Articles on baby care

How to Take Care of Your Baby

Dr. Rushabh Mehta, Gynecologist/Obstetrician
Here are a few guidelines:SwaddlingSwaddling your baby helps your baby feel warm and secure like in the womb. Lay the blanket in a diamond shape. Fold the top point inwards. Lay your baby down on its back on the blanket with his head just a bit above the folded point. Take one of the side points across the baby’s chest and tuck it under his thighs. Bring the bottom point over the baby’s feet. And follow through with the last point of the blanket across the baby’s chest and tuck it also under the opposite thigh.Dressing your babyAvoid disposable diapers as much as possible. Use them only for outings. Use cloth diapers at home to the greatest extent possible. Wash all clothes, blankets and linens before using them the first time. And always use a mild detergent to protect your child from skin-allergies and rashes.When selecting clothes for your baby, realize that they will be repeatedly soiled and have to undergo many washes. Check for sturdy zippers and well-stitched seams. The inside seams should be soft and not rough and itchy.Bunch up shirts before pulling them over your baby’s head. Look for shirts with side or front openings, shoulder buttons and stretchable necklines.Clothes should be comfortable and loose. Purchase a few inexpensive and durable clothes for sizes 0—3 months as babies will outgrow them very quickly.Infants lose heat rapidly from their uncovered heads. It is important to cover the head with a cap and also feet with socks when outside, and also on chilly days.Dress your baby as you would yourself. With just one extra layer when your baby is younger. Avoid exposing them to cold or chill or humidity or heat for long periods. Do not overdress them as this would dehydrate or give heat rashes.Dental HygieneAfter the first tooth erupts, pay extra care to dental hygiene. Family history of gum problems and cavities should be always kept in mind. Schedule a visit for the baby between 6—12 months of age and then follow up regularly. Do not allow the child to go to bed with a bottle containing anything other than water. The baby should be removed from your breast when done feeding. Check with dentist on what toothpastes can be usedCryingCrying is your baby’s way to communicate a whole range of needs and responses. It is also a way to relieve tension and stress. Sometimes going to a quiet place really helps.Hunger, in the early days and weeks of life is the most prominent reasons for crying. Wet diapers are another big cause as they make your baby very uncomfortable. Disposable diapers feel heavy and warm when wet. Illness can be another reason for crying. If a baby is crying too much, contact your pediatrician. Gas can be yet another reason. Newborns need to be burped often.Rub your baby’s back gently or move your baby’s legs back and forth towards the chest in a cyclic motion to relieve gas pains.It might get frustrating or anger you trying to constantly comfort your baby if he is fussy or not responding to your efforts. It is completely alright to be frustrated or angry and you needn’t be hard on yourself. Get someone to help if possible.Never shake a baby or throw them up into the air. The rapid movement causes severe whiplashes around the spinal column, neck or head. The younger the child, the more serious the danger. Avoid raising your hand on children of any age in any way and learn to control your temper and stress and release it in a more mature way.ColicBabies with colic cry frequently and may twist their face in pain, and draw their knees up to the abdomen and pass gas. They usually feed well and gain weight normally, but soothing colicky babies is difficult. Check with the pediatrician to rule out any issues. Cuddle your baby, gently rock or place your baby on your knees to try and soothe. Warm water bottles on the abdomen also help to an extent. After feeding your baby, carry him around on your shoulder and gently rub his back to relieve any gas.Bathing your BabyBabies needn’t be bathed every day; every alternate day works just fine. Use a sponge to gently bathe the face, hands and genitals every day.Never leave your baby alone while bathing him. Use a mild soap always and that the bathwater is lukewarm and never too hot. A way of testing is to dip your little finger to check the heat.Diapering your BabyA major decision parents face is deciding which diaper to use. Cloth and disposable diapers both have their advantages and disadvantages. Availability of time, concerns about environment and costs determine choices. A combination of cloth and disposables has been found viable by several parents. Change diapers after every bowel movement or if the diapers are wet to prevent rashes.Use plain water to clean your baby’s bottom. Use disposable or commercial diapers only for long outings because they usually contain chemicals and alcohol. The elastic around the legs and waist also irritates your baby’s skin. From time to time let your baby go without diaperPostpartum AdjustmentsMothers need good amount of rest after delivery. And those who have undergone C-sections need even more recovery time. Parents need to go an extra mile to render support to each other in their new roles.The biggest change that comes over is the relationship between spouses.As parents you also need to spend time away from the baby and with each other to understand yourself and relax. Divide duties between yourself and don’t place the entire onus on just the mother. Take time out with your partner,enjoy an evening out for a few hours with friends, call relatives over etc.Sexuality and Gender RolesFor women, sexuality and gender places multiple roles and responsibilities according to the society as well as their own aspirations and dreams. Avoid roles dictated to you by the media and society and create a balance that benefits you as well your family. Do not try to be perfect or be hard on yourself. Small compromises here and there are completely fine. A father needs to present as much for his wife as for his baby. Parenting is a combined role. Never just a mother’s job.Sex and Post - partum changesMany couples get worried about their sexual relationship and whether it will ever be the same again after a baby’s birth. Rest assured that it will once a mother’s basic healing process is complete. Vaginal discharge stops usually three to four weeks after birth and stitches if any will usually dissolve in this time frame too. Sexual intercourse may be resumed after this period but do understand and grant yourself the leeway that sex might be uncomfortable the first few times. Use forms of birth control to prevent becoming pregnant right away. Your vagina will be dry and tender because of low estrogen levels, you will be fatigued and the baby might provide distraction often. Try using a water soluble lubricant, contraceptive cream for breastfeeding mothers to help any dryness of the vagina during intercourse. If you are still breastfeeding, your breasts may tend to leak during intercourse. You may get a special bra lined with breast pads.

