Keep It Dry
Your Pregnancy|October/November 2020
Keep It Dry
How to care for the slightly scary, slightly icky, umbilical cord stump. Don’t worry… Soon your baby will have a cute little belly button.

The umbilical cord connected your baby to you in the womb. Shortly after birth, it is cut. Baby is an independent little being now who can breathe by himself and receive nutrition through breastfeeding. In a way, you can think of his belly button as the last part of him that changes him from a baby in the womb, to a babe in arms.

This is what you need to know about taking care of the stump… After birth, the cord is clamped and cut. Don’t worry – cutting the cord does not cause you or your baby any pain, because, like your hair or nails, it doesn’t have nerve endings. The other end of the cord is connected to your placenta, which is expelled after birth. After this is all examined by your doctor (it is important that nothing remains behind inside you), it will be destroyed as medical waste, unless you request otherwise. Some people do, but that’s another article for another day.

A short stump with a plastic clamp on it is left behind on your baby’s tummy. The stump will gradually dry up and eventually drop off, usually within two weeks. It won’t hurt your baby when it happens.

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October/November 2020