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Umbilical Cord Care

Be sure to keep your newborn’s umbilical cord dry and clean. Within a few weeks, you can expect it to fall off on its own. 

Be sure to carefully clean the cord stump with gauze and water only, and gently lift it, so you can clean around where it attaches to the skin. If it looks wet, you can clean it with alcohol. To keep the area dry, fold the diaper below the cord, and refrain from using lotion, powder or petroleum jelly on or near the stump. Don’t attempt to pull off or remove the cord. When it falls off, a small amount of bleeding is natural.

If you notice yellow discharge, a foul smell, or redness around your newborn’s umbilical area, contact your pediatrician. 

In-Depth: Umbilical Cord Care

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