But Ngaire soon discovered that keeping premature (or preemie) babies like little Clark warm and clothed wasn’t as straightforward as it would be for babies who grew to full-term before birth.
No Source Of Premature Baby Clothes
While Ngaire learnt that some baby retailers and department stores have a premature baby clothing section, the clothes they provided were similar to regular baby clothes but smaller. The fabric was the same, and not well suited to the delicate skin of a prematurely born baby, who may have a very thin outer layer of skin. Also the available outfits did not provide any access points for the IV (intravenous) and PICC (peripherally inserted central catheter) tubes that Clarke needed to be connected to while the hospital was monitoring him.
Just picking up little Clarke proved to be problematic. Even if the nurses managed to fit connections to all of the monitoring equipment under Clarke’s clothes, wires were pulled to stretching point when Ngaire and her husband tried to hold Clarke close. The parents had to resort to disconnecting all the connections first before picking up Clarke from the incubator, and then asking the nursing staff to reconnect Clarke when they’d finished.
Trying To Keep Warm
Also Clarke’s head needed to be kept warm with a hat to prevent loss of body heat. Trying to put his hat back into place while holding and feeding him proved very difficult.
Ngaire began to wonder how other mums and dads of preemies coped with shopping for suitable clothes. Did they all have to resort to buying a jumpsuit here from one shop, and a cosy bag here from another shop, because suitable clothing was so hard to find from all the available outlets? The major baby clothing retailers seemed to provide preemie clothes as an afterthought, compromising on fabric quality, design and fit.
Who better would know the complete clothing requirements of premature babies than the nurses who took care of them every day in the Special Care Baby unit (SCBU)? By talking to the nurses and investigating the needs of children like Clarke, Ngaire began to design Dinki Dreams, a special range of clothing and accessories for preemie babies, uniquely adapted to their requirements. For example, the Dinki cape has a hood attached to a wraparound blanket so that the premature baby’s head is always covered. Baby is kept warm and there’s plenty of access for connections to PICC and IV wires.
SBCU Were So Helpful
Over a few months, Ngaire’s range of specially adapted clothes have been tested by SCBU nurses who confirmed that Dinki Dreams offers practical, well made and comfortable clothing solutions for babies like Clarke. So if you are the parents of a preemie, you don’t need to search around a number of retailers anymore – you can go to Dinki Dreams at www.prematurebabyboutique.co.uk for a one-stop shop.