You’ve been waiting forty glorious (or not so glorious, depending on how your pregnancy went) weeks for you beautiful bundle of joy. Now that your baby is here, there is something you should know that your friends and relatives with children probably haven’t told you. The reason they haven’t told you is that it’s a rather indelicate subject, and they probably didn’t want to risk offending you, or grossing you out.
As a parent, you are not only charged with loving and guiding your little cherub, but you are also now the monitor of all that exits you child. That’s right, you are now a stool, urine, and mucous monitor. While it sounds rather gross, it really is important for you to keep track of what’s going on with your child’s body. By doing so, you can catch problems in the early stages before they become serious as well as assist your doctor in diagnosing problems with your child when she does become ill.
The truth is that there’s a lot that your doctor can tell about your child’s illness if he knows what’s going on with what she is or isn’t producing. Here’s some of the things you’re doctor may want to know:
Stools: Quantity, frequency, consistency, and color. With respect to color, there’s a wide variation for what is considered normal (which can include a rather shocking, yet interesting, color of blue or blue green if your child has eaten blue Popsicles, blue yogurt, or any other food dyed bright blue). Colors, which warrant an immediate call to your doctor, include red or black (can indicate bleeding) and white (can indicate a problem with your child’s liver).
Urine: Again, your physician will want to know quantity and frequency (if your child is still wearing diapers, the doctor will want to know how many wet diapers you’re changing in a day), color (like stools, if you see red in urine, it could indicate bleeding and you should contact your doctor immediately), and whether or not the urine is cloudy or clear.
Mucous: With mucous, your doctor will want to know if it’s thick or runny and what the color is (clear, yellow, or green). If there is a minor amount of blood in mucous from the nose, it’s generally not a problem; however, blood in mucous that is coughed up can mean something serious is going on.
Vomit: With vomiting, the doctor will want to know frequency and color. If vomit is green (it may mean that there is bile in the vomit) or has red (a possible indication of bleeding) or something that looks like coffee grounds (another possible indicator of bleeding), you should contact your doctor immediately.
While it’s something you probably never thought of when you were dreaming of becoming a parent, monitoring what’s going on with your child’s body is really quite important. By doing so, you can head off problems before they become get out of hand, and you can assist your doctor in expediting a diagnosis and properly treating your child.