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Newborns and hats - Page 2

post #21 of 60
That's interesting...I never thought of that!

My hospital doesn't put hats on them....My son was swaddled when they brought him to me, but that was only because there was a lot of meconium in the fluid, so the NICU team checked him over and then he got cleaned up and weighed first.

The original plan (before the appearance of meconium) was to place him immediately on my chest, and I believe they said that they would wait a while before taking him to weigh him, etc.
post #22 of 60
there are some newer things being done for hypoxic infants in order to slow or prevent brain damage trials using cooling rather than heating --

so in addition to other more sensual reasons there may be some life saving/brain preserving reasons--
on the other hand at some point you may want to bundle /wrap or put a hat on a baby for warmth-the same way that parents eventually diaper or wrap a baby up- it just doesn't need to be immediately in most cases--
post #23 of 60
I always thought since the head is the largest body part of a newborn that a little hat would help keep the body heat in and normalize the little one's temperature.

Just a guess.
post #24 of 60
yes for years we have been quickly hatting infants in order to not loose precious body heat because it is true that body heat can be lost that way-and that infants especially thin and early have more of a need to be kept warm not much brown fat to burn for warmth-
except now fitting right in with all those hypotherma stories where children are revived after drowning in very cold water is the use of cold to protect from oxidative stress and brain swelling after a baby has been recuscitated--
vernix and fluids are in a baby's hair and that warmth attracts a mom to nuzzle it who knows what kind of aroma therapy is within that-- watch a mom, watch a mom and baby interact- not that direct stare but within the scope of your sight as you are doing paperwork- even when hatted they want to see how much hair and color and the soft spot.... then they tug the hat back on but with the hat off it is fingers and chin- a cheek some kisses, this is an area of attraction for mom -- I can even remember now that downy soft hair of my babies against my chin-- head touching is a very intimate thing.
now remember that Odent was always keeping his rooms warm for laboring moms- better pain management- he didn't want moms shivering - so infants that are not distressed are not having a great deal of heat loss- not as much as they loose when in an air conditioned hospital room where they are lined up and given baths and put in an isolet/not held by warm human body- and not being nursed- and a nursing baby is often like a little heat generator-
now I do think that given the widespread use of head covering world wide- even pre-missionaries that there is some degree of sensibleness and human desire to cover the head but within seconds of birth is just too fast in my estimation
post #25 of 60
I'm not convinced that hats are harmful. They might be unneccesary, i think they probably started the practice because of the old idea that being cold makes people (and babies) sick or more suspectible to sickness which isn't true. But I wouldn't fight nurses about putting a hat on my baby, I would rather choose my battles and enjoy my new baby. I just don't see the point in raising a big fuss about a hat when there are things like routine circumcision and newborn hepatitis B vaccinations going on.
post #26 of 60
Skin to skin is best- seems like all that wrapping insulates a baby from mommy warmth.
I can't keep a hat on my baby's head for too long even here in Alaska- she tears 'em off nonstop! I get the dirtiest looks/ comments from people if she's taken her hat off and thrown it...
post #27 of 60
interestingly here in the hospitals- it is a non-issue no hats are popped on to baby's heads after birth- can't remember if they provide one later-- after a bath..
post #28 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by mwherbs View Post
there are some newer things being done for hypoxic infants in order to slow or prevent brain damage trials using cooling rather than heating --
Yes, that is what I was referring to earlier, but you explained it better, thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mwherbs
not as much as they loose when in an air conditioned hospital room where they are lined up and given baths and put in an isolet/not held by warm human body- and not being nursed-
And that's what I was thinking in response to what Jessica was talking about. An awful lot of births in developing countries take place in hospitals or clinics that are not heated and the baby's had a bath and separated from the mother... in such a situation I would certainly be worried about the baby's heat loss. But not if the baby had never had a bath and was being held next to a warm body. I just seriously doubt that babies who are in contact with a human body are dying just because they don't have a hat on. The real issues are doubtless human contact, nutrition, sanitation, and access to antibiotics when needed.

I did use a hat on my babies who weren't covered directly after birth -- but only at night (our mattress is on the floor where it's colder, and the baby slept next to me but not skin-to-skin) and when we went out into cold weather. If it's cold enough for me to be bundled up, obviously it's cold enough for the baby to be bundled up. There's some common sense necessary there. But likewise if I'm warm and comfortable without bundling, the baby should be too if s/he is in contact with me.

Quote:
I'm not convinced that hats are harmful.
It made a huge difference to me in how I bonded to my babies, and now that I know that, it would be enough to raise a big stink about if I had to birth in a hospital. I know that's anecdotal, no big studies have been done to prove that there is a chemical reaction occurring. I'm just curious about what, in your experience, makes it so easy to discount it?
post #29 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by chiro_kristin View Post
Not wearing a hat, as Pam mentioned, allows the mom to kiss and touch that baby's head, and her instinctive directional stroking really will help align those cranial bones.
How does this happen? I have to admit I'm skeptical but interested. I remember stroking along the fontanels, feeling almost compelled to do it.
post #30 of 60
Interesting. I never even heard about hospital staff making newborns wear hats before. I live in the UK, and have had 3 babies born in hospital. None of them have had hats put on. I assume its something thats just not done over here. We don't have problems with babies losing heat and not being able to keep themselves warm.

