No matter how prepared you are for pregnancy, no parent is ever prepared for a premature baby. No one ever plans on becoming a parent to a delicate infant who is not fully developed physically and functionally.
Here are a few tips you should remember when taking care of preemies:
Your baby may be too weak to suckle and you may not be allowed to breastfeed in the first few weeks. However, you will have to express breast milk using a pump, which will then be fed to the baby through a tube. Breast milk provides the essential antibodies that will help to build your baby’s immune system.
You can also build a breast milk stash, which is highly recommended when the neonate is kept in the NICU for a longer period.
2. Kangaroo care
Even as advanced medical equipments are used to take care of the baby, your role as a mother is still very important. Providing “Kangaroo Care” is one of the best methods in premature baby care. This involves skin-to-skin contact with your baby by strapping it to the chest to maintain body temperature. Such method is commonly used for low birth weight babies. You can ask your doctor before making this decision.
Ask a pediatric nurse to guide you while providing kangaroo care. Touching and talking can comfort the crying baby and improve bonding.
This video will help you explain Kangaroo care better.
Babywearing is a great way to offer this kind of care. To understand better, watch this video.
Premature babies are usually kept in incubators to provide stable temperature control. Most incubators have open tops that allow you to make contact with the baby. Even if the incubator is fully enclosed, you can stroke the baby through the small openings meant for wires and pipes. It is recommended that you make use of every opportunity to create a bond with the baby.
Being anxious about a premature baby is natural. If you have any queries or concerns, constantly communicate with the doctors, hospital staff, and counselors to find your calm. After all, that’s most important!
Disclaimer: This article has been put together by experts.
Source of banner image: sciencelife.uchospitals.edu
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