Premature babies are newborns who are born before the normal due date of 37-40 weeks. The weight of premature babies is less than 2500 grams, extremely premature babies even weigh less than 1000 grams. Their immune system and digestive system are not yet sufficiently developed. You are so vulnerable that you could not survive without special treatment and a long time in the incubator.
The immature organs often make breathing possible only through intubation, and eating can often be done only through feeding tubes. The weight of premature babies should develop similarly outside the body, i.e. in the incubator, as it does in the womb. Achieving this is sometimes a real challenge.
Hospitals specializing in premature babies have a few tricks of the trade to provide the best possible support for the little one. In addition to optimal nutrition, there are some measures to promote and stabilize weight gain in premature babies. We tell you how you can support your baby’s weight gain. However, medical care is essential.
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What You Can Use To Support Weight Gain
– Breast milk.
– Classical music.
– Body contact.
Weight Gain Of Premature Babies!
Even if a child is born prematurely, the mother adjusts to the special needs of the child. Thus, for about 4 weeks, special milk is formed, which is very similar to colostrum, but much richer in content. The protein content is 20% higher. Growth factors, long-chain fatty acids, and hormones are abundant. They protect the immature immune system and intestinal flora bacteria settle faster. Especially the so-called hindmilk, which begins to flow later, is very rich in fat so that the calorie content increases with this milk.
With breast milk, digestion gets going better and the baby’s first stool can leave the body more quickly. If it is not possible to get breast milk, special premature baby food with probiotics should be used. Normally, breast milk is initially pumped and administered via tubes until the baby can suck on its own.
Not only nutrition but also regular physical contact can help to increase the weight of premature babies. To do this, the premature baby, if stable, is placed out of the incubator and on top of the mother (or father) in physical contact. The longer and more often the baby receives physical contact, the better it is for overall development. Already here you can lay the foundation between body contact and the feeling of satiety if your child receives a tube meal during cuddling. The transition to breastfeeding is much easier later and possible setbacks in weight gain can be reduced.
In a clinic for premature babies, medical experts found that classical music, which masks the noises of the hospital, causes premature babies’ energy consumption to drop and nutrients to be better utilized. As a result, premature babies gain weight faster and the time until discharge from the hospital is shortened. Children with music generally develop better.