How to Take Care of a Preterm Baby at Home
The most beautiful gift God gives to a parent is a child. when your child is born preterm and he survives, a parent feels more blessed. Premies are the real fighters.In NICU, the baby gets all the facilities, and treatment but when the doctor allows your baby to get discharged, parents don’t know how to take care of the premie properly.
What Precautions Need to Be Taken
The very first thing is hygiene because preterm babies are more prone to infection.
- Clean the room where the baby stays daily with Dettol or Savlon water.
- Do not allow people with fever, cold, cough or viral infection to enter the room.
- Whenever you have visitors, tell them to wash their hands and sterilise them.
- The mother should always sterilise her hands before touching the baby.
- The caretaker should be given a mask so that any foul smell does not cause any infection to the baby.
Cleaning and Massaging
- Use massage oil which is suitable to the baby, mostly coconut oil is recommended for preemies.
- Sponge bathe the baby daily with boiled warm water.
- If possible, the mother should massage the baby because mother’s touch develops bonding and helps the baby gain weight.
- In winters, two times oiling is preferred.
- Give kangaroo care to your baby.
- In winters, the room should be warm preferably with a room heater.
- Room heaters should be placed at least 6 feet away from the baby.
- In summers, keep the room cool with coolers or AC.
- Feed the baby every 2-3 hours.
- Feed as much quantity as the doctor has prescribed.
- Do not feed while while he is sleeping . Wake him up by tickling his feet or rubbing behind his ears.
- Feed him holding his head upside.
- Burp the baby after every feed and while sleeping, his head should be up so keep a cotton cloth (may be 1-2 inch) below his head till chest so that he doesn’t vomit.
- Preemies may not feed directly due to latching problem so use katori and spoon method but try to feed your baby directly so that after some time, he will start direct breastfeeding.
- You can use breast pump to extract the milk and feed your baby. But note that all the parts should be sterilised properly and after every use.
- Don’t miss any appointments with the doctor.
- Call the doctor in case of an uncontrollable situation.
- Go for regular vaccination.