This post was sponsored by WaterWipes as part of an Ambassador Program for Influence Central. I received complimentary products to facilitate my review.
Before kids, I have zero idea what skin-to-skin was. Honestly, I actually didn’t know what the “big deal” about skin-to-skin time was still, even after my first son Cash was born. With Brando, I’ve come to realize how important that connection is to my child and just how calming and comforting this magical bond can be. For those new to parenting, here are some tips for optimizing skin-to-skin interaction with your new baby, and a little information on why it’s such a crucial part of the parenting process.
Why it’s important
- Skin-to-Skin bonding promotes independent thermoregulation in infants. Put simply, newborns have to learn how to process and regulate their body temperatures to survive outside the womb and skin-to-skin contact is one of the easiest ways to help your baby adapt to his/her new environment.
- Helping your baby to gain weight. This I didn’t realize until we were told Brando was at the lower end of the weight gain percentage and we needed to supplement to get him some extra calories. We keep our house super cold because James and I run hot, and Cash’s eczema flairs are avoided when he’s cool. However for Brando, he has to burn extra calories to try to keep warm, so more skin-to-skin interaction plays a huge role in helping him put on more weight.
- It makes breastfeeding easier. I have plans to share the struggles I’ve had on this breastfeeding journey, but just know it hasn’t been all sunshine and rainbows thus far. My milk supply took a huge hit after getting mastitis when Brando was 3 weeks old. After seeing a lactation consultant, she informed me that just 10 extra minutes of skin-to-skin bonding a day can boost hormone levels that regulate lactation. Helping the baby be more satisfied at the breast, and ensure that he gets the amount of milk he needs each feeding.
Tips to optimize Skin-to-Skin interaction
- Keep your clothing at home minimal. Because skin-to-skin is so great at calming your baby, unless you’re going out in public, keep your baby in only a diaper at home that way each time you hold your baby they get some of that super sweet skin time! Also on a parental end, I typically wear lower cut blouses and James stays in button-downs or v-necks around the house, so it’s super easy to access our skin to calm Brando if necessary!
- Wear your baby. Strollers are super convenient when going out and about with two kids especially. But I’ve found that it’s actually just as easy to wear Brando while I have Cash in a stroller. When I wear Brando he gets all that skin-to-skin goodness he craves, making our time outside the house MUCH more peaceful and enjoyable.
- Pick up your baby as much as you can! This sounds obvious, but I know sometimes I am guilty of setting Brando in his swing with a pacifier when he is super fussy just so I can get some work done. I’ve found that while I do have things to do, Brando is much more peaceful if I pause and take just 5 more minutes to let him rest his head against my chest. Then instead of running back to the swing every 4-5 minutes to reinsert the Bink, he peacefully lays down in his swing and enjoys the ride, allowing me to ultimately get more things done that I need to do!
While we’re on the subject of skin, keeping your skin and your baby’s skin clean is very important. Since everything you put onto your skin can be absorbed into your body, it’s a huge priority of mine that I don’t introduce harmful chemicals to my skin that could be passed onto the baby during our skin-to-skin time. This is why we use WaterWipes, a chemical free baby wipe composed of Irish water and grapefruit seed extract. They are so much safer than other wipes to use on your baby’s sensitive skin, and very durable for those blow outs that we are all too familiar with! WaterWipes understands the importance of skin-to-skin contact and wants to make sure that sacred time isn’t ruined with any harsh chemicals. For more information check them out on Facebook or Twitter. To watch this sweet video and share it with your loved ones who understand the importance of skin-to-skin, check it out here.