6 Common Baby Problems

Hi there,

Today I want to share on common baby problems that may be encountered at birth to three months after birth and how to deal with them. Those common problems are:

Jaundice in newborns

Colic

Fever

Diaper rash

Oral Thrush

Common cold

Jaundice          

Jaundice is the yellowing of the skin due to the build up of bilirubin in the blood when the liver is unable to break it down .It is critical to look for signs within 3 to 5 days after birth. Some times it is difficult to detect in darked skin infants and special test including blood test can be done to detect this.

Jaundice identification can be done in the hospital before discharge. This condition is  more likely to happen in boys,babies who have loss a lot of weight just after birth, mothers who are diabetic or if there was an induced labor. Also premature infant because the liver is not properly developed can also show signs of jaundice. There are different causes of jaundice .One could be the normal course of events of child birth(physiological) at it can be a disease(pathological) for example hepatitis, infection or liver dysfunction. Jaundice can be treated by placing the infant under ultraviolet lamp(bililight) or if not severe the infant can be allowed to leave the hospital with the parents exposing the infant to mild sunlight for  a few minutes. If yellowing of the skin occurs two or more months after birth then it would be best to take the infant for a check up.

Colic

Colic is a painful episode that newborns go through which is characterize by excessive crying and passing gas. This starts usually between two weeks and last up to about five months.

There is no know cause of colic and can affect any baby healthy or not and is not gender specific. It is said that a few factors may contribute to colic. These are

1.The digestive system may still be developing or adapting to the outside and it is baby’s way of communicating.

2.Food allergies some infants may be sensitive to the milk given if bottle fed or even breast fed.

3.Gas in the digestive system.

4.Overstimulation which occurs later in the day where baby is trying to process every thing or smoky environment.

Ways to reduce colic include

  1. As much skin to skin contact for reassurance so that baby does not cry for attention. This is not spoiling folks.

2.Holding baby in upright position when breast or bottle feeding to reduce the gulping of air. For bottle fed babies using the right nipple is key. It is best to use size one nipples and a bent bottle to reduce gas whether it is rubber or plastic nipple depends on baby preference use both to see which one is best suited for your baby.

3. Assisting the infant to burp after every feed to reduce gas .This is done by placing the infant against your chest and gently patting the back.

4.Feed when the infant is hungry .I know it will take some getting use to for first time parents but you need to know your baby. For the

first three months the average infant feeds every 2 hours with at least 10 minutes on each breast or 2 to 3 ounces every 3 to 4 hours for bottle-fed babies.

Coping with Colic

Speaking from the heart,colic is no joke I remember when my first child got colic ,he was crying for what seems like hours , flaying his arms and legs around stretching out and the list goes on. I was in tears on the verge of going to the hospital because I tried everything and nothing was helping just then his father walked through the door took him rom me and right away the crying stopped. I really felt inadequate as a mom and a little jealous but here are a few things I learnt that day.

I learnt that in raising a baby it takes more than one person so if you are a single parent get help from another relative when you feel overwhelm. Know that you are doing your best even though you may feel as if you are not. There are several ways to calm a baby from putting baby across the shoulder, across the knees, in a rocker , walking around making soothing sounds, playing soft music ,going for a drive, giving medicine for gas and so on .Try different things and see what works for baby.

Fever

Fever may have different causes.It is usually a response to a bacterial or viral infection.Any temperature over 100.4 fahrenheit is considered a fever for a newborn.So the first thing mothers must always have at home is a thermometer and Paracetamol liquid because you never know when the temperature will go up.

Baby crying with a thermometer read by adult

One thing to note is that the body temperature go up naturally in the evening to around 11 PM naturally.So it is important to be observant.