I should add, that my mother in law is a whole different story. She told me and DP that our DD would die because we kept taking her out without a hat on. The thing is, she was born in July, one of the hottest months of the year! She wasn't talking about a sun hat either, she meant a big woolly hat. Strange woman.
post #31 of 60
About 4 hours after my son was born a nurse put a hat on him. He hated having it on, he'd fuss and knock it off and if I went to replace it he'd fuss more, so we didn't bother with it. It just wasn't practical for us, I was holding him and the room was warm enough anyway. And babies' heads smell so good, and are so kissable, why cover them up?
post #32 of 60
Today at my DONA-approved doula childbirth education class, we watched a video from University of Vienna (Austria) from 1995, showing 4 mothers as they labored & birthed in a birthing center.

And none of those babies wore a hat.

I don't think I would have noticed that detail if it were not for this current discussion.
post #33 of 60
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreeThinkinMama View Post
I'm not convinced that hats are harmful. They might be unneccesary, i think they probably started the practice because of the old idea that being cold makes people (and babies) sick or more suspectible to sickness which isn't true. But I wouldn't fight nurses about putting a hat on my baby, I would rather choose my battles and enjoy my new baby. I just don't see the point in raising a big fuss about a hat when there are things like routine circumcision and newborn hepatitis B vaccinations going on.

Here's what I know...

I was 18 and 20 yrs old when my oldest kids were born (now 10 and 14). I did not have the sense to ask so I would understand or speak up if I disagreed abotu ANYTHING. I simply went along with whatever the doctors and nurses told me to do or told me they were doing, etc.

Both births were SO mainstream...afterwards...I mean, although they were both hospital births, I did not have any pain meds or medical interventions during the labor and delivery (DID have the obnoxious countdown to push, but that was it--no meds, no IVs, no epis, etc).

However, after the babies were born--the machine went to work--washing, weighing, hatting, etc...And it never occurred to me to take that hat off. Not one time. It didn't occur to me that the presence of the hat was foreign to this very natural process.

Now, at age 32, I'm much more educated about pregnancy and childbirth and the issues that go along with it. I'm also not afraid to speak up for what *I* think is right for MY situation.

I missed out on this "intoxication" mothers speak of...I didn't nuzzle my older kids downy heads until I got them home. I didn't benefit from that intimate contact from the first moment...

Regardless of the possible medical implications of hat vs. no hat, I am developing a strong position that I DO NOT want extraneous people inserting themselves into our first moments after our baby is born (as a previous poster described). I do not want unnecessary barriers between my baby and me. I do not want anything to interfere with that immediate bonding process that happens in the moments just after birth...

And I never would have thought any of this important if I hadn't found this community and if I hadn't had a place to ask this question. LOL...so, I'm really thankful for that!

Of course, when I went to my husband (out of the blue while he was working on one of the new rooms we're adding to the house) and said, "I don't want them to put a hat on the baby when she's born", he looked at me like I was crazy...having no idea what I was talking about or where I was coming from...and I had a hard time trying to explain it...but now that I've written this post, I think I'll be able to make better sense.
post #34 of 60
This is why I love this forum. I had never even thought of this before, as as an L&D nurse, we always slap a hat on after the birth. But after reading this last night, I skipped the had with the baby born this morning. And it was lovely, mamas hand went right there. And the baby's temp was fine, the exact temp of her mom. Thanks for this post!
post #35 of 60
OMG, I love my midwife! I did get to enjoy those uninterrupted moments with my three kids thanks to HER. I never thought about these things before, and I never considered a home birth, but she made sure that my hospital births were wonderful, she made sure the doctor arrived after the babies were already there (ooops), she made sure that the babies were put directly on my breast with no hats/clothes to interfere with bonding, she made sure they stayed there for a very long time and relaxed until they felt like nursing to establish nursing right away, she made sure the babies did not get bathed (only one had too much blood on him and she helped DH bathe him), and then she made sure I went home two hours after birth (along the lines of "you're not sick, why do you want to be in a hospital?". I LOVE HER! I never realized how important all that was. Years on, I still savour those moments. Heck, I never realized this was not NORMAL!
post #36 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by fourlittlebirds View Post
Yes, that is what I was referring to earlier, but you explained it better, thanks!



And that's what I was thinking in response to what Jessica was talking about. An awful lot of births in developing countries take place in hospitals or clinics that are not heated and the baby's had a bath and separated from the mother... in such a situation I would certainly be worried about the baby's heat loss. But not if the baby had never had a bath and was being held next to a warm body. I just seriously doubt that babies who are in contact with a human body are dying just because they don't have a hat on. The real issues are doubtless human contact, nutrition, sanitation, and access to antibiotics when needed.

