Best Tips for Circumcision Care for Your Newborn

Circumcision Care

Circumcision care, along with many other aspects of new motherhood, requires a bit of a learning curve. If you’ve decided to have your baby circumcised, you know how important it is to keep your baby healthy and happy while he heals.

What’s the first rule in circumcision care when it comes to bathing my baby?

After every diaper change, gently wash your baby’s diaper area with warm water and pat him dry with a soft towel. Even though it’s too soon for anything but sponge baths, be extra thorough in cleaning if there’s been poop. Generally, avoid using diaper wipes on your baby’s genitals because they’re just too sensitive. To keep your baby comfortable, just put on the diaper a little loosely or use two diapers to minimize pressure from your baby’s thighs.

Do I put on Vaseline or gauze on my baby’s penis?

Many doctors advise putting a dab of Vaseline on the circumcised glans during healing, which will also prevent scabs from sticking to the diaper. You might also loosely wrap your baby’s penis in a gauze, but check with your doctor first. The gauze will come off the first time your baby pees, but that’s unavoidable.

How long will it take my baby to heal after circumcision?

Circumcisions will heal in about 7 to 10 days. In that time, the tip of your baby’s penis may be raw or yellowish. That’s normal, and so is the thin yellowish film that develops on the tip of the penis after the circumcision. Don’t worry about it or take it off because it’s helping your baby’s skin heal.

How will I know if my baby’s circumcised penis becomes infected?

Good circumcision care will help prevent an infection; however, infection may still happen. Be sure to watch out for the following symptoms:

• Does your baby have a fever higher than 101 degrees Fahrenheit?
• Is the incision site bleeding more than a few drops?
• Is your baby having trouble urinating?
• Has it been longer than eight hours since he peed?
• Is your baby crying without stopping?
• Is there swelling or discoloration of the head of the penis?
• Is your baby acting sick?

If your mom radar is sending danger signals, call the doctor right away. It’s better to get medical attention than to minimize what might be a serious problem. Complications from circumcision are rare, but as with any medical procedure, there is always the slight chance. Just keep a close eye on your baby and listen to your gut.

Caring for your circumcised baby is mostly a matter of keeping him clean, warm, and comfortable until he fully heals. The learning curve for a new parent can be a little steep, but this time is important in both your lives.

Photo: Getty