PREVENTING INFECTIONS IN NEWBORNS
For first time parents, handling a new born and particularly ensuring that he/she does not catch any infection can be an intimidating task. This is very important since new born’s immune system is not fully developed and they are more susceptible to acquiring infections. The New Born Care team at India Home Health Care suggests the following tips to keep infections at bay for the new born.
1. Clean Hands – ALWAYS wash your hands before handling the new born and make sure anyone else who will be holding him/her also does. This is one of the simplest and basic, yet most effective way to ward off infections.
2. While Changing Diaper – If you have a girl baby, make sure that you clean the genital area first to prevent Urinary Tract Infection. Always wipe from front to back to keep the genital area clean. Make sure that you wash hands thoroughly after diaper change
3. Umbilical Cord Care – It is advisable to give a sponge bath until the umbilical cord stump falls off which might take ten days to three weeks. Some doctors suggest to let the umblical cord area free of any intervention and some suggest to clean it with rubbing alcohol. Please consult your new born’s doctor and confirm what he/she prefers. If the area becomes red colored or starts to give a foul odour, take the baby to the doctor immediately.
4. When you have an infection – It can be a daunting task if the parents, especially the mother catches an infection while handling a newborn. Make sure that you take the following precautions to protect your baby from catching the same.
a. Wash your hand before and after touching the baby.
b. Touch or handle the baby only if absolutely required
c. Change clothes frequently to prevent exposure of the germs that might have gotten trapped in your clothes
d. Keep the windows open and let the sunlight in
e. Cover your nose and mouth every time you sneeze or cough to prevent spreading the germs in the air. Keep tissues handy so that you can cough or sneeze into them.
f. Keep the area where you would let the baby move around sanitized and clean