Having a premature baby means a longer stay in the hospital for little ones — a temporary housing arrangement that can have parents counting the minutes until they can bring their newborn home with them. While you're waiting for the doctors to give you the green light, you may start to look for signs your premature baby can go home soon to ease the waiting period. Each step in the process is a small success to celebrate, and a good indication that you will be bringing your bundle of joy back to your cozy casa before long.
According to the March of Dimes, there are certain milestones a premature baby must meet while in the hospital in order to be cleared for discharge. Although this list is short, each item is crucial to the baby's health and wellbeing. Depending on your baby's unique set of circumstances, the length of her stay in the hospital after birth can last between a few days to months. Whatever the length of stay, it's no doubt a difficult wait for parents. Which is why it's comforting to keep in mind that each time you check one of these five milestones off the list, your baby is that much closer to joining you at home.