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Unhappy vs content: weighing of newborns

Posted Jun 16 2010 9:59am
You know me, always thinking about being more mother-baby friendly. I just thought of something recently: how we weigh newborn babies. Normally, they are placed on a thin paper cover on top of the scale, lying supine, like this

(Note to HIPPA police: this were random images found on google search - none were pictures taken by me, nor were they at my hospital).

What is the common denominator with these photos? These babies are crying/unhappy!! Why are they crying and unhappy? Because (obviously) they are cold, away from their mothers, and are lying in supine positions, which stimulates the moro and startle reflexes, which then make them = CRY!

How can we do this more humanely?

(Once again: pictures borrowed from the web, from WebMD - first picture, and from Amaze Studios - second picture.)

What an amazing difference! These babies are lying prone (on their bellies), with something very soft underneath them. They are not crying and they are instinctively lying in a fetal position, which is very comforting for them.

Personal nursing goal: start weighing newborns on multiple layers of soft blankets, with them lying prone.

Proposed outcome: newborns in the prone position while being weighed, lying on soft blankets, will be more content, with decreased startle reflex, as evidenced by reduced or absent crying.

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