Neonatal Sepsis

Neonatal Sepsis

Sepsis is the name given to the body’s reaction to bacterial infection in the bloodstream. Bacterial

infection can originate from many parts of the body, for example, the skin, the urinary tract, etc.

When bacteria enters the bloodstream, the immune system goes into overdrive and starts attacking the organs and tissues  of the body. Also bacteria and the toxins they create changes the body’s temperature and blood pressure and prevent the organs from working properly.

Sepsis can affect people of any age, but is more common in infants under 28 days old, whose immune system hasn’t developed enough to fight of widespread infections. This is what is called neonatal sepsis .

In cases of early onset sepsis, bacteria can enter the baby’s body from the mother  during pregnancy, labor or delivery. And complications such as :-

  1. Premature rupture of amniotic sac, i.e. before 37 weeks of gestation.
  2. An infection in the uterus or placenta.
  3. Maternal fever during labor.
  4. Preterm delivery.

Bacterial  infection can be acquired by the newborn during delivery. Group B Strep (GBS) is a kind of bacterium that people harbor in their intestinal tracts, but it can also colonize the vagina as well and infect a newborn infant during labor.

Some symptoms of neonatal sepsis include :-

  • Disinterest in feeding.
  • Difficulty feeding.
  • Fever greater than 100.4 F (38 C), in some cases low unstable temperature.
  • Change in skin color.
  • Rash.
  • Jaundice.
  • Decreased amount of urine.
  • Lethargic.
  • Difficulty breathing.
  • Poor cry or high pitched cry.

Another source of possible infection comes from hospital equipment that a preterm infant might need to use.

Symptoms of neonatal sepsis can be vague,  some prevention actions can be taken in pregnant women, a simple swab test can be done (between 35 and 37 weeks of pregnancy), to determine if

they carry GBS bacteria.

Newborns can also acquire a  bacterial infection in the care area at home between 8 to 28 days old. So be sure to sanitize your home thoroughly.

This would only prevent some types of sepsis so if your newborn display any symptoms of neonatal

sepsis call your doctor right away.

Spread Of Neonatal Sepsis.

Spread Of Neonatal Sepsis.

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Other articles that I have published.

In my next post, I intend to share, with you,  a very serious health issue that can affect newborns with deadly outcome. In the mean time, if you are interested in more of my published works, you can look me up at skperdon.hubpages.com

You will be able to find information on some health issues such as Blood InfectionAbdominal Obesity and ITP.

I have also shared some of my experiences on social and parenting issues in Different Lifestyles – Hub 1 and Hub 2.

A sixth hub that I have published on HubPages,  is currently up for this week’s Rising Star Program. The Hub is titled My Lasagna without Ricotta.

You can vote for “My Lasagna without Ricotta”  by clicking on the link above, before Wednesday of this week.

Stay Healthy and Happy now!

And now for some good news!!!

The Hub is titled My Lasagna without Ricotta. WON!!!!!

“My Lasagna without Ricotta” is now a Rising Star on HubPages Rising Star Program.

Thank you for your support! Those of you who voted for it made it happen.

Infant Massage

Nana's Massage

Nana’s Massage (Photo credit: jldavis_1)

Yes, it really is, totally  done everywhere now,it is safe and babies enjoy it!!

Not only my own babies, but recently, I have had the pleasure of observing students from Humber College during an Infant Massage session at the Ontario Early years Centre in Brampton.  I was happy to see  that both moms and babies thoroughly enjoyed the whole process.  Moms learning new techniques and their babies reaping the wonderful rewards.

I really was bowled over.  You see, I learned infant massaging techniques  from my mother, she from hers,and so on, and so on.

I have been taught that it was a necessity, but we when became aware that my daughter “was on the way”, my husband and I went into a panic and took to all the baby books that we could lay our hands on,  not too many of them mentioned infant massage so I deduce that it’s probably “old wives tale“.

After she was born, in comes the the fussy grandmas, bathing and “anointing” (massaging),  and chiding me for not caring about massaging their granddaughter.

“Their grandbaby will have bowed legs,” they said.

“Her fontanelle won’t close if I don’t ” annoint”  the skull” or “Her head would be pointy”.

I didn’t believe, for one minute!  that my babies would become severely deformed without being massaged.

They were appalled, but I was forgiven because I was young, they didn’t say it, but the word naive was ringing in my ears.

