Would you like to be a member of our research panel? Join here - there's (nearly) always a great incentive offered for your views.

Been advised to prepare for poss premature birth... Any tips?

(169 Posts)
10storeylovesong Wed 16-Jan-13 10:28:52

Hi, I'm currently 24 weeks and due to various issues have been advised that I'm at high risk of going into premature labour. I've been put on bed rest and going for steroid injections tomorrow, but just wondering if there's any advice anyone can give me?

I've bought a few bits for the baby - I have a Moses basket and a starter set with bottles and a steriliser. Not even started with the nursery or anything yet. I'm going to get a hospital bag together but wondering what other essentials I should get just in case?

Thanks

Sophie sorry for your loss, I lost a little boy at 20 weeks due to a weak cervix (ic) I had a stitch placed this time at 14 weeks, which they took out last week at 35+2

NewYearNewBoo Wed 16-Jan-13 17:39:56

Oh mama hope you and your ds continue to do well, I'm currently 24 weeks and couldn't imagine meeting baby yet thanks
10storey I would echo the advice of taking care of your own needs first, you could invest in the tiny clothes and bits then end up carrying well into the late 30+ weeks. Maybe make a list of where to get items and allocate friends and family items to get when you know the weight/sex. I hope you stay pregnant for many many weeks!

SophieBirkBirk Wed 16-Jan-13 17:52:34

10 prem baby topic is useful, but scary as some tell stories about going to have more prem babies. I'm not pregnant again since I lost Riley in April I've lost two more babies both 7 weeks so waiting until march for testing. I hope your resting? :P make sure you stay positive! [Thanks]

moom they've told me about cervical stich, i get extra scans at 16&24weeks.. when I get pregnant again doesnt reassure me because of infection to yhe placenta, if youve had it before apparently its 50/50 of getting it again. It made me servely ill, at one point they thought i was going to die. Sorry to hear about the loss of your baby, happy to hear your so far gonw now! Not long and congratulations grin

SophieBirkBirk Wed 16-Jan-13 17:54:06

[Thanks]= thanks blush

Definitely get everything sorted for you and ask what the NNU provides where you are. We had to provide nappies (we found Tesco size 0 nappies were nicer than pampers) and cotton wool. You could buy some clothes from Mothercare and leave the labels on/keep the receipt. Give them to someone who will launder them quickly and get them to you if needed otherwise you can take them back. It's worth noting that some very prem babies don't wear clothes because it is too irritating for them and/or they have too many tubes in the way. If you plan to breast feed, definitely invest in a good electric pump. It doesn't have to be a double pump but some people swear by them. Also, I found that I was more leaky while expressing all the time. The only breast pads that were good enough were Tommee Tippee ones (definitely not reusable ones or cheapies) and it was an NNU nurse who suggested them (lovely nurse!).

Wishing you all the best and hoping that you can avoid the NNU!

PurpleStorm Wed 16-Jan-13 20:46:28

Agree that you should check what your NUU provides before buying anything.

The SCBU DS was in provided all nappies, nappy changing supplies, and had a stock of tiny baby clothes (although we brought in our own clothes once DS was out of the incubator and wearing them). They also had breast pumps for expressing milk in the neonatal unit, and lent me a breastpump so I could express at home until DS was discharged. So we were under no pressure to get things sorted for DS in advance.

My twins came 8 weeks prem and I had nothing, I had only given up work the day before. The SCBU provided nappies, clothes, blankets and a little toy for each of them and would have done for as long as they were in. They grow out of the tiny clothes so quickly that there was little point in buying them - the hospital were lovely though and gave us their first babygrow and the toy when we left as a reminder of how small they were. I found them the other day and showed them to my now strapping almost 18 yo boys and they were gobsmacked!

The hospital also provided whatever I needed in the way of pads and pumping kit too. When we left 3 weeks later we gave them a cash donation by way of a thankyou which made me feel that I'd returned some of the kindness that we had been shown. They are scary places, but the kindness is usually exceptional.

Unless you actively want to get stuff in then there really isn't a need.