My Baby Is Teething!

Dr. Poonam.M. Sambhaji, Pediatrician
When will my baby start getting teeth?Its a overjoys moment when parents see the first tooth erupting in their babies little mouth. The vast majority of babies sprout their first teeth when they're between 4 and 7 months of age. An early developer may get his first white cap as early as 3 months, while a late bloomer may have to wait until he's a year old or more. (In rare cases, a baby's first tooth is already visible at birth. Whenever the first tooth makes its appearance, celebrate the milestone by taking pictures and noting the date in your child's baby book.Teeth actually start developing while your baby's in the womb, when tooth buds form in the gums. Teeth break through one at a time over a period of months, and often — but not always— in this order:First the bottom two middle teeth, then the top two middle ones, then the ones along the sides and back. They may not all come in straight, but don't worry — they usually straighten out over time.The last teeth to appear (the second molars, found in the very back of the mouth on the top and bottom) have usually begun coming into place by your baby's second birthday. By age 3,your child should have a full set of 20 baby teeth, which shouldn't fall out until his permanent teeth are ready to start coming in, around age 6. What teething symptoms will my baby experience?Experts disagree about whether teething actually causes symptoms — like fussiness,diarrhea, and fever — or whether these common symptoms are not related to teething at all and just coincidentally appear at the same time as emerging teeth. Regardless, many parents maintain that their teething babies do experience discomfort (though some babies get through the process with no problems at all. The symptoms most likely to trouble a teether include:• Drooling (which can lead to a facial rash)• Gum swelling and sensitivity• Irritability or fussiness• Biting behavior• Refusing food• Sleep problemsThough many parents report that their babies have loose stools, runny noses, or a fever just before a new tooth arrives, most experts don't think teething is to blame for these symptoms. One scientific possible reason may be that  Teething can cause diarrhea and a mild diaper rash because your baby's excessive saliva ends up in his gut and loosens his stools. Inflammation in the gums, may cause a low fever (under 101 degrees Fahrenheit).On the other hand, these may be signs of illness that should be checked out.  Symptoms may be due to an infection unrelated to teething, but that the stress associated with teething could make your child more vulnerable to infection right before a new tooth appears.  If your baby has loose stools — but not diarrhea — don't worry. The condition will clear up on its own.What can I do to ease my baby's discomfort?Give your child something to chew on, such as a firm rubber teething ring or a coldwash cloth. If your baby is old enough to eat solids, he may also get some relief from cold foods such as applesauce or yogurt. Giving him a hard, unsweetened teething cracker  to gnaw on is another time-honored trick. (Avoid carrots, as they can be a choking hazard.) Simply rubbing a clean finger gently but firmly over your baby's sore gums can ease the pain temporarily, too.Rubbing the gums with topical pain relief gel is also an option, but you may want to visit your baby's doctor before trying it. If you use too much, it can numb the back of your baby's throat and weaken his gag reflex (which helps prevent him from choking on his saliva). The gels are generally safe to use, but in rare cases can cause an allergic reaction.If drool causes a rash on your baby's face, wipe, but don't rub, the drool away with a soft cotton cloth. You can also smooth petroleum jelly on his chin before a nap or bedtime to protect the skin from further irritation.This are just few facts parents can try.Happy Parenting

