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The recipe for wonderful breastfeeding in neonatology

La recette d'un merveilleux allaitement en neonatologie

- Updated on Apr 12, 2024

Summary :

    Article written by Mylena, childcare nurse.



    Going from the aquatic environment to the air environment is a challenge for the newborn, especially when they are born prematurely. Indeed, a premature birth inevitably means hospitalization in different neonatology sectors (resuscitation-intensive care/neonatology/kangaroo unit) of varying length depending on the importance of the prematurity. It is important that the mother can HAVE (yes, SEE her child at birth) contact with her baby as early as possible, from the delivery room, regardless of the care her child receives. It is the same for the dad: promoting the parent/baby bond alongside the birth that we have not always idealized.

    The objective is not to separate parents from their baby from the delivery room to the neonatology department and throughout the hospitalization. We don't know it yet, but these points will be lucky factors for the start of the milky rise.

    Yes, because there is also the question of breastfeeding. Breastfeeding is a choice of the heart, and sometimes even when we have not made this choice, the question hardly arises during a premature birth. Breast milk, called white gold, is an important source of antibodies which is full of proteins, carbohydrates, lipids and immunoglobins. All these components prevent a dreaded pathology in premature children: enterocolitis which is a lesion of the internal surface of the intestine which can lead to necrosis.

    Concretely, how to implement breastfeeding in the context of premature birth? How to stimulate lactation?

    What we know: a premature child is able to suck, swallow and breathe at the same time from 34 weeks but what we know above all is that we must adapt to the child because each child is different!

    In this circumstance, the birth was trying for the mother and when she decides to start breastfeeding, the first breastfeeding after birth is not always possible and the mother is inevitably morally and physically exhausted. Childcare nurses must provide unfailing support and accompany mom as soon as possible to encourage breastfeeding. Just like the personal entourage that the childcare worker will also support.

    Mothers were not necessarily able to share the famous welcome feeding with their babies: it will only be a postponement!

    The recipe for breastfeeding that will work, the neonatology nursery nurses will support the mother in:

    -SKIN TO SKIN: promotes lactation and the hormones responsible for milk production (prolactin) and milk ejection (oxytocin), contact feedings, nutritious feedings depending on the new-born, in short baby close to the breast!

    Speaking of oxytocin: it will have an important role in milk production because it is the hormone of love and attachment. In neonatology, we will promote skin to skin and mother/daddy/child contact to produce this hormone in significant numbers by creating a relaxed atmosphere and continuous support. In other words, the more soothing the environment, the more oxytocin will be secreted in the mother's body and the easier milk production will be!

    - Setting up milk pumping sessions while waiting to achieve full breast feeding (some mothers will choose to do exclusive breastfeeding pumping = breastfeeding pumping means breastfeeding): explain to the mother the importance the frequency of drawings (if possible 8 times per 24 hours at the beginning) and carefully measure the size of the nipples to encourage good drainage. The breast pump must not hurt, explain the methods of the breast pump and above all adjust the pump one notch below the pain threshold

    Expressing milk close to your baby even if he is sleeping in his incubator allows you to produce more milk because the mother is looking at her baby.

    -Encouraging the presence of parents is important, placing the child comfortably on his parents, encouraging the mother to rest during these cocooning moments

    -Suggest galactogens (breastfeeding herbal teas, almonds, etc.): be careful, too many galactogens kill the galactogens and the latter are taken in a 3-week course with a 3-week break

    -You understood: it is the love and presence of parents which will be the main drivers of breastfeeding

    From the moment lactation begins: the mother has the cards in hand to breastfeed as she wishes with her baby!

    And who am I?

    I am Mylena, PASSIONATE childcare nurse for over 10 years
    I am a baby massage instructor, specialized in breastfeeding, wrapped bathing, carrying and soon to be a child pain consultant (IUD in progress)
    At the heart of my neonatology intensive care service, I accompany and take care of the newborn and therefore I take care of their parents too: over time we form a triad of trust. Neonatology is a difficult service because of its very technical environment and my role is to make this environment warm by keeping the newborn and his parents in a cocoon of peace

    I also support many mothers on my social network Instagram: @mymy_babynurse: I discuss many rich and varied themes around the psychomotor and emotional development of newborns and children.

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