How to take care of umbilical stump during winters?
Created by Ambili S Kartha Updated on Nov 26, 2019
If you are a first time mum, from the first diaper change to the first time dressing your little one, it’s all a quest. Every person in your close circle is going to tell you what to do or what not to do. The little cord stump that is left behind when the umbilical cord (which connects the baby to the placenta through which the unborn baby receives oxygen and nutrients) is cut after delivery. The umbilical stump will remain on the navel of the baby until it falls off after a few days to a couple of weeks. Umbilical stump is one of the things a new mother will be anxious about. So let’s see why winter season demands some extra TLC.
Why Winter Season Demands Extra Care For Umbilical Stump?
Cold winter air, even if saturated, incorporates far much less moisture than the warm summer air. Wounds recuperate best when the atmosphere is loaded with moisture (like during summer). Therefore, more care is required for fast healing and falling off of umbilical stump during winter.
How Do I Dress My Baby For Winter Weather?
To dress the baby during the first week or two when the umbilical cord stump is still on there and the climate is very cold can be a bit complicated for first-time mothers. Here are some points to remember.
- Retain the stump area dry is the key to avoid umbilical cord infection
- You may have a tendency to wrap the baby in layers of clothes or make the baby wear cute little body suits to protect him or her from the cold winter weather
- Never make wear your new born body suits until the umbilical stump falls off
- Avoid bundling your child and keeping him too warm during winter. This sometimes leads to sweating, which might irritate the stump
- Air circulation is an important part of the healing processes and air circulation will be hindered under wraps
- During winter, therefore, dress your baby in loose clothes and take proper care to make the stump remain dry
- Keep the umbilical stump exposed to air as much as possible. This will help the base of the code getting dry sooner, and thereby, heals and fall off faster
- Making the newborn wearing diaper also need some thought. You have to make sure diaper didn’t touch or cover the stump. If the stump gets wet with the urine, the chance of stump infection increases
- Bend down the edge of the diaper so the cord stump is not covered by it. If it’s covered, the cord stump is at risk of getting soaked with urine leaving it more susceptible to infection
- Diapers designed for the newborns with umbilical stump are available in the market with a cut-out space for the stump. These diapers expose the stump to the air and at the same time prevent contact with urine
How Do I Bath Baby With An Umbilical Stump During Winter?
During winter, limit your newborn’s bathing time as short as possible. Unlike summer, during winter you only have to bathe the baby once in two or three days. Every day, just wipe your baby with a warm towel and change his clothing. It is always recommended to give your baby sponge baths (which will help the stump from getting wet) instead of tub baths until the stump falls out. However, always make sure the umbilical stump area pat dried and it is not wet after every bath.
During winter it is recommended to apply baby moisturizing cream or baby lotion after bath. You should make sure you leave off the umbilical stump while applying lotion on your baby.
How Do I Clean Umbilical Stump in Winter?
Here are some tips to clean umbilical stump during winter.
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- Dip a cotton swab in warm water. Press the tip to get rid of the excess water. Now, softly clean around the base of the cord and then the adjacent skin
- Using alcohol to clean the stump can irritate the baby’s skin around the stump
- Now hold the stump with a clean and soft absorbent cloth to dry it completely. It is very important that the umbilical cord should stay clean and dry until it falls off naturally
- Likewise, never use tissues or toilet paper to pat dry the area after cleaning. This can be rough on the soft baby skin and cause irritation. Instead, you can use sterilized cotton balls