New research: Benefits of skin-to-skin contact DURING a C-section

Toni Harman
7 min readNov 15, 2022

Parenting info: New study finds that if mothers are supported to have skin-to-skin contact during a C-section (within 5 minutes of a baby being born), women have a positive experience, with improved bonding and breastfeeding, and feel less anxiety and depression.

  • Want to know why skin-to-skin is so important for human health? We’ve just held our first international conference on the infant microbiome aimed specifically at birth/breastfeeding professionals. The conference featured 20+ scientists and maternity experts.
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Parenting info: Benefits of skin-to-skin contact between mothers and babies during C-section
New research: Benefits of skin-to-skin contact DURING a C-section. http://microbiomecourses.com

Why this matters to me?

As a mum of a baby born by C-section, I wish I had known that it could have been possible to have skin-to-skin contact with my newborn baby DURING the C-section birth.

As it was, I didn’t hold my baby until I was in the recovery room — so probably about 30-45 minutes after my baby was born. And there was no support to enable skin-to-skin contact or to inititate breastfeeding.

Now new research from Australia finds that women who were supported to have skin-to-skin contact DURING their elective caesarean birth (within five minutes of their baby being born):

  • Took less time for the first feed (and less time for the first breastfeed)
  • Had a positive experience, with improved bonding, less anxiety and depression than with a previous caesarean birth.

The research by Sheedy GM et al., was published in Women and Birth in November 2022

More details about the study are below, plus my take-home message (rant) are below.

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  • Want to know why skin-to-skin is so important for human health? We’ve just held our first international conference on the infant microbiome aimed specifically at birth/breastfeeding professionals. The conference featured 20+ scientists and maternity…

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Toni Harman

I help parents and health professionals better understand the science of pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding and the microbiome. https://linktr.ee/toniharman