Why skin-on-skin contact is so good for you and baby
Do you like to have skin on skin contact with your child? Did you know that it is very good for your health and that of your baby?
By having skin on skin contact you can calm the heart of your child when it is upset. It also helps to regulate its temperature and it stimulates the growth of its brain. For mothers, it helps to prevent postnatal depression.
An experiment performed by skin expert Dr. Susan Ludington shows that skin has direct psychological benefits on skin contact. This way the self-confidence is increased, you build up a bond more quickly and the temperature of the mother can regulate the 'biology' of the baby.
Skin on skin contact was first used in South America 25 years ago to increase the health and survival of preterm infants. Now it is recommended for all babies everywhere. It is also recommended to improve breastfeeding success rates. But even if you do not want to breastfeed, doctors recommend skin to skin contact.
Obstetrician and blogger Jenny Lord has some more tips for making skin on skin contact:
- Make skin on skin contact if your baby is warm and dry. Hold him against your chest
- Put a blanket over your child to keep him warm. But beware: make sure your child is not too hot. A sheet or a blanket is more than enough.
- Make sure that the head, nose and mouth of your child is always free. A good rule to keep is: 'Close enough to give a kiss'.
- Do not drink alcohol and do not smoke a cigarette during skin contact and make sure you do not fall asleep. If you feel a little drowsy, ask if someone can take over with your child.
- It is best to make skin on skin contact during the first six weeks of your child. Preferably five times a week, 20 minutes at a time.
- Skin on skin contact is not only good for mothers, but also good for fathers. Research shows that fathers who make skin on skin contact have more self-confidence as a father and their child also benefits because they become calm.
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