Tuesday, May 10, 2011

My Own Kangaroo Care Experience

My son had a difficult time sleeping today. He would wake up at the slightest creak and cry his lungs out. Probably because his two front teeth are about to erupt. My trusted manzanilla, my solution to problems that cannot be solved, could not do its usual trick.

What I did was take off my shirt, took off his shirt, and hugged him close to me. He started calming down. This is known as kangaroo care, similar to kangaroo pouches. Kangaroo care was started in Colombia where premature babies are born in the most primitive of conditions.

When a child is born premature, he is whisked into the NICU, wherein a drop in normal levels (blood, fluids, etc) would mean very loud beeping sounds. The baby needs its mother to calm him down. In the kangaroo care philosophy, the baby, only in diapers, would be placed under the shirt of the mommy, and they would be "skin to skin". The baby then mimics the breathing of the mommy.

All babies, regardless if premature of not, can benefit from skin to skin contact.

Call it mothers' touch. Call it skin to skin contact. My son slept through the night because he was literally enveloped in my used shirt. Motherhood at its best.

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