Once you find out you are having a baby, it seems like you are suddenly flooded with decisions that you have to make before and after they are born. This is especially true with new moms who are expecting their first child.

Parenting is truly filled with making these important decisions about how to care for your baby. One way that you can care for your baby right after birth is through skin-to-skin contact.

What is Skin-to-Skin Contact?

Skin-to-skin contact refers to when your baby is placed belly-down on your chest. Most often the baby has little to no clothes on and the mother has her baby directly against her bare chest as well.

Skin-to-skin is most commonly practiced immediately after your baby is born. However, many new mothers practice skin-to-skin with their baby through infancy.

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Planning for Skin-to-Skin

If I decide to do skin-to-skin contact with my baby, how can I prepare for it?

Preparing for skin-to-skin is very important and can make your delivery experience go much smoother. One thing to do when you decide to have skin-to-skin contact with your baby directly after birth is to talk it over with your doctor to ensure that they know your wishes and expectations during and after delivery.

You should also talk with your spouse about skin-to-skin and how he can help you with placing your baby on your chest and keeping you and the baby comfortable.

How Long Do You Do Skin to Skin?

Generally, it’s best to start skin-to-skin contact with your baby within 1-2 hours after birth, however, you can truly start skin-to-skin contact at any time once your baby is born.

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