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The Family Health Service of the Department of Health provided

Cleaning umbilical cord for newborn


The umbilical cord stump of a baby usually falls off 5 to 10 days after birth, but the timing varies among babies. Some may take 3 weeks or even longer.


It's important to keep the cord clean and dry before it falls off. You need to clean the baby's cord when you find sticky fluid oozing from its base, which is the junction between the cord and the abdominal wall, like after bathing or changing nappies.


Super: Things for cleaning cord; Cool boiled water; Cotton buds


Cleaning a newborn's umbilical cord. To start, prepare some cool boiled water and cotton buds. Then wash your hands. Undress your baby to reveal the belly button area. Dip a cotton bud into the cool boiled water, gently clean areas around the base of the cord and then discard the cotton bud.


Use a new cotton bud soaked with cool boiled water for every wipe. Repeat the same procedure until the base of the cord is completely clean. Lastly, clean the cord stump in the same way.


After cleaning the cord, you can dress your baby. Put the nappy below the umbilical cord to avoid covering or touching it. This can help keep the cord dry and prevent bleeding caused by nappy rubbing against the cord when the baby wiggles.


It's normal to see a little blood near the belly button after the cord stump has just fallen off. Don't worry. Moreover, there could still be some discharge on the belly button. Just keep cleaning the belly button until it becomes completely dry.


In case there are signs of infection, such as skin redness around the base of the cord, foul smell or pus, or presence of a lump, take your baby to a doctor immediately.

Chinese Version:

This video is produced by the Family Health Service of the Department of Health


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