Before I had EJ I spent countless hours reading books, pinterest posts and generally trying to gather as much information as humanly possible so that I would be prepared for anything and everything a new born could throw at me.
While I did get A LOT of great information there was some stuff that I was TOTALLY unprepared for.
So, here’s some fun facts about newborns that threw me the biggest curve ball:
omg the earwax! I had an issue with having way too much earwax when I was a child and I didn’t think anything about it until I had EJ. I woke up one morning and his ear was literally covered in earwax. I’m not exaggerating. It wasn’t just a small amount, I mean his entire lobe and up the curve of his ear, even some behind his ear. I googled his symptoms because that’s what all sane people do to be reassured right? Nothing bad ever pops up when you do that… cue eye roll. But I was sleep deprived, so sue me.
I rushed my son into his doctor because that’s what Dr. Google told me to do, since it sounded like he might have an ear infection. Not the worst advice from Dr. Google I’ve ever received so it sounded like a pretty sound idea. Low and behold I drove him the hour in to find out that it was perfectly normal and some babies just have a lot of ear wax. If he was showing signs of pain or discomfort or a mild fever, thats when I should be concerned about ear infections.
A little advice my doctor gave me is to drop just a couple drops of olive oil into his ear to break up the earwax and let it drain. Or put some cotton balls very loosely in his ears if your concerned about a mess- I’m not a doctor, just a tip he gave to me.
2. CHAPPED LIPS
I didn’t know this was a thing either. Babies get extremely chapped lips. It looks uncomfortable and I had to physically restrain myself from wanting to pick at it like I do with my own. I read somewhere that a little bit of breastmilk rubbed onto the lips will help, but it never did anything for EJ. Basically I just had to let it run its course, but it did clear up on it’s own after a few weeks.
3. LIP TREMBLE
now this I did read some vague references to as it being a sign of baby’s neuro system finish it’s developing. Or they are cold. It would freak me out every time I saw it especially when I knew that it wasn’t because he was cold, and I called the health link number once about it. She told me the same thing.
If you haven’t sensed a pattern yet, I’ve spent a lot of time at the doctors or on the phone with health link because I’m a paranoid momma, like I’m sure most of us are.
4. ARM CHEESE
so this is a thing. When I first saw this, I panicked because his armpit was looking a little red and the arm cheese was STINKY. I wasn’t expecting it because I was giving him his baths, properly cleaning him and always checking that he was okay. Turns out arm cheese happens often and fast in newborns because they clench their arms down so tightly, their under arms don’t get to breath very much. Now that hes older and flails around a lot it isn’t an issue, but I dealt with it by putting a bit of diaper cream when his armpits were looking really red. Otherwise, I would take a damp cloth and wipe his underarms as best I could every diaper change.
5. BABY ACNE
now this one is definitely pretty common knowledge, I knew there was a good chance EJ would get it, but what I wasn’t prepared for was how intense it was. For the first three months it looked like he was going through some really intense puberty. I was expecting a few bumps, or patches, but his ENTIRE face was COVERED in baby acne. It even spread to his chest for awhile at one point. It’s a little daunting to see because your expecting a few bumps but the redness and sheer amount is a little daunting. I didn’t really do much for it beyond switching to really mild baby soap, and washing his clothes separately with his own detergent to help avoid anything that might irritate it further. If your breastfeeding you can also try giving your baby a breastmilk bath, which I did try once but I didn’t notice a difference. That could just be because I didn’t stick with it.
Those are just five things that sort of stick out for me for the first couple months, because I just wasn’t prepared for them. I hadn’t found a lot of information on any of it, without knowing exactly what to look for. I hope it helps you out!