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CS and Skin to Skin

(37 Posts)
Writerwannabe83 Wed 05-Feb-14 19:09:37

Can I ask how quickly those of you who have experience of CS were allowed skin to skin?

I always thought you were given the opportunity ASAP but the lady doing one of my antenatal classes last night implied that with CS the first 'real' prolonged skin to skin and attempted first feed session can be delayed for hours shock

It also worries me that on TV programmes after a CS the baby is always wrapped in a towel and then given to mom (whilst she's being stitched up etc) and she is advised to put baby down the front of her hospital gown. But it isn't skin to skin when the baby's in a towel is it?!

I'm having a CS in 6 weeks and feeling genuinely anxious about missing out on such an important stage sad

yonisareforever Wed 05-Feb-14 19:25:27

its going to b different wheerever you go.

when you have your CS clerking....they should b able to tell you. I was told no, but had her next to me whole time, and very soon after birth she was with me happily feeding in recovry.

yonisareforever Wed 05-Feb-14 19:27:36

BTW I was told no s to s, because of hte cold....i really cant see why feeding would be dlayed for hours unless thre was a proble,m

MakesAMessWhenStressed Wed 05-Feb-14 19:35:51

Having had a C Section last time I have decided that, should I need a C Section next time I will insist on a 'natural' C-section where at all possible. Might be worth researching this. I wish I had known about it then, it may have helped heal some of the (emotional) pain of having to have an EMCS in the first place.

Ladyhaha Wed 05-Feb-14 19:40:46

I've had two sections - 1 emergency and 1 elective and had skin to skin during both (as they were stitching me up), then had another chance in recovery.

theborrower Wed 05-Feb-14 20:57:14

She was wrapped in a towel and handed to DH, I got to hold her in the recovery room. I doubt I could have held get on the table though, felt a bit flat out. If I have another I will definitely ask if its possible, but maybe it's a hospital policy thing.

andadietcoke Wed 05-Feb-14 21:02:02

With my DTs I didn't get to hold either until recovery. DT2 was taken to NICU but DT1 was fine, and I had skin to skin in recovery and fed her there.

SmileAndNod Wed 05-Feb-14 21:07:10

I've had two sections. I had skin to skin and first feed during my elective whilst I was stitched up. Didn't manage it with the emergency, but it was late at night, I had gone into a fast labour and I was shaking a lot after she was delivered. I did try but felt too wobbly. Managed it fine and fed her in recovery. Was wheeled back to the ward with her still under my gown.

I think it depends, and they often cite theatres being cold (which they are) but I would definitely ask and put it in your birth plan if you feel strongly about it, the baby can always be skin to skin with towels over the top. Your body is a lot warmer than a towel!

MrChow Wed 05-Feb-14 21:13:12

Nobody can tell you that you're not allowed to have skin to skin! If anything the excuse of being cold is rubbish, skin to skin is beneficial for baby's temp.

The hospital I work in, and had my last baby in promotes it together with the anesthetic team (as they used to be the ones who'd get twitchy, now we've a lovely female consultant aneas who's worked with us) and baby goes to mum if all is ok, and she wants skin to skin of course. Personally I don't even take the baby to the resuscitare unless needed, baby placed in cot, I wheel cot to mum and partner and then pop a hat on and ask mum if she wants S2S, if not dad/birthing partner can.

My last baby born by cs, we had immediate skin to skin. It was amazing.

AHardDaysWrite Wed 05-Feb-14 21:16:14

I wanted it and would have been able to have it in theatre, but when it came to it, the drugs they were giving me gave me the shakes so I couldn't hold her immediately. It was fine though - DH held her right next to me, and I had hours of skin to skin in recovery and got feeding established straight away. I don't feel on hindsight that I missed out by not having skin to skin in theatre - I had it within an hour of her birth.

DontmindifIdo Wed 05-Feb-14 21:20:48

It was about 30 minutes before I could hold her, but DD was handed to DH straight away and he held her cheek against mine while I was stitched up.

callamia Wed 05-Feb-14 21:25:12

Everyone I know who had a CS was given their baby straight away.

I had a straightforward birth, but my baby needed to be taken to nicu with fluid on his lungs, so skin to skin was delayed by a few hours. Nothing awful happened as a result - four months later, we still have tops off mornings in bed together.

CrispyFB Wed 05-Feb-14 21:59:59

It really does depend on not just the hospital, but the personal preference of the doctor doing the surgery (and a lot of the time it's not the consultant you see for appointments either)

So frustratingly it is luck of the draw angry

Like you I want instant skin to skin.

First c-section was an EMCS and I didn't know to ask for it.

Second was an ELCS and I forgot to put my gown on right, otherwise I'd have probably got it. Instead I got to cuddle DS on top of my gown with a towel over the top whilst I was being stitched up (Chelsea and Westminster for the record)

Having DC4 at Watford.. the one consultant I've spoken to seemed open about a lot of things of that nature but I have been switched to another one now so who knows..

Writerwannabe83 Thu 06-Feb-14 08:56:17

Thanks everyone - I'm seeing my Consultant at the end of this month so I will discuss it further with her. I will also be asking if she'll be the one performing the procedure, fingers crossed she will be but I won't hold my breath. If I can't hold the baby straight away then I definitely want it to go to DH, I can't bear the thought of him being bought and just left in a crib on his own for ages.

CrispyFB Thu 06-Feb-14 10:16:57

They'll usually hand the baby over to someone if you ask.. although we did have to for both DC1 (natural birth) and DC2 (EMCS).. they seemed to assume we were happy leaving baby on their own in the crib. Um!!!!