Essential Baby Care Tips

Dr. Yogesh Kumar, Ayurveda
Baby care is an area which could be very intimidating for the first timer parents. This article has been written to help mothers learn about their babies. It gives a lot of information on how a baby grows, how to breastfeed, and helpful hints on caring for babies through infancy. Breastfeeding:Breastfeeding is the normal way to feed babies. Breast milk provides all the nutrition the baby needs. It has hundreds of antibodies, enzymes and other factors that protect babies from infections and diseases. Breast milk is easy for the baby to digest, it is always at the right temperature, easy to provide and always handy. Breastfeeding is also good for the mothers because it helps them to return more quickly to pre-pregnancy weight, gives stronger bones in later life, helps to bond more closely to the baby and lowers the risk of breast cancer, ovarian cancer and diabetes.The World Health Organization, and many other National and international organizations recommend that no other foods besides Breast milk be given to the babies until they are six months old. They also recommend that one continues to breastfeed after starting solid foods at six months. Reflexes :Babies do some things automatically without knowing they are doing them. These are called reflexes. For example, if something is put in their mouth they suck on it (sucking reflex) and if something is put in their hands they hold on tight (grasp reflex). If they are startled or upset they fling their arms out and throw their heads back (Startle Reflex) Breast Bud Babies are often born with large genitals and breasts and sometimes 'milk' comes from their breasts. This swelling is due to the mother's hormones, it is normal (even for boys) and it does not last long. Don’t try to squeeze and milk out of the breasts, as too much pressure can sometimes cause an infection. If the breasts become larger, firm and tender, and your baby seems unwell, there could be an infection, and you would need to take your baby to your doctor.Umbilicus: The baby's umbilicus (belly button) may take several days to heal fully, and many babies have umbilical hernias. An umbilical hernia is a lump underneath their belly button (umbilicus); it may swell if the baby is crying. This is a small gap in the tummy muscles and will nearly always go away in time. It does not cause health problems. Cradle cap :Cradle cap is a yellowish, patchy, greasy, scaly and crusty skin rash that occurs on the scalp or recently born babies. You can put olive oil or baby oil to soften the scales and wash the oil off the next day. Gently lift off the softened scales with a soft brush, if some of the scales are sticking to the surface of the scalp, use the oil again the next night. Do not use much pressure to scrape off the scales, as this could cause wound on the underlying skin. Rashes: Most babies have spots on their faces and often on parts of the body in the first few weeks. They are called milia and can look like acne -red spots with white centers. They are not acne and they do not need any treatment. They seem to be a reaction to the skin being exposed to air rather than to fluid in the womb (uterus) before birth, Sometimes the spots come when the baby gets hot or has been lying on that side. Some may also be reactions of the skin to Baby’s cream, lotions etc. Diaper rash: This is a red and painful rash on the diaper area. Rashes can be caused by irritation from dampness of urine or bowel movement on the skin. To prevent Diaper rash, wash your hands before and after changing diapers. Keep the skin dry by changing diapers as soon as they are wet or soiled. Wash the diaper area with warm water and dry well or preferably use a baby wipe. Take the diaper off and expose the area to the air for 10 to 15 minutes, three times a day. You can lay your baby on an absorbent towel and play with her during this time. When the diaper area is clean and dry, rub on a thin Layer of zinc-based cream. Oral Thrush (candidiasis): Thrush is a common infection in infants. Thrush appears as a whitish gray coating on the tongue and on the inside of the cheeks and gums. This coating is not easily wiped off. Babies may also develop thrush on their skin. Most babies do not have any pain or complications with thrush .Regurgitation :Lots of babies have hiccups after feeds. This is normal. Some babies spill some milk after feeds. If they are growing well and happy this is nothing to worry about. If the baby is bringing up milk in big spurts much of the time and not putting on weight or is miserable a lot of the time; you need to see the doctor.Stomach pain or Colic: Many babies cry for up to three hours, or sometimes more, a day in the early weeks. Most babies like being held and comforted. Some babies still cry when they are being held. Remember that every baby isdifferent. While babies usually follow similar patterns with their development, your baby might do things faster or slower or differently from other babies and this is usually fine. If the baby is doing things much more slowly or not doing some things at all. It is a good idea to check with your doctor to make sure that all is going well. Teething :Most babies get their first teeth between 6-9 months. Once teething starts, it continues almost uninterrupted for about two years. Some babies have no difficulty with teething while others may become fussy and uncomfortable. Some things you can do to relieve sore or tender gums: Give the baby a clean teething ring (Teether). Clean and massage the gums regularly to ease discomfort. Baby's stools: Very young breastfed babies usually do several 'poos' a day. Even if your baby, seems to be pushing hard, the poo is usually very soft. After a few weeks some breastfed babies only have a poo every few days and it will still be soft. All this is normal. Bottle fed babies might have firmer poos. If the poos seem very hard, water may be given to the baby to help the poo be soft again. Some may also have constipation for days, they may need to be assisted with the bowel movement. Baby‘s urine: A little light pink or orange stain from urine on the nappy is common and is nothing to worry about. It is caused by a reaction between chemicals in the baby's urine (urates) and chemicals in the fibres of the nappy. It is more likely, in boys because their stream of wee (urine) is more likely to all be on the same place on the diaper. If it is red or leaves a brown stain, that is, if it looks at all like blood or your baby seems unwell and is not feeding normally you need to have it checked by a doctor. Sometimes there can be small ‘crystals’ on the inner surface of a disposable nappy. These come from the inside of the nappy not from the baby. Vaginal blood loss :Some female babies have small vaginal blood loss a few days after birth. This loss is due to the change in hormone levels after birth causing a brief menstrual period. This bleeding stops after a day or two. There will not be any more vaginal blood loss until the girl reaches puberty and starts to have periods. Developmental milestones: The child developmental milestones are briefly analyzed below: Six Weeks:  He can smile at you when you smile at him. Two Months: Neck Control i.e he can hold up his head when you are holding him upright and lift his head up if he is lying on his tummy. Three Months:He will enjoy hitting toys that make noise and he can hold a rattle for a short time. Four Months:He may be able to roll from his front to his back, but it may be another couple of months, or more, before he can roll from his back to his front. Six Months:He may be able to sit without support .Seven Months: He will be sitting up and might be starting to crawl Nine Months:Many babies can pull themselves up to stand. Some babies take longer. It takes another two or three months or so before he can stand without holding onto something and then a few more weeks before he can actually walk. Twelve Months: Babies will talk to you in their own language and expect you to understand. They may say one or two clear words- Hello, No etc. They can understand some sounds. The baby will be able to hold something with his thumb and forefinger and play little games like wave goodbye. Jaundice: Jaundice appears in about half of full term babies and most of preterm babies. Babies have extra red blood cells. As the blood cells breakdown, a yellow colored substance called bilirubin is released. The yellow coloured substance in the baby’s blood causes the skin and the whites of the eyes to take on a yellowish tinge called jaundice. In most infants, Jaundice is mild. It comes on during the first three to five days and lasts only a few days. The only treatment needed initially is lots of breastfeeding and later phototherapy. Do not give water by bottle as bilirubin is better eliminated through stools than urine. Untreated severe jaundice can lead to brain damage and deafness. Immunization: Immunizations help to protect children from many diseases. Other words for immunizations are inoculations, vaccinations, boosters and shots. Immunizations help the baby’s immune system make substances called antibodies that fight diseases. The baby then develops protection against these diseases. Some vaccines are only given once or twice, and some need to be given over a period of time in a series of properly spaced immunizations. By immunizing your baby, you give him the best possible protection against many serious diseases. Always take your child's record with you when he gets his immunizations. Keep it with other important papers, because your child will need his immunization record when he is older. Sometimes immunizations may cause minor side effects, but these are temporary. These side effects might be soreness or swelling where the needle went into the arm or leg, or a slight fever. These do not usually last long. Serious side effects from immunizations are very rare. Vitamin K Injection :All newborns should have an injection or vitamin K within 6 hours after birth. This injection helps prevent hemorrhagic disease of the newborn. Hemorrhagic disease of the newborn is a bleeding problem that occurs during the first few days of life. Eye Treatment: Pediatricians recommend that all newborns receive treatment to prevent an infection of gonorrhea or Chlamydia. These infections can get into the baby’s eyes during birth. Today, an eye ointment is usually used to treat a baby’s eyes if the discharge is copious. If not treated, these infections are severe and can cause blindness. Ear Infection : Middle ear infections are called Otitis Media. Children can also get infections in the ear canal (called Otitis Externa). It causes pain, fever and distress to children and is one of the reasons why they may wake at night. Ear infections can also affect children's hearing. Fever: Fever is usually caused by infections. The source of the infection can be bacteria or a virus. Fever is the normal process of fighting an infection. Babies less than six months old should be taken to their health care provider if they have a fever. Let the baby breast feed more, or offer more to drink, take off extra clothes that the baby is wearing. Give medicine to help bring down the fever and make him more comfortable. Give your baby a tepid sponging or lukewarm bath. Not every sick baby will have a fever, especially if they are less than 1 month old. Some signs of a sick baby may be poor feeding, excessive crying or being irritable. Temperature range Your baby’s body temperature changes throughout the day. It is lowest in the early morning and highest in the early evening. Normal temperature taken under the armpit is 36.5°C to 37.4°C (97.7F to 99.3F). Put the tip of the thermometer in the centre of the armpit. Tuck the arm snugly against the body, then comfort and distract your baby. After about 1 minute the thermometer will beep if it is digital. Mothers are advised to get their own digital thermometer for home use. Paracetamol or Ibuprofen Paracetamol (which in some countries is called acetaminophen/tyelenol) has been safely used for many years to help with mild to moderate pain and fever for babies, young children and older children, But if too much paracetamol is given to a child, especially a sick child, for too long, it can harm the child. Ibuprofen is a newer drug than paracetamol, but it has also been used for fever and mild to moderate pain in children and adults for some years. It is not suitable for children under six months of age. If the fever persists for 1-2 days, it is advisable the child is seen by the doctor. Circumcision  :Circumcision is the removal of the flap or skin which naturally covers the tip of the penis. Circumcision can be painful for the child, both at the time of the operation and some days after. Male Circumcision reduces risks or urinary tract infection in infancy and reduces the risk of HIV/AIDs later in life. The babies are placed on paracetamol after the procedure. Female circumcision: is harmful and is not done due to the various complications it exposes the female child to. Preterm babies: Preterm babies or preemies are those who are born before 37 weeks gestation. Preemies may have immature organ systems. Generally, the younger the baby’s age at birth, the more health problems she may have. A preterm baby may need to be separated from the mother at birth if special care is required. When the preterm baby is well enough, she may be encouraged to have skin-to-skin contact with the mother; this is called Kangaroo care. The baby is unwrapped and placed on the chest where he can hear the heart beat, feel the breathing, and breastfeed. The babies may have problems with feeding. They may be fed via pedal tubes or pump to give breast milk for feedings. Remember - Never shake a baby or throw a baby up! It can lead to seizure, brain damage and death.

