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PSYC 2450 (267)
Chapter 5

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PSYC 2450
Anneke Olthof

PSYC 2450 - Chapter 5: Birth and the Newborn’s Readiness for Life  Prenatal environment – environment surrounding birth  First stage of labour – period of birth process lasting from the first regular uterine contractions until cervix us gully dilated  Second stage of labour – period of birth process during which fetus moves through the birth canal and emerges from the mother’s body (also called delivery)  Third stage – expulsion of the placenta (afterbirth) – takes 5 –10 minutes Baby’s Experience  Produce activating stress hormones that help them withstand oxygen deprivation by increasing their heart rate and flow of oxygenated blood to the brain  Not especially attractive when born – bluish from oxygen deprivation, may have flattened noses, misshapen foreheads, assortment of bumps and bruises  Look at 5 standard characteristics to assess infant – heart rate, respiratory effort, muscle tone, colour, reflex irritability  Apgar test – quick assessment of the newborn’s heart rate, respiration, colour, muscle tone, and reflexes that is used to gauge perinatal stress and to determine whether a neonate requires immediate medical assistance  Neonatal behavioural assessment scale (NBAS) – test that assesses a neonate’s neurological integrity and responsiveness to environmental stimuli – tests 20 inborn reflexes Labour and Delivery Medication  Mothers who receive large amounts of anesthesia often less sensitive to uterine contractions, don’t push effectively during delivery  Babies may have to be pulled from birth canal with obstetrical forceps (look like salad tongs) or vacuum extractor  Labour and delivery medications cross placenta – in heavy doses can make babies lethargic and inattentive  infants of heavily medicated mothers smile infrequently, are irritable and difficult to feed or cuddle for few weeks of life  now use less toxic drugs in smaller doses  natural and prepared childbirth – each involve delivery were physical and psychological preparations for birth are stressed and medical assistance minimized  caesarean section – surgical delivery of a baby through an incision made in mother’s abdomen and uterus  believe home deliveries reduce mothers fear and offer social support with presence of family or friends  alternative birth centre – hospital birthing room or other independent facility that provides a homelike atmosphere for childbirth but still makes medical technology available  some free standing, some part of hospitals  no more risky then in hospital  midwifery regulated profession The Social Environment Surrounding Birth  emotional bonding – describe strong affectionate ties that parents may feel towards their infant – some theorists believe strongest bonding occurs shortly after birth during sensitive period  mothers who had more interaction with babies appeared more involved and held them closer  still develop bonds if adopt child and don’t have early contact  postpartum depression – strong feelings of sadness, resentment, and despair that may appear shortly after childbirth and can linger for months  many severely depressed women don’t want their children and see them as difficult  lack of social support increases risk  fathers fears mounted during labour  new fathers experience engrossment – fathers fascination with neonates, including desire to touch, hold, caress and talk to newborn baby  father present at birth has closer contact and better bond Birth Complications  anoxia (oxygen deprivation)  lack of sufficient oxygen to brain  may result in neurological damage or death  nearly 1% babies born  umbilical cord squeezed during birth – when bab
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