❖ Father’s role: There is no reason why the father can’t do all that the mother does for the baby. Once they become used to this role, they feel proud and satisfied that they are good fathers and are contributing something to the upbringing of their child.
❖ Bathing: The baby is very limp and with soap on his body, becomes slippery and liable to slip out of your grasp, which may lead to injury. So be careful.
❖ Diapers: The diaper should not cover the navel as it may soil it. It should be of cotton and frequently changed, preferably after each soiling.
❖ Clothing: Often parents tend to over-clothe the baby, which may be uncomfortable to him. Head should be covered in winters because heat loss through it can be considerable.
❖ Stools and urine: There is a wide range of normalcy regarding voiding of urine and stools. The parents need not be perturbed as long as the stools are not watery or hard and infrequent. Counting the number of times the baby has voided urine or stool is not advisable.
❖ Jaundice: The skin and eyes of the baby may show a yellowish hue. In most of the babies, it is not due to a liver problem, but is due to “physiological jaundice”. It requires no treatment. Mothers, who are of the “negative” blood group (e.g. O negative), may have babies with severe jaundice, if the baby’s blood group is “positive.”
❖ Umbilicus: A slight discharge may come from the navel after the stump has fallen off. This discharge is normal. The navel should be kept as dry as possible and exposed to air.
❖ Diarrhoea: A golden dictum is that breast-fed babies usually don’t have infective diarrhoeas. Most of baby diarrhoeas are self-limiting and don’t require antibiotics.