94 Pregnancy and Childbir th
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Baby born too early or too small
A baby born before 8 months is born too early. A baby that
weighs less than 2500 grams or 5 pounds is born too small.
These babies need special care.
1. Dry the baby with a warm, clean
cloth immediately after birth.
2. Put the naked baby against the
mother’s body. Cover the
baby with many warm
cloths or blankets. Make
sure the head is covered
and the room is warm.
Keep baby warm and dry.
3. Put the baby to the mother’s breast. Small
babies need to nurse at least every 2 hours.
4. DO NOT bathe the baby. It must stay warm.
Baby does not breathe
A baby must begin to breathe on its own within 2 to 3 minutes after the cord
becomes white or the placenta separates from the womb wall. If the baby does
not start to breathe, it can suffer serious brain damage or die.
What to do:
Clear the baby’s mouth and nose, and firmly rub its back and feet. If the baby
still does not start to breathe, do rescue breathing:
1. Lay the baby on a hard surface, like a table or the floor.
2. Open the baby’s throat by tilting her head back slightly.
3. Put your mouth over the baby’s mouth and nose, and gently blow little puffs
of air into the baby. Blow about 40 puffs per minute (which is a little faster
than you breathe when resting). Let the baby breathe out between puffs.
4. The baby’s belly and chest will rise and fall with each breath. If the belly
stays up, it means that air is going into the baby’s stomach, not its lungs. Try
changing the position of the head. Make sure nothing is blocking the throat.
Chest and belly fall
IMPORTANT The new baby’s lungs are very delicate. If you blow too hard, you will
damage them. Blow little puffs of air from your cheeks and not from your chest.
Where Women Have No Doctor 2012