How to Care for a Baby With Jaundice

Normal newborn jaundice is a common condition that affects many babies. Babies with jaundice often have yellow tinted skin and yellowed whites of the eyes. Within the first few days of life, bilirubin levels in the blood become elevated. The rise in levels is a result of the liver of a baby being too immature to process the bilirubin that is released when the baby breaks down red blood cells. If your baby has jaundice, you may be asked to follow these steps to care for your baby.

Instructions

  1. How to Care for a Baby With Jaundice

    • 1

      Be sure your baby's intake is adequate. Eating and eliminating can help improve jaundice.

    • 2

      Place your baby in indirect sunlight. Sunlight can help break down bilirubin and decrease the levels in your baby. Putting your baby in the light of a window for 10 minutes twice per day can help decrease bilirubin levels.

    • 3

      Phototherapy may be prescriped. If natural sunlight doesn't seem to help, you baby may be placed under a special lighted blanket to help breakdown bilirubin.

    • 4

      If your baby's jaundice gets worse or is severe, call your child's pediatrician. In severe cases of jaundice, you baby may be readmitted into the hospital. Some babies who suffer from different variations of jaundice may need a blood transfusion, although newborn jaundice usually resolves itself within a few weeks after birth or with limited light treatment.

Tips & Warnings

  • The most common form of newborn jaundice resolved within 1-2 weeks after birth.

  • Contact your child's physician if you have concerns about your child's health. This article is meant for informational purposes only and should not replace medical advice given by your physician.

  • Contact your health care provider with any questions or concerns regarding your baby's health.

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