Newborn given grape juice for jaundice: Mum warns of dangers of home remedies for jaundice
After her baby was given grape juice to fight jaundice, the little one ended up in the ICU. Read on to learn more.
When you are a new mum, even the slightest illness can cause you to worry. Because of this, you may seek the advice of fellow mums or elders. But even the opinions of the most experienced parent should not be prioritised over seeking sound medical advice from trained professionals. One mum in China warns against the dangers of jaundice remedies after following inaccurate, though well-meaning advice.
In a Facebook post, which has been shared over 19,000 times in just two weeks, the mum recounts her ordeal.
According to the mum, her baby was taken to the hospital because of complications after being given freshly squeezed grape juice. Some elders recommended giving her baby pearl powder or fresh juice to treat jaundice. But the opposite happened; the baby’s jaundice only got worse.
What’s more, the baby struggled to digest the grape juice, even after days of drinking it. So the baby was confined to the ICU and hooked up to an intravenous drip and stomach tube.
Once at the hospital, grape juice was found in the baby’s stomach. The doctor asked the mum why this was given because the baby should only be given breastmilk — not even fresh milk.
The mom says she pleaded with the unidentified elder not to give her baby pearl powder, but she wouldn’t listen. She didn’t specify who gave her baby the grape juice or pearl powder.
The mum simply wants to warn others NOT to listen to elders when it comes to jaundice treatment because it’s extremely dangerous.
The good news is that the little one recovered. However, the outcome could have easily been very different as we all know.
What mums and dads should know about the dangers of jaundice remedies
Babies with jaundice exhibit yellowing of the skin, including the white part of their eye. It is fairly common, affecting more than 50 percent of all newborns. It is caused by large amounts of bilirubin, or the reddish-yellow pigment that results from the normal breakdown of red blood breaks.
But it more commonly appears in premature newborns during the first week of life.
Though jaundice tends to resolve on its own, it still helps to consult with a doctor, especially when it comes to possible dangers of jaundice remedies.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends exclusive breastfeeding until the age of six months. So naturally, giving your baby juice before they’re ready can pose serious consequences.
For new mums, it can be confusing, especially with the huge amount of information at their fingertips nowadays. But it’s always best to consult a doctor before giving your child ANY remedy at ANY age.
If your baby suffers from jaundice, there are natural remedies available that don’t involve feeding them unsafe substances.
1. Let your baby get some sun
While phototherapy in a hospital is recommended for some babies, many doctors would often prescribe more time outdoors. But keep in mind that it’s important not to expose your baby to direct sunlight to avoid sunburn.
Just simply hold your baby in your arms while in a sunlit, warm room. Leave their diaper on, but make sure to clothe them shortly after to keep them from getting cold.
2. Make sure your baby is well-fed to promote good digestion
Breastfeeding your baby frequently will result in more bowel movements, which can help eliminate excess bilirubin through your baby’s stool.
On average, breastfed babies should nurse from eight to 12 times a day during the first few days of life.
3. Supplemental feedings can help address feeding issues
If you have difficulty breastfeeding, or if your baby is losing weight, some doctors would recommend formula or expressed milk given through a spoon or syringe to act as breastfeeding supplements. It depends on your doctor’s judgement, really. So make sure to be open about your concerns.
You should also seek a second opinion if your instincts are telling you to be extra safe.
If left untreated, jaundice can result in brain damage and even death. So though it is a condition that goes away on its own, it’s best not to take its dangers for granted to make sure your baby’s first year of life is happy and healthy!