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Your Healthy Family: UCHealth Memorial's Kangaroo-a-thon

Parker and Paisley are doing very well at the ripe old age of 2 weeks, thanks in part to UCHealth Memorial’s Kangaroo-a-thon. Parker and Paisley are doing very well at the ripe old age of 2 weeks, thanks in part to UCHealth Memorial’s Kangaroo-a-thon.
COLORADO SPRINGS -

When Nicolle Lewis-McTague held her new twins, son Parker and daughter Paisley who were delivered 8 weeks early it was an overwhelming experience.  

Nicolle says, “The first time I held them they had C-PAP machines on, and things to help them with their breathing.  There were cords going in and out of everywhere.  You're overwhelmed emotionally just to hold a new baby, but then as a mom to hold your baby for the first time but have all those cords, it really is overwhelming."

Parker and Paisley are doing very well at the ripe old age of 2 weeks, thanks in part to UCHealth Memorial’s Kangaroo-a-thon.  

Amanda Lupton is a registered nurse on the NICU at UCHealth Memorial, "Our Kangaroo-a-thon is a time where we try to get patients to hold their babies as much as possible, and we want them to be skin to skin.  Especially with Mom and Dad, but it can be with other family members as well"

Skin to skin contact for newborns has many benefits says Lupton.  “Babies have more stable vital signs, they have lower respiratory rates, they can have better heart rates, better body temperatures, and they are more stable.  Parents have an increased bond with their babies, they feel more attached and more competent to carry babies.  Moms can also have an increased milk supply from doing skin to skin care with their baby.”

Nicolle says, “As we lay together, their heartbeats synchronize.  It's it's just snuggle time.  It's a bonding time for them.  As they're laying here it helps their heart rate, and it helps their oxygenation level, and it helps everything that they need even their intestinal process.  We thought of the bonding time, but the more we sat with the nurses and actually learned what Parker and Paisley were getting out of skin to skin contact with us, it made it even better.  The time we hold them isn’t just snuggling, that's the best part, but it’s also helping them grow a little bit quicker, and get the things they need."

For 2 weeks, The Neonatal ICU at UCHealth Memorial has had every family tracking the minutes that babies are held skin to skin by family members.  As part of the Kangaroo-a-thon they set a goal of 25,000 minutes.  It’s a goal they met and as one small part of the effort, Parker and Paisley should be going home soon.

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