After the delivery of your baby
Following the delivery of your baby you will be welcomed to have skin to skin with your baby. Skin to skin contact is the practice where a baby is dried and laid directly on the mother’s bare chest after birth, both are then covered in a warm blanket and left for at least an hour or until after the first feed.
More information can be found below:
Skin to skin contact - Information from UNICEF - UK Baby Friendly Inititiative Standards about skin to skin contact.
Skin to skin contact offers a vast number of benefits for both mother and baby. The staff at BHRUT identify and value these benefits and therefore will encourage and protect Skin to skin contact.
Some of the benefits are:
- 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 an interest in feeding.
- Regulates temperature.
- Enables colonisation 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.
In some cases, immediate post-delivery skin to skin is not an option and this will be a decision made by the Midwives, Obstetrician and Neonatologist. If you baby is taken to our Neonatal unit, when it is safe to do so, staff will also encourage skin to skin contact and discuss it many benefits.
Skin to skin after caesarean section: If your baby is delivered by caesarean, you should still be able to have skin-to-skin contact with your baby straight after delivery.
Mothers are empowered to make evidence-based decisions and if they do not wish to have skin to skin or do not feel it is appropriate at this time, birth partners are also welcomed to complete skin to skin. The benefits of skin to skin contact is ongoing, meaning skin to skin contact should be completed throughout the early years of life for both the comfort of mother and baby.
Meeting your newborn for the first time can be very overwhelming and there is no right way to feel. All births are different and do not always go the way parents planned. Some parents can feel pressure when meeting their newborn for the first time but is essential to note that your relationship with your baby grew and they did in your tummy during pregnancy. Your baby has learnt a great deal about their parents and started to learn about the world outside of the tummy.
There are many things you can do after birth to comfort, reassure and bond further with your baby. Every time you interact, cuddle, kiss and hold your baby you are helping to build and grow their brain and teach them about the world around them.
BHRUT Maternity Unit is a UNICEF, Stage One Accredited, Baby Friendly Initiative hospital which means that women are supported and empowered to make informed and evidence-based decisions around how they wish to feed their baby’s.
After delivery staff will support you to feed your baby and will be happy to explore any questions you have around Infant Feeding.
Tommys.org has an informative video whih can be viewed below.