What if your preemie is tethered to a web of tubes and wires?
Heated incubators in the NICU preempt the need for the warmth-maintaining feature of clothing. Even so, the positive emotional benefit of NICU-friendly clothing can not be underestimated – for baby, parents, and staff.
Normally, at this stage of development, a preemie would still be in the womb. When tightly cuddling the baby close to your bare skin is not practical or possible for extended periods of time, clothing can help simulate the cradling that your baby enjoyed enurtero.
The attention and tactile stimulation that dressing a baby provides can promote an ability to thrive and envoke positive emotions for parents and staff that can also promote thriving.
Here's a short list of things you'll want to consider if you are planning to clothe your baby while he or she is in the incubator:
Pulling a garment over the head and/or hands through a sleeve can be a little invasive for a tiny preemie. And when certain monitoring and treatment are devices attached to your baby these actions can become impractical and even impossible. In such cases, you might consider a wrap or a wrap gown.
Assuming there are no leads from baby's head, a cap is always a nice way to provide comfort and a little extra warmth. If your preemie weighs over 4 lbs. booties and/or socks are also beneficial.
Since preemies often have very sensitive skin, the garments you select should be made with, at a minimum. 100% cotton, 100% pima cotton is better, and for super-sensitive skin, 100% organic fabrics are optimum.
Clothes that are especially designed to meet the unique needs of a preemie in an NICU incubator
NICU Wraps: Clothe a preemie without having to slip anything over the head or thread arms through a sleeve.
Often NICU preemies require leads from head, chest, and/or limbs as well as tubes to the mouth and nose. These connections make pulling a shirt or gown over baby’s head or threading tiny hands through sleeves impossible! That’s why the NICU Wrap was developed. Simply place your baby on the flat, opened wrap and fold the front panels over the shoulders. Then fold the side panels around the front and fasten with the Velcro fastener.
NICU Wrap Shirts and the NICU kimono gowns are soooo cute and super easy to put on!
As with our other wrap-type garments, the NICU Kimono shirt and the NICU kimono gown wrap around the torso without having to slip anything over the head. The arms easily slip through the generous armholes and then the rest of the garment wraps around the front and attaches with a velcro® fastener. Both garments easily accommodate most tubes and leads.
An awesomely clever gown specifically designed for the NICU "well-connected" micropreemie.
Our NICU Wrap Gowns combine the comfort and coverage of a traditional sleeping gown with the ingenuity of our NICU Wrap Shirt. There's never a need to pull the gown over the head or hand through a sleeve. The front panels fold over the shoulder and are fixed in place with two side flaps that are fastened with Velcro®. In like manner the sleeves are formed by folding a flap around the underside of the arm and affixed to the front.