Originally Posted by Melany
Assessments can be done with baby in your arms, weighing and measuring not so much. BUT, there is no reason you can't delay weighing and measuring. Baby is super alert right after birth and there is no reason that they can't wait to weigh baby until after baby is asleep. My OB was very supportive of that and it made a big difference in comparison to when the whisked my first away, gooped up his alert eyes so he couldn't see me, and handed me the baby buritto, discouraging me from unwrapping him. My daughter never left my chest and initiated nursing on her own 20 mins after she was born. They wiped her down, but no shots, eye gunk, weighing, measuring, or bath. The hospital was fine with it. The L&D nurse came back in about 2 hours later and baby was still asleep in my arms.
As the nurse who does all those annoying things to babies in the delivery room, I'll tell you that I LOVE skin to skin contact and immediate bonding with the mom. I try to keep the mom and baby (or babies!) together as much as I possibly can. I really dislike the "baby burrito" swaddle (which was commonplace in my hospital until I wrote a paper with journal articles discussing the safety and benefits of immediate skin to skin contact! And now everyone tries to get baby skin to skin in delivery room!!! Yay for small victories!).
And I agree that it is best to wait to do a newborn assessment/weight/measurements/footprints/ID bands/medications until after initial bonding and breastfeeding, but to be realistic, it's not always possible, depending on the busyness of the unit. I am supposed to attend every single delivery on the floor (which can be up to 8-9 births per 8 hour shift... My record is attending 4 births in an hour! CRAZY busy) which means that I cannot wait to get the ID bands and footprints done (Those must be completed before I can leave the room so that baby is identified to mom). It is really hard (and quite frankly annoying to the mom, haha, and very awkward) for me to do that stuff on her abdomen while she is getting cleaned and stitched. It usually works out well for me to take 10 minutes to get all that stuff done quickly and efficiently during the third stage (birth of placenta) and any perineal repair that needs to be done (on the radiant warmer) and then return the baby to mom's chest for uninterrupted time for breastfeeding and skin to skin after all that is done. Of course, I try to read the situation, and do what the mom wants. If baby is transitioning well (good apgars, no need for any resuscitation), I will wait a good 5 minutes or so and then just ask the mom if she wants me to take the baby for a weight and assessment or if she'd like me to wait a while longer. If she wants to wait, I respect that as much as I can. :) In my state, it is law for me to give the baby meds (erythromycin and vit k) within one hour of birth, so I can't wait *too long* anyway.
Of course, if this is your desire (to wait an hour or so before any baby stuff is done), It IS a very good idea to word that in your birth plan so that the newborn nurse knows ahead of time! :) :) Good points, Melany!
In the delivery room, I really have to get a GOOD look at the baby, head to toe. I am the first medical professional to look at the baby. If there was a problem that I missed, I would be in BIG TROUBLE. It is really hard to do a thorough check of the baby (for the initial assessment) while the baby is held, just my two cents. :) (I can do my assessment in a matter of only like two minutes, it doesn't take long and then baby goes right back on mommy's chest!! (where baby belongs!!!!)