Is it too many clothes? Sometimes when the place is hot and baby is wrapped up, this can cause a elevated body heat so when needed ensure that baby wear light clothing to reduce the temperature that is appropriate in the different seasons.

when to be concerned

1.When baby is fussy and cranky

2. Not eating or sleeping well

3. Few tears and less wet diapers

4. Has difficulty breathing

Younger infants who develop a fever should seek medical attention.

for older infants six months and older some measures that can be implemented at home are

1. Bathing infant in luke warm water

2. Giving paracetamol or Ibuprofen following the appropriate dosage for the age

3. Ensure that the infant is well hydrated by giving water, electrolytes or breast milk

Diaper Rash

Every parent horror is to discover a rash on your little one precious bottom. Where did I go wrong? you may wonder.

There are several reasons why an infant may have a diaper rash.

Firstly, a fungal infection may be the culprit. Because the area is moist and fungus thrive in this environment it is likely that a fungal infection may develop. what to do?

Check and change frequently to ensure less moisture build up. Allow air on baby’s bum just for a few minutes before putting a fresh diaper. Use an antifungal cream which the doctor can prescribe after confirming that it is indeed a fungal infection.

Secondly, because of the different ingredients in powdered milk or even beast milk and prolong contact on skin ,it may become irritated. Therefore it using a diaper rash cream as a base to protect the skin from irritation after each change is advisable. using a zinc oxide cream or A and D cream or ointment or similar products available in your country.

Thirdly, using highly scented products can trigger a rash. Avoid scented products as some babies are prone to eczema. Products such as Cetaphil, Dove, and Aqueous cream are a few examples.

Finally, some brands of diaper may not agree with the skin of the infant .Try the different brands and stick to the one that does not trigger a rash.

Oral Thrush

It is said that a diaper rash and oral thrush go hand in hand. That may not be the case at all times but if oral thrush is not treated properly then it can lead to a diaper rash.

Thrush is a build up of Candia albicans. Normally candida in the mouth is present in normal amounts. But sometimes because of immature immune system, the use of antibiotics, fungal infection on the nipples of the mother of food left in the mouth of infant who feel asleep a rise in candida can develop. Treatment range depends on early diagnosis.

Symptoms include white patches in the mouth which do not go away with wiping and may actually bleed if an attempt is made to remove it.

Early diagnosis is needed and treatment will can be a written prescription for and antifungal gel or liquid some old time remedy of using gention violet may also help.

Common Cold

One of the most distressing things to happen is for your baby under three months to develop a cold so many questions race though the mind. How did this happen? What can I give to such a young baby?Should I go to the doctor?

Thre are several signs of the common cold which can be mild to severe,also there may be flu like symptoms as well.

Some of these include

Running nose

blocked nose/trouble falling asleep

fever

cough

vomiting /lack of appetite

diarrhea/or dry diaper

Because there are so many angles to cover when it comes to cold/flu like symptoms the best thing to do is to check with the doctor when these symptoms arises to ensure that there is no infection, asthma, bronchitis ,croup, pneumonia or any thing serious.

I would love to hear your thoughts . Feel free to let me know if there is anything you want to add to this discussion.

Cheers

Charlene

Best Book For Baby-get the right tools

Hi There,

Welcome once again to an exciting world of sharing.Today I am going to share on best book for baby.

So you have gotten over the hurdle of sleepless nights frequent diaper changes and adjusting schedules. Your baby is growing and you want to add a little library to continue to enhance the overall development of baby .By this time your infant is beginning to try to grab and hold things, so new toys and indeed books will need to be included so baby can spend the day having lots of interesting things to do with your supervision naturally.

Here are a few ideas on what type of book to choose, by this I mean the texture type of book. There are different types of books out there but not all are appropriate for baby .Cloth, board books ,vinyl and foam type books are

Baby Board book

appropriate for baby at this age(three to nine months)

Card Board Type

You want books that are safe and can stand the test of time therefore small cardboard type of books are appropriate .This is not only practical but can be managed by baby who can try to turn the pages, bite and explore the different colors and textures available.

