Health — 31 May 2013


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Why do babies cry after birth

Immediately after the baby’s birth, babies are expected to cry within 30 seconds to one minute of their lives. This crying is necessary for the baby to survive because while inside the mother’s uterus, the babies do not take breath from their lungs. It is the umbilical cord which provides them with fresh oxygen and takes away carbon dioxide from their blood stream. Once, outside their mothers’ womb, the babies need to breathe on their own.

Lungs do the job of breathing and though soon after birth her nose and lungs are suctioned to clear of amniotic fluid and all secretions, babies also try to clear the clutter from their lungs and nose by crying.

Till very recent past, the babies who did not cry on their own were made to cry by stimulation. For this, the doctors would hold the baby from its feet, face down and would spank her on her bottom.  This process is no longer used by doctors now as it is not being seen as something necessary.

Earlier, the doctors used to follow this aggressive method of stimulation because they simply did not know how else to do it but now the doctors understand that this kind of aggressive stimulation can be potentially risky for the neonate. For example, if the baby slips out of the hands of the doctor or gets hit on a vulnerable spot on his body then it can lead to many complications. Now, doctors simply rub the back of the baby or gently massage the soles of her feet in order to make her cry.

Babies get tired in their effort to get out at the time of delivery and also get hungry. Besides, they feel surprised when being taken out from the dark, cool and cozy environment of their mother’s womb and hence cry immediately after birth.

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Written by Ritu Insaan

A homemaker, social worker and a mother, Ritu Insaan holds an MBA degree in Public Health. She has worked in the rural areas of northern India for the upliftment of less privileged sections of society. Whenever she finds free time amidst her busy schedule, she does freelance writing for a number of websites.

About Author

A homemaker, social worker and a mother, Ritu Insaan holds an MBA degree in Public Health. She has worked in the rural areas of northern India for the upliftment of less privileged sections of society. Whenever she finds free time amidst her busy schedule, she does freelance writing for a number of websites.

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