Celebrating the miracle of birth is very exciting! Whether you are parent for the first time, or well seasoned when it comes to caring for newborns, the providers and staff at Kids First Pediatrics are here to help. We will help you protect the health of your newborn by doing everything that we can to ensure that your baby is growing and developing properly, has the vaccines he/she needs, and that you have the necessary tools you need to care for your child.
What to expect at your newborns visit
Caring for your Newborn Baby
- Bath Time
- Crying and Colic
Diapers and Clothing
Baby Birthmarks & Rashes
These birthmarks can vary considerably in size but are all flat areas of skin that contain extra pigment, which causes them to appear brown, gray, or even blue (like a bruise). Most often located on the back or buttocks, Mongolian spots are very common, especially in dark- skinned babies. They usually disappear before school age and are of no medical significance.
Small blisters that typically appear at birth, they peel open and dry up within a couple of days. They leave dark spots like freckles that usually disappear over several weeks. Some newborns may have only the spots, indicating that they had the rash before birth. While pustular melanosis is common (particularly in babies with darker skin) and is a harmless newborn rash, it is always important to have all blister like rashes evaluated by your baby’s doctor to make sure they aren’t due to an infection.
These tiny white bumps or yellow spots are found on the cheeks, chin, or across the tip of the nose, and are caused by skin-gland secretion. This common newborn rash generally disappears on its own within the first two to three weeks of life.
Often referred to as a “heat rash” or “prickly heat,” miliaria most often occurs in hot, humid climates or when babies are over-bundled. The rash can contain tiny sweat blisters and/or small red bumps. It shows up most often in skin folds and covered areas, and usually goes away within a few days.
Often called “E tox” for short, this rash is very common and usually appears within the first few days after birth. It consists of multiple red splotches with yellowish-white bumps in the center, and goes away within a week or so. It generally resolves if it’s left completely alone.
These raised red spots are caused by a strawberry-like collection of blood vessels in the skin. For the first week or so, they may appear white or pale, then turn red later. While they often enlarge during the first year, most shrink and almost disappear by the time a child reaches school age usually without requiring treatment.
Port Wine Stain
Large, flat, and irregularly shaped dark red or purple areas. Caused by extra blood vessels under the skin, port wine stains are usually located on the face or neck but, unlike hemangiomas, don’t disappear without treatment. These birthmarks can be treated, sometimes with laser surgery by either a plastic surgeon or a pediatric dermatologist.
If your baby was born vaginally, in addition to the elongated shape of his head, there also may be some scalp swelling in the area that was pushed out first during birth. If you press gently on this area, your finger may even leave a small indentation. This swelling (called caput) is not serious and should disappear in a few days.
A Breastfeeding Checklist: Are You Nursing Correctly?
Signs of Correct Nursing
- Your baby’s mouth is open wide with lips turned out.
- His chin and nose are resting against the breast.
- He has taken as much of the areola as possible into his mouth.
- He is suckling rhythmically and deeply, in short bursts separated by pauses.
- You can hear him swallowing regularly.
- Your nipple is comfortable after the first few suckles.
Signs of Incorrect Nursing
- Your baby’s head is not in line with his body.
- He is sucking on the nipple only, instead of suckling on the
areola with the nipple far back in his mouth.
- He is sucking in a light, quick, fluttery manner rather than taking deep, regular sucks.
- His cheeks are puckered inward or you hear clicking noises.
- You don’t hear him swallow regularly after your milk production has increased.
- You experience pain throughout the feed or have signs of nipple damage (such as cracking or bleeding).
Click HERE for Common Breastfeeding Problems.
If your baby was born by C-section, click HERE to get tips on breastfeeding after a C-section.
While recognizing the benefits of breastfeeding, mothers—and fathers, too—may feel that bottle-feeding gives the mother more freedom and time for duties other than those involving baby care. Dad, grandparents, sitters, and even older siblings can feed an infant breastmilk or formula in a bottle. This may give some mothers more flexibility.
There are other reasons why some parents feel more comfortable with bottlefeeding. They know exactly how much food the baby is getting, and there’s no need to worry about the mother’s diet or medications that might affect the milk.
Even so, formula manufacturers have not yet found a way to reproduce the components that make human milk so unique. Although formula does provide the basic nutrients an infant needs, it lacks the antibodies and many of the other components that only mother’s milk contains.
Formula-feeding is also costly and may be inconvenient for some families. The formula must be bought and prepared (unless you use the more expensive, ready-to-use types). This means trips to the kitchen in the middle of the night, as well as extra bottles, nipples, and other equipment. Unintended contamination of formula also must be considered a potential risk.
If you have decided to bottle-feed your baby, you’ll have to start by selecting a formula. Your pediatrician will help you pick one based on your baby’s needs. The American Academy of Pediatrics does not recommend homemade baby formulas, since they tend to be deficient in vitamins and other important nutrients. Today there are several varieties and brands of commercial formulas from which to choose.
Click HERE for Bottle Feeding Basics.
Resources and Links