The term refers to an infant who is only hours, days, or up to a few weeks old.

Refers to an infant in the first 28 days after birth, born prematurely, post mature infants, and full term infants.

The average birth weight of a full-term newborn is approximately 7½ lbs,and is typically in the range of 55–10 pounds.

The average total body length is 14–20 inches.

Shoulders and hips are wide, the abdomen protrudes slightly.

Newborns arms and legs are relatively long with respect to the rest of their body.

A newborn’s head is very large in proportion to the body.

The cranium is enormous relative to its face.

The skull is about 25% of the length of the body, compared to 12.5% in adults.

The normalhead circumference for a full-term infant is 33 – 36 cm at birth.

At birth soft spots in the skull (fontanels) are present.

The two largest are the diamond-shaped anterior fontanel, located at the top front portion of the head, and the smaller triangular-shaped posterior fontanel, which lies at the back of the head.

The infant’s skull changes shape to fit through the birth canal causes the child to be born with a misshapen or elongated head. that usually return to normal on its own within a few days or weeks.

Newborns may have a fine, downy body hair called lanugo.

Lanugo is most prominent on the back, shoulders, forehead, ears and face of premature infants.

Lanugo disappears within a few weeks.

Skin color immediately after birth is often grayish to dusky blue in color, and usually within a minute or two, the skin’s color reaches its normal tone.

Newborns are covered in streaks of blood, and coated with a white substance, vernix caseosa.

The newborn may have Mongolian spots, birthmarks, or peeling skin, particularly on the wrists, hands, ankles, and feet.

Genitals are enlarged and reddened.

Scrotum’s of newborns are large.

The breasts may also be enlarged, even in males, as a result of maternal hormones and is a temporary process.

Milk may be discharged from newborns nipples.

Vaginal bleeding or discharge may be transiently.

The newborn’s umbilicus is bluish-white in color, and after cutting is a 1–2 inch stub.

The umbilical cord residual will dry out and spontaneously fall off within about 3 weeks.

Stroking, cuddling, caressing, and rocking calms a crying newborn, as do massages and warm baths.

Newborns have an instinct to suck allowing feeding, and ability to provide comfort by sucking on fingers or a pacifier.

Normal infant vital signs include: Blood Pressure systolic 75-100 mm Hg, diastolic 50-70 mm Hg, heart rate 120-160, respiratory rate 30-60.

Newborn infants are able to focus on objects about 18 inches directly in front of their face.

Generally, newborns cry when they are hungry.

In utero, the infant can hear, and the sound of human voices, especially the mother’s, can have a calming or soothing effect on the newborn.

Newborns can respond to differing tastes.

Digestive tract is filled with a greenish-black, material called meconium.

Meconium allows the intestines to develop to the point where they can process milk on birth, and is passed in the first few days.

Newborns cry as a form of communication.

Breastfeeding is the recommended method of feeding.

Born with a sucking reflex, as well as an instinctive behavior, rooting, with which they seek out the nipple.

Requires routine warming, drying, suctioning of the airway and stimulation.

Approximately 10% require some assistance to begin breathing after birth, and one in 1000 require extensive recuscitation after delivery.

Infants born at hospitals with the lower level neonatal intensive care units have poorer outcomes.

Hypoglycemia is the most common metabolic problem in newborns and may lead to persistent brain injury.

Neonatal hypoglycemia is asymptomatic it up to 30% of all newborns and requires routine monitoring for hypoglycemia with 12-36 hours after birth.

In otherwise healthy newborns asymptomatic moderate hypoglycemia as low as 36 mg/dL does not have significant psycho motor development impairment at 18 months.

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