Baby Health

Things You Need To Know About Nursing A Premature Baby

Pregnancy is a mystery in that you never know when you’ll give birth, how or what you’ll give birth to, if it happens that your baby arrives early will nursing your premature baby be different? Yes and here are the things you need to know;

A premature baby needs breast milk as breast milk has everything a premature baby needs to be nourished especially since premature babies are more prone to infection due to their immature immune system.

Your breast is totally up to the task though, milks produced by moms of preemies are very rich in proteins and has slightly different fats than later breast milk.

Meanwhile your baby won’t be able to unite with your baby immediately as your baby will be placed inside the incubator that means you can’t breastfeed your baby directly but you can pump. After pumping the breast milk an hospital staff will feed the expressed breast milk to your baby through a nasogastric (NG) tube (known as gavage). This ensures your baby take enough breast milk as preemies are usually too small to suck directly from the breast.

At the hospital, the doctors might want to supplement with formula to increase your baby’s calorie intake, if you don’t have a problem with breast milk supply remind your doctor that breast milk is the best for your child and since you don’t have a problem with your flow there’s no need for supplementing feeds. You might want to be expressing and freezing to keep up your breast milk flow (pump every 2-3 hours) and ensuring there’s always milk for your baby.

 

 

When your baby finally starts nursing directly from your breast be prepared for a test. Sucking out milk from your breast won’t be easy since your baby is already used to getting milk from the bottle which is easier. You can try different breastfeeding positions or buy a nursing supplementer (attach the tiny tube to your breast) so your baby can get milk from it and your breast as well until they finally adjust to sucking from just your breast.

If you’re having trouble breastfeeding your premature baby, ask for help from the nurses and doctors in your hospital. Breast milk is the best for preemie babies but your family and friends may not understand and therefore suggest that you switch to formula to save yourself the trouble. If you have to pump round the clock, do it, it’s the best you can do for your preemie baby.

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How My Baby Died From Severe Pneumonia

My baby was healthy. She had fever for two days and I was going to bring her to the doctor the next morning, but she started vomiting at midnight so we brought her to the hospital immediately.

When they got to the hospital, the medical staff hooked her baby to an IV, through which they gave her a medication to stop severe vomiting.

The next day, around noon, her baby started throwing up again. The medication didn’t work. She had asked for help, but there was only one nurse on duty as most of the staff had left to attend a party.

“We were calling out for help but no one helped us. I had to carry my child all the way to the emergency room because the doctors were there and we were in a ward,” she said, adding how her baby was struggling to breathe.

The only nurse on duty hooked her baby to a nebuliser, but it was too late. She recalls screaming for help, but they couldn’t save her baby.

Her baby, who she describes was perfectly healthy, had died because her lungs had filled up with phlegm, making it impossible for her to breathe.

Contrary to popular believe pneumonia is not caused by cold weather or getting wet but it is actually an infection. A cold or flu that gets worse can turn into pneumonia. That’s because the cold or flu will irritate the lungs, creating an environment where it’s easier for pneumonia germs to move in and start an infection.

  • The cause of pneumonia can either be fungi, bacterial, or viral.
  • It can be prevented through vaccination, proper nutrition, and through providing the proper environment: avoiding pollution and practicing good hygiene.
  • Exclusive breastfeeding during the first 6 months of life has also been found to help.
  • If the cause of the condition is bacterial in nature, it can be treated with antibiotics. Sadly, only 1/3 of children diagnosed with pneumonia receive the needed antibiotics.

Normally, pneumonia begins as a mild cough or sore throat, much like other respiratory infections.

  • fever (usually above 38.5°C)
  • shivering
  • cough
  • rapid breathing
  • wheezing
  • difficulty breathing
  • chest or abdominal pain
  • poor appetite
  • exhaustion
  • vomiting
  • dehydration

However, it’s important for parents to know that there is a type of pneumonia, or what is known as Walking Pneumonia, that is so mild and subtle that those who have it barely show any symptoms. Though not easily detected, it can be treated with antibiotics. 

Pneumonia can affect anyone of any age, if you notice any of these symptoms in your child or even yourself be sure to visit the hospital as soon as possible to get it treated.  

Source: The Asian Parent 

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