Baby Health

How to Ensure Your Baby Is Gaining A Healthy Weight After Birth


After the birth of a baby the parent’s concern then shifts to making sure the baby is gaining weight and growing both physically and intellectually like the baby is supposed to. Growth is a good indicator of general health, and babies who are growing well are generally healthy, while poor growth can be a sign of a problem.

Doctors will keep track of weight, length, and head size. According to Kidshealth, a new born baby born at 37 and 40 weeks usually weighs 2.5kg-4kg.The length of the pregnancy is important. Babies born around their due date or later tend to be larger than those born earlier. Other factors that can affect a baby’s weight include:

  • Premature babies generally are smaller and lighter than other newborns. A preemie’s weight will be largely determined by how early he or she was born.
  • Genetics
  • Multiple births,
  • First babies are sometimes smaller than brothers or sisters born later.
  • Girls tend to be smaller, boys larger, but the differences are slight at birth.
  • Mother’s health during pregnancy
  • Nutrition during pregnancy
  • Medical problems and certain infections acquired during the pregnancy, can affect a child’s birth weight and later growth.

Valerie Marchand, is a Pediatric Gastroenterologist and chair of the Canadian Paediatric Society’s Nutrition and Gastroenterology Committee. She was part of a group that recommended the use of new growth charts developed by the World Health Organization (WHO).


Growth charts examine length and weight in boys and girls, from birth to thirty-six months.  In the first few days after birth, babies normally lose weight, then get back to their birth weight by about 10 days. Marchand suggests that parents should be aware that a baby’s birth weight depends more on the mother’s diet and health during pregnancy. While slow-gaining babies tend to get the most attention, there are new concerns about babies who gain quickly. “You need to look at height as well as weight,” says Marchand.

Paediatrician and breastfeeding expert Jack Newman said, “the first step is often to improve the way the baby latches on to the breast”. “When the baby is not drinking much, using compression can help,” he adds. To determine how your baby’s measurements compare with those of other babies born after the same length of pregnancy, your paediatrician will refer to a growth chart. Always refer to your baby’s pediatrician and listen to them concerning how to maintain a healthy weight for your baby.

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Signs Your Baby Might Have Hearing Problem


During my service year, I was among the NYSC NCCF(Nigeria Christian Corpers Fellowship) and we did regular community service whereby we went round to rural areas and donate few items to the less privileged. It was during one of these our community service that I met a small girl who was a little over a year old and after conversing with her mother I found out that the girl was deaf.

I was drawn to her because she was a twin and her twin(a girl also) was very jovial and everywhere but she was so quiet,I noticed she did not talk much she just stuck to her mother’s side throughout.

Her mother said that she noticed her daughter had not started talking properly, would not respond when being called unlike her twin. She initially said she thought she was just quiet and did not take her to the hospital until she was about 9 months.


This struck a chord with me because I wondered what could have been if it had been noticed earlier on and how they would have been able to tell that their baby was deaf early.

Many children are born deaf because of a genetic reason. Deafness can be passed down in families even though there appears to be no family history of deafness. Deafness can also be caused by complications during pregnancy.

Illnesses such as rubella, viral infection, parasitic infections and herpes can cause a child to be born deaf. There is also a range of medicines, known as ototoxic drugs, which can damage the hearing system of a baby before birth.

Children may become deaf after they are born. Being born prematurely can increase the risk of being deaf or becoming deaf. They may also be born with severe jaundice or experience a lack of oxygen at some point. Both of these can cause deafness.

In early childhood there is a range of things that can be responsible for a child becoming deaf. Infections like meningitis, measles and mumps can cause deafness.

Your baby’s ability to hear is in large part the foundation of his ability to learn. A hearing screening is the most important early way to tell if a baby’s hearing is impaired, but parents also need to be alert for warning signs.

Signs of hearing loss can be different for different babies, and the extent of hearing impairment can vary. There are various signs to look out for depending on how old your baby is:

Birth to 3 Months

  • Becomes quiet when around everyday voices or sounds
  • Reacts to loud sounds: baby startles, blinks, stops sucking, cries, or wakes up
  • Makes soft sounds when awake: baby gurgles

3 to 6 Months

  • Turns eyes or head toward sounds: voices, toys that make noise, a barking dog
  • Starts to make speech-like sounds: “ga,” “ooh,” “ba,” and p, b, m sounds
  • Reacts to a change in your tone of voice

6 to 9 Months

  • Responds to soft sounds, especially talking
  • Responds to own name and looks when called
  • Understands simple words: “no,” “bye-bye,” “juice”
  • Babbles: “da da da,” “ma ma ma,” “ba ba ba”

9 to 12 Months

  • Consistently responds to both soft and loud sounds
  • Repeats single words and copies animal sounds
  • Points to favorite toys or foods when asked

Hearing is very important for the development of a child because it holds them back when compared to their age mates. It is important that hearing problems are detected early so the child can get help early. If you notice any of these signs in your child it is important that you report to a doctor immediately so as to give the baby the best quality life possible.

 

 

 

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