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Every mother wants to have a he althy baby. Two handles, two legs - you can see it immediately. No less important is what we do not see, but specialists discover. In the first days and weeks of life, your newborn baby will undergo a visual and hearing test.

Immediately after birthnewbornis subjected to a detailed analysis. Neonatologists meticulously check its condition, weigh it and measure it. Skin color, breathing rate, heartbeats per minute and normal reflexes determine the number of Apgar points awarded. But it doesn't stop there. You must also make sure thatchildsees and hears well. Screening will help you find out. They are made to babies right after birth. If their result indicates the probability of a defect, then the toddler must undergo diagnostic tests that will confirm or exclude it.

He althy eyes of a newborn baby

In term babies, the neonatologist checks whether the pupils narrow and dilate when exposed to light, and whether the eyeballs move. However, it is only after a few months that you can be sure whether your toddler can see well - that's why a lot depends on the parents. The first disturbing sign is the lack of eyesight fixation. So if you find that your baby is unable to focus on your face or the object you are showing him, be sure to tell your doctor, who will refer you for further tests. More detailed eye examinations are only performed on babies born before 36 weeks of age. pregnancy. Their eyesight is not yet properly developed, and the sudden exit of the uterus and incubator placement changes the natural course of retinal maturation. This and the low birth weight of a child (less than 2000 g) affect the risk of retinopathy, which affects about 15 percent. premature babies. That is why in Poland every premature baby is tested for retinopathy. The disease consists of excessive vascularization of the fundus, which leads to retinal retraction, detachment, hemorrhages, and consequently - loss of vision. It cannot be prevented, but it can be stopped and even reversed. Therefore, a premature baby must be regularly examined to determine the moment when the laser photocoagulation procedure should be performed, removing or reducing the defect. The first examination is performed in the 4th week of a premature baby's life,and the next ones no less frequently than every two weeks. In the examination, the doctor assesses the anterior segment of the fundus, carefully observes the border between the vascularized and non-vascularized areas, because disturbing changes appear at their junction. This method, called indirect ophthalmoscopy, is sometimes assisted by ultrasound, and specialists emphasize that premature babies diagnosed with retinopathy should be examined more often and more thoroughly later in life than full-term babies. They are much more prone to eye diseases that show up only after many years - glaucoma and cataracts.

What is not worth worrying about in a newborn?

Newborn hearing tests

Both full-term and premature babies are tested for hearing. The first half of life is a strategic period for the development of speech. If a child has no hearing at all or has some hearing loss that is not corrected in time, there is little chance that they will learn to speak. Screening tests, which are carried out right after the birth of a child, are primarily intended to "catch" sick children and give them a chance for a harmonious development. The first test is the recording of otoacoustic emissions. The human ear not only perceives sounds, but also emits them itself, as a spontaneous response to external sounds. This quick (several seconds) and painless examination is performed with a probe. The device has an earpiece that sends sounds of varying intensity and a microphone that records the reaction of the hair cells. The test is done on day 2 of your baby's life, usually while you are asleep; should take place in a quiet and peaceful place. If the examination is unsuccessful, it is repeated on the day of discharge from the hospital. If a defect is found, the doctors will refer the little patient to an appropriate audiological center, where they will undergo further diagnostics. Another procedure to aid in making a diagnosis is to record auditory brainstem evoked potentials. The electrodes glued to the baby's head record the bioelectric activity (created in the brainstem), which is a response to auditory stimuli delivered through a special earpiece. Contrary to otoemission registration, the registration of potentials takes longer - about a dozen or so minutes. If doctors find that you have a hearing loss from both sides, steps will be taken in the audiology department. When the culprit is a malfunction in the middle ear, it may be enough to prescribe medication. Sometimes the ENT specialist recommends a hearing aid. The same will happen when it turns out that the hearing loss is permanent. In the audiology center, not only ENT specialists will offer you help, but alsoSpeech therapists and psychologists who will be watching over your child's development from now on.

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