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What Babies Want [video]: Hospital Births, NICU, and Bonding


What Babies Want looks to be an interesting documentary, but I have to say I am a little annoyed by the trailer. Although it is true that most hospital birth practices interfere with bonding, I don’t really think babies bond with machines. Many of the images in the trailer are of babies in NICU. As a mother of one such child, we had no choice but to hook my son up to machines after open heart surgery. The NICU nurses were great about having my son in my arms and breastfeeding while still connected to all of those machines as soon as he woke up from surgery and was alert enough to feed.  Several days later, they even rolled a cot into the room so we could co-sleep.

The stereotypical scenario of a hospital birth is thankfully changing. Many birthing centers allow babies to room with mothers, but infant nurseries do still exist.  I have only experienced home births, so I cannot speak to personal experience about how a hospital birth may interfere with bonding.  I can say that the NICU nurses at UCSF understood the importance of skin-to-skin contact and were very supportive during out stay.

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