Giving birth is beautiful. Even though it’s a painful process for the mother, yet, there’s no joy that matches the one that’s brought by adding a new member to the family. During the whole process, the focus is always on ensuring that both the mother and the baby are at the best of their health, before and after birth.
There are many complications which may or may not happen during the birth of the baby. It totally depends on the health of the mother and type of delivery and also the health of the baby when inside the womb.
There are many babies who are born prematurely due to different complications. Most of these complications may be external or internal in nature. Diseases may come across, there might be excessive bleeding and many other reasons which may not allow the baby to fully develop but still has to be taken out of the womb so as to ensure the safety of the baby.
[You might be interested in this: Premature Baby Growth Chart]
One of the most common complications of birth which is very natural is that baby is born underweight or lower than the average weight of a baby when they are born.
Nurturing and nourishing a baby is an everyday battle specially if the weight of the baby is less than average.
Doctors say that a lower than average weight baby is like any other baby but they require a little more care and attention until their weight is back on track.
Here are some ways where mothers can ensure that their babies get back to average weight and maintain it:
Breastfeeding on Schedule:
Breastfeeding is the most important responsibility of a mother post birth of the baby. It is the best way of nourishing the baby and for the first six months, breast milk should be the only source of nourishment for the baby.
Since extra care needs to be taken, doctors prepare a schedule for breastfeeding rather than catering to the baby’s demand.
Parents of lower than average weight babies are suggested to feed their babies every three hours and in some cases even two. If that means that the baby needs to be woken from deep sleep or a nap, it should be done.
Skin to Skin Contact:
Another method for ensure the good health of the babies who have lower than average baby weight is skin to skin contact by the mother at most times.
Holding the baby directly against the skin most times has proven good for the health of the baby in many ways.
Some of the ways are:
Help the baby gain weight.
Maintain the warmth of the body.
Regular the heart of the baby and the breathing rate.
Help them spend more time in deep sleep as keeping them close to the skin provides a sense of comfort for them.
It gives them a better chance at successful breastfeeding.
Another method of skin to skin contact is massaging the baby. It is very essential for the weight gain for the baby. Premature babies and also babies whose weight is lower than average have said to respond well to stroking and gentle rubbing as well with oil.
Safe Sleeping Guidelines:
A mother sleeping close to her baby is advantageous in most ways. The baby and the mother can enjoy the closeness of the relationship between mother and child. Apart from this is also helps the mother to breastfeed whenever the schedule demands it.
However, the baby and the parents or mother is advised not to sleep in the same bed but sleep in the same room rather. The baby can sleep in a cot or a separate bed and preferably on the back and not on the tummy or side.
Monitoring Baby Growth:
Monitoring the baby’s growth is very important for the parents as it will give an insight about what they are doing right or what they are not doing.
Weekly paediatrician trips and timely vaccinations are very important for the baby. A lower than average weight baby is just like any other baby and needs to be given all the vaccinations on time.
The weekly trips will also give the parents an insight to the baby’s height and weight development.
The parents know the baby more than any other person but in case the weight of the baby isn’t growing even after the taken steps it is always safer to consult a doctor and to know what can be done.
All in all, be there for the baby. Play with them, hold them and nurture them. Treating the baby any different due to low weight is not healthy as such. The steps mentioned usually always help in the development of the baby and show positive results.
About the Hospital:
Ankura is a Best women and children’s Hospital in Hyderabad. Set up in the year 2011 in KPHB, near Hitech Railway Station, the Ankura Hospitals family has today spread its wings to Secunderabad, Khammam and Vijayawada.