Babies are fragile beings. During the first few months of their life, you need to pay special attention to their well-being and ensure they are not at risk of developing severe ailments. Hence, as a parent, it is natural to feel stressed and worried about your child and fuss over their safety. This is why you must educate yourself on common diseases your child can have and what you, as a parent, can do for them. You must remember that a newborn baby is still in the developmental stage. They need you until their immunity can stand and ward off infections. So, to help you get informed about your baby’s health, here is what you need to know:
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1. Get Your Child Checked For Birth Injuries
Babies are incredibly vulnerable during birth. This is because as you steadily move towards labor, the pressure inside the womb increases, which can impact the baby. Likewise, factors like your blood pressure, blood sugar, and oxygen levels also affect your child. As a mother, it hurts your baby if you go into distress. For instance, if you’re not breathing well, it can reduce the oxygen levels around your child, making them gasp and inhale the amniotic fluid.
Similarly, if your baby is in the birth canal and a doctor uses suction or tools like forceps with immense force to pull them, it can also cause birth injuries.
Once a child is injured, they need immediate medical help to recover. While some of these, like minor wounds, may go away on their own, other birth injuries, like cerebral palsy, are extensive, and you will need financial support to help your child. Birth injuries can lead to developmental disabilities that may make your child dependent on physical therapy and medication to recover. It is also equally important to note that not every birth injury is visible immediately.
Some wounds, like nerve damage, may catch your attention later when your child exhibits unusual symptoms and has immense lethargy in moving around. Hence it will serve in your best interest if you get your child evaluated a few days after birth and continue seeing a doctor regularly. This ensures that if your baby did sustain an injury, you could get it treated on time before it escalates in severity.
2. Look For Jaundice
Jaundice is a condition that is directly linked to the liver. Numerous babies experience jaundice right after birth because their liver has yet to develop, and they have far too many red blood cells from you in their bodies. So when you have your baby, it’s not uncommon for them to have a slight yellowish tinge. However, their skin and eye color must quickly shift back to their natural tones.
By two weeks, most babies start losing the yellowish tone of their skin and eyes. This is why if beyond this mark, your child still has symptoms of dehydration, fewer wet diapers, and struggles to feed. If the yellowish color continues to persist, you may be dealing with an acute problem with the liver. It would help if you took them to the hospital.
3. Keep An Eye Out For Skin Conditions
Babies are prone to many skin conditions and infections, especially as newborns. It is because your child may have sensitive skin or allergies to certain products that can cause their skin to flare up. Hence, you must look for unusual signs and symptoms on your baby’s skin. If you see a mark or redness that stands out against their regular skin tone, you may need to see a doctor. Your child may have an infection or a bad fungus that needs to be treated immediately.
For instance, there’s a high chance your baby can get a Nappy rash. It is very common in babies almost a year old but can happen in newborns too. There are many reasons why your baby gets a nappy rash. They may be allergic to the diaper’s material, or you may have left them too long in their soiled diaper. The wetness can also impact the baby if the diaper has highly absorbent cotton. A nappy rash is a red, scaly wound that appears on areas covered by the diaper. You may need to use ointments or look into special diapers to avoid this problem.
Another case involves a cradle cap. It is common in babies with a high influx of maternal hormones in their blood, triggering a yeast infection. A cradle cap is a type of dermatitis or eczema too. These are skin conditions that irritate your baby’s sensitive skin and cause them to become flaky and harmful to their health. If your child also produces too much sebum and oil, this can lead to a cradle cap, and your best defense against this condition is visiting a doctor.
4. Symptoms of Constipation
Your child must pass their first stool after 24 hours of giving birth. This green-like substance has a wet texture, indicating that your child’s digestive tract has no issue. Gradually, as you start feeding your baby, their poop will change according to the new environment. However, for some infants, the change in the atmosphere and exposure to milk can irritate their bowels. If your baby is not eating enough or has trouble digesting milk, it can cause them to become constipated. It is when your child cannot pass stool and has a stomach ache.
In some cases, the formula milk you choose can also have this effect on your baby. In rare cases, if your child is allergic to milk protein, they may also get constipated. You can try alleviating the symptoms by applying a warm compress to their stomach. In extreme cases, you may need to find an alternate milk supply that their doctor can suggest to you.
Nothing is more frightening for a new parent than the thought of their child getting hurt or developing a severe condition. Babies are sensitive and vulnerable. It takes them time to adjust to life outside the womb, which can cause a fluctuation in their health. While minute turbulences are fine, you need to keep an eye out for significant problems. If your baby exhibits unusual signs and symptoms, you must take them to a doctor immediately. For instance, if you observe that your baby has sustained birth injuries that involve damaged nerves, wounds, and fractures, you cannot wait for them to heal on their own.
Other common ailments include the presence of jaundice. In this case, your baby’s skin should clear up in a few days; if it doesn’t, you may be dealing with an issue in the liver. Likewise, if your child has a skin condition that looks flaky and is hurting their tender skin, find out the source of their problem.
Finally, you will need to intervene if your child exhibits constipation symptoms and cannot pass stool. Generally, a warm compress can help, but if the condition doesn’t sort itself out, you may need to take them to the doctor.
Just make sure that whenever you notice your baby is not responding or behaving as they should according to their developmental stage, they need help.