Well, it worked, I started massaging and we loved it.

I would spend about 7 – 11 minutes massaging my baby after her bath. Just enough baby oil in my palms, especially the pads of my fingers, starting at the hips, gently, but firmly massage in a circular movement, from inside to out and going down to the toes.

When massaging the upper body you start from the shoulders going out to the wrists for the limbs and the same firm, gentle circular motion on the chest.

Take the cue from baby. The key here, is to be firm but gentle on the touch and, observe your baby for discomfort or pain.Stop immediately if there are any signs.

You would want to talk to baby in soothing tones, ask permission or just let her know what you are doing or name the body part or make up a rhyme, whatever keeps the atmosphere light and stress free.

US Navy 100423-N-0641S-143 Mara MacDonald demo...

US Navy 100423-N-0641S-143 Mara MacDonald demonstrates different massage techniques to a group of new mothers and their babies in an infant massage class (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Take the cue from baby. Be sure to be firm but gentle on the touch and observe your baby for discomfort or pain.  You would want to talk to baby in soothing  tones, ask permission or just to let her know what you are doing or just name the body part or make up a rhyme, whatever keeps the atmosphere light and stress free.

Be sure to lay baby on her back and gently roll the arms outward, from shoulder to wrist in a gradual rocking motion,  if you are permitted.  Repeat the same process  with legs from hip to ankle and going outward.

Another technique is to gently take hold of his legs, just above the ankle, and move it so that the knees are bent going up to the stomach, remember, no pressure on the limbs or stomach. Arms go in and out from the chest, always gently.

For the face, you use the pad of your fingers, in tiny circular motions, always from in to out. Avoid your baby’s eyes and the fontanelle – i.e. the soft spot on the top of her skull where bone hasn’t united as yet.

Turn baby over onto his tummy and gently massage his back, firm, circular motions, beginning from shoulders to heels.

Relax, have fun and remember, as with every thing,  you and your bundle are partners on this journey.

Another bonding routine,  we made up  games,  shared laughs and had fun doing it. You know, it really boosts parents’  happiness to hear and see their baby’s toothless laughter.

 

Baby’s First Car Seat

Child safety seat image indicating the various...

Child safety seat image indicating the various parts (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The other very important issue I would like to write about, is travel.

Whether you are taking baby home from the hospital, to the doctor for vaccinations & check-ups, shopping,  or that Sunday drive. Your little bundle of joy needs the special protection of the infant safety seat, this is the rear-facing infant car seat.

There are a few specifics for installing this type of car seat :-

  1. Facing the rear of the vehicle. This is because infants‘ spine, neck, head and pelvis is yet to mature,  and they are at risk of spinal cord and head injuries.  If an accident occurs, baby’s body moves back into the shell of the infant car seat and the head, neck and spine is supported.
  2. In the back seat. Away from airbags in the vehicle’s dashboard, this would prevent suffocation and other injuries that can be occur from an exploding airbag.
  3. Harness. Try the seat belt in your vehicle to ensure a proper fit,  not all car seats are made for every vehicle.The base of the infant rear facing car seat should not move more than an inch. When babies are in their rear facing car seat, the harness should be over their shoulder and should be firm against their body ( not tight). place the chest clip even to your child’s armpits.
  4. Safety Standard. Look for the Canadian Motor Vehicle Safety Standard label or Statement of Compliance on the seat. Look for the round sticker with the Maple leaf on it. And in the U.S.A look for the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration’s five star rating system or  the NHTSA.  The manufacturer’s manual would have step by step instructions on installation and use of your baby’s  car seat.

Here is a link that you will find very useful:-

http://www.videodelivery.gov.on.ca/player/download.php?file=http://www.media.gov.on.ca/529d574ffefeee72/en/pages/text.html

Baby’s First Bath

Picture

Picture (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A Sponge Bath

Although your new baby needs to be cleaned, newborns do not get dirty, it is advisable to start by giving him a sponge bath for about a week, or until the umbilical cord stump dries up and the area is completely healed.

You will need to select a room that is warm, the sink in your bathroom is a good example. Have the items that you will need for a sponge bath within easy reach:-

You will need to be focused solely on your baby, never leave your baby unsupervised,  so turn off any distractions, if the door bell rings and you need to answer it take him with you!

