The first thing recommended by the doctors after the birth of a child is for it to touch the skin of the mother. The technique has shown wonderful results in terms of increased glucose and respiratory stability, brain development and instinctive skill. It also helps in promoting breastfeeding for a longer period of time and prevents postnatal depressions.
1. Enhances Physiological stability
As seen in Kangaroos, the mother’s chest has the ability to adjust the temperature according to the thermal need of the infant and is termed as Thermal Synchrony. The human mother’s chest becomes warmer if the baby is cold. This mechanism facilitates the baby, who has just come out of a womb to a cooler environment, to adjust and adapt to it. This also increases oxygenation, respiration, glucose levels and reduces stress hormones. It also regulates blood pressure.
2. Boosts up maternal behaviour
Oxytocin is also known as the happy hormone and is released when the baby’s skin comes in contact with mothers’. This helps the infant to boost up attachment with the mother. It increases attraction, face detection and maternal behaviour. The same hormones released in the mother helps in reducing anxiety and developing an association with the baby and boosting up confidence.
3. Overcomes the effects of parting
The baby and the mother are considered as one being until delivery and thus this parting creates an emotional void for both of them. The baby complains by crying to get back in the old, warmer and nutritious habitat. The skin to skin care promotes emotional intimacy between the mother and baby.
4. Promotes brain development
The skin to skin contact helps in activating the nervous system which plays a crucial role in mental development. This also promotes emotional growth and memory development.
5. Increases breastfeeding
The skin to skin technique helps the newborn to instinctively reach to the nipple and start breastfeeding. The first hour with the newborn is the most crucial one and It is followed by crawling where the infant makes short climbs towards one of the mothers’ breasts. After that, the baby opens his/her mouth and suckles. So live these moments with your new member, feel its delicate skin against yours and listen to the heartbeat, it vibrates with yours.