Pain Management Program

Recognizing and Managing Pain in Your Newborn

How do I recognize pain in my newborn?

Newborn babies and babies born prematurely may show different behaviors when they are irritable, uncomfortable or stressed. These may include:

A member of the healthcare team will use a pain scale to help you decide if your baby is feeling pain. The pain scale helps the healthcare team look at the different behaviors your baby may display when in pain.

What you can do

Talk with the healthcare team about your baby's pain. It is helpful for you to know what steps you can take to help ease the pain for your baby.

Create a comfortable and safe environment

Use touch to provide comfort

Use distraction to help your newborn focus on something other than the pain

Ask a member of the healthcare team for other ideas.

Ask questions to better understand pain and its treatment. Some important points are:

Pain assessment and management are important to us. We want our patients to be as comfortable as possible. Thank you for helping us to better meet your baby’s needs.

If you have any questions, ask your baby’s doctor or nurse.

Contact us

For more information about the Pain Management Program at CHOP or to schedule an appointment, please call 215-590-1409.

Reviewed by: the Pain Managment Program team
Date: August 2012

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