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Evidence shows that breastfeeding and breastmilk have important lifelong health benefits. Our hospital is dedicated to providing new mothers with the information and support they need to make an educated and informed decision about infant feeding. Our hospital is striving to become a Baby Friendly Hospital. This initiative is a quality improvement program prepared to help you and your new baby get off to the best start. Our hospital has implemented policies and best care practices related to making your baby's transition from life inside your womb to the outside world as gentle, healthy and safe as possible.
Skin to skin
Our goal is to keep babies close to their mothers right after birth. Whether you have a vaginal or cesaerean birth, we encourage you to hold your baby skin to skin as soon as possible. Babies held skin to skin breathe better, warm up faster, and have better blood sugar levels. One hour of skin to skin right after birth is very important for your baby's well being. Most babies are very calm and keep their eyes open when they hear their mother's voice. All babies love skin to skin time. If your baby has to go to our NICU, we will encourage skin to skin time as soon as your baby is medically stable.
Skin to skin time also gives breastfeeding babies a chance to feed within the first hour of life. This helps babies become better breastfeeders sooner. Even if you plan on using a bottle as your baby gets older or when you go back to work, we encourage you to start with breastfeeding in the first hour. Colostrum is your baby's first milk but it is also your baby's first vaccination and protects your baby from infection.
In effort to become a Baby-Friendly birthing site, we do not distribute samples from formula manufacturers. We also carefully assess your baby's feeding to address any early problems and help to take care of them quickly. We will assist and support you in breastfeeding so that you feel more confident. Furthermore, if breastfeeding worries arise after you and your baby go home, you can contact our staff for support and advice.
We support healthy babies and their mothers to stay together day and night (rooming in) so they have the best chance to get to know each other. Having a support person available (not just for labor!) allows mothers to get their needed rest while baby stays close by. Research shows that mothers and babies sleep better when they are in the same room.
Rooming in gives parents more opportunities to learn about normal baby behavior while having our knowledgeable staff nearby to answer any questions and provide support for diaper changes, burping, comfort techniques and breastfeeding. Babies can be sleepy the first day and not want to feed as often and this can be concerning for new parents. Our staff is just a call bell away to talk about what you should expect from your new baby.
What about bottle feeding mothers?
When a mother has chosen not to breastfeed, when supplementation of breasefeeding is medically indicated and when supplementation is chosen by a breasfeeding mother, we are supportive of their choices. Our staff will educate new mothers on the safe and appropriate methods of formula mixing, handling, storage and feeding.
Last Updated: 12/27/2013