Delayed Cord Clamping

To all the lovely yoga mums, hello and welcome to jen’s blog.

Following on from our discussions last Wednesday evening with Meg about placenta’s I thought we could explore a simplistic look at how women have birthed their babies and placenta’s since time immemorial…

I like to think of a cave women giving birth. Once her baby is out, she and her birth attendants would pick the baby up and put him to the mums breast. The mumma would cuddle her baby and keep him warm. All the attending birth assistants would smile and enjoy the beautiful scene. Then at some point the umbilical cord would be cut, possibly using a sharp rock.

When the time came, with no apparent measure of time, the mumma would deliver the placenta. During this natural time gap, the baby’s heartbeat would of continued to circulate blood throughout the baby’s body, the umbilical cord and placenta. Over the course of several minutes, the quantity of blood in the baby, while low immediately after birth, would have returned to normal. After several more minutes,  post delivery changes would cause the vessels in the cord to clamp down, naturally sealing the baby off from the placenta and keeping the baby’s blood entirely within its body. The cord would then stop pulsating… So, the baby that is allowed to remain attached to the cord until it stops pulsating on its own ends up with a much higher red cell count than one that is immediately disconnected. This improves iron status and reduces the need for dietary iron early in life. It is actually thought that breast milk may be low in iron simply because babies who don’t have their cords cut early don’t need supplementary dietary iron early in life.

Are you in favor of delayed cord clamping?



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