Potential Health Issues in Premature Babies

Because a premature baby is early he/she is more prone to health problems.  These tiny premature babies often have underdeveloped lungs as well as other issues and as a result have higher rates of disabilities such as cerebral palsy.

Because of the various health concerns a premature baby is given medical assistance immediately after delivery. Depending on how prematurely a baby arrives he/she is likely to be transferred to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), for assessment to determine his/her medical needs.

My premature baby daughter Sky

Below are some of the more common conditions that occur in premature babies:

Respiratory Distress Syndrome
a breathing disorder related to the baby’s immature lungs.  Because a premature baby’s lungs frequently lack surfactant, a liquid substance that allows the lungs to remain expanded.  Artificial surfactants are often used to treat these tiny babies in conjunction with a ventilator to improve baby’s breathing and to help maintain sufficient oxygen levels in the blood.

Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia
is the medical term used to describe babies who require oxygen over a longer period of time.  The severity of this condition varies and as baby’s lungs mature they tend to outgrow the condition.

Apnoea
is the medical term given when the regular breathing rhythm is interrupted for more than fifteen seconds.  The condition is often is associated with a reduced heart rate, known medically as bradycardia. A pulse oximeter is used to measure oxygen saturation a drop in oxygen is known as de-saturation. The majority of babies outgrow the condition by the time they go home.

Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP)
previously known as retrolental fibroplasia (RLF), is an eye disease that affects premature babies in which the retina is not fully developed. The majority of cases resolve without the need for treatment, although serious cases may require surgery. Both oxygen toxicity and relative hypoxia can contribute to the development of ROP.

Jaundice
is the result ofabuild in the baby’s blood of achemical called Bilirubin. As a result of this build up the baby’s skin takes on a yellow tinge. Treating the condition involves placing the undressed baby under special lights whilst covering baby’s eyes to protect them from damage.

(ArticlesBase SC #4110371)

About the Author: Sue Edmondson runs Prem2Pram the on line premature baby store http://www.prem2pram.co.uk as a mother herself of two premature babies she understands the difficulties parents face when their baby arrives early.

Why is breast milk ice-cream repulsive?

If the Baby Gaga dessert from the Icecreamists has sexual undertones or just feels wrong, how about milk from cow boobs?

Source: The Guardian
Author: Sarah Ditum

Baby Gaga breast milk ice cream has proved popular at the Icecreamists cafe in London.

Eww! Ice-cream made out of breast milk! Gross! There’s a good chance that was your first reaction to reading about the Baby Gaga ice-cream being served by the magnificently trend-baiting Icecreamists parlour in Covent Garden, and to be perfectly honest, even after thinking it through for long enough to write this piece, it’s still my reaction.

I struggle sometimes just thinking about my food having a face. The idea of my dessert coming from a milker with a name, the ability to speak and a business plan for her lactational products is simply too much. (The milk comes from the breast of Victoria Hilley, apparently, who receives £15 for every 10oz she supplies. Which makes me feel slightly sick in a different way, as I suddenly imagine every sodden breast pad I lobbed in the bin during my own nursing phase as a tenner in the landfill.)……  continue reading

A letter to … my lost baby

The letter you always wanted to write

Source: The Guardian –  Read the full article and comment

I was surprised to find out I was pregnant with you because I had taken steps to avoid it. I cried. I was young, in a rocky relationship and already over-stretched with the care of your brother. The flat was too small, money was more than tight and I was halfway through my training. But I loved motherhood and believed that new life is always a gift, so there was never any question of an abortion.

Things would have to change, of course. I gave your father an ultimatum. He had to stop drinking and give me charge of the money until we could save for a better home. At first it seemed to work.

What I didn’t know was that you had a secret locked away in your DNA. It was the silence at the ultrasound scan that gave it away. The sonographer pointed to the black-and-white fuzz on the screen. “There’s the heart … You can see it beating.” Then silence. She must have known straight away. I could make out your head. She asked to be excused while she went to get a second opinion. I knew something was very wrong. They said there was fluid around the brain. I still have the photo of that scan. Your hands are clasped together underneath your head like you are sleeping and praying at the same time. This is the position you were born in….. Continue reading

Babies, children and adults can all have allergies

When I was a child hardly anyone even doctors ever thought of allergies, nowadays, times have changed and we live in a world in which we have a greater empathy for those suffering from allergic reactions.

