How do I feed my sleepy baby?
Skin-to-skin means your baby is placed belly-down,
directly on your chest, right after she is born. Your care provider
dries her off, puts on a hat, and covers her with a warm blanket, and
gets her settled on your chest. The first hours of snuggling
skin-to-skin let you and your baby get to know each other. They also
have important health benefits. If she needs to meet the pediatricians
first, or if you deliver by c-section, you can unwrap her and cuddle
shortly after birth. Newborns crave skin-to-skin contact, but itís
sometimes overwhelming for new moms. Itís ok to start slowly as you
get to know your baby.
Snuggling gives you and your baby the best start for breastfeeding.
Eight different research studies have shown that skin-to-skin babies
breastfeed better. They also keep nursing an average of six weeks
longer. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that all
breastfeeding babies spend time skin-to-skin right after birth.
Keeping your baby skin-to-skin in his first few weeks makes it easy to
know when to feed him, especially if he is a little sleepy.
Skin-to-skin cuddling may affect how you relate with your
baby. Researchers have watched mothers and infants in the first few
days after birth, and they noticed that skin-to-skin moms touch
and cuddle their babies more. Even a year later, skin-to-skin moms
snuggled more with their babies during a visit to their pediatrician.
Skin-to-Skin Beyond the Delivery Room
Keep cuddling skin-to-skin after you leave the
your baby will stay warm and comfortable on your
chest, and the benefits for bonding, soothing, and breastfeeding
likely continue well after birth. Skin-to-skin can
help keep your baby interested in nursing if heís sleepy.
Dads can snuggle, too. Fathers and mothers who hold
babies skin-to-skin help keep them calm and cozy.