From Womb To World: Why Skin-to-Skin Contact Is Crucial

From Womb To World: Why Skin-to-Skin Contact Is Crucial

The welcome which a baby receives as she comes out of the womb and into the world has a lasting and profound impact on her overall health and well-being. 

The first hour is a crucial hour for the newborn as she is ejected from the comfort cocoon that was the womb into the cold and sterile hospital surroundings. Skin-to-skin contact with the mother at this stage helps to calm the baby. 

What exactly is skin-to-skin contact?

Skin-to-skin care, or “Kangaroo Care,” means placing the dried and unclothed baby on her mother’s bare chest with a light blanket covering the baby’s body. Routine check-up of the mother and the baby can be conducted during this period, or it can be postponed till later. 

Benefits of skin-to-skin contact:

  • Several research studies have conclusively shown that babies who are given skin-to-skin contact immediately post birth show better physiological stability. Human touch helps stabilize the newborn’s respiration, increases glucose levels, gives warmth and regulates blood pressure. 
  • An infant separated from the mother or the ‘host,’ experiences physiological and psychological withdrawal, in addition to the anxiety of being removed from a stable and warm environment. At this stage, skin-to-skin contact established with the mother goes a long way in soothing the baby. The reassuring contact eases the separation process as the child is released from the umbilical cord and graduates from being ‘one’ organism with the mother to ‘another’.
  • Oxytocin, or the ‘love hormone’ released during skin-to-skin contact helps mother and child bond better. Mothers who have cradled their newborn post birth are more likely to feel confident in their parenting abilities. Lack of skin-to-skin bonding and early separation of mother and baby may delay crucial maternal-infant bonding and may even negatively impact the mother’s response to her baby. 
  • Another very powerful and positive impact of establishing skin-to-skin contact after birth is that it facilitates breastfeeding. Mammals are born with the instinctive urge to breastfeed. When placed against the mother as soon as they are born they are able to find the breast and self-attach. Research shows that women who had skin-to-skin contact with their naked babies right after birth breastfeed longer and typically breastfeed months longer than mothers who did not get a chance to establish this contact. 

Undoubtedly, the benefits of mother and baby skin-to-skin contact are manifold and far-reaching. Perhaps it is time to consider introducing this age-old tradition back in the modern delivery process. Hospitals and clinics must actively make use of this ‘golden hour’ or the first sixty minutes immediately post birth. Skin-to-skin contact should be established immediately after birth and should last for at least sixty minutes. This is a no-cost initiative which positively affects maternal and child outcomes. 

Skin-to-skin bonding is a natural process which, over the years somehow de-linked from the clinical birthing process. Now is the time to actively introduce it back in the delivery and childbirth process.

Skin-to-skin contact is not yet very common in India. Now is the time to lobby to bring it into the mainstream! Did you get to have skin-to-skin contact with your baby right after delivery? Share your delivery story with us at and be featured on our website!



Team Together
30 May 2017

5 Conditions That Endanger Childbirth

5 Conditions That Endanger Childbirth

Their appearance is a red flag.

Conditions you may never have had before can develop during your pregnancy. It is absolutely vital that these conditions be diagnosed as early as possible, as they could lead to a high-risk pregnancy and seriously affect the birth. They can determine whether you have a normal delivery or a Caesarian (C-section). Moreover, their effects may persist or manifest long after you have given birth.

  1. Haemorrhage: Uncontrolled Bleeding During Pregnancy or Birth:

Severe blood loss during pregnancy, labour or the post-partum period is alarming and the number one threat to maternal health.[1] If you experience vaginal bleeding during pregnancy, immediately bring it to the attention of a doctor.  During childbirth, bleeding can be treated with blood transfusions and/or manual removal of the placenta. “Oxytocics” are drugs which induce uterine contractions and they may also be used to stop the bleeding.

