After the birth of your baby, you will be able to hold him or her immediately, as long as there are no health concerns that require immediate medical attention.
Bonding With Your Newborn
The first hour after your baby’s birth is known as the "Golden Hour." During this time, we encourage healthy newborns to spend time skin-to-skin on mom or dad's chest. The diapered baby is placed directly on the parent's skin, and both are covered with a warm blanket. This contact encourages bonding, improves your baby's immune system and regulates his or her temperature after birth. If you’re breastfeeding, it also improves your baby's ability to latch for the initial feeding.
Although your baby can return to the nursery at any time, we suggest that healthy moms of healthy newborns spend 23 hours per day with their baby in their room, when possible. This practice can improve your knowledge of your baby's feeding cues and help you get to know your newborn.
If you are feeling sleepy and need to rest, the baby needs to be in the bassinet next to your bed. It is not safe for the baby to sleep in your bed, as he or she may roll and fall of the bed. We want safe sleep for both mom and baby.
Mom & Baby Guide
The Mom & Baby Guide will provide you with all you need to know, learn and do in the first hours and weeks of life with your new baby. Download the Mom & Baby Guide.
Please visit How to Keep Your Sleeping Baby Safe: AAP Policy Explained to get the latest information regarding the American Academy of Pediatrics' Safe Sleep guidelines.
New York State Department of Health Safe Sleep Anatomical Diagram
The ABC's of Safe Sleep Brochure
- ABC's of Safe Sleep (English)
- El ABC del Sueño Seguro (Spanish)
- 安全睡眠的基础 (Chinese Simplified)
- ABC yo nan Dòmi san Danje (Haitian Creole)
- L'ABC del Sonno Sicuro (Italian)
- 안전한 수면의 ABC (Korean)
- Азбука безопасного сна (Russian)
Never, Ever, Shake a Baby: A Video for New Parents
Are you a new parent? It’s normal to become frustrated sometimes; it happens to all parents. Learn how to cope. Three seconds is all it takes to change a life forever. Make sure anyone who cares for your baby knows how to prevent shaken baby syndrome.