The effects of combining kangaroo care and parental singing on premature infants' and parents' wellbeing and development of parent-infant relationship
After experiencing premature birth, fragile infants have to spend weeks and even months on the ward because of their medical needs. This can be stressful both for parents and infants and increase the risk of early interaction problems and difficulty in bonding. In this qualitative study I was interested to find out what kinds of experiences parents had with parental singing during kangaroo care. I was also interested in examining the nursing staff’s attitudes, observations and thoughts about using music on the ward. I conducted my study within a Kangaroo Families study on the L2 ward at Jorvi hospital, Espoo. My study consists of interviews from 4 mothers that participated in the Kangaroo Families study and of 15 questionnaire answers from the nursing staff. The results showed that parental singing had a positive effect on the premature infants' and parents' wellbeing by relaxing them and by making the development of the early interaction and bonding process easier. Parental singing gave empowering experiences to the parents as it helped them to be in the moment, connect emotionally with the infant, and to be actively involved with the infants' care. Parents found that singing was a natural way to be in contact and to create a soothing sound environment in the case of infant's distress. Furthermore, kangaroo care – combined with singing – was experienced as a more all-encompassing experience and it had a positive effect on bonding. In nurses’ experience, singing can be an effective way to relax infants and parents as well as to support the development of early interaction. ...
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