I am passionate about skin to skin for newborn babies. It is the natural state human infants are born expecting. It stimulates baby led attachment at the breast. It stabilises body temperature, heart rate and breathing in premature and mature babies and it encourages bonding and helps heal the trauma of medical intervention separating mother and baby.
It also feels great!
When my daughter was pregnant, we knew skin to skin (s2s) would be part of her postnatal plan. What we didn't know was just how crucial it would be when her labour, birth and breastfeeding establishment were far more challenging than expected!!
We had prepared with a couple of products that turned out to be wonderful resources.
The Breastfeeding Blanket by Bebitza is designed to provide cover for modest women when breastfeeding, however I have found it to be very useful as a wrap during s2s and baby-led attachment sessions. Kaitlyn found it kept her and baby Charlie covered and warm during their hospital stay, when they spent most of their time practicing skin to skin to help stimulate feeding and milk production.
Skin To Skin Kangaroo T-Shirt Once at home, s2s continued to be important, as Charlie needed lots of stimulation to breastfeed and overcome her jaundice, all of which was delaying Kaitlyn's milk production becoming established. Even once those hurdles were overcome, being worn close to her mother is Charlie's second favourite place to be after the breast! To allow easy switching between feeding and wearing, without needing to stop and put on a sling, wrap or carrier, especially when out and about. the Skin to Skin Kangaroo tshirt has been a real winner.
Charlie was four weeks old in these photos and had been quickly tucked into just the front pocket of the shirt while mum finalised some shopping, however she was then placed correctly into the cross-over straps, which would be skin 2 skin if she was only dressed in a nappy. The end result is just like their favourite Hug-a-bub wrap, but much eaiser for quick switches between breast and carrier for babies like Charlie who cluster-feed between short naps. This is great when Mum wants to eat dinner, walk around - or keep visitors hands off the new baby and is perfect when out shopping!
We were really happy to be able to source this Canadian-made product here in Australia, through Ninky Bear. In fact, Kaitlyn loves it so much, she is thinking of getting a one or two more, which should take her and Charlie through the next couple of months until she is 7kgs.
You don't need anything special to practice skin to skin, but these two products have certainly made it a bit more practical!