Cloth Type

Cloth type books are also available and may  need some help from care givers to use, indeed if they become wet can be dried but can be somewhat difficult for some to manipulate as they do not lie flat.

Vinyl Type

There is the vinyl type books which are great during bath time especially for those babies who are fussy during this time. It would be a great tool to create that relaxing environment that bath time is suppose to be. These books can also be wiped after use and allow to dry to avoid mildew.

Spiral binding books of any type whether board or cloth are great because baby can turn the pages easily and can be a visual and tactile stimulant as well.

Foam Books

These are also soft and rubber like at the same time. Suitable for small hands and also great for bath time. Since baby is still small, do not purchase the ones with loose pieces and even this is done to store for a later stage usage must be under supervision.

Illustrations

Illustrations at the stage image is every thing. look for books that have bright  and bold images that are large and appropriate for what baby is familiar with for example dog, cat(animals) ball, vehicles, baby faces .It would best if one image is on the page rather than having lots of images at a time.

Words

It would be best at first to use ‘one word on a page’ books because they are  simple and they help the baby to develop vocabulary ahead of the speaking vocabulary phase. Books with rhymes can be used a little later within the three to nine month phase where baby is more into the listening stage and not so much understanding so sounds are important.

Books that enhances activity like the feeling of texture books allows exploring  the different elements of the subject for example the bark  of a tree  and different shapes. This

Books with textures

would be a plus for both caregiver and baby. Peekaboo games are never boring  during the alert phase of baby’s day and  makes interaction added fun and enhances bonding time.

Tone

Always remember to use different tones when reading, one that reflects excitement. Read slowly and in a singing sort of way which helps make this a fun exercise.

Until next time do leave a comment below to say if this has been helpful to you or add suggestions as to how this can be more helpful. Perhaps there are other types of books you found to be helpful.

Cheers.

Charlene

 

 

 

5 First Baby Books-A Must Read

Hi there,

Welcome to another exciting time of sharing  information. Today, I am going to review 5 first baby books that I think will be a great addition to any  parent or care givers ,more so, for first time parents.

One thing I have come to realize is that information keep changing and one must keep up to date with what is happening .The way we were raised in the past is not the way children should be raised now. With the advent of technology, new  school techniques and styles and also the fact that most mothers are now gainfully employed, parents need to keep up to date with what is happening and find new ways to parent in this changing time. Therefore, having the relevant information on hand helps one to incorporate new information and hence give great ideas as to how to make child rearing a better experience.

A must read for new parents

So here goes:

The Child whisperer by Carol Tuttle

This book tells of how to treat each child as an individual. Each child is different and hence a parent’s approach should always be specific to the infant.There is no one shoe fits all concept when it comes to raising a young one.This hand book gives great insight as to how to do that. It details different personality types and help parents to recognize the difference so that can relate to the child better. Child whisperer also help parents learn more about themselves and how to relate to others around. This manual can also be a great tool for teachers who are teaching young children.

This reading material can be a bit boring for someone who has read other how to books but nevertheless a great help for first timers.

The Baby Owner Manuel by Louis Borgenicht  practical book on how to raise a baby

This is a fun and practical book suitable for all first timers and  cargivers. It has  lots of diagraphs on how to help make raising children fun and stress free as possible especially for first time fathers .Great ideas and insights for all. Simple language therefore easy to follow.

Repeat parents may find this book too simple but for hands on people this is a God sent

Work. Pump. Repeat. by Jessica Shortall    A guide to mothers who wants to continue breastfeeding and going back to work

A new mom’s survival guide to breastfeeding and going back to work. Useful material for moms who intend to keep breast feeding after the three months maternity leave. As you know it is best to keep breast feeding up to two years. This is helpful to build the infant’s immune system .Eczema is one sign of the many allergies that can develop if the infant’s immune system is not developed properly so old adage that’ breast is best’ still lives on.