Home Care for Elderly

Dr. Shreedhar Archik, Orthopedist
Dr. Gandhi fell at home and broke his hip bone. Dr. Gandhi is 87-year-old, who practiced till he was 78 years old. He had no diabetes or blood pressure. His only problem was dementia, from which he was suffering since last 5 years. He hardly remembers anything and stays all alone with his 80-year-old wife. Dr. Gandhi has two married daughters.Dr. Gandhi underwent a replacement surgery of his hip bone successfully and suffered no complications. However, our physiotherapist could hardly get anything out of him. He used to be violent at times or simply refuse to co-operate. He used to stay awake most nights in spite of sedatives, and then sleep the whole day. His diet suffered. He was on a urinary catheter and a diaper. He was put on an air mattress since he refused to turn in bed and we were worried that he would end up having bed sores.The time came to discharge him from the hospital as there was nothing to be done from the medical team. Physiotherapy was advised by the doctors so that he could get out of bed and get going, however, sadly, he refused to co-operate with the doctors, mainly due to his poor mental health. Both his daughters started panicking as we started discussing with them about his discharge. Though from a well-off family, the daily bill of a good hospital started pinching them. How would they take care of their father at home? How would their frail mother manage him? They had their own families to look after and could not spend the entire day with him.This is where the new home care startups came to our help. These new startups provide almost entire hospital facilities at home. We arranged a hospital type of bed and an air mattress on rent. We arranged two ward boys to take care of him in two 12 hours shift. We arranged a MBBS doctor to visit him once a week to check on his parameters. The cost of all this was almost 50 % of his daily hospital bill.We lack nursing home facilities for such elderly patients who need to be discharged from the hospital but are not fit enough to go home. In foreign countries, these facilities are available (though very expensive). The new startups in India have managed to fill this gap very well.We see patients like Dr. Gandhi who have their kids in the USA and no one local to take care of them. For such elderly couples, any such institution that takes care of them and yet lets them live a quality life, is a god-send facility.These startups vary from region to region and your treating doctors would be happy to share their numbers with you.

