What may happen if your baby is born this week
If your baby was born this week, they would be classed as moderate to late preterm. It’s unlikely that they will have any severe problems associated with being born prematurely.
They will still need specialist care in the neonatal baby unit. Common problems include hypoglycaemia (low blood sugars) and mild breathing problems.
Babies are much less likely to need intubation (where a breathing tube is placed into the baby’s mouth or nose and into their lungs). They will still need help with their breathing. Instead, they will have small prongs put into their nostrils or have a mask put over their nose. This is connected to a machine (called ‘CPAP’ or ‘high flow’) that provides air, with or without extra oxygen, with pressure to make the effort of breathing easier for them.
Babies born now often find it difficult to maintain a normal temperature, so they will be placed in an incubator or on a heated mattress.
Most babies will need support while they are learning to feed. They will need a thin tube passed through their nose or mouth into their tummy that milk can be given through. They may also need fluids (a ‘drip’) through a thin tube into a vein (intravenous or IV line). Some babies may also need support if they develop jaundice.
Your baby will also be tested and may be treated for infection.
Your healthcare team will monitor your premature baby closely to make sure they receive the best possible care.
If you have any questions about your pregnancy or risk of premature birth please talk to your doctor or midwife.
You can also call the Tommy’s midwives on 0800 014 7800 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm), or email us at [email protected].