Archive for the ‘Premature Babies’ Category

Newborn Baby Care: Dos and Don’ts

Posted on: June 14th, 2011 by admin No Comments

Welcoming a newborn baby into the home is an exciting experience but can soon turn out to be overwhelming due to the sheer increase in responsibilities. For first time parents it can be as confusing as it is exhilarating. This article compiles some useful tips to help the average new parent to take care of their precious newborn baby.

Do: Breastfeed Your Baby
Studies have shown that babies who are breastfed for at least a year tend to score higher in IQ tests later in life. Breast milk contains essential nutrients and antibodies which help the infant to grow healthy and strong. It is not simply a means of providing food to the little one; breastfeeding enhances the bond between mother and child. An infant needs to be fed several times a day and mothers should experiment with a number of positions to ensure mutual comfort. The cradle hold, where the mother holds the baby in her arms while nursing, is the most popular but when the child needs to be fed in the middle of the night, many women prefer to lie down while nursing their infant.

Don’t: Hold Him/her Carelessly
A newborn baby has weak neck muscles and needs to be supported while being lifted; and one hand should be placed under the neck at all times especially when holding in a cradle-like position. After a month or two, your little one will be able to move his/her head independently but will not be able to lift it up for longer than a few minutes. Lay him/her down on his/her stomach to help strengthen the muscles. By the end of six months, the infant should be strong enough to hold his/her head high on his/her own!

Do: Practice Kangaroo Mother Care
A newborn baby begins his/her life from the womb and s/he is accustomed to tight surroundings, since the familiarity makes them feel secure. It is for this reason that babies are swaddled tightly with a blanket from shoulder to toe. Another technique that is recommended by doctors is skin-to-skin bonding, better known as Kangaroo Mother Care. The infant is placed on the bare chest of his/her parent. This technique reduces the cortisol levels in the bloodstream by allowing the infant to sleep longer and more soundly leading to rapid development. While this kind of care works best during the initial four months, Kangaroo Mother Care can be practiced comfortably for as long as the child begins to reject it. There is immense proof that this technique improves the health conditions of premature babies.

Don’t: Overwhelm Your Newborn Baby
To celebrate the birth of a newborn baby, friends and family usually pay the mother a visit for a chance to hold and have a look at the new entrant. However, this can stress the child since s/he is not used to having many people around him/her. For the first month in particular, it is best to avoid taking the infant outdoors, and limiting interaction with other children. This ensures that the newborn baby does not catch an infection which is highly likely due to an underdeveloped immune system.

For more information on The Science of Touch through Kangaroo Mother Care, please visit Tony and Nyrie Roos are a resource for natural parenting practices and kangaroo mother care.

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Premature Babies: How to Help Your Preemie Survive the Odds

Posted on: June 8th, 2011 by admin No Comments

Premature babies are born before their full gestation time. Those who have spent less than 35 weeks in their mother’s womb usually have decreased chances of survival. Parents of such babies suffer through emotional trauma since they have to cope with the increased responsibilities of caring for a preemie. Premature babies are often incubated for differing amounts of time since their organs and systems are not fully developed and need time to achieve full functionality. The following is some advice to help you improve the odds for your preemie.

Preemies are often placed in Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICUs) as a means to provide shelter and warmth, and are duly monitored. Parents are often overwhelmed by the image of their newborn in a N.I.C.U surrounded by tubes and other apparatus. This emotional trauma is compounded by the fact that parents can be refrained from interacting with the infant. It so happens that this is also detrimental to the health of the infant for she/he has been placed in an unfamiliar environment which triggers a release of stress hormones which hamper the fight for survival. Studies have proven that the mother’s touch has nurturing powers since the baby instinctually recognizes her touch as result of being in the womb for nine months.

Kangaroo Mother Care is a highly beneficial method used to stabilize premature babies. If the parents are advised against holding their baby initially, the Kangaroo Mother Care technique should be practiced as soon as the newborn is declared out of danger. Using this method the baby is placed on the bare chest of his mother or father and covered using a gown or some other suitable covering. The baby should only be wearing a diaper at the time. This skin-to-skin contact not only builds up attachment between the two, but has been noted to calm premature babies, thus saving much-needed energy. This energy is directing away from crying and towards life-saving actions such as strengthening the respiratory and circulatory bodily processes. Studies have also shown that babies who receive Kangaroo Mother Care turn out to be healthier and more confident in the longer term and, fall sick less often.

Premature babies need to be fed about 8 to 10 times per day to ensure they do not dehydrate. If the infant needs to be have their diaper changed 6 to 8 times a day, it implies that he/she is receiving adequate nourishment. The weight should be monitored to ensure it does not remain constant or decrease; rather, the little one should progressively gain weight.

Premature babies can be immunized according to the same schedule as full term newborns, although a flu vaccine may additionally be prescribed for such infants since they are more vulnerable than normal babies to catching infections. Doctors advise the entire family to receive a flu shot to guard against the possibility of the child catching the infection from family members. Some special supplements may also be advised for premature babies since they did not receive the entire benefits of normal gestation.

For more information about Kangaroo Mother Care please visit Tony and Nyrie Roos are a resource for natural parenting practices and kangaroo mother care.

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