10750 Columbia Pike, Suite 502 Silver Spring, MD 20901 tele: 301.593.5440 fax: 301.593.5501

for parents

FAQs for the Newborn

Should I give my infant water for hiccups?
Hiccups are common in newborns, particularly after feeding.  You can try to feed through them or let them subside without intervention.  Please do not give infants younger than 4 months water.  Water has no caloric benefit to a growing infant.

When should I call the doctor regarding fever?
Fever is the body’s attempt to fight off infection.  A rectal temperature of 100.4 degrees F or above in a baby younger than 2 months is a cause for concern.  Please notify the doctor immediately.  Do not give infants less than 2 months Tylenol or Motrin.

Is it normal for my infant to make noises when she breathes? 
All newborns make strange noises when they breathe.  At times the breathing is irregular, fast and noisy.  They may sound congested due to their narrow nasal passages.  Babies do not know how to breathe through their mouth so it is important to keep their nasal passages clear by suctioning when necessary.

Why does my baby have acne?
The cause is unknown but it has been attributed to maternal hormones.  Approximately 20% of normal newborns develop acne in the first month of life.  If desired, the lesions can be treated with a mild hydrocortisone cream applied sparingly.  The acne will resolve on its own.

My baby has breasts.  Is this normal?
Both male and female infants may develop some breast swelling with redness shortly after delivery.  This is caused by residual maternal hormones and is not a cause of concern.  The infant should be evaluated if there is extreme tenderness, redness or fever

My baby has white spots in his mouth.  What should I do?
This is likely an infection caused by the fungus Candida Albicans.  It is very common in the newborn period and can be easily treated with an antifungal suspension.

How do I take care of the umbilical cord?
Studies have shown that it is not necessary to clean the cord with alcohol.  To prevent infection, do not submerge the cord in water and keep the diaper tucked beneath the umbilicus until it falls off in 2-3 weeks.  Some bleeding and yellow discharge is normal.  Call the doctor immediately if the skin around the cord is red or if the discharge is malodorous.

Is it normal for my daughter to have vaginal discharge?
Female infants may develop a white, creamy vaginal discharge shortly after birth due to residual maternal hormones.  There may also be vaginal bleeding.  This is a normal occurrence.

Is it possible to spoil my baby?
No.  Parental response is the most important factor in a child’s ability to develop deep, loving relationships.  A baby whose needs are promptly met learns to trust his parents and will learn to be outgoing, loving and trusting individuals


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