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4. How often should I bathe my newborn?

Three baths a week or fewer are plenty. More often can dry out your baby’s skin. Wipe her clean with a sponge or wash cloth.

5. How should I care for my baby's belly button?

Keep the umbilical cord stump and the skin around it clean and dry until the stump shrivels and falls off.

  • Give your little one sponge baths, and don't submerse the cord in water.
  • Fold diapers below the cord to keep pee from soaking it.

Call the doctor if your baby cries when you touch the cord. She might have an infection. Redness at the base and foul-smelling, yellow liquid are also warning signs of an infection.

6. How should I care for my baby's circumcision?

Your son's penis will be quite red for a few days. This should disappear within about a week. If it gets worse or you're concerned, call your doctor.

  • Keep your son’s penis clean, especially after a dirty diaper. Use just water, or a mild cleanser and water, as needed.
  • Dab a little petroleum jelly on the tip to keep it from sticking to the diaper.

7. What else should I do?

Enjoy this time! As you get to know your little one, remember these basic safety tips:

  • Always put your baby to sleep on her back.
  • Empty her sleeping area -- no pillows, crib bumpers or wedges, toys, or soft bedding like a blanket.
  • Your baby can sleep in your room, or vice versa. But don’t sleep or snooze in the same bed.
  • Keep up with doctor visits and immunizations.
  • Breastfeed your baby, if you can.
  • Keep her comfy. Don’t overdress her. You want to prevent overheating.