7 Common Reasons Babies Cry — and How to Soothe Them

Dr. Adil Hingora, Homeopath
Obviously, you know that baby’s going to cry, but that doesn’t make it easy to hear. The key to calming those cries is to get to the bottom of what’s causing them. And since babies don’t come out of the womb with a full vocabulary, you’re going to have to use the process of elimination .HungerProbably the first thing that runs through your mind when baby’s crying is, “Could he be hungry again?” They call it hangry for a reason, and babies seem to go from zero to screaming pretty quickly if they haven’t eaten for a while. The key isn’t to watch the clock with feedings — it’s to respond to baby’s cues. “Crying is a late sign of hunger,” says Paul Horowitz, MD, of Discovery Pediatrics in Valencia, California. To avoid crying completely, look for early signs of hunger: lip-smacking, sucking on his hands and rooting — turning his head to find the boob or bottle. When you see those, start the feeding. If baby’s already crying, you might recognize the “feed me” cry as rhythmic and repetitive and (usually) short and low-pitched. All you’ve got to do here is feed baby.Tummy troublesIs your fussy baby’s also wriggling, arching his back or pumping his legs? Classic case of gas, says Preeti Parikh, MD, pediatrician at Pediatrics of New York in New York City. And yes it sounds gross, but you can help him pass it. “Hold baby on the left side or on his or her stomach to help with digestion,” she says. “If baby is gassy, bicycle his legs and push them up to his chest to help relieve the gas.”Dirty diaper Some babies can sit in a wet or dirty diaper for hours without a care in the world. Others go nuts if they’re sitting in it for more then a second. (Can you blame them really?) It doesn’t take much effort to open up the diaper and make a quick check, but there are also some diaper brands with a “wetness indicator” that changes color when they’re wet, so you don’t have to go through the whole undressing process every time you wonder.TeethingBaby can start teething as early as four months old, around which point you may notice more fussiness. Other telltale signs of teething are excess drool and gnawing on anything within reach. “Sucking either on a pacifier or on your thumb or finger can help soothe baby,” Parikh says. You may even want to give her gums a massage. “Massage them frequently until you make a squeaky sound,” Horowitz says. Chewing on frozen or refrigerated teethers, washcloths or even cotton bibs may also give baby some relief.SleepinessYou may be able to fall asleep the minute you hit the mattress, but it’s not the same for baby. In fact the more tired baby is, the harder it might be for him to wind down. Do some trial and error to see what calms your tired baby. Swaddling, for starters, may make baby feel cozy and comfy. Some babies respond to rocking motion or the sound of a lullaby or even a hum of the vacuum. Set a bedtime routine that signals to baby that it’s time for sleep. “Mine is the three Bs: bath, bottle, then bedtime,” says BumpieMammaMoon9. “Baby doesn’t always fall asleep immediately, but the bath does calm him quite a bit.” Resist the urge to limit daytime naps thinking it will help baby sleep at night — it won’t. And even if it’s not his usual naptime, and he seems tired, go ahead and put him down. “Sleepy babies should be allowed to sleep,” Horowitz says.Need to burp“Everyone remembers to burp baby after a feeding, but many babies may need to be burped after sucking a pacifier, having the hiccups or crying,” says Horowitz. “All these activities can result in swallowing air.” So, when baby’s crying and you’re not sure why, it doesn’t hurt to give her a pat on the back. “I hold baby over my left shoulder, making sure his left arm is hanging over my shoulder,” Bumpie KatieDahlia says. “Then I rub in circles on his left side and back, starting down by his hip and working up. Usually after two or three tries, we get a massive burp out of him.”OverstimulationWe all get sensory overload now and again. For baby, it might be after getting passed around by aunts and uncles at a family party, or toted along to the grocery store. Remember: Baby’s still getting used to all that commotion, so it might not take much to get him upset. It’s a good idea to take baby home and relax when he seems overstimulated. Or go for a walk together, suggests Parikh. Some fresh air, quiet and/or familiar surroundings will probably do him some good. But don’t go too crazy trying to keep him away from stimulation completely. “Stimulation is a good thing,” Horowitz explains. “But the best form of it for baby is one-on-one stimulation with a loved one.”

