When a person is not doing well, a common phrase can be heard: “You look jaundiced!” It is meant to imply the pallor or yellowing associated with a certain type of disease. But that’s not necessarily jaundice. Jaundice, also called jaundice, causes your skin and the whites of your eyes to turn yellow. The condition is caused by too much bilirubin, a yellow chemical in hemoglobin (the substance that carries oxygen in your red blood cells). When red blood cells break down, the body builds new cells to replace them. The old ones are processed by the liver, but when the liver can’t handle the blood cells as they break them down, bilirubin builds up in the body.
About 60 percent of all babies born in the United States have jaundice. However, jaundice can occur in people of any age and is usually the result of an underlying medical condition that includes:
Acute inflammation of the liver: This can affect the liver’s ability to conjugate and secrete bilirubin, causing it to build up.
Inflammation of the bile duct: This can prevent the secretion of bile and the removal of bilirubin, causing jaundice.
Blockage of the bile duct: This prevents the liver from having bilirubin.
Hemolytic Anemia: Bilirubin production increases when large amounts of red blood cells are broken down.
Gilbert Syndrome: This is a hereditary condition that affects the ability of enzymes to process the excretion of bile.
Cholestasis: This cuts off the flow of bile from the liver. The bile, which contains conjugated bilirubin, remains in the liver instead of being excreted.
Less common conditions that can cause jaundice include:
Crigler-Najjar Syndrome: This is a hereditary condition that affects the specific enzyme that is responsible for processing bilirubin.
Dubin-Johnson Syndrome: This is an inherited form of chronic jaundice that prevents conjugated bilirubin from being cleared from the liver cells.
Pseudojaundice: This is a harmless form of jaundice. The yellowing of the skin results from an excess of beta-carotene, not from an excess of bilirubin. Pseudojaundice is usually created by eating large amounts of carrots, pumpkins, or melons.
Hence, it is best to be careful about diets, some of which can be harmful. To check if a person has jaundice, a physical exam of the abdomen is done to see if there is any possible liver swelling. Then, to check the severity, the doctor may recommend special liver function tests to see how well the liver is working.
Some common symptoms of jaundice are vomiting, nausea, loss of appetite, fever, abdominal pain and headache, swelling of the legs and abdomen, and weakness. All of this has also been experienced by people suffering from Covid-19. The itching associated with jaundice can sometimes be so severe that patients are known to scratch their skin, experience insomnia, or in extreme cases, even have suicidal thoughts.
If complications do occur, it is usually the underlying problem, not the jaundice itself. For example, if a blocked bile duct leads to jaundice, uncontrolled bleeding can occur. This is because the blockage leads to a lack of vitamins that are needed for clotting.
The following treatments are used to treat jaundice:
Anemia-induced jaundice can be treated by increasing the amount of iron in the blood, either by taking iron supplements or eating foods rich in iron.
Hepatitis-induced jaundice requires antiviral or steroid drugs.
Doctors can treat obstructive jaundice by surgically removing the obstruction.
If the jaundice was caused by the use of a drug, treatment will include switching to an alternative drug.
While harsh medications might be required in some complicated cases, many natural home remedies can help heal jaundice faster. Let’s look at some of them.
1.Natural sunlight: If babies are diagnosed with jaundice in addition to phototherapy, doctors recommend exposing them to sunlight.
2. Sugar cane juice: Sugar cane juice strengthens the liver and supports its proper function. Drink one glass daily until your jaundice improves.
3. Goat milk: Goat’s milk is on a par with cow’s milk in terms of nutrients, is easy to digest and suitable for babies and adults alike. Goat milk also contains beneficial antibodies that help in curing jaundice.
4. Green grape juice: Green grape juice helps improve liver function. It evens out serum bilirubin levels and cures jaundice.
5. Ginger: Ginger has excellent antioxidant properties. It is also hypolipidemic and helps the liver. Have in the form of ginger tea for best results.
6. Garlic: Garlic is a powerful antioxidant. This helps in detoxifying the liver and thus aids in curing jaundice.
7. Lemon: Lemon juice helps clear the biliary tract as it has antioxidant properties. It also boosts immunity and stops further liver damage.
8. Yogurt: The probiotics in yogurt help improve immunity. It lowers serum bilirubin levels and provides protection against harmful bacteria. Take a bowl of cottage cheese daily to cure your jaundice.
9. Tomatoes: Lycopene, a compound found in tomatoes, is a powerful antioxidant. This helps in detoxifying the liver and curing jaundice. Make a juice from boiled tomatoes and drink one glass a day.
10. Amla: Amla is high in vitamin C and other essential nutrients that help fight jaundice. It improves liver function and helps balance serum bilirubin levels. Boil amlas, make paste and mix with water and honey and take daily.
11. Tulsi: Tulsi, or holy basil, is perfect for the liver as it has hepatoprotective properties. It improves immunity and fights infections. Boil tulsi leaves in water and take daily.
12. Papaya leaves: Papaya leaves are rich in papaine enzymes that aid digestion and improve liver health. Grind the leaves and discard to get the juice. Drink one tablespoon a day. It is normal for a baby to have jaundice when it is born.
There are several different treatments that you can try to treat jaundice in newborns. Below is a list of some of the things you can do to treat jaundice in newborns.
Breastfeeding: If your newborn has jaundice, feed them frequently. If you breastfeed your little one frequently, the bilirubin will be removed from their bloodstream and flushed out through stool and urine. Babies with jaundice sleep a lot; If your baby has jaundice, they may sleep a lot too.
Periodically wake the baby to feed them. In addition, mothers must eat healthily while breastfeeding their newborns. Freshly prepared, nutritious and balanced meals can ensure this.
This includes leafy green vegetables, a small serving of low-mercury seafood per week, foods with healthy fats, seeds, nuts, fruits, well-cooked meats, and a healthy dose of high-fiber starch.
Sunbathing: If your baby has jaundice, keep them in sunlight for 1-2 hours every day. However, make sure that the baby receives the oblique rays of the sun before 8 a.m. The sun’s rays help reduce the level of bilirubin in the blood and cure jaundice.