Belly Button Care for Newborns


Never pull on the umbilical cord, even if it looks like it is about to fall off, or even if it has mostly fallen off and there is one little strand or piece left.

When the cord is cut and tied after delivery, the hospital staff applied medication to help the cord dry out and fall off, revealing your little one's cute little belly button in about 3 weeks time. At home, you will need to monitor this process, and be sure to keep the area clean and dry.

Tending to the Umbilical Area

While bathing your infant, do not submerge their entire body in bath water. In the first few weeks, it is best to stick to sponge baths. You should also be sure that nothing is rubbing against the remaining umbilical cord, like clothing or a diaper, because this may irritate the area. After you have changed your baby's diaper, fold down the excess in the front so that the diaper is not rubbing on the umbilical cord, this can cause irritation and may also snag and pull the umbilical cord; off prematurely, which can lead to infection.

Remember to never pull on the umbilical cord, even if it looks like it is about to fall off, or even if it has mostly fallen off and there is one little strand or piece left. This small piece must fall off naturally too; otherwise there is a higher risk of infection.


What do you think?

Belly Button Care for Newborns

Tell us what you think!


  1. Profile photo of Stephanie Stephanie says:

    I was told to check the belly button, and if it had build up to gently clean around it with an alcohol swab, but to otherwise leave it alone. It came off on her clothing at about 9 days, and the belly button bleed ever so slightly. I freaked out but I guess it’s normal… Her cute little belly button is perfect now

  2. Profile photo of Danielle Danielle says:

    agree great information to know

  3. Profile photo of liz says:

    great tips, tnx so much

  4. Profile photo of KEIYONDA KEIYONDA says:


  5. Profile photo of gfeld gfeld says:

    These tips are great and spot on.

  6. Profile photo of MrsPearson MrsPearson says:

    Glad it was tips cause i was looking to remember what to do

  7. Profile photo of Heatherly Heatherly says:

    The best thing is to clean it gently with a q-tip and then apply some goldenseal powder (from a capsule.) It heals quickly.

  8. Profile photo of KaelinRae KaelinRae says:

    So many different things I’m going to have to remember once my little one gets here.

  9. Profile photo of Marilyn Marilyn says:

    Awesome! Thanks!

  10. Profile photo of Stephanie Stephanie says:

    Good advice I would take it in consideration thanks.. :-):-)

  11. Profile photo of sheenaholman sheenaholman says:

    Its weird that the cord turns into a scab like thing that falls off.

  12. Profile photo of Dominique Dominique says:

    get info I love it something knew for me

  13. Profile photo of Sara Sara says:

    I think this will be easier than taking care of his healing circumcision; very helpful info 🙂

  14. Profile photo of emi285 emi285 says:

    I’ve done alcohol wipes on all my kids (including my current two week old) and have never been told not too…going to call the Dr. in the morning and see if they recommend otherwise since the hospital is the one who started us out with the cotton balls of alcohol…

  15. Profile photo of JamJam JamJam says:

    I just love how helpfl this website is! im glad to know all this before my daughter gets here!

  16. Profile photo of JamJam JamJam says:

    the huggies newborn diapers are awesome they have a cutout for the umbilical cord !

  17. Profile photo of dyna5150 dyna5150 says:

    haha! this is great…they sent me home with a bunch of alcohol wipes and told me to clean it 2-3 times a day! he was born 5 weeks ago, im sure it changed well before that!

  18. It’s hard not to rub against anything but am doing my best in leaving it alone but I feel like it hurts him:/

  19. Profile photo of Valerie Valerie says:

    I think your suppose to just leave it alone and let it come off naturally.. But I was told to use alcohol so I’m not really sure.

  20. So no alcohol wipes, stick with sponge baths, keep clothes and diapers from touching the cord, and watch for infections. GOT IT!

  21. Profile photo of Angelwings Angelwings says:

    I’m a little confused, how do you clean the belly button area?

  22. Profile photo of Tricia Tricia says:

    U will, most of it is just common sense and natural instinct. 🙂

  23. Profile photo of Julie Julie says:

    I hope I am able to figure all this stuff out.


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