Georgie has challenged everything we have known about parenting.
From before he was born, there was MORE. More pain, more problems, more weight gain. When my water broke at 35 weeks, we were thrust into the unknown: PPROM, induction, antibiotics, a NICU transfer team, the NICU.
Georgie was a "late term" preemie. Late term babies are born between 34 and 36 weeks of pregnancy. Although their situation is generally not as critical as traditional preemies or micro preemies, they still are:
•6 times more likely than full-term infants to die in the first week of life (2.8 per 1,000 vs. 0.5 per 1,000)
•3 times more likely to die in the first year of life (7.9 per 1,000 vs. 2.4 per 1,000)
A child's brain at 35 is not completely developed. Because of this, they face an increased risk of learning and behavior problems. As with all preemies, they also have a greater likely hood of showing autistic symptoms and needing speech, behavior, OT and PT therapies.
Late term preemies ARE a problem. In fact, they as a cohort account for the increase in preterm births. In fact, they account for 70 per cent of premature births. We can no longer say that the delays some LTP have are temporary or benigin. In fact, the scientist in the previous link suggests that LTP would also benefit from follow up care- something I've been saying since Georgie was a baby!
In a month, we will meet up with our friends from the NICU and march for our babies. The March of Dimes is working to prevent preterm birth and help all preemies, even late term preemies like Georgie. And won't help them help babies like my sweet PuddinPie?