Parenting

Breastfeeding a Premature Baby

A premature baby might be very small , and you may be too scared to hold him or her. But, you still have a chance to have a good and healthy relationship with that small baby. After all, your baby needs your milk, and you need to build that relationship as you feed your baby.

To feed your baby, you will need some materials:

  • Baby bibs
  • Burp clothes
  • Nursing pads
  • Electric breast pump

Tips for Breastfeeding a Premature Baby

  • You need to pump right after you deliver your baby. Your colostrum could feed your baby with a tube while you are feeding your baby for the first time. Your colostrum is very important for him/her considering that premature babies are so likely to get an infection.
  • You need to either buy or rent an electric pump. It will help you keep up your milk supply for your baby. In this way, you will have enough milk to feed your baby.
  • If it is necessary, fortify your milk. You can ask about it before starting formula supplements.
  • You should not use artificial nipples when he/she is ready to be fed directly from your breast. It is better than feeding by bottle.
  • Before starting to feed him/her, put a drop of milk on his/her lips to make him/her interested. After all, premature babies need extra encouragement to open their mouth.
  • When you are nursing your baby, follow his/her cues, and let him/her be fed as long as he/she needs. If his/her suck is not strong enough, he/she might need extra time for breastfeeding.
  • You might need to build and stabilize your milk supply to help your baby to be fed until he/she can maintain the milk supply by him/herself.
  • Always keep a breast-pad close to him even if you cannot hold him. It will help your baby to be familiar with the smell of the milk.
  • Try to get help with neonatal nursing.

It might be difficult to feed a premature baby, but with the right techniques and help you can easily handle it and enjoy being a parent.

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