I did use a hat on my babies who weren't covered directly after birth -- but only at night (our mattress is on the floor where it's colder, and the baby slept next to me but not skin-to-skin) and when we went out into cold weather. If it's cold enough for me to be bundled up, obviously it's cold enough for the baby to be bundled up. There's some common sense necessary there. But likewise if I'm warm and comfortable without bundling, the baby should be too if s/he is in contact with me.



It made a huge difference to me in how I bonded to my babies, and now that I know that, it would be enough to raise a big stink about if I had to birth in a hospital. I know that's anecdotal, no big studies have been done to prove that there is a chemical reaction occurring. I'm just curious about what, in your experience, makes it so easy to discount it?
That's odd because both of my babies have worn hats and I managed to bond just fine with them.

even more amazing is that my first dd was bottle fed and my new baby boy is breast fed and I managed to bond with both of them the same! Go figure;P
post #37 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjanelles View Post
Here's what I know...

I was 18 and 20 yrs old when my oldest kids were born (now 10 and 14). I did not have the sense to ask so I would understand or speak up if I disagreed abotu ANYTHING. I simply went along with whatever the doctors and nurses told me to do or told me they were doing, etc.

Both births were SO mainstream...afterwards...I mean, although they were both hospital births, I did not have any pain meds or medical interventions during the labor and delivery (DID have the obnoxious countdown to push, but that was it--no meds, no IVs, no epis, etc).

However, after the babies were born--the machine went to work--washing, weighing, hatting, etc...And it never occurred to me to take that hat off. Not one time. It didn't occur to me that the presence of the hat was foreign to this very natural process.

Now, at age 32, I'm much more educated about pregnancy and childbirth and the issues that go along with it. I'm also not afraid to speak up for what *I* think is right for MY situation.

I missed out on this "intoxication" mothers speak of...I didn't nuzzle my older kids downy heads until I got them home. I didn't benefit from that intimate contact from the first moment...

Regardless of the possible medical implications of hat vs. no hat, I am developing a strong position that I DO NOT want extraneous people inserting themselves into our first moments after our baby is born (as a previous poster described). I do not want unnecessary barriers between my baby and me. I do not want anything to interfere with that immediate bonding process that happens in the moments just after birth...

And I never would have thought any of this important if I hadn't found this community and if I hadn't had a place to ask this question. LOL...so, I'm really thankful for that!

Of course, when I went to my husband (out of the blue while he was working on one of the new rooms we're adding to the house) and said, "I don't want them to put a hat on the baby when she's born", he looked at me like I was crazy...having no idea what I was talking about or where I was coming from...and I had a hard time trying to explain it...but now that I've written this post, I think I'll be able to make better sense.
I agree with the general point of your post, that women should stand up for themselves and their babies to avoid unneccesary interventions. I just don't see how putting a hat on them is the same as routine IV's and epis. My babies didn't wear the hats 24/7 anyway. it was usually at night when it gets colder and/or they're sleeping. so i wasn't prevented from stroking their hair and kissing their heads. if you think of the hat as a foreign object, why not the diaper and any other clothing we put on them? those things are functional. i see the hat as functional.
post #38 of 60
Interesting, i had DD in a hospital, and about an hour after she was born, they took her and DH to the nursery to weigh and measure her. In the nursery, they showed DH a box of knitted hats made by the women's club there, and he picked a gorgeous pink one. She only wore it for a couple of pictures, but i adore that hat. It's so small, and made with such love. i have it on display in my daughters room.
post #39 of 60
I can understand the reasons given for not wearing a hat immediately upon birth BUT,

I am ALWAYS cold. I see the shows on tv about birth and all I can think of is please hurry and put a blanket on the baby he/she is cold!

My rule is, If i'm cold, everybody's cold. I'm thinking of a hospital birth and know how cold hospitals are. I have even thought about bringing my own extra blanket or requesting about 3 blankets for my stay.

I have never given birth to my own child, but I have raised several foster newborns and i have had no trouble bonding with them, with or without the hat. I know that if I am going through 9 months, labor and birth, nothing as minor as a newborn hat is going to prevent me from bonding with my baby. I would be extremely worried about my baby being cold and that would inhibit my initial bonding if anything.

I guess I lean more towards the mainstream regarding birth although I would like no meds.
post #40 of 60
For some reason, a hat was never put on after the birth. However, one or two days later, the nurses had my ass for walking around with her in the hospital without one on. :

I just brushed it off as whatever, because they never offered me a hat either and I didn't have one with me. If it was that big of a deal they would have one to give.

I could honestly have cared less if a hat was put on after the birth. I had far more important things on my mind than a stupid hat. I certainally don't buy that it misshapes the skull more than pushing it out of my loins did.
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