Skin-to-Skin Positioning

Helping your baby transition to life outside the womb is important. That’s why we practice uninterrupted skin-to-skin (bare chest) contact as soon as possible after baby’s birth. Research shows that this contact helps baby regulate his/her temperature, breathing and heart rate, which decreases stress during the transition.

As soon as possible after birth, your baby will be placed directly on your chest. During skin-to-skin contact with your baby, he/she will have the opportunity to search for his/her first feed and you will have a chance to start learning your baby's behaviors and bond together.

How baby should be positioned:

  • Chest to chest with mom
  • Face can be seen
  • Nose and mouth are not covered
  • Head is turned to one side
  • Neck is straight, not bent
  • Legs are flexed
  • Back is covered with blankets

Additional precautions

  • Mom should be positioned a little upright, not flat on bed or chair
  • Someone else should watch mom and baby when both are sleeping
  • If no one can watch baby during skin-to-skin, put baby on his/her back in the bassinet for safety purposes

Benefits of ongoing skin-to-skin after discharge

  • This can be calming for your baby through the newborn period and beyond
  • Dads can also enjoy skin-to-skin with baby, creating a special bond

Skin-to-skin after a Cesarean section

  • We also offer the opportunity for mothers who deliver via Cesarean section to participate in skin-to-skin with their baby while in the operating room.