  1. Hypertension: High Blood Pressure During Pregnancy or Birth:

You may never ever have had high blood pressure in your life. But if it makes an appearance during pregnancy, it needs careful monitoring as it could be a sign of “pre-eclampsia.” If left untreated, pre-eclampsia can lead to eclampsia and raise a high risk of seizures, kidney failure and even coma. In the worst case, eclampsia can even be fatal for the mother and/or infant.[2]

Fortunately, pre-eclampsia can be detected during pregnancy and pre-emptive measures taken. Monitoring blood pressure during every prenatal check-up, conducting a through physical examination, screening for protein in the urine and generalized swelling (edema) are important to detect pre-eclampsia.  During childbirth, sedative or anti-convulsant medication can also be administered.

  1. Pregnancy-related Infections:

At the clinic or in daily life, when it comes to hygiene, the bar must be set high. Poor hygiene and a disregard for infection control practices can really stack up the risks for infection (sepsis) during pregnancy and childbirth. Moreover, care must be taken to prevent and treat sexually transmitted infections during pregnancy. Rigidly following infection control protocols, conducting appropriate prenatal testing, and use of intravenous (IV) or intramuscular (IM) antibiotics during childbirth and the post-partum period keeps infections in check.

  1. Prolonged or obstructed labour:

In other words, the stuff childbirth horror stories are made of! In some cases, it’s a size thing: a disproportion between the size of the baby’s head and the mother’s pelvis (Cephalopelvic disproportion a.k.a. CPD) at the time of delivery. Or, it could be the position of the foetus. This is when assisted vaginal delivery methods such as forceps extraction, vacuum, or a Caesarian section (C-section) need to be employed.

  1. Anaemia During Pregnancy and Birth:

One in two women in India (an estimated 56%) suffers from some form of anaemia, regardless of socioeconomic background.[3] In pregnancy and childbirth, a haemoglobin count of less than 8 g/dl is regarded high risk. Anaemia associated with pregnancy is a weird chicken-and-egg situation: anaemia in the mother can lead to poor foetal development. Then, complications during the birth, such as bleeding, can be a risk factor for anaemia. Screening for anaemia and its management through an iron-rich diet or iron supplements, therefore, are crucial.

Obstetric conditions like these, unfortunately, have consequences beyond childbirth. Learn about the lasting effects they can have on your quality of life.

Did you experience one or more of these conditions during pregnancy and/or childbirth? Share with us at and be featured on  our website!


  1. Felippi V, Chou D et al. Levels and causes of maternal morbidity and mortality
  2. Causes of Maternal Mortality
  3. Kaur, K. Anaemia, a ‘silent killer’ among women in India: Present scenario

Team Together
21 Aug 2017

Pregnancy and Everyday Travel

Pregnancy and Everyday Travel

Travelling during pregnancy is one of the trickiest things to do – We, Indian women, are very superstitious when it comes to travelling during pregnancy and most of us would even stop travelling to keep our babies safe. Healthcare professionals worldwide have always maintained that travelling in pregnancy isn’t really a risky thing,  in fact, doctors say that in the first trimester, travelling by any mode is safe. But we can always be cautious. 
One must remember that as the pregnancy progresses, the joints are less stable and the centre of gravity is altered and the bump tends to overbalance the pregnant woman.

Let’s discuss these modes of travel and see what precautions need to be taken:

1. Two wheelers: Riding a two-wheeler is safe in the first trimester because the body hasn’t undergone major changes. After 12 weeks, when the body weight increases, this mode of travel is risky. It is also because of the unruly traffic and bumpy roads everywhere. Precaution to be taken:  while riding pillion, sit with legs on both sides as compared to sitting sideways. 

2. Three wheelers/Auto-rickshaw: Considerably a safer option, as it is covered from all sides unlike a two-wheeler and is one of the most preferred options of travel. However, one should still keep in mind the bumps and the traffic and ask the driver to mind these.

