Is your baby yellow? This is what you should know about jaundice in newborns.
Does your baby have a strange yellowish skin and eyes? Do not be alarmed, it is neonatal jaundice and according to figures from the Mexican Social Security Institute. It is normal since it occurs in 60% of newborns. It usually disappears in a few days and very rarely requires medical intervention.
Jaundice is a condition in which the skin turns yellow and is due to the increase of bilirubin level in the blood. The body produces bilirubin when it substitutes the aged red blood cells, before birth the placenta is responsible for processing it to discard it. It is yellow. After delivery, the liver is the one who processes and disposes of the bilirubin through the stool.
Symptoms Jaundice in Newborns
Although the yellow skin is the main sign of jaundice, it is necessary to detect where the baby’s body appears. For example, most newborns have it on the face and in the sclera (white part of the eye). However, also others present it on the trunk and extremities. In fact, if it occurs in the legs, in tears and saliva, it is much more likely that bilirubin levels are higher than those who only present it in the face.
According to the Dr. Anagani Sharma – Child Specialist Doctor in Hyderabad, there are two types of jaundice in newborns: the physiological and the pathological.
The physiological is the most common in newborns. It is fleeting because it disappears from the second to the seventh day of birth; the pathological one appears the first 24 hours after birth and usually disappears more slowly. It even takes weeks to go, but it is important that a pediatrician is in charge of diagnosing jaundice in newborns in any of its types.
Jaundice for breastfeeding: Occurs in the first week of life of babies and occurs many times when newborns do not eat well or when the mother has problems to produce breast milk.
Jaundice for breast milk: Usually occurs on the seventh day of lactation in a healthy baby due to substances in breast milk that affect the breakdown of bilirubin in the liver.
Premature babies: A baby with gestational maturity will decrease the chances of jaundice in newborns, because the liver is more “ready” to process bilirubin, as opposed to a premature baby who will need more time for the liver to “mature” and process any substance correctly.
There are many popular myths that seek to eliminate the yellowish tones on the skin of babies, such as the famous sunbathing for several minutes a day, however, remember that any abnormality in newborns should be evaluated by a doctor to avoid complications and for rule out any hepatobiliary or metabolic disease.
Although jaundice in newborns is normal and is usually transient and benign, it does not hurt to consult a pediatrician to make sure the baby is healthy.
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