You’ve given birth to a beautiful baby. Congratulations! You’re probably very tired but can’t wait to get to bond with your baby. The postpartum period is wonderful, but can also be intense and challenging.
In the Netherlands, 24 hours of maternity care is required by law. The maternity nurse will take care of you and your family for the first eight days after you give birth. She helps care for the baby, checks the health of the mother and baby, provides information and does some light household tasks.
For the first eight days postpartum, we are responsible for your health and the health of your baby. We will stop by for regular visits and health checks.
If you have any questions or concerns, you or the maternity nurse can always call us.
You must register the birth your baby with the municipality within three business days after birth. In most cases, this is a task for the father. If this is not possible, someone who was present during the birth must register your child. You do not have to make an appointment in advance and registration is free. Make sure to bring valid identification and the registration form.
A week after registering the birth, your baby will receive a citizen service number (BSN). You are required to share this number with your health insurance company within one month of the birth.
During pregnancy, one of the first decisions you’ll make is how you will feed your baby.
Research has shown that breast milk is the healthiest form of nutrition for babies, especially if there are allergies in the family. It’s important that you make a decision that you feel comfortable with, based on the right information and your personal situation.
If you cannot or do not wish to breastfeed, infant formula is a good alternative. We hold regular information sessions about breastfeeding, which are free for our clients.
There are many different brands of formula to choose from. All formula sold in the Netherlands meets stringent quality standards and we don’t advise one over the other. However, we do recommend choosing a brand and buying a box of newborn formula before you give birth. It’s best not to switch brands too often, as this could cause digestive issues.
In most cases, breastfeeding goes relatively smoothly. But if your baby is having a hard time latching or if there are other feeding issues, a lactation consultant can help. These are experts who specialize in breastfeeding. More and more insurers are reimbursing the costs of a lactation consultant.
There are lots of bottle brands and types to choose from. You’ll only know which one your baby prefers by trial and error. A fast drinker will need a different kind of bottle than a slow drinker. Because of this, it’s best to buy just one bottle at a time to find out which bottle and nipple combination works for you. Note: only use bottles and nipples for designed newborns in the first few weeks!