Our VIJA skin to skin tops are a fantastic way of ensuring that you and your newborn get plenty of skin to skin time. You can see the tops by following this link and you like to read the following information that outlines why skin to skin is so important to your little baby.
Skin to skin is not just a nice way to cuddle your baby straight after birth but has lots of benefits to your little one. During pregnancy, babies are completely protected by their mothers body and totally dependent on it for warmth, food and oxygen. Immediately after birth, babies should be placed on the mother’ s chest for skin to skin care so that their needs can continue to be met by their mothers body. A blanket should be placed over the mother & baby to keep them both warm & skin to skin time (or kangaroo care as it is also known) should continue for at least 1-2 after birth. Once placed on the mothers chest the baby begins to relax and baby’ s breathing, heart rate and temperature stabilize.
If for some reason mother & baby need to be separated after birth for any reason, where possibly Dad can of course do skin to skin until mum & baby are reunited.
Here are the 10 leading benefits of skin-to-skin care:
1. Improvement in heart and lung function. Babies go through a dramatic transition after birth as they prepare to take their first breaths of air outside the uterus. Those held skin-to-skin by their mothers tend to adapt sooner than those who are not. They also tend to have heart and breathing rates that are both more normal and more stable.
2. Stabilization of body temperature. Babies are unable to maintain or adjust their own body temperatures. It is known that when it comes to temperature regulation the best place for a baby to be is to be in direct contact with the mother’ s body
3. Regulation of blood sugar. Babies who are given the opportunity to have skin to skin are less likely to have low blood sugars and in turn less likely to be supplemented with formula. Babies use up blood sugars for energy i.e. to keep warm, when crying etc so when babies are close to their mothers their mothers body provides them with warmth and comfort so they are less likely to use up their blood sugars
4. Initiation of breastfeeding. Skin to skin contact helps to establish the breastfeeding relationship. According to UNICEF “ Every newborn…when placed on her mother’ s abdomen, soon after birth, has the ability to find her mother’ s breast all on her own and to decide when to take the first breastfeed.”
5. Transfer of good bacteria. Travelling through the birth canal is the optimal manner for the baby’ s gut to be colonized with the bacteria in the mother’ s vagina. Babies also get exposed to their mother’ s bacteria is through skin-to-skin contact after birth. Early exposure to this bacteria helps babies develop a range of healthy bacteria.
6. Reduction in crying. Studies show that babies who are held skin-to-skin contact (particularly with their mothers) are less likely to cry
7. Relief from pain. Skin-to-skin care provides better relief of pain symptoms the longer the skin-to-skin care lasts. A comparison of 30 minutes of “ kangaroo care,” 15 minutes of “ kangaroo care,” and incubator care found the greatest relief from the longer amount of skin-to-skin contact
8. Enhancement of mom-baby communication.
Having the baby in close skin-to-skin contact helps to ensure that the mother will learn her baby’ s signals sooner, improving communication and boosting maternal confidence as well as helping babies develop a sense of trust and security.
9. Easy transition from the womb. Ruth Feldman, a professor of psychology and neuroscience at a university in Tel Aviv, notes that close contact in the days after birth is not an option but a need—for all mammals, not just human babies. “ Every mammal,” she explains, “ has to be cuddled and in close proximity with its mother in the first days and weeks of life.”
10. Boost in maternal-child bonding. Touch is essential for humans to thrive, and skin-to-skin contact enables mothers and babies to use all of their senses in nurturing this new and vital relationship. The first hour after a baby is born is known as the ‘ golden hour’ however recent studies suggest that skin-to-skin care has benefits for babies beyond the newborn first days.