Public Health England’s mission is “to protect and improve the nation’s health and to address inequalities”
The Director of Nursing at The Dept of Health Viv Bennett (@VivJBennett on twitter) states that
“All of the evidence shows that a healthy start for children is essential for health and well-being and for a healthy future. Ensuring a healthy start is a major public health priority”
Public Health England (@PHE_uk) have a web site full of resources and information click here
As a clinical midwife I promote immediate skin to skin contact between mothers and their newborn regardless of type of birh. It is imperative that health care professional do not preach to those they care for.
If you are with a woman who has given birth, quietly explain what is happening and put the emphasis on the intelligence of the newborn by highlighting certain behaviour and movements that the baby makes.
I’ve been a midwife for over 21 years yet I am still learning about a newborn’s instinctual behaviour. Midwives have a unique role – which other health professional is present at every birth? We have a wealth of knowledge and information to share with parents. It is part of our role to facilitate parents into gaining a thirst for this knowledge and focus on a partnership with families.
It is complex to visualise how something we do in the present moment could have an effect on our future health. Babies cannot communicate verbally but through highly intelligent behaviour they can move themselves and crawl towards their mothers breasts – an innate instinct – the desire to feed is imprinted into our DNA to aid survival. and it also facilitates the forming of a bond between the newborn and the birth mother.
#ifbabiescouldtalk is a hashtag I use on Twitter to try and make us all think differently about babies – in my eyes – a baby would choose skin to skin contact immediately at birth , a baby would choose to breast feed and a baby would choose to not have parents who smoke .
Perhaps what I’m trying to say for “Young people week of Action” let’s remember that babies become children-become teenagers-become adults and that by giving them the best possible start in life we are making the future brighter.
If you are interested in more information about Maternal and infant bonding this is a brilliant site written and maintained by Felicity Stockwell please click here – Felicity recommends that you go through the website at your own pace as there is a lot to take in
Apologies as this blog was lost in the ether so I had to rewrite today from my notes