Let’s Talk about the Benefits of Skin-to-Skin Contact After Birth as there is growing evidence that skin-to-skin contact after birth helps babies and their mothers in many ways.
What is immediate skin-to-skin contact?
Skin-to-skin contact is usually referred to as the practice where a baby is dried and laid directly on their mother’s bare chest after birth, both of them covered in a warm blanket and left for at least an hour or until after the first feed.
Why is skin-to-skin contact important?
There is a growing body of evidence that skin-to-skin contact after the birth helps babies and their mothers in many ways:
- Calms and relaxes both mother and baby
- Regulates the baby’s heart rate and breathing, helping them to better adapt to life outside the womb
- Stimulates digestion and interest in feeding
- Regulates temperature
- Enables colonization of the baby’s skin with the mother’s friendly bacteria, thus providing protection against infection
- Stimulates the release of hormones to support breastfeeding and mothering.
What happens during skin-to-skin contact?
When a mother holds her baby in skin to skin contact after birth it initiates strong instinctive behaviours in both.
The mother will experience a surge of maternal hormones and begin to smell, stroke and engage with her baby.
Babies’ instincts after birth will drive them to follow a unique process, which if left uninterrupted will result in them having a first breastfeed.
If they are enabled to familiarise themselves with their mother’s breast and achieve self-attachment it is very likely that they will recall this at subsequent feeds, resulting in fewer breastfeeding problems.
How long should you do skin to skin with a newborn?
Families (yep you can get dad involved) are encouraged to practice Skin-to-Skin for an uninterrupted 60 minutes during the first 12 weeks and beyond.
The Academy of Pediatrics recommends Skin-to-Skin be given as long as possible and as frequently as possible during the postpartum period, which is typically defined as the first 3 months of life.
Did you do skin-to-skin after delivery? Why or why not?
Originally posted 2021-04-09 06:58:47.
14 CommentsLeave a Reply
I did skin to skin immediately after delivery and it was the best moment ever 💙 took my mind off everything that was happening to me post delivery
Our hospital charges for skin to skin 😂 charges the mother for holding her OWN baby. Only in America.
This seems so simple yet so important. Why did it take us so long to discover these benefits?
Is this done after the first or second Apgar score? 👶
My question may not be popular. Do you think skin to skin help the biological mother bond with her kid and Vis Versa that came to the world via surrogacy?
Advice/suggestions/empathy/acknowledgement for those who were not able to
“Calms mom and baby” not if mom is screaming as they manually stop the heavy bleeding and the baby just stares at the mom like wtf. Sweet sentiment but NO
This is such a great visual! Excited to share it on our story.
That was our plan, but then our baby came 6 weeks early and he was taken to the NICU immediately after being born. I didn’t get to hold him til 2 days later 😭