what is kangaroo mother care?
The best place for a newborn infant directly after birth is on mother’s naked chest. This skin to skin contact, recommended to practice every day, is called Kangaroo Mother Care (KMC). KMC is crucial for the success of exclusive breastfeeding. Also, during this so called golden hours, the first steps are made in the bonding process between mother and child. Because of these possibilities, recent studies have shown that KMC is extremely important for the infants’ recovery and development. According to a number of medical analysis and World Health Organisation KMC helps reduce morbidity and mortality in infants; supports brain development and can lead to earlier discharge from the hospital. Because of these major beneficial effects, in the last years KMC has been more and more advocated to use in the infant and especially premature baby care.
WHY IS KANGAROO MOTHER CARE IMPORTANT FOR PREMATURE BABIES?
1. SHORTER STAY IN THE HOSPITAL
Kangaroo Mother Care has a lot of positive impacts on the infant's development in the short-term, such as:
- Reduced pain and stress
- Higher likelihood of successful breastfeeding
- Better bodyweight development
These positive developments also lead to a shorter hospitalization period. The infant can therefore be home with his parents earlier!
2. LESS DEVELOPMENTAL PROBLEMS
The positive results in the first weeks and months of the infant's life also have a long-term effect. As a result of the better development thanks to Kangaroo Mother Care there is a smaller probability that infants will develop cognitive impairments and concentration issues.
The infant will benefit from this for the rest of his life!