Once your baby has been born, we will contact you to arrange your new birth appointment. The appointment will take place when your baby is around 10 - 14 days old. During COVID your appointment may take place up to 21 days after your baby has been born. For baby’s that need to stay a bit longer in hospital, we will speak to you and do what works best for your family.
If you have any questions or worries, you can call Just One Number at any time, look on Just One Norfolk or write a list of questions and save them for the appointment.
A new birth appointment is to meet your new baby, see how you’re getting on and to understand if there is any support you need. Don’t worry about the visit or tidy up especially for us! We will talk with you about lots of different things including;
We are not just there for your baby, but parents as well. We will ask how you’re adjusting to having a baby. We know a new baby can be amazing, but can take some adapting to. We’ll ask how you found the birth, the physical and emotional recovery from it. We can discuss support services you may want to know about.
We recommend all mums do pelvic floor exercises after the birth and for the first year. When a baby comes, we know this is a busy time and want to make sure you are thinking about your own health and wellbeing too, so can talk about healthy eating and exercise and your health visitor can advise about contraception postnatally.
In Norfolk most children receive their Personal Child Health Record (the red book) from the hearing screeners at the hospital. Please ask someone at the hospital if you do not get one before discharge home. Health professionals will write in this, as can you. You can use it to write your child's developmental milestones and their personal details.
In the red book you can find information on your child's immunisation schedule, useful information for parents and your child's growth chart. Your midwife, health visitor and GP will weigh and measure your baby in the first few weeks. You are able to self weigh your baby at Norfolk libraries.
Looking after your own wellbeing is the most important step to feeling well and ready for your new arrival. Taking care of yourself is good for you, your partner and the rest of the family. We know adapting to parenthood can have an impact on mental health, we are available to offer support or signpost you to other services who are able to help.
We usually discuss your mental health and how this may change both during pregnancy and postnatally.
If there are specific things you want to discuss about your health and wellbeing with your heath visitor, there will be an opportunity for this.
Some families on a low income will be entitled to Healthy Start vouchers. You can discuss this during pregnancy or postnatally with your health visitor or midwife.
If this is your first baby and you are on a low income, towards the end of the pregnancy, or before your baby is 6 months old, you may be entitled to a Sure Start Maternity Grant. This is £500 to help with the cost of having a baby, and does not need to be paid back. Speak to your health visitor to find out more.
During pregnancy and until your child is one year old, mum is entitled to free NHS prescriptions and dental care, with a Maternity Exemption Certificate. You can discuss this at your midwifery appointments. Children are entitled to free prescriptions and dental care, whilst they are in full time education.
We can also discuss your options with regards to parental leave for both parents.
Babies born early may go to NICU or Special care. If this is the case, we can contact you to ask what would work for you, whether we visit you at home or at the hospital or when would be good for you.
Parents of babies born prematurely sometimes need a little extra support and these babies can be a little bit slower reaching some of their developmental milestones. Therefore all babies born before 37 weeks will be added to our “additional needs” list which ensures we will offer a yearly contact for at least their first 2 years, to provide us with an opportunity to offer any additional support required.
Heel Prick Test
On day 5 post birth, your midwife will usually do your baby's newborn blood spot test. This is a small prick to the baby's heel and blood is placed on some special paper to be tested. It tests for 9 rare but serious health conditions.
By the time of the new birth visit health visitors do, most babies will have had their heel prick test. You may have had the results of this or the health visitor may be able to tell you them if they are on your child’s health record. If you haven’t heard anything by 4 weeks, call us.
We’ll give you information about your baby’s immunisations schedule and these can be booked at your doctor’s surgery. We recommend you get your baby registered with your GP.
Your midwife and health visitor will talk to you about how to sleep your baby safely. This is to reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). We follow Lullaby Trust guidelines:
Some families choose to co-sleep with their babies. This means they share a bed with their baby during the night, not just to feed or comfort. We do not recommend co-sleeping if;
We look at your baby's skin, as some baby’s are jaundiced (have a yellow tinge to their skin) or can have some dry skin. Jaundice usually goes without needing treatment and can last longer in breastfed babies. If your baby has jaundice ensure you feed them frequently and discuss with a health professional.
You may notice your baby has some areas of dry skin. Dry skin is common in baby's as their skin adjusts from being in the outside world. It usually flakes off and does not need any products, like moisturiser on it. If you feel your baby does need something for their skin, discuss it with a health professional who will be able to advise you.
If you notice your baby has a mark on their skin which has not been noted, we encourage you to speak to your midwife before leaving the hospital. Ask them to document it in your baby's Red Book. This is important because during other appointments, if your health visitor or other health practitioner notices an undocumented mark on your baby, they have a duty to report it and take further advice. This may mean your baby needs to see a paediatrician at the hospital. This can feel stressful for babies and families, but your health visitor will support you through the process.
We will ask if your baby's umbilical cord is off and if the area appears healthy. If you have any concerns about this speak to a health professional.
During the visit we will talk about how feeding is going and ask questions to make sure your baby is getting enough milk. We recommend feeding your baby when they tell you they want to, we call these feeding cues.
Good indicators of whether your baby is getting enough milk is whether they're weeing and pooing often and you notice they have times when they are awake and alert. If you have any worries about how feeding is going we can observe a feed and discuss position.
If you’ve chosen to breastfeed and need any extra support we can observe a feed or give you some tips on positioning and attachment. It’s recommended breastfed baby’s are given extra vitamin D supplement. See the vitamin D tab for more information.
If you’re formula feeding we will talk about preparing, storing and sterilising, we can advise you on what is safe. We do not recommend the use of formula prep machines as they do not prepare formula to a safe temperature to kill bugs.
It is recommended breastfed babies from birth up to one year of age also be given a supplement of 8.5 to 10 micrograms vitamin D per day.
Babies who are formula fed do not require vitamin D if they are having 500ml or more per day of infant formula. This is because infant formula already has added vitamin D.
We routinely discuss domestic abuse during visits. We do this because we know domestic abuse can get worse during pregnancy and after the baby is born.
Domestic abuse can take many forms and is not always physical violence. It can be;
Charities who can offer support:
Leeway - A Norfolk Domestic Abuse charity - 0300 561 0077 (24 hour helpline).
The National Domestic Abuse helpline - 0808 2000 247 (open 24 hours).
You can always contact us by calling Just One Number on 0300 300 0123 or texting Parentline on 07520 631590. Our opening hours are 8am-6pm Monday-Friday (excluding bank holidays) and 9am-1pm on Saturdays. Our clinical team will be able to answer any questions or worries you may have.
If you are 11-19 you can text Chathealth on 07480 635060 for confidential advice from one of the Healthy Child Programme team.
You can speak to other Norfolk parents and carers by clicking our online community forum below.