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Premature Infant: Signs of Overstimulation
Extremely premature infants are born before the nervous system is mature enough to handle outside stimuli without becoming overstimulated. Such an infant is said to have a disorganized nervous system.
If your premature infant has a disorganized nervous system, you may notice physical reactions (destabilization) in the presence of too much sound, touch, movement, or light, including:
- A drop in blood oxygen levels (oxygen desaturation).
- A drop in heart rate (bradycardia).
- A rapid heart rate (tachycardia).
- Looking away from you when you speak or make eye contact, a more subtle sign of overstimulation.
If you see such signs, give your infant some peace and quiet. The next time you're together, try only one stimulus at a time (such as touch or voice, but not both).
|Primary Medical Reviewer||Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine|
|Specialist Medical Reviewer||John Pope, MD - Pediatrics|
|Last Revised||April 14, 2011|
|By:||Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: April 14, 2011|
|Medical Review:||Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine|
John Pope, MD - Pediatrics
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