What is jaundice?
Inflammatory jaundice is when a baby’s skin, eyes, and mouth turn yellow. In the first few days of infancy, jaundice is common — the yellow color caused by bilirubin.
Bilirubin is a yellow substance that made when the body breaks down old red blood cells. The liver cleans it out of the blood, leaving the body through the stool (poop). Sometimes bilirubin builds up in your child’s body. Maybe it’s because your child’s liver can’t break it. If your child has an extra volume of red blood cells, that can happen. This growth can give your baby jaundice. Hepatitis is common in infants and is usually not serious.
Symptoms of jaundice
The main symptom of jaundice is the yellowing of your child’s skin. Look for changes in skin color, the whiteness of your baby’s eyes, and the pink skin in your baby’s mouth. If these areas turn yellow, contact your child’s doctor.
If your baby has pale skin, soften it with your fingertips. Do you lengthen it and turn your skin yellow? Your child may contract jaundice. If your child has dark skin, seeing yellow can be a challenge.
Artificial light, especially fluorescent lamps, can sometimes deceive your eyes by seeing a yellow light that is not there. Try to inspect your child on a natural day in a sunny room.
Inflammatory jaundice usually occurs between 2 and 7 days after birth. As the volume of bilirubin in the blood rises, your baby’s body turns yellow. When bilirubin levels rise, the yellow color can move from your baby’s head to his chest and toes. These are signs that your child may have more jaundice. If this happens, you should contact your child’s doctor immediately.
What causes jaundice?
When your child has too much bilirubin in his body, hepatitis occurs. Bilirubin is produced when the body breaks down old red blood cells. It is a lifelong process. Usually, the liver breaks down bilirubin. But the infant’s liver has not yet developed enough to filter bilirubin. Or your child may have an increased number of red blood cells that need to be replaced. These can cause bilirubin in your baby’s body and cause jaundice.
There are several types of jaundice:
Physiological hemorrhage: Most newborns have this hepatitis. Probably not as tough. It does not cause any problems and goes away on its own in 2 weeks.
Premature jaundice: The liver of premature infants is often not advanced enough to effectively break bilirubin. Although their bilirubin levels are not very high, they are often treated.
Breastfeeding: This is available when infants do not get enough breast milk. They may be due to difficulties in breastfeeding or the mother’s lack of milk.
Breastfeeding: Sometimes, breast milk substances cause bilirubin levels to increase. They also have difficulty removing bilirubin through the chair into the infant’s body. This type starts in 3 to 5 days and slowly gets better over several weeks.
Sometimes jaundice is caused by an underlying problem. It may include bleeding, infection, or liver conditions.
What are the risk factors for jaundice?
Your child is more likely to have jaundice:
Premature: A premature baby is more likely to have early liver disease. They may have fewer bowel movements than a full-time infant. They mean that a premature infant may not be able to get rid of bilirubin as quickly as a full-time baby.
Bruised At Birth: Bruising should convert red blood cells into bilirubin. They can increase the level of bilirubin in the bloodstream.
Breastfeeding Difficulties: Breastfeeding babies may be dehydrated or have low caloric intake. They can increase the risk of jaundice. If you or your child has problems breastfeeding, ask your doctor for help.
How to identify jaundice?
After you have your baby, you wait for the signs of your baby’s jaundice before you leave the hospital. Most hospitals check bilirubin levels when a baby is 24 hours old. They can use a test that assesses bilirubin levels by touching the skin. If the level is high, it is confirmed by a blood test.
If you are at home and your child’s skin is yellow, see your child’s doctor immediately. The physician will take a short amount of your baby’s blood and measure it with bilirubin. Your doctor will measure your child’s bilirubin level several times. If necessary, your child will be treated. They usually prevent your bilirubin levels from hurting your child.
Can jaundice be prevented?
In most cases, a baby’s jaundice is normal, and you can’t stop it. By feeding your baby at least 8 to 12 times a day for the first few days, you can reduce your risk of contracting jaundice. They help to move the bowels regularly, thereby removing bilirubin from their bodies.
Often there is no treatment for jaundice. Mild jaundice subsides by 1-2 weeks.
For more severe cases of hepatitis, your child may need treatment in the hospital. Most infants who need treatment for hepatitis receive light therapy (also known as phototherapy).
During phototherapy, your child is placed under individual lights or on a blanket that produces special light. He or she only wears a diaper and mask to protect their eyes. Light helps your baby’s body get rid of excess bilirubin. Phototherapy usually lasts 1 or 2 days. Sometimes, if bilirubin levels are not high enough, you can use phototherapy at home.
When your child diagnosed with jaundice, it is essential to drink plenty of milk or formula. They help them to move the intestines and remove bilirubin from their bodies. Try to feed your baby 8 to 12 times a day. If you have any problems with feeding your baby, talk to your child’s physician.
If phototherapy does not work and your child’s bilirubin levels continue to rise, your child may need an exchange. In this manner, some of your baby’s blood is taken out and replaced with fresh blood.
If an underlying condition causes hepatitis, your doctor will treat the underlying condition.
Living with jaundice
How can my child have jaundice?
Hepatitis is a different time in different infants. Often, a baby’s bilirubin level rises for the first 3 to 4 days and then slowly reverses. A breastfeeding infant may develop mild jaundice for longer than a formula-fed infant.
Can jaundice hurt my child?
In most healthy babies, jaundice is not a severe problem. But, very high bilirubin levels can be critical and can even damage the brain. If your baby is premature, high bilirubin levels can increase your child’s risk of serious injury. But jaundice is almost always diagnosed before bilirubin levels are high.