It addresses practical issues for example, how to pump, keep your milk levels up, how to discuss with management your intentions to continue breast feeding. Also it discussed the internal and external struggles faced as a new mom. A must have as a collection.

Of course this will not be appropriate for those mothers who for any medical reason is unable to breast feed.

What to expect In The First Year Heidi Murkoff     A useful guide for parents and caregivers

Practical and user friendly book. It tells what to expect as the months progresses, the milestones that the infant should have accomplished  in that month  as well as common conditions that can occur and how to deal with them. It also has a section on children with special needs, an area that prepares a father  for what to expect and discusses common child hood diseases. It also give ideas on home remedies on how to deal with certain conditions. A really great reference guide for parents on the whole whether first or second time parents. Also for care givers who are taking care of the infant while the parents are at work.

The Happiest Toddler On The Block Harvey Karp  Manual on how to deal with Tantrums

A useful handbook on how to eliminate tantrums and raise a patient, respectful and co-operative one year to four year old child.

As the baby grows in to toddler years and strive towards independence, new challenges develop as the true character develops .This manual gives great insight on how to deal with this common yet stressful period especially for new parents.

Knowing how to deal with tantrums and power struggles will definitely add in creating a peaceful and less stressful environment for both parents and child.

Mr Harvey gives a practical, straight and to the point  ideas as to how to deal with these issues. Of course not all ideas will be appropriate for every child  as they differ but yet this is a great tool that parents should have.

Feel free to leave a comment on any other book that you found to be useful and any other insight you would like to share with others. I would like to hear from you.

Until next time.

Cheers

Charlene

 

New Born Baby Health

For first time mothers, new born baby health can be a slightly traumatic experience.

Newborn baby on his mothers arms right after delivery

Too often we see the cute, smiling, babies and we cannot wait to get our own bundle of joy only when baby comes out it is not what was expected. As a matter of fact the first real smile makes an appearance at about four weeks.

You will agree with me that after all that journey through the womb let alone being in the womb for seven or more months that appearance will not be high on the list .Today ,I am going to be sharing on what are some things done to access baby’s  health just after birth. Of course there may be more depending on which country or island you are from.

First off as soon as the head is crowned ,mucus is removed from the nostrils and mouth to clear the airways. The umbilical cord is clamped and antibiotic applied to prevent infection. Antibiotic eye ointment is also administered to the eyelids to prevent eye infections especially if  there was a vaginal birth. Then the APGAR score is taken. You may be wondering what is that. It is a score taken to evaluate how the baby is doing if  fine or need further medical attention.so what is looked at;

Appearance/color

Pulse

Grimace

Activity

Respiration

Scores between 10 to 7 is excellent 4 to 6 fair and below 4 poor.

A few other things checked for of course fingers and toes!

A record of urine or stooling activity

Baby’s weight

Baby’s length

Head circumference

Internal organs (kidney, spleen liver) done by external palpation of physician’s hand.

Reflexes and hips for dislocation

Identification  by use of ID bands or inked feet( depending on which part of the world your are)

Blood test is also done. A sample is taken from the baby’s heel to test for phenylketonuria( a genetic disorder where the body is unable to break down an amino acid called phenylalanine) which can lead to development disorders if not identified and treated early and hypothyroidism( caused when the thyroid gland located in the front part of the neck is unable to produce enough thyroid hormone) among other test deemed necessary according to the policies of hospital, state, or risk of pregnancy. This can be done in a 24 to 48 hours period. Other test can be carried out depending  if the status of mother was unknown to hospital for example  are HIV or hepatitis B. If these are positive then the appropriate treatment is given to baby and mother. These cases are now rare because routine prenatal care should have identified  this and of course the health information should be given to the health care practitioner at the hospital before delivery so everyone is aware of the health status of the mother.

Until next time if you have any additions that you think is important to share with others  feel free to add to the discussion by commenting below.

Cheers

Charlene