Jaundice In A New Born
What causes Jaundice in a new born and should you be concerned

Jaundice In A Newborn

Jaundice In A New Born
What Causes Jaundice In Newborns And Should You Be Concerned

Ever seen a newborn baby who looks a little yellow?  This condition is known as Jaundice.

Newborn jaundice symptoms include yellowing of the skin and the whites of the eyes that appear within days after birth. In most cases, treatment isn’t required although light therapy (phototherapy) can help resolve moderate or severe cases.

Jaundice is caused by the build-up of excess bilirubin in your baby’s system. All babies get a little bit of jaundice and a slight yellow tinge to their skin can be normal.⁣

Too much bilirubin can cause serious neurological issues, which is why jaundice needs to be nipped in the bud if levels get too high. ⁣Before you get discharged from the hospital your baby will be checked for jaundice by using a light sensor on their forehead or via bloodwork.⁣

If it comes back high, your baby might need phototherapy.⁣

What is Phototherapy?

Phototherapy is a way to break down the bilirubin. Most often babies only need a day or two under the lights before their jaundice resolves. ⁣Your nurse will teach you all this if your baby ends up needing phototherapy.

Newborn In An Incubator With Photo Therapy Lights For Treating Jaundice
Newborn In An Incubator With Photo Therapy Lights For Treating Jaundice

If you are breastfeeding your baby, don’t stop! The more colostrum your baby gets the better, as their bodies get rid of bilirubin through poop and colostrum is a laxative!⁣

Just remember to only take your baby out from under the lights for feeds and diaper changes. The more light exposure the better! ⁣

Did your baby need phototherapy? How was your experience?⁣

Originally posted 2021-04-20 21:14:21.


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  1. Yes, my 2nd babe almost 7 years ago, she was in her spaceship for 2.5days. I cant believe I didn’t know that it was so dangerous 😳 😭. It was so tough for me to just be lonely after my csection, trying to pump as much as I could for her. I wanted to see her as often as I could, so I pumped every 45 minutes to try to make more milk/colostrum for her. They only let me see her from the NICU window 😔😞

  2. My first boy had a bilirubin level of 667 and the chat at our hospital only went up to 500! He was in intensive care for 5 days and had to have a full blood transfusion plus intense phototherapy!! All very touch and go with him ☹️ luckily he’s now 20 months old, happy and healthy ❤️

  3. We were lucky that my little one didn’t need to go under the lights, i just pumped her full of milk and kept her in the window. She was pretty close to being readmitted to hospital tho so we were lucky!

  4. First baby needed phototherapy and we were lucky enough to do it with a bili blanket at home but still so stressful 😭Second baby did not! I feel like it had to do with our same blood type (O Pos) and the fact that we had been supplementing.

  5. My son was born via c-section at 41 weeks and had jaundice. We knew it’s fairly common, as his cousin had it a couple months ago and she was born after 41 weeks. We were told it was due to him having a different blood type than me. He spent a day and a half in the hospital under the lights and another day at home with a bili blanket. We had to supplement with formula while in the hospital and he got used to the nipple. He’s 1 week old today and I’ve been pumping because he won’t latch on to breastfeed.

  6. We had quite luck, my sons didn’t need photography but he wasn’t drinking well at the beginning. One week after he was born we could leave the hospital and even thought he weren’t able to breastfeed he got enough milk with different variations of feeding. 💕

  7. Daughter was born 37w5 days and after our 3 night 4 day stay starting at 5 days we left knowing that her levels were bordering light-therapy in the first place. We also learned that she was born with no thyroid. Her hormone levels, early delivery, and struggles with latching were what led the hospital stay. I am forever grateful our pedi sent us back to testing and sent us to the er as we were able to start thyroid therapy as early as we did.

  8. My daughter did phototherapy for 24 hours – it was so hard not to pick her up all the time, because she was only 3 days old and we were so excited to have her! It wasn’t terrible, but the repeat blood tests were!

  9. My daughter was born at 37 weeks. We were readmitted twice for phototherapy. Luckily she kept breastfeeding well throughout and was gaining weight. It was helpful that we had a bili blanket I could also put on her while she nursed to get some extra rays. It was easy to tell when her levels were going down as she would fight being on the neocozy

  10. It was very sad to us. Even though our baby was 40 weeks and 4 kilos he had it. It was 20 hours . He received formula and I pumped in order to feed him..but he was not allowed to take it out. So everything was inside the crib.

  11. My baby was under the light for 24 hours and I tried to only breastfeed but some of the nurses at the hospital I delivered at made me feel like I wasn’t giving my baby enough so they forced me to bottle feed with formula while she was under the light. I think that contributed to why I was never able to really get her use to feeding from the breast and why my milk has dried up and she is only 10 weeks old.

  12. We spent 17 days under light with my latest babe 😑 she wasn’t premature (38.4) and no one could find a reason for her prolonged jaundice- her levels went up down up down up down … most mentally and physically exhausting 17 days post c section #2 🙈

  13. My daughter did phototherapy for a day when we were in the hospital. We stayed for an extra 3 days because she weighed less and lost a good percentage of her weight compared to her brother. We were so heartbroken and I cried a bit. She was so upset for a while we had to comfort her 😕 We felt bad as new parents.

  14. Yep! Both my kids spent time under the lights. The first only needed 3 days, but my second needed about a week!

  15. My 2nd son needed phototherapy & was readmitted to the hospital at 2 days old. He had also lost 11.6% of his body weight so we had to do top ups too. He was too sleepy to nurse much so I did a lot of pumping. It was a very exhausting 24hrs as I had to be there with him all alone due to Covid except for 2 brief periods of time where my Mom & husband came to watch the baby so I could have a bath & bring me supplies.

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Written by Claire

Claire is our Community Manager here at New Moms Forum. A mom of two (almost grown-up babies), Claire has been building and operating community-based websites for almost 20 years. In her downtime, Claire enjoys spending time with her family and drinking copious amounts of red wine!

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