They always seemed a little surprised when we asked so I'm wondering who these parents are that apparently are happy to leave their baby alone in a crib post birth. Isn't that, well, the point of pregnancy and birth? The baby?! Was there something else the parents needed to be doing?!

oscarwilde Thu 06-Feb-14 10:35:39

In recovery. My DH held our daughter and we then had skin to skin and a first feed in the recovery room with a very nice midwife who helped me to breastfeed while lying flat on my back.
To be honest though, I'd been two days in labour and it's all a bit of a blur. I must have drifted off after the delivery and first look in DH's arms, I have no recollection at all of an elapsed time while I was stitched up.
If it is very important to you and it's a schedule ELCS, then just say that you want to do it and take no arguments. Provided there are no complications with you or the baby (may need airway cleared initially for example) then there is no reason not to and you should simply state that fact and let them find a reason. Make sure your DH is aware as the team will need reminding when you are wheeled in to surgery.

BrunoBrookesDinedAlone Thu 06-Feb-14 11:08:04

One EMCS and one ELCS, both times baby was wrapped loosely in a towel, I had my gown on with the ties at the front so they could be opened, I had baby straight away and could open the towel a little so baby's head and front were skin to skin with me, helped by DH kind of supporting baby in place. Fed as soon as got to recovery. Both bf successfully.

For the ELCS I made sure I asked about immediate skin-to-skin (or at least holding baby straight away as described) and this was met with a yes of course, as soon as essential checks done baby will come straight to you. Ask about this and if you get any query my next question would be can you refer me on to a hospital which can ensure this!

You know that you can phone the hospital and check who is doing the meeting - is it your own consultant and the one who will be doing the birth? Prior to my ELCS I was booked for meeting with ?registrar. I politely asked that I would very much prefer to have some specific questions answered by the consultant. They were able to rearrange the appt so that I could see the cons herself. It didn't seem to be an issue.

I was very VERY clear that I expected to be supported to have contact straight away and to feed in recovery, and that as a Baby Friendly accredited hospital I fully expected this to happen. Google this, a 'baby friendly' hospital should be making every effort to promote breastfeeding and immediate skin to skin and support to feed straight away is part of that.

Good luck. My CSs were absolutely fine.

Writerwannabe83 Thu 06-Feb-14 11:20:29

At what point did you all have these meetings where your birth plan and wishes were discussed? And who attended? I know normally the a Community Midwife discusses and documents your birth plan in your pregnancy notes, does the same apply for ELCS? My CS is happening 6 weeks on Monday and I still feel completely clueless about it all. I have done my own research etc but nobody from the hospital has actually sat me down and gone through the procedure and explained the logistics of the day etc? Or is this something that happens nearer to the time?

AJH2007 Thu 06-Feb-14 11:45:05

Where I am (South London) it's an appointment with the consultant to confirm CS plan at 36 weeks, then a clinic with midwife and - I think - consultant/anaesthetist the day before the op. The clinic is where you ask questions re skin to skin etc.

CrispyFB Thu 06-Feb-14 13:24:18

I've been told I'll be discussing mine next week when I'm 34 weeks.

If you haven't already, look into gentle/natural c-sections. Gives you an idea of the kind of things you might like to ask for.

oscarwilde Thu 06-Feb-14 15:18:00

Writer - if you go private then you can discuss it with the consultant as they'll be the person doing the CS. In the NHS, I think they rely on you speaking up on the day as you won't see any of the same people in hospital that you have seen during your pregnancy (and if you do, they won't remember you). SE London here.

I had an appointment about a week before my ELCS (circa 37+5) to go to the hospital for a pre-op chat. Presumably to tell me not to have a steak sandwich for breakfast etc etc. Had to call them from the ward to tell them I'd had an unplanned VBAC the night before and I wouldn't be needing the apt later in the week.

AngelaCatalano Thu 06-Feb-14 19:20:59

I held DD pretty much straight away, and then had proper skin to skin and BF in recovery very soon after.

herethereandeverywhere Thu 06-Feb-14 20:29:15

It won't be 'hours' unless your baby requires some sort of additional medical care/ SCBU (which is unlikely unless baby is prem or has a known medical condition).

I carried DD on the way from theatre to recovery then tucked her inside my gown in recovery, it was the best thing ever (much better than the 'skin to skin' after my VB - whole other story!)

You will come across people who are CS skeptics (perhaps without even realising it) and will enjoy letting you know what the down sides can be.

CS are very safe and widely practised and chances are you'll skin to skin well within the first hour of her life. Enjoy your CS, it will be calm and careful and wonderful x (PS not sure if you're planning on bf but if you are then I had no probs at all after ELCS - unlike after prolonged labour with DD1 where we were both so knackered and traumatised there was no milk and no effort from baby)

Writerwannabe83 Fri 07-Feb-14 09:28:36

Thanks everyone - hopefully my Consultant will go through it all with me at my next appointment. I want skin to skin almost immediately although I do know baby has to be checked over. I will research into Natural CS seeing as it has been suggested a few times. I've had a crappy pregnancy so I want the birth to be as close to perfect as it can be smile

Meglet Fri 07-Feb-14 09:37:19

There's a photo on my profile (last one I think) of me having skin to skin with DD after my planned section. TBH it was a bif fiddly and I didn't feel comfortable doing it because I was shaky after the op. I held her for a couple of minutes then passed her back to her dad to look after. Once I was in the high dependency unit an hour later it was much easier to hold her and bf was easy unlike the bf carnage of her older brother.

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