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Management of newborn baby

Q: My grand child is just one month old and is born after C section of my daughter. Both are fine and I have the following questions: 1. Is there is any difference between the caesarian born babies and naturally born babies, in their behavior, hunger pattern, allegy effects etc. 2. At what intervals should we give head baths to the child? Should we massage the head gently with oil or give a bath without an oil massage? 3. In order to ensure that the head is properly growing in the shape what precautions should we take while lifting the child, sleeping and during bath? 4. Do you recommend giving gripe water to ensure the child grows nicely and to neutralise the uneasiness in the child due to gas accumalations and hiccups?

A:1. There are no differences in the pattern of behaviour of newborn babies whether born by normal vaginal or by caesarean section especially regrding the pattern of hunger or development of allergy. 2. You can wash the head every day when you give the baby his/her daily bath. In the first few days it will be easier to clean the head after the application of oil with the use of a mild shampoo. Mild massaging while applying oil or shampoo is all right for the baby. Avoid vigorous massage. 3. A slight asymmetry of head is common in babies born vaginally after a prolonged labour, but uncommon in babies born by an elective caesarean section. A gentle massage is all that is required to shape the head. Undue pressure should be avaoided at all times. The shape of the head changes slightly as the baby grows. You may avoid keeping the babys head in position throught the day and night during sleep. As far as lifting is concerned, it is always better to be careful when handling a baby who has not achieved head control, though it has nothing to do with shape of the head. 4. There is no need to routinely administer gripe water to the newborn. Even though it is considered to be a harmless practice, the benefits of gripe water is not confirmed by scientific studies. Gas accumulation in stomach can be avoided by good feeding technique and proper burping after feeds.

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