Home with a newborn

Care for baby

The birth of a child brings many changes. This new stage in your life will require adjustments for you, your couple’s relationship and your family.
Many reference articles and Internet sites can provide you with information during this transition period.


When to see a doctor

It could be necessary to see a doctor under these circumstances:

  • Blood or pus leaking from the base of the cord;
  • Unusual odor;
  • Persistent redness around the base of the cord;
  • Swelling around the base of the cord;
  • Cord remains past one month after birth;
  • Persistent bleeding after the cord falls off;
  • Serious scaring of the navel after the cord falls off;
  • Fever (underarm temperature above 37.3 °C | rectal temperature above 38 °C).

Bath time

Bath time for baby is often a soothing time as most babies enjoy being bathed.

  • If baby’s skin is dry, you can apply a moisturizing lotion. Baby powder is not recommended because it can cause respiratory problems.


Vaccinating my baby

Vaccinations allow your baby to produce antibodies that protect against diseases. The first vaccines are normally administered at 2 months old. You can create your child’s vaccination record on the Public Health Agency of Canada’s web site.


Here are the main diseases for which vaccinations would be administered:

  • Diphtheria;
  • Pneumococcus;
  • Tetanus;
  • Whooping cough;
  • Polio;
  • Haemophilus influenzae of type b (Hib);
  • Measles;
  • German measles or rubella;
  • Mumps;
  • Hepatitis B.

In Québec, there is a vaccination protocol for these diseases. Vaccines are recommended for everyone (optional) and are free. Your child can be vaccinated at the CLSC or by your doctor.
For more information of vaccinating your child, consult the Ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux du Québec web site or that of the Canadian Paediatric Society.


Baby safety

How can I ensure my baby’s safety during sleep?

To learn more, consult the document Safe sleep for your baby, published by the Canadian Public Health Agency

How to know which car seat to choose?

For more information on baby or child car seats or to know where you can have your car seat verified, consult the section on this topic on the Société de l'assurance automobile du Québec (SAAQ) web site.

What is shaken baby syndrome?

Shaken baby syndrome is a type of head injury caused when a baby is shaken violently. The baby’s head moves in all directions which causes brain injury. The baby’s head does not have to hit anything for it to be injured. It is the shaking motion that causes brain damage. Shaking a baby can result in serious consequences leading to death.

You believe that this does not concern you, that this will never happen?

In actual fact, everyone is susceptible to get angry and lose control because we are tired, the baby does not want to stop crying or for any other reason. If you feel that you are at wit’s end:

  • Place the baby in a safe place, like their bed;
  • Leave the room;
  • Telephone someone and ask for support;
  • Return to check on the baby every 10 to 15 minutes;
  • Wait to be calm before picking up your baby.


If I air out regularly, can I smoke in my home?

What are the risks?

To learn more, consult the document Make your home and car smoke-free published by Health Canada.