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Wirral University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust Wirral University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Vitamins and medication

Most babies gain their vitamin and iron stores in the last twelve weeks or so of pregnancy, therefore a baby born before 32 weeks needs supplements until he/she is established onto mixed feeding.

Vitamins are essential for normal growth and nutrition, the iron and folic acid are needed to help make red blood cells and help to prevent your baby becoming anaemic. A full term baby who has been ill may also need iron and folic acid. These supplements usually continue until your baby is 6 months of age, once mixed feeding has been established, or when your Consultant or GP recommends.

You will have been shown how to give your baby's medication. Mix it with a little milk (breast milk or formula) and give this via bottle prior to the feed. Keep a bib or tissue handy as the medication can stain clothing.

If it seems to cause any vomiting try dividing the dose over a few feeds, giving it in the middle of a feed or mixing it with more milk. Iron drops will usually turn the baby’s stools green or grey but do not cause constipation.