Did you recently give birth to a premature baby? It may have been a frightening experience for you because of the medical issues that can arise when a child is born several weeks before they are due. For example, children who are born early are often significantly underweight and may have difficulty breathing. Now that you have given birth, you may want to know what you can do to support your preemie and encourage healthy growth despite any delays that may occur over the next few years. The good news is that there are many great things you can do to support his or her development.
1. Make Plenty of Skin to Skin Contact to Comfort Your Little One
It is always helpful to give your preemie as much attention as possible. Providing skin to skin contact is beneficial for the development of the baby, but it is also a great way for you to spend some time bonding with your little one. Even if you are choosing not to breastfeed, you can still participate in skin to skin contact. Many medical professionals agree that the warmth of the mother's skin will remind the baby of being inside the womb, which is one of the most comforting feelings for a newborn, especially one who was born prematurely.
2. Take Your Child to the Infant Care Clinic For Routine Checkups
When your little one was first born, he or she may have spent some time in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit to receive special treatment based on his or her condition. Different specialists may have had to run tests to make sure your little one was healthy before releasing him or her from the hospital. Some of the specialists that often monitor premature babies include neurologists and cardiologists.
Although your child may have received the best care in the NICU, it is still important to seek aftercare treatment from an infant care clinic, such as Kitsap Children's Clinic LLP, after your child gets released from the hospital and is able to come home with you. Because premature babies are considered high-risk and are more likely to suffer from assorted developmental delays, you can continuously keep an eye on your child by bringing him or her into a specialist at a very young age. The specialist may recommend physical therapy, speech therapy and other services that will benefit your child.
Spending plenty of time making skin to skin contact and seeking additional treatment for your baby at the infant care clinic after the little one gets released from the hospital are two of the many good things you can do to support your child's development. Premature babies often have to overcome many obstacles, but with the right care and treatment, they often grow to become healthy and happy children who continue to flourish.