Circumcision refers to a standard procedure where the foreskin at the penis tip is removed surgically. Circumcision is usually done on a newborn boy within the first 2 days of his life. At the same time, Jews perform a special circumcision ceremony on the 8th day of birth.
How Does Circumcision Work?
Circumcision is often carried out at baby circumcision clinic and it is more safe and easy as compared to teenager or adult circumcision. Your baby’s penis can look red and swollen after circumcision. This is because it might have petroleum jelly or gauze on it. When your baby urinates, the gauze will most likely fall off. Your doctor will guide you whether to place clean gauze on your baby’s penis or if it should be left off. You can use warm water to soak the gauze in and then gently remove it.
The doctor may have used Plastibell devices to perform circumcision. As a result, your baby will be wearing a plastic ring around his penis. It should be gone in 10 to 12 working days.
The area may develop a thin, yellowish film the next day. It is a normal part of healing. It should disappear in a few days.
During healing, your baby might seem fussy. Your baby may feel uncomfortable when they urinate. The pain usually subsides within 3 to 4 days. It can last up to two weeks.
Your baby’s penis may feel worse after 3 to 4 days. However, the penis can look better in 7-10 days.
This care chart will give you an idea of how long it will take your child to heal. Each child heals at their own pace. These steps will help you to get your child better as soon as possible.
Circumcision after Care
Doctors will apply petroleum ointment to the wound, wrap the baby penis in gauze, and then close the diaper to prevent the wound from sticking (unless they have used the Plastibell method). Usually, your baby will be with you within a few hours of the procedure.
1. Keep the Baby Swaddled
Make sure your son is snugly wrapped, especially his legs. He will be less comfortable the more he kicks his legs. If he is not comfortable with swaddling, you can stop swaddling him after 24 hours.
2. Diaper Change
For the next 24 hours, check your son’s diaper frequently for abnormal bleeding. If your son is asleep, you can check the front of his diaper to make sure there is no blood. With each diaper change, it is normal for blood to stain the diaper as large as a loonie.
But the dripping of blood from the penis is an alarming situation, and you consult the surgeon.
Keep the baby’s diapers loose, so there is less pressure on its penis as it heals.
3. Warm Water
After each diaper change, gently wash the baby’s penis in warm, plain water. Dry it with a towel. Use soap. Avoid alcohol and hydrogen peroxide. They can slow down healing.
Place a square of Vaseline-infused gauze over your son’s penis. However, it might fall when your baby urinates, so not to worry, replace it with a 3×3 Vaseline-infused gauze. After 24 hours, you could remove the gauze.
The doctor will also wrap a long, white (and a brown) bandage around your son’s penis. This gauze should be left in place and removed after 24 hours. No need to worry if it falls off sooner, and you do not have to apply it again like the gauze. It may become stuck or dry after 24 hours.
You might have to pull a bit harder. This may cause some bleeding, and this is normal. You may have to put pressure directly on the head of your baby’s penis. To help it heal, you can use warm water to moisten the dressing. Keep the pressure on the dressing for five minutes if there is any bleeding.
After the first 24 hours, no gauze or bandages will be required. But keep applying a layer of Vaseline in front of the diaper and on the penis of your child as it will help the surgery heal.
Your son may be irritable or sleepy the first 24 hours after the circumcision, so allow your baby to rest as much as you can.
After surgery, you can give your baby an accessible sponge bath. But please do not forget to check with your doctor.
To ease pain, your doctor might recommend that you give your baby Tylenol (acetaminophen) after the procedure. Take precautions when using medicines. Make sure to give the medicines to your child as a prescription. If your child has a problem with medicine, call your doctor.
10. Hand Wash
Always wash your hands after touching the circumcision site, as it will help you maintain safe hygiene for yourself and your baby.
It is absolutely normal to feel nervous when your child has any surgery or procedure. However, it is essential to remember that circumcisions and complications are not uncommon. Circumcision is a standard procedure that heals children without any health issues or difficulty. Talk to your doctor if you have questions about circumcision.