Steps to help prevent RDS can be taken at a few different times.
To reduce your chance of having a premature baby:
- Get good prenatal care beginning as early as possible in pregnancy.
- Eat a healthful diet and take vitamins suggested by your doctor.
- Do not smoke or use alcohol or drugs.
- Only take medicines that your doctor has approved.
If you are at high risk of giving birth to a premature baby:
- You may be given steroids just before delivery to help your baby's lungs develop
- Your doctor may do an amniocentesis to check the maturity of your baby's lungs and to help determine the best time for delivery
After delivery, if a premature baby has a very high chance of developing RDS, surfactant may be given right after birth to help the baby breathe better.