While at home she thought of what went through her mind. It was a snap examination of her baby. She did this all by herself while she was in the hospital.
The woman in pregnancy is bombarded from day to day about what her baby would be like, who will the baby resemble, will it be born a normal and healthy child.
How a Mother Examines Her Baby
Opening her eyes, her first thought was to reach for her baby. This she did. She examined its face, body arms and feet. The baby’s eyes were closed. She will find time to see those eyes. It was breathing delicately and timely. What was she looking for?
About then she looked back at its head. She examined the hair, its texture. She saw that it was good. She moved quickly to the actual face. She saw that there was no distortion. A quick look at its head revealed that her previous glance of her child before she fell asleep had revealed a misshaped head.
Now everything looked fine. The head appears to be normal. It was a reasonable size for a newborn. I must agree that the baby’s journey through the birth canal can contribute to its head being misshaped for a while. This then becomes normal.
Quickly her thoughts jumped to “I hope the baby can hear”. She saw that the baby’s two ears appeared to be normal. She knows that there stands the likelihood that if the child is not hearing, it will be unable to speak. How was she to know this? She asked herself.
Then something came to her mind. She snapped her finger at its ears. The baby responded but not in the way she wanted. Only a slight movement was made. There was the movement of the eyes even though the eyes were still closed. She comforted herself by saying: At least there was a response maybe the baby can see. She also thought that at a later date she would be able to check the baby’s eyes and ears.
Every woman wants a normal healthy baby. She was looking for a normal healthy child. The mother was not finished. She held one of the neonate’s hands and gently counted the fingers. She did the same to the other. All seemed well. There were ten fingers, five on each hand. They were all looking normal as they were proportionately sized and ordered. Her examination of the hands assured her that her baby will have the capability of using its hands. The baby’s hands and arms were good.
She then moved to the child’s lower body. Her eyes surveyed the trunk of the body. Everything looked good. Where else was she to look? Oh, she thought, let me look at the genital. In my opinion, that is a very important area to examine. Why is this so? I have known at least two persons who have had abnormal genitals. These persons were allowed to grow up to teenage without anything done about it.
Some Abnormalities That May be Seen at Birth
The mother had the thought to examine her baby for abnormalities. Therefore, this mother is most likely to see to it that, what is to be done, will be done to correct any on toward situation. For genital abnormalities, the earlier these are addressed the better it is for all affected and concerned.
Some of the genital defects that may arise are ambiguous genital, a fusion of the labia, structure that appeared to be a small penis attached, undescended testes, enlarged clitoris which sometimes gives the appearance of a penis. Urethral opening may also be located in unusual places at the genital area. Ambiguous genitals make it difficult or somewhat difficult to differentiate if the baby is truly boy or girl. There are also other types of birth defects that may occur.
Genital defects should be reported as early as they are found.If these are things that can not be addressed at a tender age then an appointed time will be set for this. There are persons who do not report these defects for medical attention because of fear of embarrassment and stigma.
These are sensitive issues and is understood by the medical team as such. Most of these cases are handled by a team of specialists along with situation specific counselling. Babies that are born in a reputable birth unit are most times examined by the paediatrician before discharge.
However, somethings are firstly seen by the watchful eyes of the mother. She and family members will have some serious decisions to make concerning the issue. This cannot be over-emphasized.
Continuing her examination of her baby, the mother looked at the lower extremities. Many thoughts ran through her mind. These were questions that some could only be answered by “Time,” (not someone’s name, but terms of days months and years). For example: When will these feet walk with me to the door? When will these feet be able to go to school? If I were asked these questions, I would have answered: “Soon>” In a short while from then, this child will be going to school. “Time waits for no man”.
To her, the legs and feet were looking normal. Each foot had five toes and the were proportionately formed and ordered. This day, she remembered that She had to make a keen examination of the baby’s eyes again. This she had to do approximately a weeks after her first examination of her baby in the hospital.
She made sure her hands were clean. Then she delicately examined the lids of the eyes and the eyeballs. Everything seemed okay to her. There was no pus in the eyes. Of course, there was also no swelling of the eyelids.
The eyes were vital organs and were necessary for her to examine. Who would want their baby to be at risk of infection to the eyes and to go unnoticed? This would also cause the baby to be at risk for blindness. But Oh no, the possibility exist that the baby could have picked up a serious infection while coming through the birth canal.
This would have been possible if the mother had infections. Infections such as Chlamydia trachomatis and Neisseria gonococcus organisms. One must realise that disinfecting the exterior of the genital would not have taken care of the interior of the birth canal or genitalia, for some organisms. The fact also is that the mother could have been infected with the organisms and do not know. These organisms can cause an illness called Opthalmia neonatorum. If untreated it may cause blindness.
But let us, look at this. Because of the seriousness of these organisms and the problem that they can cause to the baby’s eyes, great care is taken to treat the baby’s eyes immediately after birth. But did the mother know this? She could have known. However, she was still making sure that all was well.
Therefore, it is a wise mother who does her own examination of her baby, regardless of what was done by the nursing staff. Mothers do not always know in these cases of what was done or may not have been done. Mothers do fall asleep after labour. This mother satisfied herself by doing a physical examination of her own baby, to note that all is well with her child as far as she could see.
There is so much to look at on your newborn. What were your expectations? Every mother’s expectation is always to have a healthy and normal baby.
Therefore over and over she will examine her child. She will probably move her hands across the baby’s face to see if the infant winks a little. Then she will think: “O yes my baby is seeing”. Furthermore, she may want to snap her finger near to the ears to see if there are indications to say the child is hearing. Lower extremities are also examined for any deformities.
You will agree that mothers go through periods of anxieties on the birth of their babies. tell me, what do you think? Please let me hear from you.