3. Bus (Public Transport): Most pregnant mothers prefer travelling by buses as they are safe and more relaxing as compared to other modes.  Also, it is the cheapest way of going from one destination to another. One must keep in mind, to not travel during peak hours, to choose ladies special buses, if available. Getting down and boarding is bus may prove to be tricky as the pregnancy progresses, so it is important to take help from co-passengers. You can always ask fellow passengers to give you a seat. 

4. Trains: A lot of pregnant women prefer commuting by train to work nowadays as well. In fact, it is safer to travel on the train unless it is the peak travel hour when it is a little tricky. Trains allow more movement as compared to other modes of transport and offer one the chance to relax and even put their feet up in case of tiredness/numbness/stiffness. A train travel also means there is no chance of encountering traffic so it is easier to reach the destination on time. For a long distance travel, a woman must be careful while washing the washroom in the train- preferably go to the washroom when the train is at a station or is moving slow.

5. Cars/Cabs/Taxis: One of the biggest challenges while commuting to work in a car are the bumpy, narrow roads. It makes this mode of travel risky. Having said that, it can’t be denied that it is a comfortable mode as well. A pregnant woman should carry a cushion/soft clothes that will help back-pain during car travels. Also, driving after the second trimester isn’t advised because the bump grows bigger and it is an uncomfortable position.

6. Aeroplane: An expensive mode of travel but is also the fastest. Travelling in the first trimesters are as safe as one can expect. After 28 weeks (beginning of the third trimester), flight requires a certificate from the doctor.  A pregnant woman may experience nausea/breathlessness during air travel, so it is advisable to sip water every few minutes. It is also advisable to ask for an aisle seat, towards the rear as it is easier to get up from there and walk to the washroom.W

How has been your experience with travelling? Do you have anything that we haven’t shared here? Write to us at!

Team Together
18 Dec 2018

गर्भावस्था में अपने चिकित्सक से पूछे जाने वाले प्रश्नों की सूची

गर्भावस्था में अपने चिकित्सक से पूछे जाने वाले प्रश्नों की सूची

जब हम गर्भधारण करते है, हमारे मन में बहुत सारे सवाल होते है जिसका हम जवाब ढूंढते हैं। पर जब हम हर महीने डॉक्टर के पास जांच के लिए जाते है, तो हमे याद नहीं रहता कि हमे क्या पुछना था। ऐसे में अगर कोई हमे सबसे अधिक पूछे जाने वाले सवाल की सूची दे दे तो कितना अच्छा हो।हमने दस डॉक्टरों से बात करी और ये जाना कि कौन से सवाल है जो ज़्यादातर औरतें पुछती है और यह वह सूची है

भोजन पर प्रतिबंध:  अक्सर ऐसा देखा गया है कि गर्भावस्था में औरतों को ये चिंता रहती है कि क्या वो सबकुछ खा सकती है। ये सबसे अहम सवाल है जो हर होने वाली माँ डॉक्टर को पुछती है

कौन से व्यायाम करें और कौन से ना करें- ये अपने डॉक्टर से पूछ लें ताकि बाद में कोई गड़बड़ ना हो।

वाहन का उपयोग कौन से वाहन से सफ़र करे, किसमें क्या सावधानी बरतें, ये सब पूछ लेना चाहिए

4  चाय कॉफी का सेवन। आप दिन में कितने कप चाय/कॉफी पी सकती है या हरी चाय, ये पहले डॉक्टर से पूछ लें एंड उसको अमल करें

5 आपातकालीन स्थिति में कौन सी दवाई खाये, सरदर्द, उल्टी या उबकाई मैं, ये डॉक्टर को ज़रूर पूछ लें

6 बहुत सारी महिलाओं को प्रेगनेंसी में  दर्द रहता है और कभी कभी ब्लीडिंग भी होती है। अपने डॉक्टर को पूछ लें कि कब ये सब साधारण अवस्था है

कितना वजन बढ़ना चाहिए और कितना आवश्यक है। हर औरत का शरीर अलग होता है और सबका वजन वृद्धि दर भिन्न होता है। इसीलिए इस बारे में चिंता करने से पहले डॉक्टर की सलाह ले ले

