If you’re pregnant or thinking about having a baby you’ve probably heard of delayed cord clamping, but do you know why it is important?
A baby and its placenta are attached from about one week after conception until the baby is born. The placenta is made from the fertilised embryo which means it has both parents’ DNA. This temporary organ sustains your baby during the pregnancy. It gives oxygen, removes toxins that could be harmful to your baby and gives your baby all the nutrients and minerals it needs to grow. It’s essentially your baby’s lifeline – the placenta is basically awesome!
Your baby and placenta share blood continuously, via the umbilical cord. In fact, at any one time, up to 40% of your baby’s blood is actually in the placenta. This is also the case when your baby is born.
The placenta’s final living job is to transfer all that nourishing, wonderful blood to the baby.
This process can take about 10 minutes. When the transfer is finished, the umbilical cord will stop pulsating and turn grey/white.
If you cut the cord too early this blood will stay in the placenta – which isn’t what the final mission of this amazing organ is supposed to be.
Delayed cord clamping means that the baby:
- Will receive more red and white blood cells.
- Will lose less weight after the birth.
- Will be more oxygenated – blood holds and circulates oxygen throughout the body, so the more blood your baby has, the oxygen your baby will have.
- Will receive more of their parents’ antibodies.
- Will experience a smoother transition from womb to world.
- Will not have to work as hard to produce the level of blood it needs outside of the womb.
Delayed cord clamping is a procedure that can be carried out for both vaginal and abdominal births.
This is one of many, many, many facts and information you’ll be taught on your course with The Positive Birth Group, as well as how to achieve and make this optimal cord clamping delay part of your afterbirth.