To know more About New Born Health
Kangaroo care is holding the baby as a kangaroo does!
In 2016, Cochrane review, analyzing data of 21 studies, highlighted a significant reduction of both death and diseases in low birth-weight infants owing to Kangaroo care. The review also underlined the reduction of hospital-acquired infection, increased breast milk production, and increased weight gain in babies. As recommended by the World Health Organization, Kangaroo mother care has been accepted worldwide, especially in developing nations, as an essential modality for preterm and low birth-weight care.
Kangaroo care can be given by mother, as well as the father or any relatives.
How to do it?
Kangaroo care is essentially a skin-to-skin contact of babies with the mother or the carer. Baby is placed on the chest of the mother in between her breasts. They should be only on diapers and are placed under the clothes of the mother on her bare chest. Their head is turned on one side with a slightly up position so that babies' eyes can see mothers' and their chest is touching against the mothers’. The baby gets warmth from the mother and sleeps nicely. They should be kept in this position for at least an hour or till they are agitated and wants to come out.
With the skin-to-skin contact, mother-baby gets significant pain control, reduced stress levels, as well as normalization of heart rate, breathing rate, and temperature. It also has a positive effect on motor skills development and cognitive development. Similarly, in mothers, it improves confidence, develops stronger bonding and helps in the establishment of successful breastfeeding, which is another essential part of early motherhood.
Mother’s milk provides the baby with all the nutrients to nourish and stay healthy. It keeps them safe from ear infections, constipation, eczema, chest infection, diarrhea, vomiting, and various other risk factors related to serious health problems. On the other hand, breastfeeding is equally beneficial for mothers. Skin-to-skin care with the baby helps contract their uterus after delivery and minimize the risk of bleeding. It even reduces the risk of them getting breast cancer. Also, breastfeeding helps them burn up to 500 calories a day; so the mothers find it easier to lose their pregnancy weight.
Now, there are many elements to breastfeeding, including how and when to do it. Generally put, the first hour after birth is the ideal time for the first breastfeed. Following, feed them whenever they are hungry. You can even feed them for comfort. Remember, it’s not possible to over-feed a breastfed baby. Just ensure they have a mouthful of your breast from underneath the nipple and that their head-body is in a straight line so that it’s easy for them to swallow. A good sign the baby is being breastfed well is that their cheeks would stay rounded during sucking. WHO/UNICEF recommends mandatory breastfeeding for the first six months of the baby; it can be continued for 2 years and even beyond.
A Perfect Solution
International kangaroo care day is celebrated worldwide on the 15th of May every year since 2011. As coming out of the controlled environment of a mother’s womb is a significant trauma for the low-birth-weight or preterm baby, Kangaroo care is the best possible way to provide the attachment to the mother back again.
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