Hop into kangaroo care!

6 Kangaroo BenefitsBabies, as long as they do not have medical needs, should be placed immediately upon the mother’s chest in a practice known as “kangaroo care” (which is more specific than skin-to-skin contact as the baby’s fully naked body is placed upon his mother’s chest).  This benefits both mothers and babies.  Newborns are calmer, warmer, more comfortable, and more able to initiate breastfeeding in this way. They experience a more peaceful transition into their new environment when they can hear their mother’s familiar heartbeat and voice.  Big changes take place in your baby’s life in the first 5 minutes (for example, his circulatory/pulmonary system completely shifts!), and it is important to keep him close and thermo-regulated as he adjusts. Mamas are the BEST baby warmer on the planet!  Mamas also benefit from kangaroo care because it releases additional hormones which bring forth a bolus of colostrum, increase milk supply, contract the uterus, and increase feelings of love, happiness, and attachment.  Moms bleed less and experience less pain postpartum when they “kangaroo” their babies.

Kangaroo Care is not just for babies in their first few hours of life.  They benefit from it for an extended period at home as they grow. It helps to develop their immature nervous system and immune system (they acquire a healthy microbiome from mom’s skin, and in turn, mom begins producing antibodies that baby needs), and quite honestly, it is where they are happiest.

East Alabama mamas are so fortunate to receive kangaroo care encouragement and education from the staff at EAMC.

Follow the important links below to learn more about kangaroo care.

  • Kangaroo Care (which is fully encouraged and supported at EAMC, along with limited family visits in the first hours so you can bond with your new baby)
  • Insanely long list of proven benefits and research supporting  Kangaroo Care
  • Make your own babywearing device so you can kangaroo and nurse your baby at home modestly (clothing wise and budget wise) ! This is an excellent blog post that describes safely carrying your baby skin-to-skin or “kangarooing” your baby at hospital and home.  And you don’t have to spend a fortune.  It is blog posts like these that make me heart the Internet.
  • Delayed Newborn Bath (research suggests the benefits of vernix, bacteria, and amniotic fluid transfer from baby to mother aids in your baby’s ability to breastfeed using smell cues, begins the production of important antibodies by you to protect your baby through breastmilk, and assists with the establishment of good bacterial flora in the baby’s gut)
  • Optimal Cord Clamping (also known as delayed cord clamping)

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