Your baby’s umbilical cord is cut within minutes of birth. This is a painless experience for your newborn baby, as there are no nerves in the umbilical cord. The short stump that remains after birth should be maintained and kept clean until it dries and falls.
Taking care of an umbilical cord from the newborn is not difficult and here are some tips to take care of your baby’s umbilical cord.
When The Umbilical Cord Stump Fall?
For a majority of infants, their umbilical cord will dry, heal, and fall within one to three weeks (7 to 21 days) of birth. For some babies, it takes up to 8 weeks (2 months) before the umbilical cord falls. Please be patient during this process and resist the urge to pull the umbilical cord yourself even if the strain is barely hanging. Let the stump fall on its own.
Contact the pediatrician or your baby’s doctor if the umbilical cord has not fallen by the time your baby is two months old.
Umbilical Cord Stump Colors
As the umbilical cord separates and dries out, you may notice that it changes color from yellow-green to black as it fades, dries out and finally falls out. Do not be alarmed by one of the color changes, it’s normal.
How To Take Umbilical Cord Stump Care
- Whenever possible, you want to expose the umbilical cord to air, this speeds up the drying processes.
- In summer, dress your baby in a T-shirt that is loose to avoid irritation.
- When you change the diaper of your baby, fold the diaper under the stump. You can also buy newborn diapers that have a cutting space for the umbilical cord stump.
- Do not dress your baby in a body style jersey until the umbilical cord has already fallen.
- Avoid giving your baby baths until the stump falls. You may want to give him or her sponge baths.
Tips for Umbilical Cord Cleaning
If your baby’s umbilical cord is dirty or sticky for any reason, you should take a washcloth and soak it in a mild soap for baby and warm water. Dab the stump of the umbilical cord to clean and dry with a dry, clean cloth. You can also use the fan on the umbilical cord to strain it dry or with a piece of paper.
Umbilical Cord Problems
For a majority of babies, they will not experience any problems when their umbilical cord falls. Sometimes, however, when the stump falls, there are pieces of lumpy flesh (of pink scar tissue) that remains on the navel. This is called an “umbilical granuloma“. It is not a serious condition, and it does not hurt your baby because it contains no nerves. Sometimes the scar tissue disappears itself. Other times it may need to be burnt by the pediatrician.
Another problem that can occur after your baby’s umbilical cord falls is active bleeding. For this reason, you do not want to remove the umbilical cord, even if it is hung by wire. If your baby bleeds actively at the navel, you will notice that each drop you wipe will be replaced by another drop of blood. Always call the doctor if you notice bleeding at the cord section.
Signs Of Umbilical Infection Cord
Keep the umbilical cord of your baby dry and clean to prevent it from becoming infected. Umbilical cord infections do not happen very often, but they can spread very quickly when this happens. Call your baby’s doctor right away if you notice any of the following signs:
- It is nauseous, yellow drainage from the umbilical cord.
- The skin around the umbilical cord is red and tender.
- The navel of your baby and the surrounding area seem swollen.
- There is pus around the base of the umbilical cord stump.
- Your baby has a fever, begins to act abnormally, or looks sick.
If your child has an umbilical cord infection, getting it treated can prevent the infection from spreading to other areas. Always trust your maternal instinct. When you feel something is wrong, call the pediatrician’s office.
Related Post: Take Care Of My Baby’s Skin