5 Things to Expect After Leaving the NICU

You'll Feel Overwhelmed

Grappling with countless doctor's appointments, questions about caring for your preemie, jealous siblings and mandatory indoor confinement, you're going to feel overwhelmed. The time after leaving the NICU can be very stressful, and the only thing you can really do is just ride it out. But here's the most important thing you need to know: You can do it.

If you start feeling incompetent, unworthy or even just exhausted, remember that you're not the first parent to bring home a premature baby. The doctors wouldn't have allowed the little one out of the hospital if they weren't entirely convinced that he or she could make it in the outside world and that you were capable of providing adequate care. It's going to be stressful -- it might even be a little scary -- but you two are going to be OK.

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