Olivia has been doing better and better with her sucking this week and we couldn't be more proud! The speech therapist works with Olivia every day for one of her feedings doing some work with a pacifier and some work with a bottle. The last couple of days the speech therapist has been trying different consistencies of milk and so far the best combination for Olivia seems to be a little bit of breast milk, a little bit of formula and some drink thickener. It is possible that Olivia is aspirating so she can't take straight breast milk since it is too thin and she chokes a little bit each time she swallows. She will most likely have a swallow test done sometime next week to see exactly what it is going on when she swallows.
She does, however, take the pacifier like a champ! She loves it!
We have been encouraged by Olivia's progress with her sucking and drinking from a bottle because it shows that she has some sort of cognitive function! This is huge because since her brain injury appears to be significant, we have no idea what parts of her brain is affected. She definitely notices a difference between sucking on her pacifier and sucking on a bottle/having to swallow something, we know there are connections from her brain to other parts of her body telling it what to do. Praise the Lord for signs of cognitive function!
We are learning that each thing Olivia does is a victory. I am learning not to take the little things that a term baby would automatically do for granted. We are so thankful for Olivia is making progress and we know she is going to amaze all the doctors with what she will do!
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