baby care

Staying in the maternity ward with a baby: everything you need to know about it

Staying in the maternity ward with a baby: everything you need to know about it

On average a few days, the stay in the maternity ward with our baby allows you to learn a few gestures and practices and to get to know each other while being well supported. It is also a place where regular care is carried out to ensure that baby, like mom, is in good health. Unlike a maternity ward, a birth center does not provide accommodation following childbirth.

What is the duration of a maternity stay?

The duration of the maternity stay varies from one structure to another. Generally speaking, on average, new mothers stay between 3 and 5 days in the maternity ward for a classic deliveryand up to 6 days for a caesarean section.

Hospitalization at home (HAD) allows you to leave the maternity ward after 3 days. This system concerns women who have had complications (caesarean section, hemorrhage, etc.) during childbirth and who need to be taken care of, without necessarily needing the hospital structure.

Different, the Home Return Support Program (PRADO), set up by Health Insurance, also allows you to leave earlier and be followed at home by a midwife. However, this program cannot be implemented only when the pregnancy and delivery have gone well.

Maternity rooms: single or shared?

Would you like a single room for these few days after giving birth? Good news, maternities are offering more and more to meet the growing demand of future mothers. Note that this benefit usually has an additional cost (from 50 to 100 € per day).

Privacy, rest, visits… Having your own room is a luxury that no one can dispute. However, when the cohabitation goes well, sharing your space can also hold nice surprises. This is an opportunity to talk with your neighbor, and, why not, to cheer each other up in case of a blues. On the practical side, the rooms almost all now have a space for taking care of the baby.

Maternity: typical day after childbirth

Most maternities are organized around the rhythm of the baby. In other words, if your child is sleeping, we won’t wake him up to give him a bath! In general, medical examinations take place in the morning, so as to let the mother receive afternoon tours. Every day, you will therefore have a clinical examination: control of the temperature, the blood pressure, the pulse, the perineum and its healing, the uterus, the absence of circulatory problems… As for the baby, he will also have small medical checks, including the Guthrie test.

In the maternity ward, the day is punctuated by meals: breakfast between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m., lunch around 12 p.m. and early dinner, from 7 p.m. It’s no secret that the meal tray is not always the most appetizing (except perhaps for breakfast)… But the staff is often understanding and accept that we bring you small things to nibble. On the other hand, the hygiene rules are very strict and, in the vast majority of cases, the maternity ward does not agree to keep food that comes from outside.

Organizing maternity visits

Tours take place in the afternoon, usually from 1 p.m. until 8 p.m. It is advisable not to receive more than two people at a time, so as not to tire either baby or mum. Of course, the dad or the co-parent is not subject to the same constraints and can stay all day with his family. Young children, apart from siblings, are not allowed to come, as they may carry diseases.

Take care of yourself during this period and listen to yourself: the goal is not to be saturated by visits to the maternity ward. A study carried out during the summer of 2021, when visits to the maternity ward had been drastically reduced during the previous months, due to the Covid-19 epidemic, revealed that of the 500 young mothers questioned, 73% say they are “satisfied” or even “very satisfied” that visits have only been authorized for their spouse. So let’s not hesitate to say stop and spend time alone with our infant.

The rant of a midwife!

I am scandalized by the incivility of relatives who invite themselves to the maternity ward without even asking permission. There is no respect for the mother. The priority is still that the mother discovers her baby, not that she is assailed by visitors. We are surprised after that, in the evening, she breaks down and her baby cries. »

Sophie Guillaume, President of the National College of Midwives

The night at the maternity ward

For the night, all maternity units have a nursery. Depending on his availability, you can entrust your baby one or more nights to childcare assistants, who will take care of him. In the morning, you will find him at 7 am. Some maternities accept that the dad stays the night and sometimes even offer a folding bed.

On the other hand, if you are breastfeeding, it is better to keep your little one close to you. We know that breastfeeding in the first days is essential and that it is a success factor for the future.

In the following weeks, try to prioritize your rest, right after baby care.There’s nothing harder than caring for a newborn when you’re exhausted. So, we take naps, we delegate all the possible tasks to delegate, and we rest as much as possible if we don’t sleep (it’s crazy how many things you can do in bed: breastfeed, read, phone. ..).

Good luck, everything will be fine!

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