How to take care of your baby's umbilical cord after birth?

Pediatrician Tanya Altmann discusses how to handle your baby’s umbilical cord after birth and gives some useful tips
How to take care of your baby's umbilical cord after birth? | Kids in the House
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How to take care of your baby's umbilical cord after birth?

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- After your baby is born, the doctor will clamp and cut the umbilical cord. In fact, sometimes, if you have a partner, or a father in the room, they'll even let them assist in cutting the cord. After that, there's really not a lot you need to do. You want to keep the area clean and dry. So, if you get stool or urine up in the area of your baby's umbilical cord, then your doctor may recommend washing it off with gentle soap and water, but, really, the best thing is to keep it dry. So, when you bathe your baby and the umbilical cord is still on, you'll wanna use what's called a sponge bath. So, take a soft washcloth and just wash your baby with some water and maybe some mild baby soap, and really try to avoid getting the umbilical area wet, because the longer it stays dry, the more it'll help it dry up, shrivel up, and fall off, and heal on its own. Many moms, when they're diapering their babies, they like to fold the diaper down, so it doesn't irritate the umbilical cord area, and that's perfectly fine. When is that cord gonna fall off? It can vary, a couple weeks up to two months of age. And when the umbilical cord does fall off, it's very normal to have a little bit of dried blood or fluid leak from it for a couple of days. If it persists for longer than that, then show your pediatrician. If you notice any foul odor, any redness on the skin around the umbilical area, or your baby seems to be in pain, then call your doctor right away.


Pediatrician Tanya Altmann discusses how to handle your baby’s umbilical cord after birth and gives some useful tips

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Tanya Altmann, MD, FAAP

Pediatrician

A leading medical authority for the popular press and entertainment industry, Dr. Tanya Altmann is a best-selling author, parenting expert and media spokesperson. A working mother and UCLA-trained pediatrician who practices in Southern California, Dr. Tanya is a designated spokesperson for the American Academy of Pediatrics, communicating complicated medical issues into easily understood concepts.  She is a child health expert for numerous news programs and talk shows including Today (NBC), and KTLA (CW Los Angeles). She stays on the cutting edge through her position as an Assistant Clinical Professor at Mattel Children’s Hospital at UCLA, as the Chief Medical Advisor for the Newborn Channel and her private practice.

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