Study Finds Skin-To-Skin Contact Safe For Premmie Babies
'We worry that every single thing we do to them could make them unstable.'
By Livia Gamble
January 20 2017
The benefits of skin to contact, or kangaroo care, have been widely recognised.
As well as helping mum and bub to form an attachment, the technique is also said to improve breastfeeding rates and normalise temperature.
That said, some concern was still being raised about the risk of skin-to-skin on premature babies, with some parents having to wait weeks to hold their newborn.
However, the results of a new study found skin-to-skin to be safe, even for premmie babies.
Neonatal paediatrician Sue Jacobs co-authored a new study the study, told the ABC: “We're in a bit of a dilemma in that we worry that every single thing we do to them could make them unstable."
The study, from the Royal Women's Hospital in Melbourne, followed 40 pre-term babies on breathing support over a 90 minute period to see how they responded to skin-to-skin contact verse time in the incubator.
Results from the study didn’t show any changes in a baby's blood oxygen levels heart rate, breathing rate and temperature.
"So what it tells us — and particularly [for] the nursing staff caring at the bedside — is that it's OK to put these babies into skin-to-skin care, it's not going to make them unstable," said Sue Jacobs.
"Hopefully they will experience the same benefits of skin-to-skin care as bigger babies do."