Kangaroo care does wonders for a tiny premature baby girl

Holding their baby for the first time is a tender moment that every parent-to-be looks forward to. When Angela and Michael Bakker’s daughter was born prematurely, they were going to have to wait an almost unbearable two weeks before they could hold her — and even then, it was only the hospital staff’s belief in “kangaroo care” that made it possible so soon.

Angela was at the 25-week mark when she went into labor. Naomi Joy didn’t even weigh one pound when she was born and unfortunately, babies born that early have scarcely better than a 50-50 chance of survival. Angela and Michael had to brace themselves for the worst while they hoped for the best. Thanks to the staff at the Renown Regional Medical Center’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit in Reno, Nevada, Naomi showed steady signs of improving as each day went by.

Although Naomi was doing well, her condition didn’t allow her to be held by her parents. The closest they could get was gently touching her and letting her touch them with her tiny hands, no bigger than an adult’s fingertip. But that was soon to change. The hospital believes that “kangaroo care,” skin-to-skin contact between a newborn and his or her mom (or dad), has important benefits, notably improved temperature regulation, more normal heart and breathing rates, a boost to the immune system, less stress, and better motor and cognitive development.

As you’ll see in the video posted below, it was a really special moment when Angela was finally able to have real contact with her tiny baby. Eight NICU staff carefully transferred Naomi from her incubator to her mom’s chest so they could cuddle. For the rest of her 4 months in the NICU, Naomi was able to regularly spend time receiving “kangaroo care” from both her parents.

What did you think of this wonderful example of “kangaroo care” in action? Let us know in the comments section below the video and be sure to like and share!