Undress baby to the diaper and wrap a towel around his lower half, some babies might not like to be completely naked.

Before you begin, test the water to be sure that it is warm enough but not hot!

Keep a  secure hold on him while you use the cotton balls to clean around the eyes.The cotton tip applicators are great for cleaning various ear and neck crevices, do not insert in ear canal.

Give baby’s face a thorough cleaning using the warm wash cloth, dry his face, then on to his hair, use the wash cloth to gently squeeze a little water on his hair, apply a dab of shampoo and gently massage his scalp and rinse by squeezing water so it runs over hair, blot dry and cover with the hood of towel.

Continue cleaning arms and legs by gently extending and washing and drying, and covering again alternately with wash cloth and towel.

To clean the genitalia area. For girls, hold baby’s legs out like a frog, gently spread the labia and wipe with with a warm moist cotton ball. Always wipe from front to back, this area needs the most thorough cleaning as there might be secretions, caked diaper cream. For boys, clean the creases beneath the  scrotum, the skin of the groin and buttocks and the base of the penis. Retract the skin if uncircumcised, to gently clean area.

Quickly dry and dress your bundle of joy before he has a chance to catch a cold.

My reference for this blog came from Ask Dr Sears.com.

 

 

Bonding with baby.

A mother breast feeding—a process that facilit...

A mother breast feeding—a process that facilitates mother–infant bonding. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

After a long sound sleep your little bundle of joy is ready to give you the focus of those beautiful bright eyes, or it could be the squawking of a hungry baby. Either way, baby  is looking for food.

Don’t forget that first feeding is important to both of you, it is important to be calm and just let baby set the pace. If she fusses don’t take it persona, it’s just her way of getting acquainted with it.

Remember, you are both in this together, you are anxious to be a mom and although she is hungry she is figuring out nursing too, This is your first real bonding experience, so have fun with it.

Dads might think that moms have the act of bonding cornered with breastfeeding, but you have no cause to feel left out of it. Studies have shown that you produce almost the same level of oxytocin (a hormone that is key to jump starting and maintaining the nurturing instincts in men and women)  as mothers.

So dads, please,  feel  free to let the love that you feel for your baby in, you do have the capacity for it.   Cuddling your baby after birth , feeding your baby with expressed milk,  skin to skin contact with your son/daughter would really increase your nurturing and bonding abilities  with the same perks enjoyed by moms.

I know in the distant past that it was thought to be a “mom thing”, now there are studies to prove that isn’t so. Even  during pregnancy you were taking care of your baby by making joint decisions on how to care for  his mother. So don’t feel left out of your baby’s life.

"Father gives attention to his newborn da...

“Father gives attention to his newborn daughter in a hospital warming tray. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Welcome Baby!

Each newborn baby comes with new joys for those around. At delivery, the nurses and doctor would smile widely and say ” Meet your new daughter”, or ” Meet your new son”.

Newborn child, seconds after birth. The umbili...

Newborn child, seconds after birth. The umbilical cord has not yet been cut. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

You receive your little bundle of joy with wide smiles –

” Isn’t he/she the cutest?”,

“She is beautiful! She  looks like you honey!”

“Handsome little guy isn’t he?!”

Aaand,  the inspection commences!

” Oooh! look at these tiny toes”,

And then you notice the dark patches on your precious baby’s  foot from the big toe up, oh! it’s on the other foot too and went looking, tummy, back, etc.

Maybe they are birth marks….. better ask the nurse!

Here are a few things that don’t add up when you first set eyes on your baby.

  1. Your newborn is wet and and cheesy looking – this will be cleaned and dried off.
  2. Pointy head, this came from passing through the birth canal -this is temporary and would round off in a few weeks.
  3. Looks scrunched up, legs and arms were bent at the knees and elbows in the womb -this will grow out in a few months .
  4. Blotches, spots, a purplish tinge is normal -this would clear up in a few days.
  5. Some babies might be covered in a fine hair called Lanugo – this will come off in a week or two.

Sometime in the next 12 hours after birth the doctor will examine your baby to make sure that all the weird looks are normal.

Remember your baby will change a lot over the next few weeks of growing

In any case we all just have to be sure, with that in mind here are a few websites that I have been following.

http://www.babyzone.com/baby/baby-month-by-month/baby-month-1/1st-month-baby_65958