I knew a little bit about how important skin-to-skin was before having Emery, but after having Alder, I really believe in it!

Our little Alder is already one month old! I haven't told his birth story on the blog yet, but I wanted to share a little bit about how skin-to-skin was so important for our family. His birth didn't go as planned, and I ended up having an emergency c-section. I wasn't able to hold Alder right after he was born, but I was so grateful that my husband had the opportunity. Immediately after they made sure he was ok & cleaned him, the nurses and my husband noticed that Alder was wheezing a little. They were worried about his breathing & wanted to take him to the NICU to hook him up to C-PAP machine. My boys went to the NICU, while the doctors wrapped up the surgery and stitched me up. We were separated for over two hours. Turns out when they got up to the NICU, the doctor decided that Alder and my husband would do skin-to-skin instead of using the machine. He obviously knew the benefits of skin-to-skin. Aaron and Alder snuggled for over two hours, and it ended up helping regulate Alder's breathing. They never ended up having to use the C-PAP machine. I know those moments are something my husband will cherish forever. 

The Benefits of Skin-to-Skin

With Father's Day around the corner, I am excited to partner with Huggies and their #NoBabyUnhugged Campaign. Huggies deeply believes in the power of hugs and supports parents with resources to provide important skin-to-skin hugs to their baby. Research has shown that skin-to-skin between a parent and baby following childbirth has many important benefits on a newborn's physical and emotional development, including reducing response to pain, reducing stress, creating a stronger parent bond and more. 

In fact, expecting parents can download and complete a Hug Plan with their partner, which acts as one extension of a traditional birth plan, to ensure their new baby receives important skin-to-skin hugs immediately after birth. This is an incredible tool to help parents plan for hugs regardless of what happens during labour (from having multiples to a C-section) and ensuring all babies receive the hugs they need to thrive. 

The Benefits of Skin-to-Skin

I have some more interesting facts about skin-to-skin that I found really cool and wanted to share with you. 

Benefits of Skin-toSkin Hugs Provided by Dad
While there has been a lot of research on the benefits of moms providing skin-to-skin hugs to their new baby, many experts have been specifically exploring the impact of father-infant skin-to-skin contact. A recent study has highlighted the multitude of benefits that babies receive during skin-to-skin time with dads, including:
-Temperature control
-Better infant behavioural response
-Improved bio-psychological markers
-Better interaction behaviour of fathers with their infants
-Reduced stress and anxiety experienced by fathers

The Benefits of Skin-to-Skin

Here are some tips for Optimal Skin-to-Skin Hugging:
1.) Skin-to skin: Parent should remove all clothing from the upper body, baby should be in a diaper only.
2.) Proper positioning: Parent can lie down or sit up with baby chest to chest and tuck baby's legs up into the fetal position. Baby's head should be turned to one side, so airway is clear and head is supported. Baby's hands should be near his/her face for self-soothing.
3.) Cover up: Baby and parent should be covered with a blanket once in the proper position.
4.) Duration: It is important for your baby to go through a full sleep-wake cycle, which is usually about 60 minutes as a minimum, to get the full benefits and to get the biological systems stabilized.
5.) Listen to baby: if baby starts to wiggle around and is no longer comfortable that's a good time to stop.
NOTE: Baby is safest sleeping on their back, not on parents chest and do not drink hot liquids or cook while hugging baby.

I would love to hear your experiences with skin-to-skin! Please share below!

<3 Kastles