When I was young I suffered from a series of skin allergies.  The first to become apparent was an allergy to first aid sticking plasters (band aids as Americans call them) there wasn’t the range of so called hypoallergenic plasters available.  As a consequence every time I cut my self my mother would wrap huge amounts of bandages around my cuts.  As a rough and tumble boy and the youngest of 6 children my mother was always busy nursing my cuts and bruises.  Fortunately all my brothers and sisters knew that I was allergic to them, however, once I started school the teachers and school nurse would not accept that I could have an allergic reaction to plasters.  Every time I cut my self and the teacher or nurse would do what they thought right and seemingly a naughty child ripped it off within minutes.  That child was of course my self.   School would telephone my mother and tell her the story and my mum would promptly turn round and tell them I wasn’t being naughty I was allergic to plasters.  They never did believe my mum and certainly not me the poorly child!  Sometimes she would have to come in and take me home if I was badly cut.  How quickly would I react to a plaster?  Well after less than 5 minutes I would have a rash under and around the plaster, if school could force it to stay on half an hour the rash would be half way along my leg or arm, after an hour it would be the whole length of the limb.

I also became allergic to the metal backing plate on my first ever watch when I was a child.  Bought from an offer on the Weetabix box’s and with 6 months of pocket money saved up to buy it.  I wasn’t best pleased, nor were my parents!  I couldn’t wear the watch without some form of protection on the back to prevent skin contact.

Later on as a teenager working on my motorbikes or my dads car I found I was allergic to Swarfega hand cleaner, thankfully washing up liquid with a dose of sugar sprinkled would enable me to get my hands clean without any reaction it is still a method I use today – why change something found to work for the last 30 years!

Another allergy that started to show with products changing over the years has been to washing powder, best make sure of the one used and that it is well rinsed out afterwards if it isn’t really well rinsed then it will become irritable if I get very hot.

Possibly the most unusual skin allergy I discovered in my twenties.  Living at my parents house they retired to in the mountains of Wales what could I possibly be allergic to?  Not only that but it was only in winter not in summer?   No prizes for any readers guessing, I was allergic to a particular type of tree!  Or more precisely the sap of a particular type of tree, because the tree sap is chemically quite different in winter than summer, even in coniferous trees.   Our fields were surrounded by forestry commission land and in winter storms some would fall in to our fields.  Out with the chain saw and safety gear and in to the wood store they would go.  One of the local farmers that was also a foreman for the forestry commission laughed and kindly told me exactly what type of tree was causing the problem, it would seem it is quite common in forest workers.  He was definitely right when he said it would be in winter or summer not both.  Someone not in the medical profession with very practical experience of allergies, I am really glad I went to his farm that day to pick up extra food supplements for the sheep in our fields.  A fortnight later and I was free of the discomfort caused by my allergy to the trees, now I am more careful with any ‘green’ wood I cut up.  Life is like that you can learn from your own experiences and those of others as long as you have an open mind and are prepared to listen and learn.

The only food that never agreed with me growing up was prawns/shrimps and they can be a little dodgy to eat for anyone.  As they always made me sick I haven’t eaten them for over 40 years until recently.  I knowingly ate them from the soup and the fried rice from a local Chinese takeaway, well I’m not working at the moment so I could try them and if they made me ill it wouldn’t matter in terms of my work.  I was very pleased to find that I was not ill at all.

Now in my forties, my local doctors and staff in the health services are far more aware of allergies to different items and food stuffs, some are obviously known for being potentially lethal hence we have warnings on our foods in shops and restaurants.  Fortunately as an adult I have been far less likely to cut or injure my self and having worked as a medical engineer you really do take extra care, not because of worries of reactions to plasters, there are now ranges on offer that I do not react to but for reasons of being infected by anything that might be contaminated.

In modern times medical staff are far more aware of allergic reactions to foods and materials used in items of clothing, washing powders and the like.  Babies, particularly premature babies in NICU and SCBU care in hospitals are far less tolerant to environmental changes such as heat, cold, humidity.  Because of their diminutive size and proportionately high surface area of skin contact area to their relative body mass it is as important with such babies to become very quickly aware of any skin allergies that they may have as it is to become aware of any food allergies they may show at later stages in their development.

If whilst in hospital care or even once at home and the baby begins to show any signs allergic reaction then as responsible parents we should all act accordingly and as swiftly as possible to determine and remove the cause.

Even as your child grows and through to adulthood they may still display various allergies to metals, clothing, animal fibres or foods hopefully by that time they will be strong enough and experienced enough to be able to act accordingly and let friends and family know and be prepared for some of the most dangerous allergies. As someone who suffered from the discomfort of some basic skin allergies whilst growing up I am thankful of the responsible approach that my parents adopted.  Whilst frustrated at the lack of empathy and understanding of various adults in my early life I fully appreciate the greater understanding health care professionals have on such issues in the 21st century.  If the medics didn’t listen, study and learn from patients experience in the past our health care might never improve in the future. As responsible adults and as parents we must all help the professionals as they try and help us, their patients.  For those that are the most weak and vulnerable such as premature and poorly babies all the way through to our most senior citizens any person may show allergic reactions to items they have never been in contact with previously in their life or even develop an allergy as they get older such as ‘hay fever’.

