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Tahneek - A Relief Of Pain For The Newborn

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RELIEF OF PAIN: A MEDICAL DISCOVERY

 

It is a long-established custom among Muslim parents to put a piece of well-chewed date (or other available sweet fruit) in the mouth of a newborn baby. Muslims do this following the practice of the Prophet Muhammad, upon him be peace, believing him to bee, as the Qur'an says, sent as a healing and a mercy to mankind. We may infer from the way this custom originated that there is a virtue in it. There is - complimentary to the virtue and pleasure of following the Sunnah (the practice of the Prophet) - placing a 'sugary substance' inside the mouth of a new-born baby dramatically reduces pain sensation and heart rate.

 

An interesting scientific medical study, published in the British Medical Journal (No. 6993, 10 June 1995), proved beyond any doubt the benefit of giving a new-born child sugar, in order to reduce the feeling of any painful procedure like heel pricking for a blood sample or before circumcision.

 

The study, entitled ?The analgesic (pain killing) effect of sucrose in full term infants: a randomised controlled trial', was done by Nora Haouari, Christopher Wood, Gillian Griffiths and Malcolm Levene in the post-natal ward in the Leeds General Infirmary in England.

 

60 healthy infants of gestational age 37-42 weeks and postnatal age of 1-6 days, were randomised to receive 2ml of one of the four solutions: 12.5% sucrose, 25% sucrose, 50% sucrose, and sterile water (control).

 

The first group of 30 babies received sugar syrup before a routine blood test (heel pricking, which is usually painful) done to detect jaundice. The other 30 babies were given only sterile water as a control group.

 

Placing 2ml of a 25% or 50% sucrose solution on the tongue before pricking the heel significantly reduced the crying time, compared to babies who got water. Also, their heart rate returned to normal more quickly. The stronger sugar solution had the greater effect, crying being reduced further with increasing concentration of sucrose. From which we may conclude that sucrose (sugar) placed on the tongue may bee a useful and safe form of analgesia for use with newborn infants.

 

Blass and Hoffmeyer also showed that 12% solution of inter-oral sucrose significantly reduced the duration of crying in new-born babies subjected to heel pricking or circumcision. This study was reported in The Independent newspaper (Friday 9 June 1995) as well as in the British Medical Journal article.

 

The practice of the Prophet, upon him b piece, is recorded in the collections of his sayings and reports about him, of which the most revered are the two Sahih collections of Bukhari and Muslim:

 

Abu Buradah reported from Abu Musa, who said: ?I had a new-born baby; I took him to the Prophet Muhammad, upon him be peace and blessings, who called him Ibrahim. The Prophet(saw) chewed a date then he took it and rubbed the inside of the baby's mouth with it.'

 

There are many other reported incidents like this one.

 

The date contains a very high percentage of sugar (70-80%); it has both fructose and glucose which have high calorific values, it is easily and quickly digestible, and very helpful to the brain. The date contains 2.2% protein, vitamin A, vitamins B1, B2 ad nicotruic acid (against Pellagra); it has traces of minerals needed for the body such as potassium, sodium, calcium, iron, manganese, copper. Potassium, of which percentage is very high, has been found to be very effective for cases of haemorrhage, such as the occasions of birth or circumcision.

 

We may note that the Sunnah also commends dates for the breaking of the fast in Ramadhan. Dates should be eaten, if available, before the sunset prayer - this is medically and nutritionally the best way and the Sunnah.

 

The great worth of dates is also indicated in a famous and beautiful passage of the Qur'an, surah Maryam, verses 25-6:

 

And shake towards you the trunk of the palm-tree and it will drop on you fresh ripe dates. So eat and drink and be comforted.

 

This was the prescription of Allah, the Creator, for the blessed Maryam(a.s.) at the time of the birth of Eesa(a.s.) Jesus, the blessed Prophet(saw) of Allah. It was a prescription to make the delivery easy and comfortable.

 

As in the example we have briefly recorded in this example, we believe further research will confirm for those who still doubt the full worth and truth, the wisdom, of the teachings of the Qur'an and Sunnah.

 

We shall show them our signs on he furthest horizons and within themselves until it becomes clear to them that it is the truth. Is it not sufficient that your Lord is witness over all things? (Qur'an Fusilat, 41.53)

 

As the authors of the medical study referred to intend trying new sugary or sweet substances, we shall recommend that they try dates for the newborn for the relief of pain.

 

Finally, we hope Muslim medical scientists and researchers take this new discovery on board, and that many more ideas and practices in the teaching of Islam needing investigative research and objective, scientific study will get the attention they deserve.

Courtesy: www.everymuslim.net   

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Aaishah (ra) reports, "New-born children used to be brought to the Messenger of Allah and he would supplicate for blessings for them, and rub a chewed date upon their palate." (Muslim)

 

Over 1400 years later - the BBC News has reported that "experts" have said - "A dose of sugar given as a gel rubbed into the inside of the cheek is a cheap and effective way to protect premature babies against brain damage"
 

This is why we as Muslims follow the sunnah of the messenger without questioning it. It is revelation from Allah. Everything that the messenger (salAllahu alayhi wa sallam) did is the best. So don't wait until science catches up, because Islam is the forefront of development.

 

The things we do according to the sunnah (such as fasting Mondays and Thursdays) are only just being recognised as "scientific breakthroughs"

 

 

BBC

'Sugar gel' helps premature babies

 

A dose of sugar given as a gel rubbed into the inside of the cheek is a cheap and effective way to protect premature babies against brain damage, say experts.

 

Dangerously low blood sugar affects about one in 10 babies born too early. Untreated, it can cause permanent harm.

Researchers from New Zealand tested the gel therapy in 242 babies under their care and, based on the results, say it should now be a first-line treatment.

 

Their work is published in The Lancet.

 

Sugar dose

Dextrose gel treatment costs just over £1 per baby and is simpler to administer than glucose via a drip, say Prof Jane Harding and her team at the University of Auckland.

 

Current treatment typically involves extra feeding and repeated blood tests to measure blood sugar levels.

 

But many babies are admitted to intensive care and given intravenous glucose because their blood sugar remains low - a condition doctors call hypoglycaemia.

 

The study assessed whether treatment with dextrose gel was more effective than feeding alone at reversing hypoglycaemia.

 

Neil Marlow, from the Institute for Women's Health at University College London, said that although dextrose gel had fallen into disuse, these findings suggested it should be resurrected as a treatment.

 

We now had high-quality evidence that it was of value, he said.

 

Andy Cole, chief executive of premature baby charity Bliss, said: "This is a very interesting piece of new research and we always welcome anything that has the potential to improve outcomes for babies born premature or sick.

 

"This is a cost-effective treatment and could reduce admissions to intensive care services, which are already working at high capacity levels.

 

"While the early results of this research show benefits to babies born with low blood sugars, it is clear there is more research to be done to implement this treatment."

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