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How does a baby with a cleft palate eat?

How does a baby with a cleft palate eat?

Babies with cleft palate usually need special bottles and techniques to feed well, whether or not they have cleft lip. It is rarely possible to breast-feed or use a regular bottle. With cleft palate, a baby cannot create suction to get milk out of the breast or bottle.

Which feeding method is best for the infant with a cleft lip and palate?

Pumping breast milk and using specialty bottles are supported as a way of feeding a baby with a cleft palate. The Breastfeeding and Lactation Program at CHOP, or a local lactation consultant, may be of great benefit to you and your baby as you attempt to establish good feeding behaviors.

Can you nurse a baby with a cleft palate?

Babies with a cleft lip, but no cleft palate, can usually breastfeed. With a cleft palate, poor suction can make it very difficult. You can pump your breast milk and feed your baby with a special bottle provided by a feeding specialist or speech therapist.

Can cleft babies have dummies?

Some Cleft Teams feel that sucking on a dummy after surgery will damage the repair, so it’s best to ask to be sure. The timing of palate repair surgery will vary, so depending on your child’s age they may be weaned but still using a bottle for milk or other liquids. The same may apply to a dummy.

How serious is cleft palate?

Cleft palate is the most common birth defect that occurs. It happens in about 1 in 700 births. It is not a fatal problem. Most children born with clefts do well in developed countries.

What age do you repair cleft palate?

Cleft palate repair: A cleft palate is commonly fixed between 9 and 14 months of age. If there is a separation in the gum line, it usually is repaired when a child is 8-10 years of age.

What problems can result from a cleft palate?

While most babies with cleft lip can breast-feed, a cleft palate may make sucking difficult. Ear infections and hearing loss. Babies with cleft palate are especially at risk of developing middle ear fluid and hearing loss. Dental problems.

Why do babies get cleft palates?

Causes and Risk Factors Cleft lip and cleft palate are thought to be caused by a combination of genes and other factors, such as things the mother comes in contact with in her environment, or what the mother eats or drinks, or certain medications she uses during pregnancy.

What happens when a baby is born with a cleft palate?

Babies with cleft palate are especially at risk of developing middle ear fluid and hearing loss. Dental problems. If the cleft extends through the upper gum, tooth development may be affected. Speech difficulties.

How to feed a baby with a cleft lip and palate?

The Medela Softcup Feeder. There are several bottles and teats designed for babies with cleft palates. The most common method of feeding is to use a 250 mL polythene squeeze bottle. The teat is placed on your baby’s tongue and the flow of milk increased by gently squeezing the bottle.

What should I do before using a cleft feeding bottle?

Use any shorter, softer nipple. Before using the bottle for the first time, put some water in it and practice squeezing the liquid out of the nipple. This will help you get a feel for how firmly you need to squeeze.

How to breastfeed a baby with a hard palate?

Breastfeeding is most difficult for babies with a cleft of the hard palate. Learning to breastfeed may take a long time and will most likely to require some assisted techniques and/or lactation aids. Your baby will use a lot of energy breastfeeding.

How to take care of a baby with a cleft nose?

Hold your baby in a more upright position as this will lessen the amount of milk coming through the nose. Babies with a cleft need to be burped more often because they take in more air while feeding. Watch for signs of discomfort; your baby will give you signs when it’s time to stop and burp.