Taking care of a newborn can be overwhelming. But, here are the 5 common problems in the newborn that you should know. Here’s some of the problems our newborn faced, and how we handled it as per our pediatrician’s advice.
Blocked tear ducts
According to my pediatrician, this is in the top list of very common problems in the newborn. Newborn babies tend to have blocked tear ducts due to their tear ducts are still immature. It is not a big concern and should go away by itself as the baby grows, usually around their first birthday.
What you can do now is to gently wipe off the discharge and use the eyedrop as prescribed by the doctor. We diligently use the eyedrop as prescribed by our pediatrician and wipe off the discharge whenever we see it. Eventually, when my baby was around 7-8 months old it did go away by itself.
Sometimes, you may witness your baby suddenly jolting with both arms spread out. This is Moro reflex and it’s very common in newborn babies. The Moro reflex is an essential sign that the baby’s central nervous system is developing well.
Our pediatrician checked for the reflex by pulling my baby up by arms to a sitting position and then let go of her hand. As my baby fell back on his back with his both arms jerked up, my doctor smiled and said “Good reflex”.
The Moro reflex will gradually decrease and eventually disappear on its own. Usually in about three to six months time. You can either swaddle your baby or use Cocoonababy to help lessen the Moro reflex. The absence of Moro reflex could signify underlying issues. Consult with your pediatrician and if they have any concern they will do further check ups on your baby.
My baby makes all sorts of noise when he’s asleep. One time, we heard him making a hoarse breathing sound , we thought he was having mucus in his nose. So, we took it to our own hand and used saline spray on him.
Yet, after one week of saline spray there isn’t much improvement. Doctor had a check on him and found that it’s related to incorrect feeding.
Another sound was some sort of high pitched and squeaky sound when he is lying down on his back. This weird high pitch sound is caused by their narrow airway. It will go away as your baby grows and their airways gradually become bigger. It is not a big concern if your baby is still feeding well and being alert and active when he’s awake.
Wailing baby. Arching back. Nothing seems to comfort your baby. Sounds familiar? Then your baby might have colic. Or maybe your baby is a high need baby. You can read more about Dr. Sears difference between colicky and high needs baby here.
One important point to note is that if your baby is gassy, it can lead to stomach discomfort. Stomach discomfort leads to colic. Hence, it is very important that as a breastfeeding mother we try to avoid colic causing food. Give your little one more tender, love and care (TLC) and it shall pass.
P.S I learnt that the “I Love You” massage on their tummy does help to relieve colic a little.
Various skin conditions
Skin conditions are one of the most common problems in a newborn. Newborn’s skin is very sensitive and needs to be handled with extreme care. Different kinds of rashes have different treatments so it’s best to seek your doctors advice.
For all these various skin conditions that my baby got, I go au naturel. I did not use any cream, medication or special soap. Instead, I used breast milk in his bath to help him to overcome all these skin issues. Breast milk contains anti-bacterial properties and it’s very moisturizing for your baby’s skin. Try it if you haven’t given your baby a breastmilk spa bath!
Here’s how they look like for your reference:
Baby acne is extremely common and can be found usually on the face. The cause of baby acne is unknown, however it is harmless and does not leave behind any scars.
Milia is also known as milk spot. It’s caused by dead skin cells trapped on the skin surface. These tiny raised bumps are white in color, and hence referred to as milk spots. It’s harmless and will go away on its own. Please resist trying to pop the milk spot like a pimple, it might leave scars.
Heat rash is caused by trapped sweats under the skin due to clogged pores. It usually happens in areas where babies are prone to have some skin rolls such as on the baby’s neck and groin area.
Cradle cap is this flaky piece of skin crust on your baby’s skin. It usually happens at the baby’s scalp area but it can also spread to the baby’s face. Our baby got it both on his scalp and on his forehead.
It is not harmful and will go away on its own. We shampoo his hair on a daily basis and use baby oil on his forehead. This will help to soften the dry skin patches and remove the skin flakes.
Mongolian spots are these blue-ish grey marks that you can find on your newborn. Usually on their bottom or lower back. Sometimes, you may also find them at the shoulder area. Mongolian spots are harmless and will fade with time. My son got rid of his around 14 months old.
In case of any doubt, seek for professional medical advice
These are the five most common problems in a newborn for the first few months of their life. But rest assured, most of them are harmless and will resolve on its own as your baby grows.
New parent’s tip: If you have any doubt about your newborn’s wellbeing take a video then seek for medical advice from your doctor immediately. We made a mistake of not doing that. When our baby was at the doctor’s he was breathing / doing / looking fine.
I’m sure my doctor thinks we have nothing better to do than showing up at his clinic every few days. Does your newborn have some of these problems too? Let me know in the comments below!
Featured image photo credit to Christian Bowen on Unsplash