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JWhat does an umbilical stump look like?
Immediately after delivery, when the umbilical cord ripples, the midwife puts on the umbilical cord approximately 2-3 cm from the newborn's tummy. The umbilical cord is then white and blue. A sterile gauze pad is applied to the caliper in the delivery room. The umbilical stump dries and contracts quickly, becoming pink-brown, then dark-brown. The midwife removes the clamp from the stump on day 2, still in the neonatal ward.
When does the umbilical stump fall off?
The umbilical stump usually falls off until the 14th day of the child's life. It often happens that the stump falls off after a few days after delivery, or on the contrary, despite proper care, it does not want to fall off. None of these situations are pathological until the navel area shows signs of inflammation. Each newborn baby is different, the umbilical cord is different, so the stump falls off at different times. However, it is important to observe the navel area. Both the mother and the midwife must pay special attention to redness, discharge and the smell from the navel. The appearance of any of these symptoms may indicate that the inflammatory process is starting. Sometimes the stump clings to the navel after 14 days of age, but shows no signs of infection. Such situations are frequent and do not require special care, but only observation.
How to care for your belly button?
According to the latest recommendations, the applicable procedure is dry belly button care.
Remember not to soak the stump while bathing. Of course, nothing will happen if a few drops of water fall on the navel, or if you wet it for a while, washing the baby's tummy. It is important, however, not to soak the navel under water. The belly button should be dried well after each bath! Many moms are afraid to touch the stump and dry it thoroughly at the root, thinking that it hurts their child. Nothing could be more wrong!
The umbilical stump is dead tissue, and the newborn does not feel pain when we touch it. So dry the navel thoroughly, remember to wipe the navel at the root (I recommend using ordinary ear sticks). After thorough drying, ventilate the navel. After every diaper change, you can too leave the baby with his tummy exposed. When putting on the diaper, make sure that it does not cover the stump. You can simply bend the top of the pampers or cut the navel hole with scissors. This facilitates air circulation and additionally protects the stump from getting wet by urine.
Never tear off the stump! Even if it "stays on the last hair", protect it and let it fall!
Until the stump falls off, try not to put the newborn on your tummy.
Do you use alcohol?
During a visit to the hospital, the navel of the newborn is washed OCTENISEPT. Often midwives recommend spraying the stump with this agent also at home. Recommendations say, however, that this is not necessary, and Octenisept is only used in the hospital to reduce hospital bacterial flora.
Washing the navel with alcohol causes a lot of irritation, which causes microdamages of the epidermis, which are the gate, to the formation of infections. For this reason, the navel is being removed from the spirit.
Dry care, i.e. drying, airing and not irritating the navel area give much better results - the navel is not infected, and even falls off earlier. If you absolutely want to decontaminate your belly button, don't use alcohol! A much better choice is Octenisept, which does not irritate the delicate skin of the newborn.
When to worry
You can report any concerns to your midwife on patronage visits. If she has any reservations, she will report the child to a pediatrician. Alarming symptoms are:
- discharge from the navel (purulent or bloody)
- ugly discharge
- fever associated with changes in the navel area.
If you think these symptoms are severe, go to a doctor right away.