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Signs your newborn suffered a birth injury

Ohio parents want nothing more than to give their babies a healthy start. When a mother finds she is pregnant, she may stop bad habits and start doing all she can to ensure the health of her baby.

It is difficult for new parents to know if something with a newborn is normal. If you believe your baby may have suffered an injury during birth, keep an eye out for some of these signs.

Symptoms immediately after birth

Some issues crop relatively quickly and make for a faster diagnosis and treatment. A baby who arches its back violently when crying, whose cry is high-pitched and who does not eat may have an underlying injury or condition. Babies communicate discomfort and pain in these ways. An arched back may signal discomfort and an effort to alleviate it. Failing to eat may have several underlying meanings, but almost always indicates there is a problem.

Physical signs of injury

A baby's body endures severe trauma during the birth process. A baby's body normally bends and twists during delivery, but this may go too far. Physical injuries include:

  • Misshapen head
  • Arms bent in the wrong direction
  • Bruising about the face and body
  • Shoulder misplacement

If a baby becomes lodged in the birth canal, doctors may use manipulations and even tools to help assist extraction. These forceful movements may cause pressure and fracture bones, dislocate joints and, in some cases, cause nerve damage.

Long-term symptoms

Brain injury during birth may not present until a baby fails to meet developmental milestones. As a baby approaches her or his first birthday and continues to fall behind, parents may want to speak to the doctor about possible brain damage. During birth, a lack of oxygen or a head injury may have occurred that now leaves the baby with lifelong issues to overcome.

Birth is a time of great joy and happiness that may turn into tragedy. Parents should openly discuss any concerns with health care providers to find if these birth injuries are temporary or permanent.

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