Monitoring Baby

After the birth, a Guthrie provider will check your infant for signs of a problem or illness. The pediatrician will specifically monitor your infant’s heart and respiratory rates, muscle tone, reflexes and coloration. Throughout your hospital stay your infant’s health will be monitored by doctors and nurses by physical and observational assessments. Your newborn will be weighed daily to evaluate his or her growth, fluid and nutritional needs. Newborns commonly lose five to seven percent of their birth weight and typically regain the weight within two weeks.

Common measurements for newborns:

  • Head circumference
  • Abdominal circumference
  • Length
  • Vital signs (temperature, pulse and breathing rate)
  • General appearance (physical activity, tone and reflexes)
  • Skin (color and texture)
  • Head and neck (appearance, shape, presence of molding)
  • Fontanels (the open "soft spots" between the bones of the baby's skull)
  • Mouth (palate, tongue and throat)
  • Lungs
  • Genitals and anus (open for passing urine and stool)