What are the 6 steps to take care of the umbilical cord of your baby? How to take care of the bulge, if it does not reduce for 3 months and beyond?
During prenatal development of your baby, the umbilical cord is physiologically and genetically a part of the fetus. The umbilical cord provides nutrients to your baby from your body throughout the pregnancy. During the entire period of pregnancy, it provides your body with nourishment and oxygen, which helps your baby develop inside the womb.
After you give birth, doctors put a clamp on it and cut it. It is not a painful process at all. Only a small stump will be left on your baby’s stomach. It can be anywhere from half an inch to an inch long.
How to take care of it?
It is very important to take care of the umbilical stump, while it is there. With proper care and patience, it will fall off soon. It usually takes 7-21 days to fall off. During this whole period, it is very necessary to keep the stump and the skin around it, clean and dry. Here are some tips you can follow to heal the umbilical stump.
Keep it dry: The most important one is to keep the umbilical stump and the skin around it clean and dry. Allow it to be exposed to air more and prevent it from getting wet in any way. Ensure that your baby’s diaper is not covering the stump or near it. It exposes the stump to air as well as prevents it, from getting wet from urine. You can fold the diaper from the front.
Keep it clean: Apart from keeping it dry, you need to make sure it’s clean as well. If you find the stump to be sticky and dirty, you can just dab it gently with a wet cloth. Clean it gently, but thoroughly and don’t apply any force or pressure on it. Don’t use any kind of soap or alcohol as it may irritate your baby’s skin. It’s better to consult your pediatrician if you use any alternatives.
Sponge bath: Don’t bath your baby in a tub, until the umbilical stump has fallen off. Even if you do, make sure that you wipe the area with the umbilical stump clean and pat it to dry. It is recommended to give a sponge bath to your baby instead of a tub bath as it helps keep your baby’s stump clean and dry. It’s just much easier to keep the stump dry with a sponge bath than a tub bath.
Let it fall naturally: Let the stump fall on its own, let it take its time. Don’t try to pull it. You just have to be patient and let it heal naturally instead of messing with it and worsening the situation. Resist the temptation to pick or pull it.
Loose-fitting clothes: Make them wear loose-fitting clothes to allow more air circulation for the stump to get dry quickly. You can also get specially designed dresses to get a special cut near the stump. Change the diaper carefully and ensure that it does not leak on the stump.
It takes time for the umbilical stump to fall off, but it does eventually. And let it happen naturally while it does. There is no reason to rush it or get tensed over it. Once it falls off you can find a little blood oozing out of it or a small spot on the naval region. You needn’t panic seeing the little amount of blood, as it is completely normal. Once the wound is completely healed, it will turn into a cute little belly button.
When the cord is still attached, you need to be sure that it doesn’t get infected. Some of the alarming situations, when you should give a call to your pediatrician are:
• If the stump has a yellow-colored discharge or has a foul smell.
• If the base or the skin around it appears to be red or swollen.
• If you touch the stump or the skin around it and your baby experiences pain and starts wailing, then it’s a situation to worry about.
• If your baby experiences a high fever frequently.
• After the umbilical stump falls off, a little amount of blood is normal, but if the blood flow doesn’t stop it’s better to call your doctor immediately.
In any of the above cases, you need to call your baby’s pediatrician immediately.
Your baby might have an innie or outie belly button. Don’t try any methods to get innie or outie. Taking care of your baby’s umbilical stump is very important for him to be healthy. And you need to be patient enough for it to fall off on its own.
After the umbilical cord falls off if there is a bulge and it remains beyond 3 months. Nothing to worry, a simple home remedy to it. The only thing you have to do is, try to rotate gently and push it in the hole.
It should be done consistently every day so that it is to the level of the stomach skin. It has to go within 6 months. If it does not then, you may have to consult your Pediatrician.