For any parent, premature baby care can be a daunting prospect because it can be difficult to know how your baby is feeling and what it is they need. The main thing to remember during this time is that there is no right or wrong answer – all you can do is carefully observe your baby and react to their actions. To help you understand what’s involved with premature baby care, Tiny World have put together some things you can do to help nurture them during this stage.
Signs that indicate what your baby needs
Your baby is communicating with you in everything they do, we just have to be perceptive and take note of what it is we see – for example:
- If your baby is tense or has a stern face, it might be that they are uncomfortable, so try moving them into another position and see if it helps them to relax their muscles.
- If your baby is turning away from you, chances are they’re overtired and need some time to quietly rest.
- If your baby is particularly noisy and fidgety, it’s likely they are hungry or need a nappy change.
- If your baby is quiet, relaxed and wide-eyed, they are most certainly happy.
The more time you spend with your baby, the quicker you will become accustomed to their habits and general behaviour – making it easier for you to control most situations. You will become aware of what they like, what they don’t like, the times in the day when they like to nap and the times when they’re wide awake.
Making sure your premature baby is comfortable
You won’t be alone when looking after your baby, the healthcare team will be keeping a very close eye on your baby during their time in the unit, as they’ll need to respond accordingly to your baby’s progress. This is to ensure your baby is getting the best treatment and to help keep a natural schedule so that their all-important sleep is not disturbed.
Some parents may feel overwhelmed by the apparatus within a childcare unit, so to make it all less scary, ask the healthcare team who will be able to explain what’s involved with your baby’s care. It might be the case that your baby is in an incubator and has tubes and wires attached to them, but when they are finally removed you can ask to help and get involved. Speak with the nurse, they will be able to show you how to wash and change a premature baby. At this stage, you should also be able to hold your baby.
Having a baby is undoubtedly an incredible experience, but to ensure they’re comfortable and healthy, it’s important to not overwhelm them with too many visitors. Your premature baby is tiny and fragile and needs time with his/her parents and plenty of time to rest.
Bonding with your premature baby
As we all know, bonding is incredibly important for both parent and child; it creates strong relationships of trust and security and helps your child to socialise and form relationships with others as they develop. Bonding takes time and is not something that happens in one day – it’s generally a byproduct of your everyday interaction. It’s likely that the process will take time for you too, and it’s perfectly natural for it to take time to feel a connection between you and your baby.
There are ways you can interact with your baby including:
- Singing or speaking calmly to your baby, they will find comfort in your voice and it will become increasingly familiar to them.
- Let your baby hold your finger in their hand – especially if you can’t hold them just yet.
- Having skin-to-skin contact and having your child lie on your chest (once they can be held).
- Eye contact – they will come to recognise your face and features.
- Move objects (such as a teddy) around and their eyes will follow.
Tiny World Day Nursery can be found around Nottingham and Mansfield on Stockhill Lane, Arnold Road and Layton Avenue. We have a wealth of experience working with children and provide many fun activities for your child to get involved with including painting, crafting, exercising, socialising, drawing, storytelling, playing and learning. For more information or to take a tour around our premises – get in touch today.