What is jaundice syndrome in newborns?
Jaundice occurs when the baby’s body accumulates an excess of bilirubin. Immediately after 1-2 days after birth, jaundice usually appears.
Bilirubin is born when red blood cells are out of life and broken down. Newborns often have higher levels of bilirubin because they have more red blood cells. At the same time, the baby’s liver is not mature enough to remove all bilirubin from the blood.
If your child has light-colored skin, jaundice will make their skin yellow. If your skin is dark, the yellowness will be more evident in the whites of your eyes, palms, and soles.
When the bilirubin level rises above normal, the yellow color will move down the baby’s head and face, before spreading to the chest and abdomen.
For some babies, the yellow even pull down on their hands and feet. Jaundice affects more than half of healthy babies in the first week after birth and is more common in premature babies.
As long as the baby is healthy, jaundice will not harm the baby and will go away on its own within a week or two. At two weeks of age, your baby’s liver has a better ability to remove bilirubin, so jaundice will disappear.
Pathological jaundice symptoms in newborns
In a well-lit room, try pressing your child gently on his or her nose or forehead. If you have light yellow marks on the skin below the site, you should contact a doctor immediately.
If your child has dark skin, you can try to check for yellowness in his eyes or gums.
You may also notice that your child loves:
• Drowsiness and more sluggishness, laziness, or fussy eating.
• Crying more than ordinary babies.
• The urine is dark yellow and has pale stools. Healthy babies often have colorless or pale yellow urine and their stools will be yellow or orange. The newborn’s jaundice is pale in color because not much bilirubin reaches the digestive system.
Share it quickly with a midwife or doctor if your child has jaundice. The doctor will check your baby’s overall health and advise you if your baby needs treatment.
Are your baby more likely to have jaundice?
Your child is more likely to have jaundice if:
• A premature baby.
• Your child has had jaundice before.
• You have been assisted with delivery using a suction device or forceps because bruised babies are more likely to have jaundice.
• Mother chooses the late cord clamp method. The baby benefits from having more placental blood, but at the same time, more of the baby’s blood cells are broken down.
Exclusive breastfeeding can help reduce the risk of developing jaundice. The advice for mothers is to breastfeed as often and as much as possible. The more you breastfeed, the more defecation you have and each will help your baby eliminate some extra bilirubin from the body.
In the first weeks, your baby may have a bowel movement after each breastfeeding. So you can wake your baby to feed him more often when he is sleepy.
Massage your baby’s stomach every day, moving it clockwise. This helps move your baby’s stool across the body and thus helps prevent jaundice.
Mothers should not give their children formula or water instead of breast milk is always the best choice with many nutrients that children can not find anywhere.
Is jaundice serious?
Jaundice rarely develops severely. It usually appears a few days after birth and disappears on its own without treatment within a few weeks.
However, sometimes jaundice can be a sign of another condition and is preceded if the mother sees abnormal signs.
Call your doctor if:
• Jaundice within 24 hours after birth.
• Jaundice first appears when your baby is more than seven days old.
• Your baby’s jaundice lasts more than 21 days with a premature baby.
• Baby’s jaundice lasts more than 14 days if the baby is full term.
Common causes of jaundice in newborns are:
• An underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism), which means the thyroid does not produce enough hormones
. • Mother and baby blood types are not compatible with each other. Different blood types can be mixed during pregnancy or birth. For example, a mother of Rh-negative blood type and a baby of Rh-positive blood type.
• Urinary tract infection (UTI).
• Obstruction in the bile ducts and gallbladder. These organs produce and transport bile, which helps digest fats.
• Deficiency of a genetic enzyme called Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD). If you have a family history of G6PD deficiency, notify your midwife or doctor so they can closely monitor your child’s symptoms.
There is also an extremely rare complication of untreated neonatal jaundice called kernicterus. Nuclear jaundice affects only one in 100,000 newborns.
In the long term, it can cause problems like cerebral palsy, hearing loss, learning difficulties, eye and teeth problems. Like severe jaundice, cerebral jaundice causes the baby’s ability to breastfeed poorly and slowly.
How do I know if I need treatment for jaundice?
Whether or not a child needs treatment in a hospital will depend on the level of bilirubin in the baby’s blood. Your doctor can check your child for bilirubin levels in two ways:
• Use a small device called a bilirubin meter. The light beam hits the baby’s skin and finds the amount of bilirubin in the body by checking to see if the baby’s skin absorbs or reflects light.
• By taking a small blood sample through a heel blood test. Please be assured that the baby will not be too uncomfortable because the injection is very small and fast, it helps the doctor measure the concentration of bilirubin in the baby’s blood.
Often a bilirubin meter will provide all the information your doctor needs to decide on treatment. However, your child will need a blood test if:
• A premature baby.
• Jaundice within the first 24 hours after birth.
• Your baby’s bilirubin level is especially high.
Normal bilirubin levels depend on your baby’s age. If the baby is born at 38 weeks or older, the table below shows the maximum safe bilirubin level. If your baby’s bilirubin level is higher than this, he or she will need treatment.
If your baby’s bilirubin level is high and tends to increase, he or she may need to be treated in a hospital intensive care unit. There are different levels of treatment, depending on your baby’s level of jaundice:
Conventional optical therapy
Your baby will lie in bed under a light source that emits rays at a certain wavelength. Light helps break down excess bilirubin in your baby’s liver. It’s not like sunlight so it won’t burn your baby, but then it can cause a temporary (completely not dangerous) rash.
The nurse will wear special protective goggles for babies to protect their eyes. Phototherapy is a very safe treatment, but it can make your baby hot and dehydrated.
Therefore, the nurse will regularly check your baby’s temperature during treatment and stop every three or four hours to give him a rest.
Each break usually lasts about half an hour, and it’s an opportunity for mothers to breastfeed, cuddle, and change a new diaper. Your baby’s doctor or nurse can check your baby’s diaper for signs of dehydration.
Breastfeeding during breaks is the best way to provide water for your baby so the doctor will encourage you to do this.
However, they will give extra fluids if they feel that they are dehydrated. However, most babies using optical therapy do not need this.
Intensive light therapy
If your baby’s jaundice does not improve quickly enough, your doctor will recommend intensive therapy. It is similar to conventional optical therapy but will be continuous, with no intermittent breaks to breastfeed.
The light source used will also be stronger, or there will be more light during treatment.
Your baby will need to be fed through a small, soft tube from the nose to the abdomen, so the mother should express milk first to provide for the baby during treatment.
Fiber optic therapy
Your baby will be wrapped in a special blanket containing optical fibers, helping to shine the light directly on the skin.
You can still cuddle and feed your baby, so they will feel more secure and comfortable thanks to the bond between mother and baby. This method may be used if your baby is born prematurely.
Although light is an effective treatment for children with jaundice, mothers should never try to treat themselves by exposing them to sunlight because it is too hot and can damage it. my skin.
The light therapy used in hospitals is still the safest and most effective.
Transfusion for blood
If your child has very high levels of bilirubin in the blood, this may be due to a potential health problem, then he or she will need a blood transfusion. A part of your baby’s blood will gradually be replaced with matching blood from the donor.
Your baby will be carefully cared for and observed to ensure that he is healthy during treatment.
The new blood will not contain any bilirubin, so the level of bilirubin in your baby’s blood will decrease. If your child needs to stay in the hospital for follow-up, learn how to take care of your baby during this time.