Today is World Prematurity Day

What gestational age was your baby born – let us know your story?

Do you know that around one in nine babies born each year in the UK are classed as “premature” and  can require some specialist hospital care?

A premature baby is one born before 37 weeks gestation.

Care for premature or small babies in Special Care Baby Units is amazing these days, but premature babies can unfortunately experience  some problems with feeding. Premature babies are  often fed naso-gastrically and  before (bottle feeding) preterm babies receive oral feeds they are generally subjected to a suck test, which consists of offering a special dummy to stimulate non-nutritive sucking. This simple measure is performed to ensure that the baby has the ability to co-ordinate breathing, sucking and swallowing of saliva at the same time without a marked change in the baby’s heart rate and breathing patterns.

One of the big issues is that when these premature babies are fed using a traditional or restrictive vented bottle, a vacuum tends to develop and so babies have to suck progressively harder on the one hole in the bottle to obtain the liquid – imagine how much energy a premature baby will utilise fighting this vacuum.

Help is at hand as Dr Brown’ offer  a 60ml/2oz standard neck preemie bottle, which is widely used in Neonatal Units around the country.  The preemie bottle features the unique Dr Brown’s patented system with an internal vent which eliminates the vacuum in the bottle, so allowing the milk to flow freely and the baby doesn’t have to fight the vacuum and suck as hard, so can use its energy for important things like GROWTH and DEVELOPMENT.

Go to www.drbrowns.co.uk to see a fully animated explanation of how the Dr Brown’s Natural Flow feeding bottles work

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