Bonding with Preemie

My baby was born 8 weeks early and is having trouble breathing. My doctor prefers she stay in a ventilator away from me but I am trying to pump my breast milk for her and am really wanting to do some skin to skin. Is there any way I can do this to help my milk supply?

Even if you can't hold your baby right now, you should be allowed in the room with them. Being in the same room with your baby, looking at them and talking to them while you are pumping can help a lot. It can boost your milk making hormones, even if you can't hold your baby yet.

As your baby grows and their breathing gets stable, you should be able to hold them and have skin to skin time. This is called "Kangaroo Care" when it's done with preemies. To build up your milk supply, you need to use a hospital grade double electric pump. Try to pump every two hours during the day and every three hours at night.

When pumping it can be helpful to look at your baby or if you are away from your baby, you can look at photos or a video of your baby. Once you are allowed to hold your baby, skin to skin time will help you bond with your baby and it will help to increase your milk making hormones. Babies held skin to skin will have better heart rate, breathing, and temperature regulation. Babies also grow at a faster rate when they spend more time skin to skin with their parents.

Breast milk is the perfect food for your baby and especially for a baby born early. Your body will make special milk because it knows that your baby was born early. Your baby needs this milk for the health of their digestive system and for their brain to grow. Your milk also gives them antibodies that protect them from illnesses. And because your milk is easy to digest, your baby will have fewer tummy aches.




SOURCE: “Hold Your Premie” by Jill Bergman


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