10storeylovesong Thu 17-Jan-13 20:30:24

That's really good to know - I really need to speak to hospital and see what services they offer I think

10storeylovesong Fri 18-Jan-13 12:57:21

Just a quick update - I had a massive bleed at 4am this morning and was rushed into local hospital. They did a speculum and found fluid they suspect was my waters leaking so I was then rushed to Liverpool Women's hospital with the neo natal on stand by. The bleeding has slowed down a lot now and the last internal didn't show any obvious fluid so I'm just having loads of tests and waiting for another scan.

HDee Fri 18-Jan-13 13:05:24

Sorry to hear things are still not great for you. Did you take a look at the early days of my twins lives in my blog? It will be a good indication of what you face.

If you can make it to 26/27 weeks then many babies are only ventilated for hours then onto cpap.

Sending thoughts your way. All fingers and toes are crossed for you.

ExpatAl Fri 18-Jan-13 13:14:23

Thinking of you and your little one 10storey. Fingers and toes crossed here too.

lotsofcheese Fri 18-Jan-13 13:15:35

Just to say I'm thinking of you & hoping your baby can stay in for as long as possible.

Take care of yourself xxx

FairyJen Fri 18-Jan-13 13:38:32

Fingers and toes crossed for you 10 I did post that parcel for you as well yesterday. Really hope he hangs on in there!

brighthair Fri 18-Jan-13 13:44:37

If you want, I have a tiny hand knitted white cardigan and a matching hat (knitted for prem baby) just PM me and I can post. Just needs a wash as its been in a bag
Hope everything is ok, I was a prem baby and my friends have had babies at 26 and 34 weeks

Everything crossed for you both - I hope things settle down and you can keep him cooking for longer.

Dysgu Fri 18-Jan-13 14:01:26

Hi 10 I have had 2 preemies and am currently 26+2 with DC3 who may well decide o come early too. With both of the others we were not prepared and DP found it easy enough to buy everything as and when we noticed or were told we needed it.

I found the hardest thing, especially with DD1, was coming home to an empty house and so arranged for friends to be there with us - they were close friends who were happy to just listen to us talk about the baby we had left behind in the hospital. Also we made sure I was discharged in the day light as it felt a bit easier.

DD1 was in NICU for 23 days and for a lot of that time was able to wear nothing other than a preemie nappy. Our local Boots was the only place that sold them then but I notice that Tesco do now too. NICU was able to provide anything that we did not have and were very good at telling us what we needed to buy next!

Also be prepared that they will often have to have conversations with you where you discuss the worst scenarios - but that does not mean that that is what will be the outcome for your son.

NICU is VERY hot so make sure that you wear comfortable clothing. This will obviously be more important once you are discharged but in this weather you are likely to bundle up to get there but then will probably only want a t-shirt on once there - especially once you can do kangaroo care.

You may well feel very fragile afterwards - make sure DH/DP knows that he is your advocate and that it is his job to speak up and ask all the questions that you are not brave enough to ask. My DP always chatted more to the staff whilst I spent time with DD and he found out all the answers and got the midwives and consultants to explain everything to me once I had got my head round it. The other really important thing he did was make sure the staff knew when I was feeling extra fragile and needed extra care (we found the NICU staff to be fantastic but they are very focused on getting your baby better) and he phoned the unit every morning to make sure they knew I was coming in to do cares - otherwise they would do everything before I got in.

Also ask what happens re expressing - my unit loaned fabulous (HUGE) machines for free which helped a lot. I really struggled to make enough milk so asked GP for domperidone (lactation is a side effect) - but would not have known this was possible if not for NICU staff telling me.

And our unit gives out free parking permits if they baby is in for 2+ weeks which made a huge difference.

Sorry - I could go on - especially having done it twice and waiting to do it again. But both DDs are perfect now even though DD1 had an awful start to life. Good luck.

Dysgu Fri 18-Jan-13 14:04:30

Oh and I really recommend these people free made to order clothes for special babies
They are local to us but send care packages all over the world - they can make baby clothes to fit from 2lb with adaptations for wires and tubes. This is really important once DC can wear clothes.

