Is it true that your child born early? Giving birth to a premature baby is a depressing and frightening experience.
Premature babies are also known as preemie. The birth of these babies occurs prior to the completion of 37th week of gestation, which is so early than a full-term pregnancy.
The birth of full-term babies will happen thirty eight to forty two weeks after the mother’s last menstrual period (LMP).
In other words, the average length of pregnancy is between thirty eight to forty two weeks. It is found that, in the United States, eight to ten percent of all pregnancies lead to the birth of premature babies.
Premature babies will not develop completely and come across several challenges when compared to full-term babies. In general, the earlier the birth of the baby, the less the developed organs are.
The underdeveloped organs of these premature babies may lead to specific health problems. So, remember that the chances of developing complications increase as gestational age of the baby decreases.
The common health problems of premature babies are:
Respiratory distress syndrome (RDS) is the most common lung disorder in premature babies. The babies with this condition feel difficulty in breathing.
This condition generally occurs when the babyâ€™s undeveloped lungs produce insufficient surfactant, an essential substance that blow up with air and maintains the air sacs from collapsing.
The common health problem that occurs due to lack of red blood cells to carry oxygen to the body is anemia. Premature infants may develop this condition for several reasons.
A common treatable health problem in premature babies is hyperbilirubinemia, which occurs when the levels of bilirubin in the baby increases.
Bilirubin is a brownish yellow substance that results from the breakdown of heme in red blood cells. This condition can lead to jaundice, a yellow color of the skin and whites of the eyes. Hyperbilirubinemia in extreme levels can lead to brain damage.
Another health complication in premature babies is low blood pressure, which occurs as a result of blood loss, fluid loss, or infection.
Another common health problem in premature babies is apnea,which occurs due to immaturity in the part of the brain that usually controls the force to breathe.
With this condition, the baby stops breathing, the rate of heartbeat may decline, and the skin may become pale, purplish, or blue in color.
Bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) is a chronic lung disorder that generally occurs in premature babies with respiratory distress syndrome or with immature lungs.
The more complicated health problem in premature babies is infection.It is because the immune system of these babies is unable to fight against germs that cause serious illness. Infections can develop from the mother before, during or after birth.
Patent ductus arteriosus (PDA), a heart defect that occurs in premature babies when ductus arteriosus, a blood vessel that connects the pulmonary artery and the aorta in the fetus, doesnâ€™t close after birth.
So, never get depressed if you have given birth to a premature baby. All the health complications of premature babies are treatable!
That last statement is incredibly inaccurate. Yes, there is treatment available for most conditions that occur due to premature birth but that doesn’t mean that there’s no cause for concern. Too many babies pass away due to the complications of their birth, a trip to March of Dimes website will show you that.
Women who give birth to premature infants are at increased risk for post partum depression. There’s a lot of guilt, worry and stress involved in not just the birth but the NICU journey, please don’t at more guilt on top of that by saying that we shouldn’t feel depressed. As I’m sure you’re aware, even mothers of perfectly healthy babies suffer depression, PPD is not at all related to the health of your child.