How to Get Your Life Ready for a Baby

Dr. Rushabh Mehta, Gynecologist/Obstetrician
What should we think about before we start trying?Before you take the plunge, you and your partner may find it helpful to ask yourselves these questions:Are you both equally committed to becoming parents?Have you thought through how you'll handle childcare responsibilities and balancing work and family?Are you ready to give up sleeping in on Sundays or line up a babysitter every time you want to go out without your baby?Have you thought about how becoming parents may change you, and your relationships with those closest to you?Are you prepared for the possibility that your child may have special needs?If you have religious differences, have you discussed how they will affect your child?Having a baby won't just have a small impact on your life, it's going to shift the centre of your universe. Some new parents find this a shock. Think about how you'll feel, how you usually cope with change, and how you can prepare yourself for the highs (and lows) of parenthood.When should we stop using contraception?For some people, stopping contraception is as easy as shoving the condoms or diaphragm to the back of a drawer. If you're on the pill and want to get pregnant, you can stop taking it and start trying straight away if you're ready to. Or you may want to wait until you've had at least one post-pill period. Knowing the date of your last period can help your midwife or doctor to estimate your due date when you do get pregnant. It can also give you time to make other changes to your lifestyle before you conceive. You may find it takes up to six months for your menstrual cycle to get back on track. If you do get pregnant while you're still on the pill, stop taking it and see your doctor. There's no evidence of an increased risk of miscarriage or abnormalities for women who conceive while taking the pill. But you may want to reassure yourself by talking it through with your doctor. If you've been using the contraceptive injection, it may take up to a year for you to return to your usual fertility.Do I need to change what I eat if I'm trying for a baby?Eating well is essential if you're intent on baby-making. Aim for a balanced diet of three meals a day, including at least five daily portions of fruit and vegetables. Four of the most important nutrients for a healthy start to pregnancy are:folic acidcalciumironvitamin DTo ensure you have these important nutrients, include the following in your meals:dairy producefruit and vegetableswhole grains and cerealsprotein in the form of lean meat, fish, eggs, pulses or nutsYou can take multivitamins designed for women who are trying to conceive or an antenatal supplement. These will contain 400mcg of folic acid. This is a B vitamin that helps to prevent neural tube defects, such as spina bifida in developing babies. Some women need to take more folic acid and have a 5mg dose prescribed by their doctor. However, apart from folic acid, supplements shouldn't be a substitute for a healthy, balanced diet. You shouldn't take high-dose supplements to build up your reserves.Some studies have suggested that having a lot of caffeine may affect your fertility. Although the evidence isn't conclusive, if you're trying for a baby it makes sense to keep your caffeine intake below 200mg a day. Caffeine levels in drinks vary, but two cups of instant coffee contain about 200mg of caffeine.Will my weight affect my fertility?Being either underweight or overweight can cause hormone imbalances. This can affect your fertility by making you less likely to ovulate. It can also increase the risk of complications in pregnancy. If you can, try to achieve a healthy weight, with a body mass index (BMI) of between about 19 and 25, before you conceive. This will increase your chances of conception and of having a healthy pregnancy. You can calculate your body mass index (BMI) with our BMI calculator. If you have irregular periods and your BMI is 30 or higher, try to bring down your BMI. Losing between 10 per cent and 20 per cent of your body weight can help to regulate your menstrual cycle. This, in turn, will improve your chances of conceiving. It's best not to crash diet, though, as this can deplete your body's nutritional stores. Aim to lose between 0.5kg and 1kg (between 1lb and 2lb) a week, which is a safe rate of weight loss. For best results, stick to a healthy, balanced diet of low-fat and low-sugar foods, combined with an exercise programme. If you're underweight, try to put on a few pounds. Being underweight can affect ovulation. And when you do conceive, your risk of miscarriage increases if you're underweight. Just as it's best not to crash diet if you're overweight, it's best not to gorge on sugary, fatty foods to put on weight fast. These types of foods won't give you the important vitamins and minerals you need. Try to get your extra calories from healthy food choices.Should I start exercising more before I conceive?Getting fit before you conceive lays the foundations for a healthy pregnancy. Building your stamina, strength and flexibility can help you to:maintain an active lifestyle during pregnancy and enjoy those nine monthsimprove your mood and energy levelsachieve a healthy pre-pregnancy weightcope with the hormonal shifts of pregnancycope with the rigours of labour, when the time comesBeing active and taking regular exercise that strengthens your back muscles may help to stave off lower back pain later. If you can, build exercise into your everyday life. Try walking or cycling to work instead of taking the bus, or using the stairs instead of the lift. Running and jogging are other good ways to get in shape before pregnancy. If you're not already a runner or a jogger, you may like to start now. Running and jogging shouldn't be started for the first time during pregnancy. Reaching a level of fitness now means you can either continue or tailor your routine once you are pregnant. Start slowly and don't push yourself too hard. If you have a conceptual check-up at your local surgery, you could have a chat with your doctor or nurse about starting an exercise programme.Is smoking, drinking and taking drugs harmful when you're trying?Yes, these can all be harmful when you're trying for a baby. There are many good reasons to stop smoking, stop taking drugs and drink little or no alcohol. Making these changes to your lifestyle is good for your own health and, once you're conceived, for your baby's health and development. Smoking is likely to reduce your fertility and recreational drugs, such as marijuana and cocaine, can affect your ovulatory and tubal function. This can make it harder for you to conceive. Even drugs that are available over-the-counter or by prescription can harm your fertility. It is, therefore, important to discuss your medication with a doctor before you start trying for a baby. Alcohol can also affect your ability to conceive. While trying for a baby, it is best to reduce the amount you drink to no more than one or two units per day. Try not to get drunk during this time. This will help reduce any risk of harm to your baby if your attempts are successful. During pregnancy, smoking, taking illegal drugs and drinking alcohol are connected to an increased risk of miscarriage. Further into your pregnancy, you're more at risk having a low-birth-weight baby and premature birth. Too much alcohol during pregnancy can seriously affect your baby's development. Because experts can't be sure about a safe level of alcohol for an unborn baby, it is best to stick to no more than one or two units, once or twice a week, and don't get drunk.What if my job could be harmful once I get pregnant?Some jobs can be hazardous to you and your unborn baby. If you are exposed to chemicals or radiation often, you may need to consider making changes before you conceive. Likewise, if you fly a lot or stand all day, think about how you might cope if you became pregnant. If possible, tell your employer that you're planning a pregnancy and ask about ways to avoid or eliminate hazards in your workplace. If you don't want to let your employer know that you're trying for a baby, the Health and Safety Executive has information about how to make your work environment safer.

