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Care Of The Newborn Baby – Initial Days -2

Baby Massage


  1. Improves blood circulation.
  2. Improves muscle tone.
  3. Improves texture of the skin and reduces dryness.
  4. Enhances neuromotor development by sending sensory signals to brain.

How to go about it?

  • Baby should be at least 15 days old and 3 kg before massage is started. Any mild oil can be used.
  • Prefer non-scented and non-irritating oil.
  • Avoid mustard oil.
  • Room should be warm enough and draught free.
  • Before applying rub hands between palms to maintain temperature.
  • Use gentle pressure, do not apply undue force.
  • Use rhythmic movements first from trunk towards periphery of limbs and than in reverse direction. During massage make passive movements of joints.

Watch out

Do not rely on housemaids for baby massage. Vigorous and over zealous massage and exercise by maids have known to cause soft tissue injuries and fractures. Do not instill oil in ears or nostrils of the baby. Do not try to ‘raise the ghunti’ by putting finger inside mouth.

Care of the Naval

  • At birth blue colored G V paint is applied over the cord.
  • Cord dries and falls off in 5-10 days after birth.
  • Clean stump with surgical spirit twice a day.
  • Do not apply any ghee, oil or powder over the stump.
  • If discharge continues or stump becomes red- consult immediately.

How Baby Grows?

  • Normal birth weight for a full term baby is 2.5 kg to 3.9 kg.
  • They loose 5-8% of weight during first 3-4 days.
  • Regain birth weight by 7-10 days.
  • Normal weight gain is 25-35 grams/ day for first 4 months.


Vaccines are oral drops or injections given to protect baby from various communicable diseases. Vaccines have no role in prevention of a disease. Initial vaccines like Oral Polio, BCG and Hepatitis B are usually given before baby is discharged. Baby’s Growth parameters and Vaccination data are recorded in a heath card. It also shows dates for future check ups and vaccinations.