Slide show: What a newborn really looks like
A newborn's umbilical cord stump
Previous Next 3 of 7 Your newborn's umbilical cord

The stump of a newborn's umbilical cord is usually yellowish green at birth. As the stump dries out and eventually falls off — usually within two weeks after birth — it'll change to brown to black. In the meantime, keep the stump clean and dry. Expose the stump to air to help dry out the base, and stick to sponge baths while the area is healing. There's no need to swab the stump with rubbing alcohol.

From Mayo Clinic to your inbox

Sign up for free, and stay up to date on research advancements, health tips and current health topics, like COVID-19, plus expertise on managing health.

To provide you with the most relevant and helpful information, and understand which information is beneficial, we may combine your email and website usage information with other information we have about you. If you are a Mayo Clinic patient, this could include protected health information. If we combine this information with your protected health information, we will treat all of that information as protected health information and will only use or disclose that information as set forth in our notice of privacy practices. You may opt-out of email communications at any time by clicking on the unsubscribe link in the e-mail.

See more Multimedia April 08, 2022