Each health care insurer in New York State is required to provide inpatient hospital coverage for you and your newborn for at least 48 hours after vaginal childbirth and at least 96 hours after a cesarean section. In addition, each hospital must provide you with parent education, assistance and training in breast or bottle-feeding, and any necessary maternal or newborn clinical assessments. If you choose to leave us earlier, your inpatient hospital coverage will be extended to include at least one home care visit. The home care visit will provide you with parent education, assistance and training in breast or bottle-feeding, and any necessary maternal or newborn clinical assessments. This visit will be in addition to any home care coverage available under your insurance policy. Check with your insurance company for more details on your maternity coverage.
For help in finding prenatal care services, call the NYS Health Department's "Growing Up Healthy" Hotline at (800) 522-5006 (toll free).
After you give birth, you may feel tired and a little overwhelmed by the huge task of caring for your baby. Your hormone levels have also gone through some major changes. For a few days or weeks, you may have the "baby blues," which can include feelings of sadness, mood swings, anger, anxiety and low selfesteem. The baby blues are very common and will pass in time. Your doctor can suggest some ways to help you feel better. Less common is postpartum depression (PPD). The symptoms of PPD are severe. They can include feelings of hopelessness, high anxiety, eating problems, feeling "out of control," and thoughts of harming yourself or the baby, PPD is not a sign of weakness. It's not something you can just "snap out of," but it can be treated. Call your doctor or midwife if you think you have PPD. If you feel like you might hurt yourself or your baby, call your doctor immediately.
Babies let you know what they need by crying. It's the best way they can tell you if they are sleepy, lonely, hungry, too hot, too cold, in pain or sick. At first, you might have to try a few things to makeyour baby happy. In a short time, you will be able to tell a hungry cry from a sleepy cry. Sometimes babies cry when they don't need anything. A crying baby who won't stop crying can be very upsetting. Try to stay calm. Babies can tell when you are upset. This makes them cry louder and harder. No matter how impatient or angry you feel, never shake your baby. Hard shaking can cause brain injury, cerebral palsy, visual impairment, learning and behavior problems, seizures, paralysis and death
To help calm a crying baby, check to see if your baby is hungry, is too hot or too cold, or needs a diaper change. Check to see if your baby is sick or has a fever. Feed your baby slowly and burp your baby often. It may help to rock your baby. Give your baby a pacifier or let your baby breastfeed. Play soft music, sing or hum to your baby. Secure your baby in a child safety seat and go for a ride in the car. If nothing seems to work, place your baby in a safe place, like a crib or playpen, and take a break. Take a deep breath and count to ten. Never hold or pick up a baby when you feel angry. Call a friend for support.
Be sure that everyone who cares for your child knows not to shake a baby. If you think your baby has been shaken, seek proper medical care immediately. Prompt medical attention can save your baby's life.
A free booklet Your Guide to a Healthy Birth, is available from the NYS Department of Health. For your copy, just write to:
PO Box 2000
Albany, NY 12220