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Growth and Development, Newborn - When to Call a Doctor

Call your doctor right away if you notice anything that concerns you. You are the expert on your baby. Although usually everything is fine, do not be afraid to contact your doctor for any reason.

Physical problems to watch for in your newborn include:

  • An umbilical cord stump that looks infected, as indicated by pus or reddened skin at the base of the cord.
  • Signs of dehydration, such as having no wet diapers for 6 hours.
  • Not having regular bowel movements.
  • Jaundice that has not improved by 4 days after birth.

Be sure to call your doctor if your newborn:

  • Cries in a peculiar manner or for an unusual length of time.
  • Son has circumcision problems. Signs may include greater-than-expected bleeding at the circumcision site, a bloodstained area larger than the size of a grape on his diaper or wound dressing, or signs of infection (such as swelling and redness).
  • Has a rectal temperature camera.gif that is less than 97.8°F (36.6°C) or that is 100.4°F (38°C) or higher.
  • Is rarely awake and does not wake up for feedings, or seems too tired or uninterested to eat.

Talk to your doctor if you are concerned about the following:

  • Your baby seems to be acting odd, even though you can't identify exactly what concerns you.
  • You feel that you are unable to nurture your newborn.
  • You feel that you are unable to emotionally connect with your newborn. Although it is normal to feel some distance at first, you should develop increasing feelings for your baby during the first week or two.
  • You think you might be depressed.
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WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: May 01, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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