main banner

Post-birth-tests-on-your-newborn

Post-Birth Tests On Your Newborn

As well as the Apgar tests, the midwife or doctor will make the following checks on your newborn.

The list of checks looks quite long, but they should only take a few moments to do and will show up any apparent abnormalities or problems.


Facial features

The appearance, size and symmetry of your baby’s features will be quickly examined. This is to rule out conditions that might need treatment or surgery later on, such as a cleft lip or palate.

Eyes

A quick look at the eyes will tell the doctor or midwife if there are any structural problems with the eyes.

Mouth

The doctor or midwife will check your baby’s mouth to make sure that the palate is properly formed, and to check for other abnormalities or problems. Later, you may notice small blisters in the centre of baby’s mouth caused by sucking (known as Epstein’s pearls). They will disappear gradually and are nothing to worry about. Babies’ tongues are rather short and may look ‘tongue-tied’. Don’t worry, the tongue will grow and true tongue-tie is rare.

Body proportions

A quick glance at your baby’s body and head-body proportion will tell the midwife or doctor if there’s anything wrong, such as hydrocephalus (water on the brain). To you, your baby’s body might look an odd shape – the head will seem very big compared with the rest of the body, the abdomen will look very round and his legs will look tiny. This is absolutely normal.

Feet

The midwife or doctor will count the number of toes, check the position and shape of the feet and look for abnormalities, such as clubfoot.

Hands

As with the feet, the midwife or doctor will count the number of fingers and check the position and shape of your baby’s hands.

Hips

The midwife or doctor will check for dislocated hips and other problems. A family history of dislocated hips is important, and you should tell your doctor if you have such a history.

Genitals

Your baby’s genitals will be examined to check that they are normal, and that urine comes out correctly.

Anal opening

The midwife or doctor will turn the baby on his back to check that the anus is open. In a very small number of children it isn’t open and requires an operation.

Spine

While your baby is on his back, the midwife or doctor will check his spine and look for signs of spina bifida or other problems.

Head circumference

Babies’ heads seem very large in relation to the size of their bodies – this is normal. The midwife or doctor will measure the circumference of your baby’s head. As with weight and height, this will give a baseline from which your baby’s growth can be measured. Babies vary in size, but the average head circumference is about 35cm, and can vary from 33-38cm.

Length

The average height or length of a baby is about 51cm, but varies from 46-56cm. Don’t worry if your baby is slightly bigger or smaller than these measurements. The size of babies depends on a lot of factors – such as genetics, gender and your diet and lifestyle during pregnancy.

Weight

The average weight of a baby is 3.4kg (7.5lbs), but varies from 2.5-4.5kg (5.5-9.9lbs) for a full-term baby. As with height, your baby might be bigger or smaller than these weights. However, if your baby has a low birthweight (less than 2.5kg), he may need special care.

We wish you all the love in the world as you look forward to bringing a healhy happy baby into this world. 

About the Author

eumom team 

Comments

Please login to leave a comment.