Since premature babies often go home from the hospital before they reach their original due date, they don’t always behave the same as a baby born closer to forty weeks. Preemies show differences in the way they sleep, eat, and handle daily life. And, while some preemies are calm and sleep a lot, others tend to be very fussy. Here are some of the things that can cause fussiness in preemies and what you can do to help them.

Reasons for Fussiness
Some causes of fussiness are the same for full-term infants as they are for preemies. However, an early birth can lead to other reasons. A premature nervous system: A baby born early has an immature nervous system. The nervous system controls the body’s movements, the senses, and the regulation of body functions. A preemie’s brain and nerves can have difficulty processing the world around them. They may be more sensitive and fuss in reaction to lights and sounds, being handled, or feedings.

Medications: Premature babies are more likely to leave the hospital on medications. Some medications are stimulants, especially those that prevent apnea. Stimulants increase activity in the body. They can make a baby jittery and irritable, and cause difficulty calming down and sleeping well.