Newborn Baby

Appearance: Continued

The infant's skull changes shape, during birth and labour, to fit through the birth canal, or vagina. This can sometimes cause the child to be born with a head that may differ somewhat from the norm, or be slightly elongated. Within a few days or weeks, it should return, of its own accord, to normal. Doctors normally advise that special exercises sometimes may assist in this process.

Some newborns may be endowed with fine, fluffy hair which is called lanugo. Premature infants tend to display the lanugo most noticeably on the back, shoulders, forehead, ears and face. Fortunately, this tends to clear within a few weeks. On the other hand, there are those born with full heads of hair. Conversely, there may be others who have very fine hair, or may even be bald.

This applies particularly to caucasian infants. This fine hair may even be blond in colour regardless of whether the parents are also blond. This is especially noticeable amongst parents with fair skins. There may be temporarily bruising or swelling of the scalp. This is most noticeable in hairless newborns. Further, the area around the eyes may also be somewhat puffy.

A newborn's digestive tracts are often filled with a greenish-black sticky material called meconium. This is brought about by the fact that they have never been used prior to birth. Such material has the function of acting in place of fecal material, and allows the intestines to develop to the point where they can process milk immediately on birth. This material is passed by the child in the first few days.

Soon after birth, a newborn's skin is often coloured grayish or even dusky blue. The skin's color returns to its normal complexion as soon as the newborn begins to breathe, which is usually within a minute or two.

At birth, newborns are wet and covered in streaks of blood. Their skin tends to be covered in a white substance known as vernix caseosa. This is produced by the fetus's sebaceous glands, and is thought to have antibacterial properties. The newborn may also have various birthmarks, and peeling skin. This is particularly noticeable on the wrists, hands, ankles, and feet.

Another feature is Mongolian spots which is most common among East Asians and Turks. The appearance is that of a benign flat congenital birthmark with wavy edges and a non uniform shape.

The genitals of a newborn may be larger than normal and may even be reddened. Male infants may also have a larger than normal scrotum. There may also be enlargement of the breasts, and this applies to male infants also. This is a temporary condition. The mother produces hormones, which occur naturally, and it is these that are instrumental in such an occurrence.

Young Baby – How To Succeed

Author's Bio: 

Peter Radford writes Articles with Websites on a wide range of subjects. Young Baby Articles cover Newborn Appearance, Senses, Attachment, Care.

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