How to Care for Your Newborn

Once you welcome your little one into the world, there will be a million and one things to think about. You might find yourself with questions about how to care for your newborn – and that’s okay! It all comes with time, experience, and a few ‘doh’ moments.

To help all the amazing mums, dads, and guardians navigate new parenthood, the Nuby team has answered some of the most commonly asked questions about caring for a newborn baby. So if you have any unanswered thoughts, you’ve come to the right place!

How to care for your newborn with nuby's sit me up baby bath.
Nuby Sit Me Up Baby Bath

What size nappies do you need for a newborn?

Newborn babies need to wear nappies designed for their tiny bodies. If they weigh up to 10 lbs, you can usually find nappies to fit them straight from the get-go. They’ll grow into the next size within the next few weeks, so try not to overbuy all at once.

How many wet nappies will a newborn get through?

It’s no secret that your newborn baby will get through a number of nappies every day. On the first day of their new life, they might only wet one or two nappies . This increases throughout the coming weeks, increasing to as many as ten nappies on day six. As they grow older, babies tend to need changing around 6 to 8 times per day.

How often should a newborn poop?

On average, newborn babies poop around 4 times a day . This usually reduces to two times a day by the time they’re one year old. The number of times your baby poops can change depending on a number of factors, so this isn’t a strict figure to expect. For example, whether they’re breastfed or formula-fed will affect how often they poop.

How to help newborn with constipation

If your newborn baby is constipated, you can try some adorable baby leg exercises to help soothe their bellies. Just lie your little one on their back, hold their legs in the air, and spin them as if they’re riding their first bike. You can also gently massage their stomach.

Try to keep in mind that some babies poop a little less regularly than others. So long as their poop is soft, they likely aren’t constipated. But a little bit of leg exercise can’t hurt!

How to clean your newborn’s bum

There’s no denying that changing nappies isn’t the most glamorous part of being a parent. It comes with the job description though, so here are some things to help you change a dirty nappy as quickly and gently as possible.

  • The first thing to do is prepare your newborn essentials, from cleaning supplies to a new onesie. Lay your newborn on their back. It’s always a good idea to place them on a changing mat, such as our travel changing mat that doubles up as a waterproof nappy bag.
  • Once you’ve pulled the sticky tabs off the side of the nappy, gently lift their legs into the air using one hand. Then you can slide the dirty nappy out from under their bottom, sometimes even using it to clean up any excess poop, before folding it up and putting it to one side.
  • The next and most important part is cleaning your newborn. Even if they haven’t pooped, you should always clean their bottom as well as their front to keep them feeling completely cleansed. Make sure to wipe from front to back and pay attention to inside the folds of their skin.
  • Once they’re clean and fresh, you can apply your favourite nappy rash cream. Our nappy cream brush is perfect for keeping your hands clean during changing times. You can thank us later!
  • To put on a fresh nappy, lift their legs with one hand again and slide the opened nappy under their bottom. Then you can attach the sticky tabs and you’re ready to go!

To distract your little one while you’re changing their nappy, remember to communicate through blowing raspberries and pulling silly faces. It might feel like spinning plates while you change them at first, but you’ll ease into it. Once you’ve done it a few times, you’ll be a nappy-changing pro!

How to care for your newborn with nuby's nappy cream applicator for easy nappy change time.
Nuby Nappy Cream Applicator

How often should you bathe a newborn?

There’s nothing cuter than your little one in a newborn baby bath. As tempting as it might be, try not to bathe them every day. Your little ones only need to bathe around two to three times a week , depending on how dirty they make themselves. There will be occasions where a poop disaster calls for an impromptu bath!

How to clean a newborn's belly button

Newborn babies have an umbilical stump. It might look a little alien at first, but it will generally drop off between 5 and 15 days after they’re born. The most important thing is to stop any infection from forming. Make sure you wash your hands before touching it, and use a mild liquid baby cleaner in the bath.

Once their umbilical stump has dropped off, they’ll be left with a small wound. You might see little spots of blood on their nappies, but as long as their belly button doesn’t look swollen or red, they should be fine. If you’re worried, speak to your healthcare professional.

To put it simply, you don’t have to clean their umbilical stump or healing belly button unless there’s any dirt in it. And by this, we mean poop from their dirty nappy. Sit back and let nature do the work!

How to clean a newborn's ears

It might be tempting to clean inside of your newborn’s ears, but healthcare professionals generally advise against this. Instead, use a cotton bud to wipe around the outside of their ears when you’re cleaning their face, neck, and hands. Remember to dry off the area with a towel too.

How to clean newborn's tongue

Even newborn babies need to have good oral hygiene. Parents should clean their newborn’s tongue at least twice a day, removing a milk coat and reducing the risk of oral thrush. To get started, grab a damp cloth and wrap it around your finger. All you need to do is lightly rub their tongue in small circles. Don’t forget about their gums and the inside of their cheeks!

How to clean a newborn's sticky eye

Conjunctivitis, otherwise called red eye, pink eye, or sticky eye in this instance, is common in newborns. This can happen if your baby has any allergies or if they have been poorly. More often than not, this goes away without using medication, so all you’ll need to do is clean it with some water and cotton wool. Just make sure you’ve boiled the water before letting it cool down so that it has been sterilised.

There may be a million and one things to consider when you have a newborn baby, but this responsibility isn’t something to shy away from. Once you’re holding your little one, all will fall into place and you’ll become the best parent you can be. And isn’t that all we can ask of our parents?