Newborn Development

In today's society most hospitals believe that the delivery room procedures should encourage the unity of the family at the same time making sure the infant is safe. It is common procedures for the infants to be given to their mothers immediately after birth, and often breast-feeding begins in the delivery room. There are many reasons while immediate breast-feeding is encouraged, the stimulation of the nipples increases uterine contractions and this helps decrease bleeding. Having the ability to immediately hold the child gives parents an early opportunity to experience the child and to explore feeling about this new baby. For most mothers, these are extraordinary moments. It is also highly recommended for the father to hold the infant as well. Many physicians suggest that the newborn child receives a warm bath first to help soothe the infant, but many hospitals make this an option. They will usually ask the parents if they would rather hold the child first or would they prefer the infant to be bathed first, it is up to the parents.

During the past few decades the emphasis on the importance of the first few moments of life has been tremendous. These first moments are extremely important and so are the first days, weeks, months and years. If the delivery does not go as planned and you miss the first few moments, do not worry there will be many more in the next few hours of your baby's life.

Many different hospitals have many different procedures, before admittance you should take time before hand to become familiar with the hospital procedures and surroundings. There are many common routines that are practiced at each delivery. Here are the most common routines all of these are designed to improve the safety of your newborn child.

When your child is delivered there should be an attendant whose responsibilities is to care for the infant. This does not have to be the pediatrician; many nurses are skilled to manage the common problems of the first few moments of life. There is an exception, if there has been complications during delivery the infant should be attended by a pediatrician or other doctor who will care for the baby immediately after birth.

Infants are not held up by the feet and smacked in order to begin crying, this is for the movies. Most infants breathe and cry immediately after birth. The fact the infant's chest is forced through a narrow birth canal removes most of the fluid from the infant's lungs. Most infants will have their mouths and upper respiratory passages suctioned; this removes the amount of fluid that has built in the infant's lungs immediately after birth. This enables the child to begin immediately breathing.

All delivery rooms should be equipped with infant warmers, or the infant should be wrapped snugly in a blanket. It takes a while for a baby's temperature to begin working properly. One of the worst things that can happen to a newborn is for its body temperature to drop rapidly, this can and has happened if a newborn is left wet and exposed at normal room temperature.

Newborns should be examined immediately after birth for any signs of distress. The initial checkup includes evaluation of color, tone, activity, respiratory rate and heart rate. Normally within a few hours a more thorough examination is performed.

All infants should have prophylactic eye medication administered, in most states; this is a legal requirement. The purpose of the eye medication is to stop infections from gonococcus bacteria. This is a major threat to the infant and is a common cause of blindness.

New babies should have a vitamin K injection. Before vitamin K was administered to newborns, hemorrhaging was common in newborns. This is because the newborn's liver is often unable to produce vitamin K, which is necessary for the production of one of the components in the bloods that prevents hemorrhaging.

Infants should be examined daily while in the hospital by a doctor and daily conferences between the doctor and the parents should be held in order to discuss any questions or concerns.

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