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Home > Baby Care
Baby Care after Preganancy
Newborn`s Appearance Five senses of the Newbo.. Reflexes of the Newborn..
Special Babies Common Concerns about Ne.. Sleeping and Waking
Crying Colic Development and Growth..
Playing with Your Baby.. Baby Massage Medical Care
Babysitters Colostrum
Baby Care after PreganancyThe sight of your baby for the first time brings about unexplained joy to you and to your partner; you are awed by your own creation. You are relieved now that the agonizing nine months of pregnancy are over. By the process of pregnancy you have graduated to motherhood, a stage of life where you need to take care of and not be taken care of. Motherhood brings about immense joy to you, but not without responsibilities.

The instinct of motherhood is very strong in women, and although good mothers are born rather than made, it is surely when instinct is wedded to knowledge that the real craft emerges. You and your child will need rest after you deliver him. The infant was secured inside the dark womb and with birth is thrown open in the world of light and sound. In a matter of moments the baby has become a new member of a busy family of which he knows nothing at all.

The infant will not realize all these things for sometime, because for a few weeks after his birth all infant lives in a partial continuation of his prenatal state. He will sleep away most of his time, oblivious to his surroundings and will rouse only when he is hungry or needs a nappy change or to be bathed.

You newborn may weigh about seven to seven and one-half pounds and its height is about twenty inches on an average. He may be covered with vernix, a white creamy substance, which protected your baby`s skin before birth. His head may appear large compared to his body. The shape of the head depends upon the pressures the baby undergoes to descend from the mother`s uterus during labor and birth. It may be temporarily elongated or molded and regains its normal shape within a few days.

Babies are born with two "soft spots" or fontanels -areas where the bones of the skull have not completely fused. One diamond-shaped soft spot on the top front portion of the head, and the second is a triangle-shaped spot lying at the back. The larger one fuses by eighteen months, while the smaller one by two to six months. The membrane covering the fontanels is thick and tough so brushing, and washing the scalp may not pose a problem for you. While your baby may be covered with hair in the back, shoulders, forehead, ears, and face his scalp may me devoid of any hair.

Your baby may be born with a gray-blue skin color. Breathing helps the baby to get his normal skin tones. . Fair-skinned babies particularly look blotchy, with areas of redness and paleness. Skin seems to be peeling off form the body particularly at the wrists, hands, ankles, and feet. Overdue babies seem to peel more than term babies. This is normal and no treatment is necessary.

An alert baby can focus on objects seven to eighteen inches away. He develops his preferences to view objects. Human faces, complex patterns, and slowly moving objects -particularly shiny objects with sharply contrasting colors are his favorite.

Hearing develops in the fetal stage. A newborn baby reacts to sounds. They re-spond to human voices especially high pitched voices of female. He relates to his mother because he is acquainted with the mothers voice, and other internal and external noises when he was inside his mother. He can differentiate between various. Babies are responsive to sweet, sour, salty, and bitter tastes, they normally prefer sweet substances. Your baby enjoys being held tight to your body, stroked, rocked, caressed and gently jiggled. He also likes comfort and warmth and an ambient environment. Sometimes, he may enjoy your cuddling and may want to be left alone at other times.

A newborn is not helpless. His reflexes are strong enough for his survival. If you cover his nose and mouth, he will wiggle away from it, or attempt to knock it off with his arms.

You may deliver prematurely due to reasons beyond your control. A baby is termed premature when he is born before term and weighs less than five and half pounds. He is physiologically underdeveloped. His frame is small, limp, and frail; his skin is reddish and appears tissue-paper thin; and he has little or no fatty tissue. His head is considerably larger than his body. His muscular system is not fully developed, with abundant lanugo or hair covering his body.

A preterm baby`s systems develop fully when he is older since he did not get enough time to develop in his mother`s womb. Because of his unstable body temperature, often below normal, he is kept in the controlled environment of an isolette. His lungs are not fully developed giving rise to ir-regular, rapid, and often shallow breathing. His breathing needs to be monitored closely, as he may be in need of oxygen and sometimes he has to be helped with breathing. His need for nutrients, may be greater; since he is not able to absorb food as efficiently as a full-term infant. A baby born before term may be agonizing for you, but he needs your love all the more. You may express milk from your breast and feed him in a bottle with a special nipple or via a stomach tube if his suction is not efficient. By feeding and touching him, when he is unwell, a bond develops and the baby identifies with you.

A full term infant may be afflicted with jaundice. It is a disease caused by the presence of large amounts of bilirubin in the blood. The most common symptoms are a yellow tinge of the baby`s skin and in the whites of the eyes. Phototherapy may be prescribed for a baby with high count of bilirubin in his blood.

A newborn`s stool pattern is different from an adult`s. Some newborns may pass stool more often, may be ten stools per day, while others, may pass it once. The consistency and the number of time he passes his stools depends on the constitution of the baby and whether or not he is breast fed. Constipation-hard, dry stools that are difficult to pass-is normally not found in breastfed babies .

Your baby`s eating pattern will influence his sleep cycle. After birth, he takes a few days to adjust to his new environment and his sleeping periods may be short but frequent. Later, he may sleep twelve to twenty hours in a twenty-four-hour period.

Knowing your baby, understanding him over time will help you to take care of him in a more satisfying way which will be reciprocated by your baby. You need not worry, if your baby takes a developmental step later or earlier than someone else`s infant. His developmental pattern is uniquely his own.

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