Newborn care

How to care for your baby after circumcision

A little nervous about caring for your baby’s penis post-circumcision? Here’s advice from a paediatrician on what to do and how to know things are healing well.

My newborn was circumcised. How do I care for him while he’s healing?
An unhappy baby being washedPenis care: A guide to cleaning your baby boy's business The glans (or head) of the penis is now exposed, and it can be very tender. You want to keep the area clean. We don’t recommend bathing for 48 hours or so after circumcision, but after that, the penis can be cleaned gently with soap and water. In the first few days, be sure to clean around the anus and scrotum with a wipe or wet cloth. Usually the scrotum blocks the penis from getting soiled. While he’s healing, I suggest using gauze with some Polysporin (or another over-the-counter antibiotic ointment) with lidocaine in it to help numb the area. Then your little guy will be less uncomfortable as he heals. You’ll want to change this gauze each time he pees. Some boys will have some spots of blood coming from the penis for a day or two, which is normal, but if he is bleeding through the gauze, has pus or swelling that increases over time, or shows signs of a fever, let your doctor know. Most kids heal within a week.

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