Good luck with your pregnancy smile

Don't have any experience with prem babies - but agree with PP. Make a load of freezer meals, chilli, bolognese, shepards pie etc, so your freezer is stocked to the hilt with food that can be cooked very quickly, all you need to do in prepare pasta, rice etc. You'll find this a blessing at the end of the day whether you've been in the hospital all day, or stuck at home with a new baby.

Blending Fri 18-Jan-13 14:38:51

I dont have experience with prem babies but know the hospital fairly well.

Theres a free car park accross the main road is(Where the multi-coloured fences and the Caribean Centre are.) Its manned by security, and about a 2 minute walk, staff use it but its open to the public. Could be useful if DH has to pop in and out.

The Asda on Smithdown road (10 minute drive, if that) is open 24 hours. I ended up in The Womens for nearly 3 weeks after DD was born and DH could just pop out and get things for me an dd at any time.Ita a big store, he even got me a portable dvd player from there for us to watch.

Keeping everything crossed for you xx

KindleMum Fri 18-Jan-13 14:48:11

Don't give up on this. I had a massive bleed at 20 weeks - my worst of the pregnancy, a 4 inch tear in the placenta. Drugs to stop labour. Steroids for the lungs (had another dose at about 32 weeks I think).That was the worst of the various bleeds and hospital admissions (well, bar the one at 35 weeks where they finally did the EMCS) and I thought it was over. I rested, talked to the baby a lot and begged him to hang on in there, prayed. He made it in the end to 35 weeks and was perfect and is now a healthy schoolboy. I still look at him in wonder that he made it - and after the delivery the hospital staff told me they'd always thought he'd miscarry or be stillborn, but pregnancy is very unpredictable so stay positive.
Hoping for you.

KindleMum Fri 18-Jan-13 14:52:16

Oh and FWIW, I don't agree with the advice to make loads of meals and get laundry etc ready. Yes, it's useful but unless someone else is going to do it for you I wouldn't. You sound like you should be resting as much as poss. Far better to rest now than overtire yourself. If family can't help then you can always live off easy supermarket food when you need too.
When you're having a bad time, people often want to do something practical to help, nothing wrong with saying you'd rather have a casserole or a good oven meal than flowers!

ExpatAl Fri 18-Jan-13 15:18:49

OP your friends and family will be desperate to help. Ask them to find anything or cook anything you need. They will be ecstatic to have something concrete they can do. You and your dh need to concentrate on you and getting through this.
I do agree with whoever posted that the NICU is baking hot. Ask someone to dig out comfy cool cotton clothes for you. Thinking of you. x

NewYearNewBoo Fri 18-Jan-13 15:30:46

Thinking of you and baby thanks hope it stays put a lot longer. Good luck

SophieBirkBirk Fri 18-Jan-13 16:29:39

Hope you and baby are well thanks. X

10storeylovesong Sat 19-Jan-13 08:10:03

Thanks for everyone's kind words and support - it means a lot. And all the practical advice as well - so so useful.

At the moment it's not conclusive whether it's my waters or not so I'm on antibiotics to try and stop it leaking further. Baby's heartbeat is still strong but my placenta is moving away from the edge so it's only a matter of time before he stops getting the nutrients he needs. At this point they will have to intervene and get him out. There's also still a huge clot so I'm highly likely to have more big bleeds, and with each bleed I'm more likely to go into labour so have had to make decisions today with doctors about what / how much intervention I want for safety of me and baby. Very hard decisions which have broke our hearts. At the mo it's just a waiting game as they have no idea what will happen next but have said I'm very unlikely to get past 28 weeks and that I currently have a 25% chance of a healthy baby.

However every day and week makes him stronger so I've had a word and told him to stay in there a while longer yet! They're currently estimating him at 607g and their minimum viable weight at this stage is 500g so they're saying he's a good weight and had already had the steroids so stands as good a chance as any other baby at this point. Just really hope it doesn't come to that quite so early!

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now