Frequently Asked Questions
Neonatologists are doctors who specialize in the care of newborn children. Newborns can present a unique set of health challenges that require a high level of skill and medical expertise to treat. Although most children are born without problems, neonatologists are the first line of support in a high-risk birth.
A neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) is a hospital intensive care unit that specializes in looking after sick and critical newborn babies.
NICUs have specialist doctors, nurses and equipment to care for sick babies.
Children are not just small adults. They do not always say what is bothering them. They cannot always answer medical questions or be patient and helpful while in the hospital. If your paediatrician suggests that your child requires hospital admission, you can be assured that your child will receive the high-quality care which is absolutely necessary for your child’s well being.
Various Paediatric illnesses may aggravate or require further assessment and monitoring in hospital. Non critical Children are admitted to paediatric wards to closely monitor their condition, treat the illness and if need be, shift to emergency care units.
All newborns cry and get fussy sometimes. It’s normal for a baby to cry for 2–3 hours a day for the first 6 weeks. During the first 3 months of life, they cry more than at any other time.
What Can Help a Crying Baby?
You can’t spoil your baby with too much attention. To soothe a crying baby:
- First, make sure your baby doesn’t have a fever. In a baby, a fever is a temperature of 100.4°F (38°C). Call the doctor right away if your baby does have a fever.
- Make sure your baby isn’t hungry and has a clean diaper.
- Hold your baby close against your body and take calm, slow breaths.
- Rock or walk with the baby.
- Pat or rub the baby’s back.
- Place your baby across your lap on his or her belly and rub your baby’s back.
- Sing or talk to your baby.
- Take the baby for a ride in a stroller.
- Give the baby a warm bath.
- Play music – some babies respond to sound as well as movement.
Some babies need less stimulation. Babies 2 months and younger may do well swaddled, lying on their back in the crib with the lights very dim or dark. Make sure the swaddle isn’t too tight. Stop swaddling when the baby is starting to be able to roll over.
First of all, it’s necessary to understand there are some things you can’t control about your baby’s sleeping habits.
It’s normal for babies to wake in the night because they need to eat every few hours to sustain their life. As they gain weight, he or she will naturally go longer between feedings. It’s quite common for babies to wake for feeding for the first three to six months. Also, it’s important to note that when babies sleep at night for five hours, it is considered to be sleeping through the night.
There are some things you can do that will encourage better sleep at night. For instance, you can play more active games throughout the day and engage in quieter activities near bedtime. You should also establish and evening routine that helps them wind-down and signals sleep at the end of the day. In many cases, it helps to bathe your child to calm them down before bedtime, and it may also help to rock them, read, play quiet music, and feed him or her shortly before bed.
Immunization is a way of protecting the human body against infectious diseases through vaccination. Immunization prepares our bodies to fight against diseases in case we come into contact with them in the future.
Babies are born with some natural immunity which they get from their mother and through breastfeeding. This gradually wears off as the baby’s own immune system starts to develop. Having your child immunized gives extra protection against illnesses.
Vaccines are products that are usually given in childhood to protect against serious, often deadly diseases. By stimulating your body’s natural defenses, they prepare your body to fight the disease faster and more effectively.
Vaccines help your immune system fight infections more efficiently by sparking your immune response to specific diseases. Then, if the virus or bacteria ever invades your body in the future, your immune system will already know how to fight it.
Vaccines are very safe. Your child is far more likely to be hurt by a vaccine-preventable disease than by a vaccine. All vaccines go through rigorous safety testing, including clinical trials, before they are approved for the public.
- Every community has a staple food—the food that forms the main bulk; for example, wheat, rice etc.
- Staple foods can be cooked, served, and are good sources of energy and protein.
The best way to be sure about this is to consult with your physician, and your physician will know by regularly weighing them at visits.
For the most part, you should continue to feed them when they want more and to avoid feeding when they express less interest. Your baby’s instincts should be trusted in this situation, because they will know when they need more food and when they don’t. Signs that they aren’t getting enough to eat include less urine output and lethargy. If you have concerns about this issue, please call your doctor.
No. Around the age of 4~6 months, an infant’s need for energy and nutrients starts to exceed what is provided by breast milk, and complementary foods are necessary to meet those needs. An infant of this age is also developmentally ready for other foods.
- At the six month mark, baby’s body and brain is growing rapidly and requires
more energy and nutrients than what breast milk alone can provide.
- This is the right time to introduce complementary feeding.
- Delay in introduction of complementary foods affects the child’s growth and
increases the risk of malnutrition.
To support physical and brain development feed a variety of foods are to be introduced
- Do not add salt or sugar
- Non-vegetarian can include egg, fish, chicken etc.
- Do not feed child junk foods such as chips, packaged juice, biscuits, sweets, or savouries.
- Prefer the regular family food that is locally available and culturally acceptable rather than cooking special foods.
- The recent concept of “Baby-led Weaning”, i.e., feed as per baby’s choice shall be practiced.
- Easily digestible and nourishing food.
- Taste and palatability of food for the infant.
- Start feeding with small amounts and gradually increase the quantity with the increasing age of the child.
- The consistency, frequency, and variety should change as the infant grows, depending upon the requirements and the feeding abilities.
- A variety of nutrient-rich foods shall be offered to ensure the body requirements.
- During illness, the principle of more fluids including frequent breastfeeding and encouragement to eat soft, favourite foods should be followed. After illness, promote feeding more often than usual so as to replenish the deficient intake.
- The child should be fed from a separate bowl and all utensils used should be thoroughly washed
- Look into the eyes while feeding the child. Be patient, encouraging and loving.
- Do not force feed
- Self-feeding must be encouraged early on
- At 6 months of age, start with pureed, mashed, and semi-solid foods.
- Most infants can eat “finger foods” around 8 months.
- Most children can eat the family foods by the end of 1 year.
- Avoid foods that may be lodged in the windpipe (such as nuts, grapes, and raw carrots) and can result in choking.
A combination of continued breastfeeding for at least 1- 1.5 years along with timely and adequate complementary feeding is the most reliable option to provide optimum nutrition to the child. As the child grows, increase the number of times that the child is fed: 2–3 meals per day for infants 6–8 months of age and 3–4 meals per day for infants 9–23 months of age, with 1–2 additional snacks as required; use fortified complementary foods or vitamin-mineral supplements as needed and gradually increase food consistency and variety. Over and above the nutritional benefits, complementary feeding can strengthen the bond between children and their parents.