Don’t be blasé and simply shrug your shoulders, do something to help the people in the ‘now’ and for fellow suffers in the future.

Author: Andrew Edmondson
Twenty five years experience as a engineer in various roles and still learning!  The practical joker husband of Sue of prem2pram the on line premature baby store.

Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/allergies-articles/babies-children-and-adults-can-all-have-allergies-2533357.html#ixzz1ElkrJtTd

We look after the grandkids as our children aren’t capable

BEING woken by a screaming baby in the middle of the night is tough for any parent. But it’s even more exhausting when you are over 60.

Yet this is the reality for the growing number of grandparents who are raising their children’s kids.

A total of 140,000 youngsters have been left in the care of grandparents or friends because their own parents are unable to look after them.

Drug and alcohol abuse are the main reasons for the growing trend, according to a shocking report by charity Grandparents Plus.

Here, grans and grandads who have had to take on parental duties talk about the difficulties, hardships and joys of raising their child’s child.

Christine, 50

FORMER care assistant Christine is married to retired mechanical engineer Tony, 70. Christine, who had to give up work on medical grounds, has five children from her first marriage. Tony has four. The couple, from Middlesbrough, have raised Christine’s ten-year-old granddaughter Angie* since she was born.

Christine says: “Angie was nine months old when we got a residence order to look after her. My daughter and her boyfriend were drinking and taking drugs. My daughter started drinking at 14 – although I didn’t know at the time.

“One night, when she was 16, I thought she was at a sleepover but found her passed out drunk in a road. It was then I saw how bad her alcohol abuse was. We tried to help but she wasn’t interested. She is the only one of my kids who turned to drink.

“She left school and started working but was laid off. At 18 she became pregnant with Angie. We then found out she was still drinking.

“She gave birth to Angie but later that day wanted to see her boyfriend and wouldn’t stay to see the midwife. She didn’t come back until the next day. I knew I’d have to take Angie on.

“Social services said they couldn’t help. They eventually put me in touch with Cafcass, the Children And Family Court Advisory And Support Service. They helped us get a residence order.

“My daughter is in prison now. Financially, it is difficult. Tony has a pension and I have incapacity benefit. All I get for Angie is child benefit.

“She talks about her mum and it upsets her. She’s intelligent and has been to a psychotherapist as she has taken her temper out on me.

“But she has calmed down. We have our little talks and are brilliant friends.”

For more info about Cafcass, visit cafcass.gov.uk or call 0844 353 3350.

Author: Nikki Watkins

Read the full story in The Sun

Price crunch on newborn and premature baby clothes

When it comes to buying clothes for a new baby there is a wide selection available on the market, however when it comes to buying clothes for premature babies they require more specialised clothing and accessories, so you may need to look further than your high street baby store.

Babies outgrown their clothes so quickly, that paying £15 for a babygro just doesn’t make economic sense.  Don’t panic you can still dress your baby in gorgeous outfits without breaking the bank, for example the three piece baby boys outfit pictured below sized to fit babies weighing between 5-8lbs is on sale at just £4.55

baby boys clothes

premature baby cardigans

cheap baby clothes

For baby boys weighing between 8 and 10lbs there is a five piece appliquéd outfit at just £9.99, now that’s what I call a bargain.  To see all of this weeks special offers please visit us at http://www.prem2pram.co.uk

Why do other women resent me for having a fourth child?

When Lorraine told friends she was pregnant at 42, she was horrified by the sniping and jealousy it provoked. Why should only women like Posh Spice, Heidi Klum, Jules Oliver and Tana Ramsay, who have the money and lifestyle, be able to have larger families?

When I was younger, I never wanted ­children. Never fantasised about what my future family may look like as a teenager, or day-dreamed of baby names in quieter moments at work.

It’s not that I didn’t like children, but I could see how much they needed and the younger me wanted other things so much more.

Even when my little sister had a child at 27 the thought of ever having one of my own didn’t cross my mind; motherhood wasn’t the logical conclusion to my life.

Until I fell in love at 29. Then my world changed. Instead of seeing everything through a sort of selfish soft-focus I suddenly knew with complete clarity that I wanted a family.

The shift in my priorities was enormous. It was emotional and physical.

I was Editor of Cosmopolitan at the time — the job I had waited my whole career as a journalist for — but running alongside my ambition was my new and overwhelming need to start a family.

Author:  Lorraine Candy
Read the full story: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1353032/Why-women-resent-having-fourth-child.html#ixzz1DRdpFSVA

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