Holding your bundle of joy is the best feeling, but life changes from this moment. You may expect big and small challenges ahead as a new parent. Things are even more daunting for a first-timer. Newborns are vulnerable to infections and diseases, and dealing with them is not easy. But getting help sooner than later makes a difference, and it can be life-saving in many situations. Everything boils down to being vigilant about the warning signs and seeking help at the earliest. Here are the newborn red flags parents should watch out for.
Newborns demand to be fed every three to four hours. The timelines may vary from baby to baby, but you will probably know them after a few days. If you notice signs of poor appetite, consulting a pediatrician should be a priority. Look for red flags like the little one having trouble sucking, spitting milk, or losing weight. The baby may not feel hungry for longer intervals than usual. It could be an indication of an underlying health issue that needs immediate attention.
All newborns cry for different reasons, such as when they are wet, hungry, sleepy, or in pain. You may learn to interpret your baby’s cries and take the needful action to address the problem. However, unexplained and prolonged irritability is a reason to worry. Look out for signs such as continuous crying, unusual sounds, and sudden reaction to touching a specific spot. The problem may require early evaluation by an expert.
Lethargy is another red flag you should not overlook in your newborn. While babies tend to sleep long hours, sleeping longer than usual and having little or no energy could indicate a problem. The little one may have congenital hypothyroidism if lethargy is accompanied by jaundice, constipation, swelling around the eyes, and a large soft spot on the head. Lethargy may be an indication of low blood sugar. See your pediatrician to seek a diagnosis and start with treatment without delay.
Fever in newborns requires immediate attention as you cannot start medication without knowing the cause. Babies may develop a fever due to various reasons such as respiratory illnesses, stomach bugs, ear infections, and urine infections. You also need to be conscious of seasonal allergies and bacterial and viral illnesses. Call a doctor if the temperature runs over the normal range for a few hours. The sooner you start treatment, the better.
Most babies experience digestive issues at some point, specifically when you switch from breast milk to formula. But you must pay attention to frequent bouts of vomiting, diarrhea, and constipation as they may indicate underlying problems. The newborn may require intensive treatment if there is an infection. Alternatively, the specialist may recommend a feeding change to address the problem naturally.
Newborn conditions are hard to deal with because overlooking them can aggravate even minor health issues. You must pay attention to the slightest red flags and stay in touch with your pediatrician to resolve them before the problems worsen. Early action can save your little one from a lot of pain and discomfort.