According to the American Association of Premature Infants (AAPI), over 400,000 babies are born prematurely or at a low birth weight. As a result of being born early they are more likely to require high-technology intensive and specialized care in the hospital and follow-up care as infants and children. As a result, many have chronic medical problems and developmental problems. Some of the problems consist of respiratory distress, feeding issues, language delays and several other problems.
As a mother of a premature infant, I know these issues are a major concern when the baby is born and the stress that it can put on the families. In order to be able to deal with the situation effectively you have to acquire information and learn the good and the bad that come with having a premature infant.
When a baby is born prematurely there are a number of tests that the baby has to go through.
First the doctors and nurses have to assess the baby's heart, lungs, color and temperature. If the baby is having trouble with any of these things then it is taken into what is called the neonatal intensive care unit. In some of the smaller hospitals they aren't equipped with the technology that is needed to keep the baby alive and the baby has to be transported to a bigger hospital, usually to a hospital in a metropolitan city in order to get the proper care. After the baby has been assessed for problems then it is watched closely for the next 48 hours. This is the most critical time for a baby born too early. During this time the doctors can determine if the baby is going to have a long road ahead of them or if the baby is healthy and will pull...