Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Kangaroo Care

I got to "kangaroo care"with Ruby and Millie today. I held them each for 1 hour. Kangaroo care is the practice of holding preterm infants skin to skin on your bare chest. The baby is wearing only a diaper and placed on the parent's chest and covered with a blanket. Kangaroo care was first implemented in the late 70's in Bogota, Columbia where there was a lack of power and reliable equipment (incubators) to care for very low birth weight babies. Neonatologists discovered that babies whose parents did kangaroo care had much better outcomes. The practice was adopted in North America in the early 1990's, but even today not all NICUs use kangaroo care. Studies show that the benefits of kangaroo care include fewer infections, better weight gain, decreased stress and pain response, and improved sleep patterns.

The girls' nurse told me yesterday that it was easiest to wear a button down shirt when I came to kangaroo. We are currently living at Scott's Dad (Bob) and Step-Mom's house because we are renovating our house (just to add to our craziness but the renovation was planned unlike the pregnancy - ha!). I didn't have a button down, so I wore one of Bob's old flannel ones I found in the closet. I first had a red and green one on, and I felt like I was really in the Holiday spirit, but then Jake snotted all over it and I had to change. My second choice was a little bit more drab, but it worked great for kangaroo. I also couldn't find any socks this morning, so I grabbed a pair of Bob's. When I got to the NICU I realized I had grabbed blue socks and not black. So my look was large old flannel shirt, maternity pants, blue socks and black clogs. I'm pretty sure I got voted best dressed in the NICU today. Enjoy the pictures!

Kangaroo Care with Millie

Blue Socks!

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