Tips from one prem baby parent to another

Advice from a parent who had a premature baby to another parent who is in the same position. 

We asked parents from the Special care nursery at St Vincent’s Private Hospital Melbourne what advice they would give to parents who might also find themselves with a premature baby.

1.  Take each day at a time

“A lot happens in a few days. Try not to think about what is going to happen in a month or a week. Just take each day, one at a time. Worrying about what day you are going to take your baby home won’t make it happen any faster.”

2.  Listen to the team around you

“You are likely to get lots of advice from family and friends. Ignore most of it. Only listen to the team around you and your baby. They know what you need and what your baby needs right now.”

3.  Be firm with relatives

“My family all wanted to come in and see the baby, but the nursery had strict rules and it was exhausting having them all there in the waiting room all day. Some of them would say things like “I only want a quick look” or “can’t I hold the baby for just a moment?” it just made my days even more stressful.”
premmie baby

4.  Nominate someone to be your spokesperson 

“My sister sent out a group message every evening and if people wanted to visit they had to ask her, that way, we never had more than two visitors a day, which was more than enough.”

5.  Don’t be too proud to ask for help

“One of my mother’s group friends organised a roster for making sure we had a meal every night when we got home. I’ll never be able to thank her enough for ensuring we actually ate real food for the month.”

6.  Sleep

“I worried all night about my baby, I expressed every few hours, I got up early to get into the hospital to see my baby. By the time she was ready to come home I was so exhausted. If the nursing staff suggest you spend a day at home sleeping, or even a morning, listen to them. You probably really really need it.”
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