Care and Management of Geriatric Patients

Dr. Yogesh Rao, Dentist
Introduction- Aging is a natural process. Old age should be regarded as a normal, inevitable biological phenomenon. As a result of the advances made in medicine and public health measures in the last half of the 20th century, there is a substantial increase in the life span of man. Elders above 65 years (old age) have health problems as a result of aging process, which calls for special consideration.In India, with its population of over one billion people, people older than 60 years constitute 7.6% of the total population, which amounts to 76 million. Incidence of oral cancer, which is an old age disease, is highest in India.A LINK TO SYSTEMIC HEALTHThe exploding geriatric population, coupled with recent discoveries surrounding links between oral health and systemic health, make it increasingly important for the dental community to be prepared to treat geriatric patients in the dental office or where they live. Ongoing research suggests that periodontal bacteria entering the bloodstream may be linked to conditions such as respiratory disease, diabetes, heart disease, increased risk of stroke, and osteoporosis. Studies further suggest that periodontal bacteria can pose a threat to people whose health is already compromised by these conditions.3 In light of this growing body of research, comprehensive dental care becomes increasingly important to help improve our geriatric patients’ quality of life and outlook.ENCOURAGING SENIOR VISITS AND PREVENTIVE CAREA natural part of aging can be dramatically diminished pain perception, which can easily mask the need for professional dental care. Additionally, many individuals accept oral problems and tooth loss as inevitable results of aging, making dental visits unimportant to them. These patients may not understand that regular dental appointments become increasingly important as they age or that professional care can positively impact their quality of life and attitude. Given this, the entire dental team needs to encourage older patients to maintain daily oral hygiene as well as regular dental visits.With patients who wear complete or partial dentures it is just as important to stress proper care and maintenance procedures as it is to encourage follow-up appointments. One report showed that only 19% of denture wearers remember their dental professionals’ instructions regarding regular checkups. In particular, it is advisable to stress oral re-evaluations for denture patients when considering bisphosphonate therapy. By remembering to emphasize these details to your elderly patients and explain why it is important they follow your advice, you can help make check-ups routine and not just a painful emergency.  STRATEGIES FOR SUCCESSDental care for seniors has always posed unique challenges. It requires understanding and sensitivity to the medical, psychological, social, and financial status of elderly patients. When providing care to aging patients with physical and sensory limitations, the entire dental team needs to ensure that patients feel welcomed and comfortable. Be sure that written information such as health history forms, business cards, brochures, appointment cards, and postcards are available in large-printArrange furniture to accommodate wheelchairs and walkers, and to reduce or eliminate barriers. Be sure to offer supportive armchairs (that are not too deep or too low) in easy-to-access areas of the reception room. For wheelchair transfers, always position the seat of the dental chair at the same height as the patient’s wheelchair..BEFORE THE EXAMDental providers will find more success when they communicate clearly, respectfully, and reassuringly with elderly patients. Speak slowly and directly to the patient. Knowledge of the patient’s medical and dental history aids the practitioner in planning and providing safe, personalized, appropriate, and comfortable treatment. An accurate health history is more than a legal necessity..ENCOURAGING CAREGIVER INVOLVEMENTGeriatric patients may have difficulty performing routine oral hygiene procedures due to physical limitations and/or memory problems, making the instruction and coordination of home care particularly important. Because of the possibility of actively declining skills. Demonstrate the use of power brushes and interdental aids and, most importantly, have the caregiver don gloves and participate. Dental professionals need to make sure patient and caregiver completely understand the oral care they will be practicing at home.CONCLUSIONGeriatric healthcare is complex. The medical team’s goals include maximizing each person’s function, health, independence, and quality of life. Ideally, every geriatric team should include a dentist and/or dental hygienist to promote optimal quality of life through proper oral care. Poor dental health does not have to be an inevitable consequence for America’s aging population. By keeping abreast of the complex issues that impact geriatric dental care and offering treatment that takes into consideration the physical, mental, and social status of older adults, dental healthcare providers can enhance their older patients’ health, thus enabling them to enjoy healthier, longer lives with improved comfort, outlook, and quality of life.

How Should I Manage Diaper Rash in My Baby?

