The baby is used to the sound of mother’s heartbeat and body temperature. So far, the baby received everything he or she needed from the mother and even now, the mother can provide everything the baby needs: warmth, nutrition, closeness and lots of tender loving care. Familiar things give a feeling of safety for the baby.
- A baby can express many feelings e.g. hunger, longing for closeness or having pain. A baby needs an adult caregiver constantly. Babies have a natural instinct to get close to their mother, to the warmth, to be nurtured and nursed.
- If the baby is healthy and well, he or she soon starts rooting. Maternal instincts guide the mother and the mother should remember that the mother and baby are the best experts of their interaction.
- The baby has practised sucking already in the uterus and sucking is important for him or her in many ways. For a baby, sucking is connected to nourishment, closeness to the mother and feeling of safety.
The mother’s natural sensitisation is part of the postpartum period. It may emerge, for instance, as weepiness, anxiety, insomnia, restlessness or feeling of insecurity. After having a baby, approximately 50 % to 80 % of women experience postpartum sensitisation. Sensitisation is at least partly due to hormonal causes. The situation usually becomes easier without intervention, with time, when the everyday life with the baby becomes everyday routine.
While still at the hospital, the father can start supporting successful breastfeeding, spend time with the baby and share rooming-in care. At home, the father can shoulder responsibility for the baby’s care, thus allowing the mother some time for relaxation, for instance, to go jogging or to a hairdresser’s. The father should share the task of caring for the newborn from the day one to bond more quickly with the baby.