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Early beginnings: Conquering the world, step by step - Your parenting partner from pregnancy to pre-school

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Early beginnings: Conquering the world, step by step

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Every parent’s hope is that their child will be born to term and be completely healthy; however, this doesn't always occur.

Having a premature baby can be an extremely traumatic and stressful period for parents.

Leading nappy brand Pampers®, understands all too well that coping and caring for a preterm baby’s unique physical, emotional, and educational needs, can be challenging.

Pampers® is proud to introduce size 0 nappies, new to the Pampers Premium Care range. It was specially designed for babies born too soon or too small. Moms of premature babies can now rest easy and be ensured of 5 star skin protection, from the moment her delicate baby enters the world, even if earlier than first planned.

Pampers Premium Care’s commitment to baby skin care is demonstrated through its 5 Star Skin Protection benefits:

  • Ultra Care: A breathable outer cover on all sizes allows fresh-air to skin and a unique lotion with aloe (sizes 0-5) adds an extra layer of protection
  • Ultra Dry: The Dry Max technology is clinically tested to keep your baby’s skin dry for up to 12 hours and a honeycomb layer for absorption of runny mess on sizes 0-3
  • Ultra Thin: exceptionally thin without compromising on Pampers outstanding dryness performance
  • Ultra Fit: Pampers Premium Care features a super stretchable fastening system on all sizes and flexes with baby while providing great leakage protection
  • Ultra Comfortable: All round softness to create a comfortable, snug feeling

Early arrivals on the rise:

Every year, an estimated 15 million1 babies are born preterm (before 37 completed weeks of gestation), and this number is rising. Last year (2012) in South Africa alone, there were a recorded 84,0002 preterm births. Another way that preterm births are sometimes classified is in relation to birth weight (under 2 kg), and not the number of pregnancy weeks completed. Using the broader classification, this number could be even higher.

Caring for early baby birds:

Premature babies often have special needs, particularly when it comes to skin care. “It’s important to remember that the skin needs of low birth weight babies should not be neglected whilst other more immediate health concerns are dealt with around the time of birth. The immaturity of low birth weight baby’s skin results in increased permeability in both directions,” explains Dr Welma Lubbe, premature baby expert and clinical nurse specialist, in advanced midwifery and neonatal science.
“Many premature babies spend days and months after delivery, in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). At this early stage, a nappy is usually the only item that has constant contact with a baby’s skin. The essential role of any nappy is to wick away every drop of urine as rapidly as possible, as well as any liquid content in faeces – ensuring that the nappy is effective in keeping the skin free from irritation and to help reduce the risk of nappy dermatitis and related secondary infections,” adds Dr Lubbe.

Additional innovation:

Dr Lubbe adds that a key concern for parents of premature babies, is that their infants’ temperature-regulating mechanisms are immature, making it difficult for them to keep warm. “A preemie's immune system does not function nearly as well as that of a full term baby's, making the risk of infection a further cause for parental anxiety. Hence, it is crucial to change your baby's nappy as soon as it is wet or soiled, as a damp nappy quickly cools a small and vulnerable baby. And in addition, broken skin, due to a damp nappy, then opens him or her up to the threat of infection.”

Following insights from new parents and designed in collaboration with paediatric nurses, Pampers Premium Care now features a Wetness Indicator on sizes 0-3 of its Pampers Premium Care nappies. The Wetness Indicator strip on the diaper turns from yellow to blue when in contact with fluid - a useful tool for reassuring parents, to help them decide when it might be time to change baby’s nappy.
Renowned parenting expert, Sister Lilian, also shares her views: “Undisturbed sleep (which is not the same as forced sleeping) is vital for the development of babies, in particular if they are pre-term. The new Wetness Indicator is not only useful, so that parents know as soon as a nappy change is needed, but it also means that parents don’t have to disturb a sleeping infant unnecessarily for a nappy change.”

A mother’s touch for delicate skin:

Premature babies also have very particular needs when it comes to touch and skin-to-skin contact. Premature babies, being more vulnerable than their full-term counterparts, stand to benefit most from early skin-to-skin contact with their parents,” adds Sister Lilian. Studies have proven that small babies who experience prolonged, direct touch, more especially with the skin of their chests in contact with that of their mothers or fathers, grow and develop far quicker,” explains Sister Lilian. “What is more their vital survival mechanisms stabilise Leanne Manas, Sister Lilian and Dr Welma Lubbe (From left to right)
Leanne Manas, Sister Lilian and Dr Welma Lubbe (From left to right)
more readily, from temperature control to respiration to cardiac function and even breastfeeding initiation.”
Known as Kangaroo Mother Care, the technique was initially developed to provide physiological and psychological warmth and bonding, for preterm infants in areas where incubators were either unavailable or unreliable. South Africa was one of the first countries to adopt the Kangaroo method, with great success.
Sister Lilian maintains, “In addition to skin-to-skin contact being such a significant ingredient to nurturing a strong and healthy premature baby; it is essential to highlight the vital role that all factors related to skincare play with vulnerable preemies. This includes the softness and effectiveness of nappies and later baby’s clothing.

Conquering the world, step by step

Pampers Sensitive Wipes combined together with Pampers Premium Care, can offer an even greater opportunity to provide your baby’s demanding skin with the care and protection it deserves. Pampers Sensitive Wipes contain a unique lotion, with a touch of chamomile and aloe, clinically proven to restore the natural pH balance of baby’s skin: even the fragile skin of a premature baby.

“Life as a new parent can be overwhelming, even more so when your precious bundle of joy has arrived a little earlier than expected. With the introduction of new size 0 nappies to the Pampers Premium Care range, and the new wetness indicator, moms and dads now have one less worry, and can be assured that their tiny legacy is being treated to the ultimate in five star skin care protection.”

“With these primary needs well taken care of; parents can concentrate on enjoying every treasured milestone that is attained, while their baby is able to safely and comfortably experience the full wonder of the world around them,” concludes Dr Lubbe.

Pampers® Premium Care product range can be found on-shelf in leading supermarkets and pharmacies, nationwide. For further information or to share in your experiences please visit www.pampers.co.za or the Pampers Facebook page at www.facebook.com/PampersSA.

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