Childbirth is a natural and instinctive process, but unfortunately, things can go wrong. About twenty-nine out of one hundred babies experience trauma, often because of negligent hospital staff or poor use of instruments in the delivery room. New parents should be aware of the many things that could go wrong during the delivery and be ready for any problems that may arise.
What Qualifies as Birth Trauma?
Birth trauma is the most common injury to a baby’s head, neck or shoulders as the child emerges from the birth canal. A baby is most susceptible during its first moments coming into the world, and this vulnerability can be dangerous.
Birth trauma refers to the damage done to the scalp, skull, spine, eyes or bones. A more severe case will result in a permanently affected nervous system.
It can be the result of a long, hard labor or a forced exit in the delivery room. Most doctors have alternative methods of helping the baby emerge, though some will resort to a vacuum device or forceps. Make sure you have a clear plan with your doctor and be open to a cesarean section to avoid any extensive trauma to your baby.
The Symptoms of Birth Trauma
Birth trauma is visible in many ways. One of the most common is the swelling of the scalp or deep bruises on the head. It can also include the appearance of lumps after the birth as the result of blood clots. Bruises and broken bones can also be the result of trauma as the mother’s pelvis pushes down on the baby or use of forceps during the birth. Red, bloodshot eyes can also be a sign of trauma.
One of the worst symptoms is the onset of Bell’s Palsy. This lifetime affliction takes place when the nervous system is damaged as pressure is applied to the baby’s face during the birth. It’s apparent in a child’s inability to move one part of his or her face and may affect mental development.
Treatments for Birth Trauma
Some issues with birth trauma will resolve on their own, such as red, bloodshot eyes. However, other problems will need more attention.
One source of help is chiropractic treatment. A chiropractor can realign a subluxated or misaligned spine and help a baby grow after a severe trauma. New parents should have their little one examined shortly after the birth to ensure there are no injuries after the birth, particularly if the labor was extensive.
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