You have waited for so long to see and hold your baby that on the due date, you might just want them out and in the warmth of your arms. While books and the internet might have guided you on what to expect after the delivery, your baby might take you by surprise. These 6 strange things about your munchkin will probably freak you out before you say ‘hello’ to your baby.
1. Covered In Cheese
Not literally! At the time of birth, your baby is covered in a white and sticky coating of a substance called vernix. It protects their delicate skin when they are swimming inside the amniotic fluid for 9 long months and reduces the risk of infection in the baby as they travel down the birth canal. Many nurses wash it away, before handing the baby to the mother, however, it is your choice to cuddle your baby right way.
2. Swollen Chests
Don’t fret if you notice your baby boy or girl has tiny swollen areas under their nipples. Apart from the necessary nutrition, your baby even had an exposure to your hormones. You are right on guessing that the same hormones that develop a mother’s breast trigger their formation. You may even notice some milk discharge. However, don’t squeeze if you find a discharge—it could cause an infection.
With time, when there is no exposure to maternal hormones, the tissue below the nipple will diminish and become flat.
Note:If the nipples seem to be infected, contact your doctor.
3. Born Blue
Sometimes, newborns could appear blue or purple at birth—the hands, feet and the body. This could be frightening for a new mom. It usually happens due to slight compression of the umbilical cord during birth due to an odd position of birth—which causes decreased oxygen supply. However, it is mostly temporary and your baby will change to cute pink soon after birth when they will take their first breath.
4. Swollen Nether Parts
Sometimes your baby’s genitals—testicles in baby boys and labia in baby girls—could appear unexpectedly large in some cases. This isn’t unusual—the reasons could be:
- Hormonal exposure before birth
- Extra fluid in the amniotic sac
Mothers, there is no reason to worry as your baby will pee out the fluid in a few day and the puffiness would go away.
4. Spotting In Diaper
Moms may find it alarming to see drops of blood in a diaper—poop, stink, dampness—anything is fine but not blood. There are many reasons behind it.
- If you are a mother to a baby girl, you might be seeing what is called a ‘mini-period’. It could be due to exposure to maternal hormones inside the womb, which will dilute away to nil in few days after birth.
- If your baby has constipation, a rough bowel movement may cause a cut on the outside, leading to bleeding. Check if your baby has trouble pooping.
- You might notice blood in the diaper if your baby has been circumcised. The blood you noticed could be from an unhealed wound.
Vaseline is a good moisturizer that can help with the wound or scratch. It is impossible that a parent who notices blood in their baby’s diaper won’t contact a doctor. Go ahead, ensure yourself everything is fine.
5. Crossed Eyes
Your baby is still getting accustomed to the world around through their little eyes. It will take a little while to gain control over the sight. You may freak out or find it funny, but give them time to learn to focus, and build a skill. However, if it has been over 6 months and their eyes have their own directions, it is better to consult a pediatrician.
6. Odd Shaped Head
Birthing your baby is the hardest thing you may have ever done—you call it science, moms call it a miracle. However, it is not just you who is at work during the delivery—your baby aids you in the process. Their heads are soft and sensitive. The bones of the skull are not fully formed at birth, which allows slight molding of their heads to pass through the birth canal easily. The skull could flatten or elongate at different places as the birth proceeds. Don’t worry, the difference may not be much noticeable—even if it is, it gets normal on its own with time.
Most of these features or symptoms are temporary and don’t require medical intervention. However, if your motherly instincts guide you otherwise, contact your pediatrician or ask your doctor about it to clarify all your doubts.