Over the weekend, we rented a photo-therapy lamp for Arielle's jaundice. The paediatrician's order was 20 hours of therapy per day. He, however, warned that she would likely to cry her lungs out once we undress her.
In the end, we only managed 8-9 hours per day. He was right, she cried. Then I joined in the crying too. I know, I am a softie.We came up with ways to soothe her - patting her, putting our palms over her chest and back till she calmed down, giving her a dummy, and finally, letting her lie on her belly such that the light is on her back instead. The last method, which was what we decided to adopt, has to be done under supervision where one of us - the confinement nanny, The Husband or myself will sit beside her.
The reason for putting her on her belly other than the reason that it soothes her? This way, she will not be looking at the lights, therefore do not have to wear that poorly designed eye mask that kept slipping off, blocking her nose and causing her to cry again. Between The Husband and I, we must have summoned up all sorts of bad words in our minds at least a dozen times each in the last three days, all because of that darn eye mask.
This morning, we went back to the paediatrician's office for a blood test. The result came back at a score of 15. The paed's instruction was to admit her to the hospital if the score is 16 and above. As we heaved a sigh of relief, we knew that we had to double our efforts.
While jaundice is common among Asian babies and are treatable - usually cleared up by 1-2 months old, the process to recovery is a huge hassle. In the midst of managing the newness of caring for a baby which is a biggie by itself, jaundice comes along and brings along its obstacles in the form of sleepiness (which makes establishing breast milk production even more daunting!), many trips to the clinic for blood tests and assessments, the aforementioned phototherapy treatment, and God forbids - admission of baby into the hospital.
By doubling our efforts, hopefully Friday's blood test will reap a more favourable result.