It has been medically proven that a mother who has a good prolonged skin-to-skin relationship with her baby experiences many wonderful benefits from it. Studies have also further shown that mothers would be able to reap many advantages by having a good bond with their dearest newborn through this special affix method.
The skin-to-skin method is known as the Kangaroo Mother Method, which is now commonly known as Kangaroo Care. The method earned a name for itself when hospitals in Columbia had no incubators in the early 70’s. Thus, due to this prematurely born babies were placed directly on their mother’s skin. To the wonders of the doctors, when the babies were held close by the mothers with a close skin-to-skin touch, the babies developed well and actually did better than babies who did not experience the personal touch. The babies that were wrapped closely to the mother’s skin, were miraculously warmed and healed internally through heat radiated from the mother’s body onto the baby’s skin.
Scientists believe a baby in contact with the mother through skin-to-skin connection stimulates a particular portion of the neonatal brain. The baby would be transferred to the breast of the mum and the young mother will be taught how to breastfeed naturally. Having skin to skin as a result, helps the mother’s prolactin level to rise. This is a hormone in the women’s body that helps to regulate milk production in the mother. Having high production of this hormone,helps the mother to maintain a strong supply of milk for the baby.
Once the baby is delivered, the 1st hour after delivery is known as the sacred hour. This period is very crucial for both mother and the neonate to form a special connection. The sacred hour of the baby and the mother should not be interrupted nor disturbed until the baby completes its first feeding. The baby will be placed on the mother’s chest, wrapping the baby and mother close together with a piece of cloth. When the baby is kept closed, the mother’s heartbeat will instantly calm the baby and the smell of the breast milk will get the baby closely attached to its mother, helping the infant to sleep better and stay calm.
Breast milk is the best nutrient packed formula for the baby to consume in order to provide the baby with adequate nutrients and antibodies to build its system which helps in sustaining him or herself right till adulthood. The evolved immune system of the mum transfers antibodies to the baby through touch of the skin and breast milk. Letting the baby latch onto the mother helps the newborn connect and increase good hormones for both mother and child.
Skin-to-skin touch further enhances a newborn’s skin hydration, creating a protective shield that prevents dangerous bacteria from being transferred to the infant. This method also further facilitates sustainable growth in the newborn. It provides the baby with a healthy amount of growth hormones to help their skin, intestines, nerves and blood vessels develop better.
Skin-to-skin has proven to carry many advantages by aiding the infant to even mature faster. It allows their 5 main sensory organs to respond better and quicker. The baby tends to smile sooner, be alert to it’s surrounding and respond to noises better. Do bare in mind that it is essential for the baby to experience skin-to-skin with both maternal and paternal touch, to a form equally strong bond with both parents. The baby should be in touch with both parents skin for a certain amount of time for them to form this connection.This enables the parents to be the first person to witness their baby’s first smile, encouraging a better social and emotional growth with their new born.
Other amazing benefits of skin-to-skin contact is that, it also tends to self-regulate the baby’s body, thereby stabilising the heart rhythm and breathing patterns. Using skin-to-skin, 75 percent of heart and breathing discomforts in babies have been reduced through this method. The babies are also proven to be more jovial and physically active.
Skin-to-skin helps nourish the baby in various ways. A mother should always practice skin to skin contact to ensure the baby’s growth flourishes naturally. Expectant mothers, new mothers or soon to be mothers, should endearingly practice skin-to-skin to embrace the beautiful touch of the baby as you connect to one another.