Newborn Care

When you arrive home with your newborn, there are generally a million questions. We hope this information will help you with some of those. If you have concerns that are not addressed here, please call us at:

    Smyrna- 615-223-5565    or   Nolensville- 615-776-8703 



  • Fever in an infant is 100.4 degrees rectally.  If your infant (3 months or less) has a fever, call us immediately: 615-223-5565 or 615-776-8703

  • Everyone should wash their hands before they hold your newborn. No one who is sick should be around the infant.

  • Infants should be in a rear facing car seat in the back seat of the car

  • Hot water temperature in the house should be set to 120 degrees or less to avoiding scalding your baby during a bath

  • Infants should be placed on their back to sleep on a firm mattress. No heavy blankets or stuffed animals should be in the crib.

  • Infants should sleep by themselves. Co-bedding has been shown to significantly increased the risk of suffocation and is never recommended.

  • Water is not recommended.  Formula or breastfeeding is all your baby needs


Bottle Feeding

  • Sterilization is not necessary if you use a dishwasher or hand wash separately in hot soapy water and let air-dry.

  • Let your baby determine his or her own schedule.  To start, this is usually 1 to 2 ounces every 2-3 hours.

  • Never prop a bottle.  

  • Burp midway through a feeding and when finished.  Do not try to burp longer than a minute or two each time.

  • Never microwave a bottle.

  • Do not change your baby’s formula without calling your pediatrician

  • If water is used to make formula, use filtered water.  Water may be used right out of the tap, unless you have well water.  If you have well water, it must be boiled first, and then cooled, before using.


Circumcision Care

  • Gently rinse the penis with warm water.

  • Apply petroleum jelly directly to the penis or to a gauze pad and place over the penis at each diaper change.  Continue for 1 week after circumcision.

  • As circumcision starts to heal, a yellow scab will form.  This is normal.



  • Nurse frequently in the first few days, about 8 – 12 times per day. The more you nurse, the sooner your milk will come in.

  • Begin by nursing about 5-10 minutes on each breast, working your way up to 15 minutes on each breast. Alternate feedings depending on which side your baby nursed the last time.

  • Never breastfeed more than 40 minutes total.

  • If you will be going back to work soon, start a bottle of pumped breast milk or formula once a day starting by 1 month of age.

  • New babies should be stooling at least 1 time a day.

  • New babies should be wetting diapers once for every day old up to 6 – 8 times a day.

  • If your baby goes longer than 8 hours without wetting, please contact your pediatrician.


Breast Milk Storage

  • Hand pumps take practice. They are useful for occasional pumping.

  • Rented pumps are wonderful for working mother. The electric pumps work best for daily use and are fast and simple to use.

  • Breast milk storage times:

  • Countertop room temperature – 6 – 8 hours

  • Insulated cooler – 24 hours

  • Refrigerator - 7 days

  • Freezer compartment refrigerator – 2 weeks

  • Freezer compartment of refrigerator/freezer combo with separate doors – 3 to 6 months

  • Stand Alone Freezer – 6 to 12 months

  • Thaw breast milk in a bowl of warm water. Do not microwave.


Bathing Your Infant

  • Newborns do not get very dirty, and there is no natural body odor.  Simply wiping the areas with a warm washcloth once a day is all that is necessary.

  • A tub bath may be started after the cord comes off at about 2 weeks.  However, don’t expect your baby to enjoy the bath until 6 to 8 weeks of age.

  • Do not use soap all over your baby every day to help prevent dry skin.