Dr. Rahul Varma, Pediatrician
I think virtually every parent must have faced this problem once in their babies at some point of time. Diaper rash basically develops due to direct contact of skin with moist surface or soiled diaper. It develops mostly in genital area, perianal area, thigh folds and buttocks.Causes of Diaper Rash:If potty soiled diaper is left for too long.If wet diaper is kept for too long a period.Allergic reaction to diaper material, soaps or baby wipesToo much moistureToo much rubbing of skin while cleaning or too much friction from diaper if put very tightly on baby.Bacterial infection, yeast infectionsOnce the rash has started developing and skin is damaged, there are more chances of developing infections like bacterial, fungal or yeast.Babies who are breast fed have less chance of diaper rashes.More common when baby is having diarrhea, baby on antibiotics, recent change in dietary habits like starting with solid foods. If babies are not kept clean or dry for long periods.Steps to manage/ prevent Diaper rash:Keep area as clean and as dry as possible.Pat dry; the area rather than rubbing. Allow it dry fully before putting on diaper.Use oil based barrier like Vaseline petroleum jelly, coconut oil etc.Keep diaper area dry for as long as possible. Best is to avoid use of diaper during day keep it open to dry air.If temperature of room is ambient, try to keep baby in open without nappies, so that rashes can air dry.Change diaper more frequentlyAvoid wiping with alcohol based wipes, use soft cotton washcloth.Apply thick layer of any Zinc based ointment like Siloderm etc. Or any napirash cream available. Important is to put a thick layer and it is not necessary to completely remove the whole cream on next diaper change.Most important thing to remember is that heavy rubbing or scrubbing is only going to damage it more.Wrap the diaper as loose as possible (too tight diaper can prevent proper air circulation is there and wet or soiled parts do not rub against the skin too much).Avoid use of Steroid based creams as far as possible (unless until recommended by your child doctor, as they can harm your baby).When Consult your child doctor (Pediatrician) ifPus filled blister or sores appear near rashesRashes are not improvingThey are getting worse even after taking all the precautions.Baby has fever along with rashesRashes all over the body

9 Ways to Take Care of Your Eyes

Dr. Charu Tyagi, Ophthalmologist
There is a huge population of people in India who are suffering from severe Visual loss.While not all eye diseases can be prevented, there are simple steps that everyone can take to help their eyes remain healthy now and reduce their chances of vision loss in the future.1. WEAR SUNGLASSESUV blocking Sunglasses delay the development of cataracts, since direct sunlight hastens their formation. Sunglasses prevent retinal damage; they also protect the delicate eyelid skin to prevent both wrinkles and skin cancer around the eye, and both cancerous and non-cancerous growths on the eye. Check for 100 percent UV protection: Make sure your sunglasses block 100 percent of UV-A rays and UV-B rays.2. RIGHT FOODVitamin deficiency can impair retinal function. The belief that eating carrots improves vision has some truth, but a variety of vegetables, especially leafy green ones, should be an important part of your diet. Researchers have found people on diets with higher levels of vitamins C and E, zinc, lutein, zeaxanthin, omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA are less likely to develop early and advanced AMD.3. QUIT SMOKINGTobacco smoking is directly linked to many adverse health effects, including age related macular degeneration ( ARMD). Studies show that current smokers and ex-smokers are more likely to develop AMD than people who have never smoked. Smokers are also at increased risk for developing cataracts.4. BASELINE EYE EXAMINATIONAdults with no signs or risk factors for eye disease should get a baseline eye examination done at 40 — the time when early signs of disease and changes in vision may start to occur. Based on the results of the initial screening, an ophthalmologist will prescribe the necessary intervals for follow-up exams. Anyone with symptoms or a family history of eye disease, diabetes  or high blood pressure should see an ophthalmologist to determine how frequently your eyes should be examined.5. EYE PROTECTIONIt is important to wear proper eye protection to prevent eye injuries during sports such as hockey and cricket and home projects such as home repairs, gardening, and cleaning. For most repair projects and activities around the home, standard approved protective eye wear will be sufficient. Sports eye protection should meet the specific requirements of that sport; these requirements are usually established and certified by the sport's governing body .6. KNOW YOUR FAMILY HISTORYMany eye diseases cluster in families, so you should know your family's history of eye disease because you may be at increased risk, retinitis pigmentosa,high myopia with degeneration,.. Age-related eye diseases, including cataracts, diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma and age related macular degeneration ( ARMD)are expected to dramatically increase in coming decade.7. EYE STRAINBe aware of eye strain.If you have eye strain working on computers or doing close work, you can follow the 20-20-20 rule: Look up from your work every 20 minutes at an object 20 feet away for twenty seconds. If eye fatigue persists, it can be a sign of several different conditions, such as dry eye, presbyopia, or spectacles with lenses that are not properly centered. See an Eye Doctor. to determine why you are having eye fatigue and to receive proper treatment. 8. EARLY INTERVENTIONMost serious eye conditions, such as glaucoma and AMD, are more easily and successfully treated if diagnosed and treated early. Left untreated, these diseases can cause serious vision loss and blindness. Early intervention now will prevent vision loss later.9. KNOW YOUR DOCTORWhen you go to get your eyes checked, there are a variety of eye care providers you might see. Ophthalmologists, optometrists and opticians all play an important role in providing eye care services to consumers. However, each has a different level of training and expertise. Make sure you are seeing the right provider for your condition or treatment. Ophthalmologist are highly trained professionals who can help you,from prescribing glasses and contact lenses to complex and delicate eye surgery.