Tips For Examining Newborns

■ Examine the newborn in the presence of the parents.

■ Swaddle and then undress the newborn as the examination proceeds.

■ Dim the lights and rock the baby back and forth to encourage the baby's eyes to open.

■ Observe feeding if possible (particularly breast-feeding).

■ Demonstrate calming maneuvers to parents (swaddling, holding techniques, use of pacifier).

■ Observe transitions as baby arouses, and teach parents about these transitions.

■ A typical sequence for the newborn examination (for minimal disruption of the baby):

Careful observation

Head, neck, heart, lungs, abdomen, genitourinary system Lower extremities, back Ears, mouth

Eyes, whenever they are spontaneously open Skin, as you go along Neurologic system Hips

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Anxiety and Depression 101

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