weeks old!
If you have chosen Plunket as your Well Child Health provider, your local Plunket nurse will contact you to arrange a time for them to visit you at home. This home visit is an opportunity for you to meet your Plunket nurse and to discuss any concerns you may have about your baby's development.
Your Plunket nurse will check your baby's height and weight. She may also recommend other community based resources such as Parents As First Teachers (PAFT) or coffee or play groups.
Many babies will develop blotches and blemishes around five or six weeks of age. Often looking like pimples. Bubs face and top half of her body will be full of pimples. Don't worry this is very normal, although if you're concerned that it looks more like a rash see your doctor or midwife immediately.
By now, you have probably decided whether you are going to demand feed, or routine feed your baby.
Some mothers and babies thrive with the regularity of routine. Set feeding times can make it easier to plan your day.
Other mothers and babies prefer to demand feed, where baby is fed according to his or her own individual needs.
There is no one right or wrong way to determine when you feed your baby, and some mothers find that a combination of demand and routine feeding works best.
YOU - SEX AFTER CHILDBIRTH
After having your baby, sex was probably the last thing on your mind! Weeks of broken sleep, and night time feeds, leaking breasts and tenderness after childbirth are also big turn-offs! But there is sex after baby!
Most doctors recommend that you wait until at least four weeks after giving birth before you have sex. Around this time, the lochia stops, and most childbirth wounds have healed. If you have had stitches, it may take a little longer.
The first time you have sex after giving birth may be a little painful. The hormones which assist breastfeeding can cause vaginal dryness, so it may help to use a lubricant. Take it slowly, and if you experience severe pain or discomfort talk to your doctor.
It is also important to consider contraception at this time. Breastfeeding does sometimes work as a contraceptive, but it is not a reliable method. Talk to your doctor about what method of contraception best suits you and your partner.
YOUR BABY'S DEVELOPMENT - PLAY
Babies learn through play, even from a very young age. At five weeks, your baby may enjoy lying on a mat or blanket on the floor. Baby gyms provide stimulation when baby is lying on his or her back.
It is also important for baby to have 'tummy time' - time spent lying on the floor on his or her tummy. Tummy time is important as it helps to strengthen your baby's neck muscles, enabling him or her to hold their head up, and prepare for crawling.
Baby may also enjoy spending time in a bouncinette, or rocker. This props them upright and enables them to see the world around them.