Maria Lactans

Maria Lactans
Maria Lactans (wikimedia commons)

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Kangaroo Care

Kangaroo care for premature babies really is amazing!  Something so natural and easy making such a difference is just mind boggling to me in the face of all the technological breakthroughs of our time period.  If you are not familiar with this practice, it just refers to a mother or father holding their baby skin to skin for long periods of time.

The research shows that kangaroo care "substantially reduces neonatal mortality amongst preterm babies." (1) It actually raises the infant's body temperature more efficiently than an incubator.  Plus baby's oxygen level and breathing rate are more stable and regular.  Another important consequence is a better milk production and greater likelihood of breastfeeding well when mom does kangaroo care with baby.  Research also shows this practice helps make baby's immune system stronger.  Snuggling with baby in this manner helps mom and baby heal from some of the trauma associated with premature birth. (2)

(2) The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding (2010) pg. 344

By Gina M. Peterson

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