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What is the Golden Hour?

Updated: Jul 13, 2022

The golden hour is defined as an hour of uninterrupted time to do skin-to-skin and bond with your baby immediately after birth. Ideally, it is you and your partner marveling over what just happened and the sweet little baby you finally get to meet. Emotions may be mixed. Some parents feel and instant bond while for others it may take some time (this is totally normal).

Why is the golden hour important?

This timeframe allows you to get to know and bond with your baby a little bit, but skin-to-skin helps regulate your baby's temperature and facilities breast/chestfeeding. The release of oxytocin during skin-to-skin and breast/chestfeeding helps your uterus to contract back down. Research also shows us that skin-to-skin during the golden hour (and beyond) helps reduce stress in both the birthing person and baby.

What to expect during the golden hour?

  • You still have to birth your placenta

  • The umbilical cord will be clamped and cut

  • You will be examined for vaginal tearing and stitched up as necessary

  • You may need your BP and temperature taken during this time

  • Your baby's vitals will often be taken