Keep the navel (belly button) clean and dry. If there are any secretions, clean them away. Use a wet cotton swab. Then, dry carefully.
- After the cord falls off, continue sponge baths for a few more days.
- Help the belly button area dry up.
- Then, tub baths will be fine.
Use a cotton swab or washcloth dampened with water (and soap if you must) to wipe away any blood or secretions. Don’t worry — a few drops of blood and clear secretions are totally fine. The area is healing. Dab the area dry.
How to identify an umbilical cord infection
- red, swollen, warm, or tender skin around the cord.
- pus (a yellow-greenish liquid) oozing from the skin around the cord.
- a bad smell coming from the cord.
- a fussy, uncomfortable, or very sleepy baby.
When the umbilical cord falls off can I give a bath?
Can my baby have a bath before the umbilical cord falls off? Only give your newborn sponge baths until the stump of the umbilical cord falls off, which usually happens by about one or two weeks of age. If it remains beyond that time, there may be other issues at play.
After the stump falls off, it won’t take long for the belly button to look like a belly button. There may be some blood or scabbing still, since the cord is like a scab. Never pick at your newborn’s belly button or cord stump as this could introduce infection or irritate the area.
Pediatricians used to recommend cleaning the base of the cord with rubbing alcohol. However, most now recommend leaving the stump completely alone because alcohol is believed to irritate the skin and sometimes delays healing. Other methods in caring for your baby’s cord include the use of Goldenseal Root and Echinacea.
During the healing process, it’s normal to see a little blood near the stump. Much like a scab, the cord stump might bleed a little when it falls off. However, contact your baby’s doctor if the umbilical area oozes pus, the surrounding skin becomes red and swollen, or the area develops a pink moist bump.
Slight bleeding from the umbilical cord stump is generally not serious and usually resolves within the first few weeks after birth. In rare cases, newborn belly button bleeding can indicate the baby has an infection at the site of the umbilical cord stump.
Why do you bury a baby’s umbilical cord?
“Umbilical cords were intended to be buried because this “anchors the baby to the earth” (Knoki-Wilson, 8/10/92). Baring the umbilical cord in the Earth establishes lifelong connection between the baby and the place.
How do you clean a newborn’s tongue?
To clean your baby’s tongue and gums correctly, you should:
- Make a habit of cleaning after feeding.
- Gently cradle your baby in one arm during the cleaning.
- Use a damp gauze or washcloth, or a silicone baby tongue cleaner.
- Gently massage their gums, tongue, and inner cheeks.
How often should you bathe a newborn?
How often does my newborn need a bath? There’s no need to give your newborn a bath every day. Three times a week might be enough until your baby becomes more mobile. Bathing your baby too much can dry out his or her skin.