Today’s birth methods and approaches to the postpartum period have greatly contributed to new ways of treating the newborn. It reveals how to build a better relationship with a child in the first minutes of life, and fathers are much more courageous and open to parenting advice.
The place where the baby nests on the mother enjoying skin-to-skin contact is the most desirable place after birth. If we talk about children born at term, it turned out that, in addition to the mother’s closeness, in the period after birth, the father’s closeness is also desirable. Skin-to-skin contact helps stabilize vital functions, and fathers contribute a lot to caring for a child by wearing it, changing diapers, singing to him, and talking to him. Especially important is the first period after birth, during which it is desirable to avoid the rush of visitors and to dedicate themselves to intimacy with the newborn. With close contact the child will feel safer and you will start a deep connection and get a chance to see the world with completely different eyes.
On what occasion can a father take physical intimacy with a child? If the mother has had a caesarean section and needs time to recover, at home fathers have the opportunity to keep their child in skin-to-skin contact. While the mother needs physical rest and help with moving or raising the child, the father is the first to jump in to help, which is very valuable for the mother.
Fathers, you will be even more needed if you are blessed with twins or triplets. Then the needs of your children will be met more easily and successfully if you share the care with your spouse. If your baby is born prematurely, you may feel helpless or in shock. However, remember that your child needs you the most in moments like this and your support is invaluable. Premature babies need skin-to-skin contact to stabilize their functions, so take turns caring for your baby with your spouse.
Everything you do means a lot to your child. In some cases, postpartum mothers are not able to hold their baby at all or do not want to. If this happens, the father’s chest is the perfect place for the baby while waiting for the mother to be ready for cuddling.
The child’s sounds and hugs will mean a lot to the child. It will be able to recognize your voice as you sing and speak to it during all those months of pregnancy. Continue after delivery. If the baby’s mother is betrayed, you have the opportunity to bottle feed the baby. Use that time for intimacy and tenderness.
Research says that compared to babies who spend the first hours in a crib, a newborn cries less and achieves a soothing, sleepy state faster when in skin-to-skin contact. Contact of the parent’s bare skin stabilizes the child’s body temperature to a normal level, reduces the child’s stress, and helps keep the child’s sugar levels within normal limits. It also stabilizes the baby’s heart rate and breathing rhythm and contributes to more successful breastfeeding. Some pediatricians also mention improving a child’s immune system as well as sleep. Don’t be discouraged if your maternity ward doesn’t allow skin-to-skin contact right after the baby is born or they don’t have the conditions to do so. Remember that in the privacy of a hospital room, you can take care of your child in the way that is most desirable to you, so in that sense, you can also use the skin-to-skin method to influence the child’s condition.
In addition to the children benefiting greatly from close contact, the same happens to fathers when they experience skin-to-skin contact during the first few weeks after the baby is born. When a father has the opportunity to hold a child on his chest, he releases oxytocin – a hormone often called the love hormone. This hormone promotes rapprochement and trust between people and it is the same hormone that stimulates uterine contractions during childbirth. When the endocrine system releases oxytocin as a result of skin-to-skin contact with a newborn, the father can’t help but fall in love with this new little human being. The father’s body is flooded with oxytocin and a bond develops with each other.
During the first few days after birth, it is very likely that the mother will need a little more effort and time to shower and change, and this is the perfect time for the father to settle into a comfortable chair and meet his baby. In the peace of his own home, the father can make himself a little comfortable and lean the child against him by holding the child close to his chest, skin to skin. You should gently hold the baby with both hands and cover him with a warm blanket or blanket. If the father is not yet ready for this approach, it is enough to talk to the child because the child recognizes a familiar voice that calms and comforts him.
The time the child spends with the father in skin-to-skin contact will be beneficial to both and will confirm how much the child enjoys closeness to each other.
Experienced pediatricians claim: “Children are born naked and wet, so close contact with the mother’s or father’s skin helps prevent hypothermia. This is very important after birth. Thanks to the release of hormones and pheromones that takes a long time after childbirth, a strong connection develops. Skin-to-skin contact strengthens the child’s immunity because it transmits the mother’s or father’s antibodies. When babies are born, the only antibodies they have are those received through the placenta during pregnancy. Unfortunately, these antibodies are temporary, so the child must produce their own in a more difficult way – by exposing themselves to viruses and bacteria. Another way to empower antibodies is through breastfeeding. It has also been shown that skin-to-skin contact reduces and shortens the duration of vaccination pain. ”
If it happens that the birth does not go as you hoped and there are reasons why you cannot make direct contact with the child, there is no reason to worry. Take advantage of the situation in which you are in the best possible way – talk to the baby, sing to him, touch the handle, mothers can breastfeed. These are all extremely useful methods that will help the child’s condition and physical health. Enjoy every moment.
Livija Rogulj – Excellent woman