The postpartum period is a special time for you and your partner, but also for your family and friends. A maternity nurse will lend you a hand during the first 8 days after childbirth. She will be with you for 3 to 8 hours a day, depending on what you need and what you agreed upon with the maternity care agency. It is our duty to monitor your health. We will visit you at home or at the birth hotel (HAGA).
Even though your postpartum period is likely to be a special time for you, you might also feel vulnerable during this period. That is why we have some tips for you:
If this is your first baby, we will visit you on the 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 7th, and if necessary also on the 9th day. We will check how you and your baby are doing, we will help you with breastfeeding and we will leave some instructions for the maternity nurse. If this is not your first child, we will visit you on the 2nd, 4th, 6th, and 8th day. If there are any problems, we will adjust our schedule and visit you as soon as we have time. A visit usually lasts 15 minutes, but we will make more time available if necessary.
Our visiting schedule could be a bit different if you or your baby have to stay in hospital. If this is the case, we will always visit you in the hospital at least once. You can call the midwife on call if you so desire. The normal visiting schedule will start the day after you and your baby arrive home.
We usually visit you between 9am and 1pm. If there are many deliveries in the morning, a visit might have to be postponed until the afternoon. During the visits, we will check the results of the standard medical checkups. We will discuss how the feedings are going, and, if necessary, we will give you some additional information. But above all, we are eager to see how you are doing. Are you feeling alright? Or are you feeling sad or emotional? How did you experience the delivery? How do you like your new (family) life with your baby? We will ask you all these questions, because it is very well possible that you are not feeling good at all. In that case, we will be there for you, and if necessary, we will make sure you get professional help.
From 37 weeks pregnant till the first week of the postpartum period, the bed needs to be 70 to 80 cm high. For this purpose, you can use bed risers (that you can rent at the Thuiszorgwinkel for a small fee) or beer crates.
It is important to take a moment to relive the intense, but very special experience of giving birth. We will try to arrange for the midwife who was present during your delivery to visit you at home afterwards. This will give you and your partner the opportunity to ask questions about the delivery, and it will give us the chance to explain. If such a meeting turns out to be difficult to schedule, we will try to find an alternative solution.
During our final consultation, we will discuss several matters that will play a role in the next couple of months: feeding the baby, vitamin K and D, breastfeeding, and going back to work. We will discuss the transfer to the child and family center (the “consultatiebureau”) and to your GP. We will also give you some exercises to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles and give you some advice on correct positions. We will discuss contraception, and we will invite you to come in for a postnatal checkup. For us, saying goodbye after nine months of such close contact is always a sad moment.
In the Netherlands, you should register the birth of your child within three workdays. If your baby is born on a Saturday, you should register the birth no later than Wednesday. You can register the birth at one of the city district offices in The Hague.
If you are married or if your partner acknowledged the child during the pregnancy, your partner can register the birth of your child. You and/or your partner will need to bring both your passports and the birth certificate. If you are unmarried, you will also need to bring the acknowledgement of parenthood certificate (for more information see https://www.denhaag.nl/en/birth-and-adoption/acknowledgment-of-parenthood-aop-after-the-birth.htm). Your midwife, who assisted you during the delivery, will give you the registration form after the delivery.