संभोग संबंधित जानकारी डॉक्टर से प्राप्त करे।

9 कौन सी दवाई खानी है, कौन से टेस्ट कराने है और कौन से टीके लगवाने है, ये सब डॉक्टर के सही समय पर पूछ लें

10 पार्लर जाना, बालों में कलर(रंग) लगाना, वैक्सिंग करना- इन सबके बारे में जानकारी ले ले

11 मैं कब तक काम कर सकती हूं– ये अवश्य पूछ लें। आपकी स्थिति के आधार पर डॉक्टर आपको इस बारे में सलाह देंगी

12 डॉक्टर कौन से अस्पताल में डिलीवरी के लिये उपलब्ध है, ये पूछ कर अपने अस्पताल का चयन करें

Team Together
27 Dec 2018

एक गर्भवती माँ की अस्पताल बैग: क्यों? कब? कैसे?

एक गर्भवती माँ की अस्पताल बैग: क्यों? कब? कैसे?

एक गर्भवती माँ के लिए अपना अस्पताल का बैग पैक करना आवश्यक ही नही बल्की एक भावनात्मक लगाव है। हर माँ अपने बच्चे के लिए सबसे बेहतरीन चीज़ें देना चाहती है और इसका प्रभाव सबसे ज्यादा अस्पताल बैग में देखा जाता है।पर ऐसा अक्सर देखा गया है कि उसमें से आधी चीज़ें भी उपयोग में नही आती। इससे भी बड़ी चुनौती ये है कि भारतीय संस्कृति में बच्चे के जन्म से पहले उसके लिए किसी भी प्रकार की खरीदारी नही करते। इसीलिए हम अपना ध्यान केंद्रित करेंगे माँ के बैग पर।

  • क्यों चाहिए एक माँ को ये अस्पताल की बैग : आज कल हर अस्पताल में सब कुछ मिलता है पर हर औरत के लिए उनकी व्यक्तिगत चीज़ें ज़्यादा महत्वपूर्ण होती है। जैसे की कपड़े, चप्पलें, तौलिया इत्यादि। ये चीज़ो से एक औरत खुश महसूस करती है
  • ये बैग कब पैक करे? नौंवा महीना शुरू होते ही बैग भर के तैयार रखनी चाहिए, इससे ये होगा कि अगर अचानक डिलीवरी के लिए जाना पड़ा तो ये ना सोचना पड़े कि क्या क्या ले कर जाए। इतनी जल्दी पैक करना का फायदा ये भी होगा कि आपके पास बहुत समय रहेगा कि आप बैग को खोल कर वापस से अपनी आवश्यकता के हिसाब से वापस से पैक कर पाएंगी।  इसी बात पर एक और सवाल ये उठता है कि आप ब्रेस्टफीडिंग(स्तनपान) संबंधित कपड़े कब ख़रीदे। डॉक्टरों का कहना है कि सातवें महीने में एक गर्भवती महिला का शरीर जैसा होता है, डिलीवरी के बाद वैसा लगता हैं। इसीलिए सातवें महीने में लिए हुए कपड़े की फिटिंग सर्वोत्तम होती है।
  • पैक कैसे करें:  डिलीवरी के बाद २-३ दिन तक एक माँ दौड़ भाग नही कर सकती और ऐसे में किसी को समझना बहुत कठिन हो जाता है कि कौन सी चीज कहाँ रखी नही है। इसीलिए जब आप अपना बैग पैक करे तो परिवार के किसी सदस्य को समझा दीजिये कि कौन सा समान कहाँ रखा है। या तो फिर किसी और से पैकिंग करवाइये तो उन्हें ध्यान रहेगा कि उन्होंने समान कहाँ रखा है।

क्या आपने अपना बैग पैक किया था? आपने क्या और कैसे पैक किया था?

Team Together
04 Jan 2019