Newborns are very susceptible to jaundice or newborn jaundice after a few days of birth. Many parents are worried when their baby has jaundice and even some jaundiced babies are not allowed to go home and have to get special treatment at the hospital. even before going home, the doctor recommends a bilirubin test before going home.
Is jaundice actually dangerous in babies? Why baby's bilirubin can be high and what are the signs that a jaundiced baby has completely healed? Let's see the following explanation.
What is jaundice in babies?
Jaundice is a condition where the baby's skin and eyes turn yellow due to high levels of bilirubin. Bilirubin is a yellow substance that is produced when red blood cells carry oxygen throughout the body which is then broken down. Normally, bilirubin levels in newborns should be below 5 mg/dL for 24 hours of birth.
In newborns, the processing of red blood cells into bilirubin is higher. This is because the liver in newborns has not fully functioned normally like in adults. Symptoms of jaundice can be seen after 2 days after birth. Bilirubin levels can peak between 3-7 days after birth. This condition is common in newborns and is not dangerous if the baby is born healthy and at term or not prematurely.
The yellow color will initially appear on the area around the face and can spread throughout the body. In some cases, jaundice in infants will go away within 2-3 weeks and heal by itself. However, there are some indications that need to be considered. Jaundice babies can also experience symptoms including a fever of more than 38 degrees Celsius, the baby's skin color getting yellower and the baby doesn't seem to want to breastfeed. The baby's weight does not increase, the baby looks weak and lethargic and always falls asleep.
If a jaundiced baby is accompanied by these symptoms, then immediately check the baby's condition usually babies with moderate and severe jaundice require special treatment such as blue light therapy. This blue light is believed to be able to return the baby's bilirubin to a normal amount. During the blue light treatment, the baby only uses diapers. Make sure your little one uses a comfortable diaper with high absorption, such as MAKUKU SAP Diapers Slim, so it can lock in fluids optimally. And to avoid moist skin and triggering other health problems such as diaper rash.
Please note that the cause of jaundice is not only due to high bilirubin levels in the baby's body. but it can also be caused by the condition of premature babies, different blood types from the mother, viral infections, and blood cell abnormalities.
Beware of the Impact of Jaundice on Babies
Although it can heal on its own, mom and dad should watch out if the baby has jaundice for more than 3 weeks or lasts for months. Because jaundice that is not treated quickly can result in brain damage or kernicterus. Kernicterus is a condition of brain damage in infants caused by high levels of bilirubin in the blood. Treatment steps to overcome this disease are phototherapy and blood transfusions.
Here are the Signs of a Cure Yellow Baby
So that mom and dad don't worry anymore, let's find out how the signs of a yellow baby recover completely. The following are signs of a jaundiced baby:
- Loss of yellow color from the skin or the whites of the baby's eyes
- The baby's bilirubin level is starting to stabilize and normal.
- baby looks fresh again.
- The color of the stool or stool begins to change
- The baby can consume breast milk well
- The baby's weight is starting to increase
- The baby's condition is normal
- ]Bilirubin is slowly decreasing
- The color of the eyes and gums is back to normal
- The baby is active again
- The baby's body temperature is back to normal
If the yellow baby is more than 3 weeks old, don't hesitate to take your little one to the doctor, mom, and dad! (Aq/MKK)