No Baby Unhugged.
November 17th is World Prematurity Day, a day intended to raise awareness of the high rates of premature births worldwide.
When babies arrive early they’re sensitive, vulnerable and in need of care around the clock. And while medicine and machines are an important part of their treatment, hospitals are now discovering human touch and hugs are also a critical element of newborn care and development. But in some cases, moms aren’t always able to be there around the clock to provide skin-to-skin hugs. That’s why Huggies created No Baby Unhugged, an initiative designed to help hospitals ensure that all babies get the hugs they need, even when moms can’t be there.
No Baby Unhugged is very near and dear to my heart. I remember Little One’s early days and how I was not able to hold my newborn baby until she was almost two weeks old. I craved that contact with her, but because she was so fragile, she needed to be in her isolette, and not disturbed too much. It was one of the hardest experiences on me emotionally, because though I knew that it was for the best, all I wanted was to hold my baby.
I remember the day our primary nurse let me hold Little One and do skin-to-skin/kangaroo care with her for the first time. It was the happiest moment of my life.
I was at the hospital every day for the seventy-two days Little One spent in the hospital. I was there from 6AM to 10PM, so I could hold her, nurse her, change her, and just sit by her isolette.
Being in the NICU day in and day out can be exhausting. If moms of preemies are sick or having other children at home, it can be a challenge for them to spend their entire days and evenings in the NICU. This is why the No Baby Unhugged initiative is amazing.
The No Baby Unhugged initiative directly supports NICUs in providing premature babies with the hugs they need to thrive. Studies have shown skin-to-skin has numerous health benefits for all babies, including improved oxygen levels and pain tolerance, stabilized body temperatures, improved sleep, brain development and more. For premature babies, skin-to-skin also positively influences their short-term and long-term development.
Hugs are so much more valuable than people may think. When it comes to premature babies, that physical contact does so much for them.
Through the No Baby Unhugged program, Huggies has provided $50,000 in funding to two Canadian hospitals, with more planned. To-date, Huggies has partnered with Cape Breton Regional Hospital in Sydney, Nova Scotia and Southlake Regional Health Centre in Newmarket, Ontario, offering funding to cover hugging chairs and stations, along with dozens of Hugger Volunteers in the neonatal intensive care units to help ensure all babies get the hugs they need. Over 600 babies are admitted to these hospitals each year, where hundreds of hours of care are offered by trained volunteers. Take a look at the heart-warming videos below featuring true stories captured at the these No Baby Unhugged hospitals, which expose the reality of NICU care and how this initiative is helping families:
Become a No Baby Unhugged Mom and show your support. Visit nobabyunhugged.com.