Edit ModuleShow Tags

The Magic of A Mother's Touch

A pilot program at Kaiser helps C-section moms bond with their babies in the operating room


Published:

Shutterstock

Alethea Bernstein, Kaiser Permanente, OB/GYN

Dr. Alethea Bernstein, Kaiser Permanente, OB/GYN


When a woman has a caesarian, her baby is tucked into a warmer while surgeons stitch her back up. Mom and newborn may be separated for an hour or more during this tender time. They miss out on valuable skin-to-skin contact that boosts a baby’s immunity and helps regulate everything from blood sugar to temperature. Kaiser Permanente OB/GYN Alethea Bernstein says a pilot program at Kaiser Permanente San Diego can help women who get C-sections enjoy baby bonding right away, like those with vaginal births. Specially designed surgical drapes allow a woman to watch her child emerge and, soon after, feel its warm skin on her chest.

“It’s such an amazing moment when a baby enters the world,” says Bernstein. “It’s this magic every time. By helping incorporate the family into this moment and allowing this direct skin-to-skin contact, it’s restoring the intimacy.” 

One out of three women in the U.S. have caesarians. Studies show skin contact immediately after birth makes sustained breastfeeding twice as likely. Bernstein encourages breastfeeding for at least six months to a year, when possible. She says breastfed babies show better brain development and lower rates for asthma, allergies, and childhood obesity. It’s good for Mom, too! Nursing reduces a woman’s lifetime risk of female cancers and helps restore a healthy pre-pregnancy weight. “There’s no replacement for breast milk,” Bernstein says. “It’s kind of like gold.”

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

More »Related Stories

San Diego's Top Doctors 2017

Our annual list of 756 physicians in 77 specialties, with a feature on Dr. Alan Shahtaji’s World Cup–worthy sports medicine practice and more.

Top Doctors 2016: Innovation in Health and Medicine

Our annual feature of 700 physicians in 76 specialties

Health Heroes: Top Doctors 2015

699 physicians in 74 specialties. Plus, a look at local doctors going above and beyond the call of duty, changing the way medicine is practiced, and saving lives
Edit ModuleShow Tags
 
Find Doctors on ZocDoc
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

  1. First Look: Born & Raised
    Everyone said don't do a steakhouse. So the damn kids at Consortium Holdings did with Born & Raised—to the tune of seven million bucks.
  2. 47 Outdoor Dining Spots to Try in San Diego
    From ocean views, rooftops, and garden patios to simple sidewalk people-watching, we’ve rounded up the city's best outdoor dining spots
  3. The Vegan Fast Food Revolution
    From Evolution to Plant Power, two local vegans look to revolutionize fast food
  4. Adele Stratton Leaves Noble Experiment for Jaynes Gastropub
    Her first menu features light, crisp, approachable cocktails
  5. The San Diego Lager Boom
    Why light, crisp, and flavorful is the next “new” thing
  6. The Newcomer's Guide to San Diego
    Welcome to America’s Finest City! Here’s everything you need to know to feel like a local
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module

Connect With Us:

Edit Module Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags