5 Benefits of Delayed Cord Clamping

5 Benefits of Delayed Cord Clamping | Baby Chick

5 Benefits of Delayed Cord Clamping

While preparing your birth plan for your baby’s big day, you may have stumbled upon the option of delaying the umbilical cord clamping after the birth of your baby. But what does that mean? What is delayed cord clamping? And what are the benefits and risks of doing it? Here are the different answers to those questions to help you choose if delayed cord clamping is something for you and your baby.

What is Delayed Cord Clamping?

It depends on who you ask…

World Health Organization (WHO):

According to the World Health Organization, delayed clamping is when the cord is cut 1-3 minutes after the birth of baby–a practice they recommend for all births.

Royal College of Midwives:

Some practitioners believe that the 1-minute mark is too early. They recommend extending the time to approximately 3-minutes. In this statement, the Royal College of Midwives say that “delaying for even one-minute is a welcomed change . . . However as transfusion is known to continue during the first 3 to 5-minutes of life, it is suggested that this process is allowed to complete without being interrupted.”

NOTE: Placental transfusion is the system that provides the baby with red blood cells, stem cells, immune cells and blood volume. Delayed cord clamping allows time for the placental transfusion, ensuring safe oxygen levels and blood volume in the baby.

International Childbirth Education Association:

The International Childbirth Education Association states that “Delayed cord clamping (DCC) is a practice by which the umbilical cord is not clamped or cut until after it stops pulsating. It may also include not clamping or cutting the umbilical cord until after the placenta is delivered.”

As I stated before, the answer of ‘what is delayed cord clamping’ differs from person-to-person. In my opinion, Penny Simkin describes it very well as well as some of the benefits in this video below:

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Screen Shot 2019-12-10 at 8.32.46 PM

Many families are now choosing to delay the cord clamping for their baby. Before you make a decision, let’s go over the benefits and risks of delaying this procedure.

Benefits of Delayed Cord Clamping

There have been many studies proving multiple benefits of delayed cord clamping for the baby.

1. Neurodevelopmental Benefits

“It’s incredible to see what a difference an extra 3-minutes and one-half cup of blood can have on the overall health of a child, especially four years later,” the lead author of this study, Dr. Ola Andersson, told CNN.

In this study, researchers found that “A couple of extra minutes attached to the umbilical cord at birth may translate into a small boost in neurodevelopment several years later … Children whose cords were cut more than 3-minutes after birth had slightly higher social skills and fine motor skills than those whose cords were cut within 10 seconds. The results showed no differences in IQ.”

What I found interesting is that these benefits only applied to boys. “We don’t know exactly why, but speculate that girls receive extra protection through higher estrogen levels whilst being in the womb,” Dr. Heike Rabe, a neonatologist at Brighton & Sussex Medical School in the United Kingdom, told NPR. So if you are expecting a boy, this is an added benefit.

2. Decreased Risk of Anemia

The natural transfusion of blood via delayed cord clamping delivers a substantial amount of iron. One study found that waiting 2-minutes increased iron stores by 27-47 mg. That’s fantastic!

According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, waiting 3-minutes may prevent iron deficiency during the first year of life: “Physiologic studies in term infants have shown that a transfer from the placenta of approximately 80 mL of blood occurs by 1-minute after birth, reaching approximately 100 mL at 3-minutes after birth (163132). This additional blood can supply extra iron, amounting to 40–50 mg/kg of body weight. This extra iron, combined with body iron (approximately 75 mg/kg of body weight) present at birth in a full-term newborn, may help prevent iron deficiency during the first year of life (33).”

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3. Increased Blood Volume/ Smoother Cardiopulmonary Transition

According to Mark Sloan, M.D., whether a baby “is premature or full term, approximately one-third of its total blood volume resides in the placenta. This is equal to the volume of blood that will be needed to fully perfuse the fetal lungs, liver, and kidneys at birth. In addition to the benefits that come with adequate iron stores … babies whose cords are clamped at 2 to 3-minutes have a smoother cardiopulmonary transition at birth.”

According to this article, “Another potential benefit of delayed cord clamping is to ensure that the baby can receive the complete retinue of clotting factors.” This means that the increased volume of blood will naturally increase blood platelet levels, which are needed for normal blood clotting.

4. Increased Levels of Stem Cells

Delayed clamping also results in an infusion of stem cells. This plays an “essential role in the development of the immune, respiratory, cardiovascular, and central nervous systems, among many other functions. The concentration of stem cells in fetal blood is higher than at any other time of life. ICC (immediate cord clamping) leaves nearly one-third of these critical cells in the placenta.”

Stem cells may also “help to repair any brain damage the baby might have suffered during a difficult birth,” Dr. Rabe (mentioned above) told NPR.

5. Better Outcomes for Pre-Term Infants

“Preemies who have delayed cord clamping tend to have better blood pressure in the days immediately after birth, need fewer drugs to support blood pressure, need fewer blood transfusions, have less bleeding into the brain, and have a lower risk of necrotizing enterocolitis, a life-threatening bowel injury,” said Dr. Rabe.

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Now let’s discuss some of the risks of delayed cord clamping.

Risks of Delayed Cord Clamping

Small studies have shown that delaying cord clamping increases the risk of jaundice. A study found that 3% of babies who experienced early cord clamping, compared to 5% of babies who experienced delayed cord clamping, required treatment for jaundice.

It was once believed that delayed cord clamping increased the mother’s chances of suffering from postpartum hemorrhage. However, delayed cord clamping was not found to increase mortality rates for babies or mothers. Nor were there any significant differences between the groups for postpartum hemorrhage.

What About Cord Blood Banking?

Delayed cord clamping is not often compatible with cord blood donation or storage. Some collectors will say that they need the cord cut immediately so that they can collect the necessary amount. Some will only allow up to 60-seconds before they want the cord clamped. Obviously neither of these options are long enough for most of the benefits to reach your baby. If you would like your baby to have its full supply of cord blood, you may need to reconsider your plans to donate or store cord blood.

In Conclusion

Delayed cord clamping offers many benefits to the newborn baby. Those include higher number of red blood cells, stem cells and immune cells at birth. In premature or compromised babies, delayed cord clamping may provide essential life support, restore blood volume and protect against organ damage, brain injury and death.

After all of my research, I highly recommend that you consider this option if you are currently expecting.

About the Author /

Nina is The Baby Chick® & CEO of Baby Chick®. She is a baby planner, birth doula, postpartum doula, childbirth educator, newborn care specialist, and a mother. With over eight years of experience, she has supported hundreds of families during their pregnancies, births, and postpartum journeys.

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“I breastfed my first child so I knew I wanted to #breastfeed again. People were skeptical about me #breastfeeding triplets, and this drove my determination! 💪 My boys were born at 29+3 and therefore it was so important for them to have #breastmilk! 🤱
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*This story is not to bring any mothers down that choose to formula feed. (I, personally, had to give my son formula at 7 months old!) We share this mother's story to inspire mothers and celebrate our victories! ✨
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Just in case you call her a boy, here's a MASSIVE Just in case you call her a boy, here's a MASSIVE bow that shows she's a girl . . . yet still somehow get's called a boy. 🤷⁠
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A bedtime routine can be an incredibly helpful tool in establishing healthy sleep habits and good sleep hygiene. Infants and young children thrive on routine; in fact, they are comforted by predictability (spoiler alert: most adults are this way, too!). Plus, a young mind is exposed to so much new information every day that it’s reassuring for a child to know that they can depend on certain events to have a predictable structure.⁠
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Bedtime routines are also a cue to their brains and bodies that sleep is coming. With a predictable bedtime routine, your little one will start to recognize the order of the routine and begin to anticipate what comes next. With enough repetition, this process happens automatically in a very Pavlovian way. A calm and successive routine will also make the onset of sleep come more easily. Can you imagine if you walked out of your workout and immediately someone told you that you had to lay down and fall asleep? This would be nearly impossible, and the same is true for our little ones. By allowing them some time to unwind, you are making the falling asleep process that much easier. Here are some tips on what to do for your little one's bedtime. ❤️⁠ {Click 🔗 in bio to read more!}⁠
📷: @hannahxruth⁠
Article by: @ohbabyconsulting⁠
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#babysleep #goodnight #bedtime #bedtimeroutine #nightnight #sweetdreams #sleepconsultant #babysleeptips #sleepcoach #parenting #sleeptips #motherhood #babylove #sleeptraining #parentingtips #sleeping #toddlersleep #sleephelp #parentinghelp #sleepcoaching #parenthood #sleepdeprived #sleeptraininghelp #babysleepconsultant #babychick #mommychick #momlife
THIS. The struggle is real.⁠ ⁠🥴 📷: @brit THIS. The struggle is real.⁠ ⁠🥴
📷: @britt.kav⁠
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#parenting #parenthood #parentlife #motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #mommychick #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣ #momhumor
It's the beeeeeessssttttt . . . 😬😑 (quote vi It's the beeeeeessssttttt . . . 😬😑
(quote via @smalltowntallgirl)⁠
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#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #momhumor #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣ #mommychick
🤗 7 Tips for Raising Secure and Happy Kids 🤗 🤗 7 Tips for Raising Secure and Happy Kids 🤗⁠
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Parenting is hard. And ever so important. But sometimes it feels like we need to have a special degree in “Managing Toddler Mood Swings” to navigate some of the unexpected scenarios that come with raising secure and happy children.⁠
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Like how do we handle a child that likes to scream instead of talk?⁠
“Please, child, just lower your voice while we’re in Target.”⁠
Or what are we supposed to do when a child prefers to strip down every time we get them dressed or only eat foods that are the color blue?! (In case you’re wondering, there aren’t many blue foods.)⁠
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It can feel tricky and tiring to try and do it all right and then sometimes still feel like you’re at a loss. But the truth is, there’s never any way to make everything perfect. But there are things we can do that set our children up to feel secure and happy. And here are seven of my favorite tips. {Click 🔗 in bio to read more!}⁠
📷: @lauren.stewart_dc⁠
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#parenting #parenthood #parentlife #motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #mommychick #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣
Any oldie but goodie by @spiritysol⁠. ❤️⁠ Any oldie but goodie by @spiritysol⁠. ❤️⁠
Cesarean mamas--this one's for you. I hope you know that you are worthy. That you are such a warrior. That you are brave and powerful and strong as f✨ck. I hope you know that birthing your baby on an operating table makes you no less of a mother. No less of a goddess. Your birth story is holy and that beautiful scar on your belly is sacred as sh✨t. You are worthy of praise and celebration, honor and  admiration.⁠
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I hope that you know it was worth it. Knowing this does NOT mean you can't mourn your dream. It does NOT mean "you and your baby are safe--that's all that matters!" It does NOT mean you can't wish things had gone differently. But I hope that underneath it all, you can find beauty in what was. What is. Your baby. Your birth. Your strength. Your healing. Your story.⁠
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Your journey wasn't easy. Perhaps it unfolded much differently than you had hoped--perhaps it shook you to your core and left you feeling the immense weight of a "what if" and why".⁠
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Perhaps you're still wading through the heavy emotions of disappointment, anger, and grief. Perhaps you always will. But whatever feelings you hold in your heart and in your womb, I hope that you can look at your scar and say "Hell yes, it was worth it. And hell ya, I am worthy."⁠
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*This post was written for mamas who might be struggling with an unexpected or undesired cesarean birth. I recognize that there are mamas that choose to have planned/elective cesarean births who might not resonate with the message in this post. I honor them as well--as I honor all mothers, all women, and all beings.⁠
Words & 📷: @spiritysol⁠
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#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #birth #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #cesareanbirth #bellybirth #postpartum #newmom #childbirth #momsofinstagram #mommychick #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣
Because I gave him the wrong colored cup . . . whi Because I gave him the wrong colored cup . . . which is the color he originally asked for.⁠
🤦‍♀️🤦‍♀️🤦‍♀️🤦‍♀️⁠
(quote via @HenpeckedHal via Twitter)⁠
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#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #momhumor #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣ #mommychick
Hope they're ready for us!⁠ 👯‍♀️⁠
📷: @myquestionablelife⁠
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#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #momhumor #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣ #mommychick
" . . . Tears contain stress hormones. Why would w " . . . Tears contain stress hormones. Why would we have tears if they didn't serve a purpose? Little hurts can feel big when you are little. There is no such things as no reason to cry. Comforting a crying child is not the same as shutting them down, no matter how sweetly we shut them down . . . up actually." - Pam Leo⁠
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#gentleparenting #motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #parenting #parentlife #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #mommychick #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣ #healing #mentalhealth
"Every diaper change is a struggle⁠ Goldfish cru "Every diaper change is a struggle⁠
Goldfish crumbs are literally everywhere.⁠
Nothing stays in the correct place.⁠
Dramatic meltdowns are a part of our daily routine.⁠
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Being a mother to a new toddler is so challenging, and every day I'm not sure what to expect! But, even on the days where I think I'm going nuts, it's so worth getting to watch my daughter grow into her own person. I love seeing her personality expand with each day.⁠
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I won't lie though, I do get a tad bit freaked out sometimes! I mean I've never heard anyone nail the sound of a pterodactyl better than my daughter, when she's having a meltdown. 😂😳"⁠
Repost: @postpartum⁠
Words & 📷: @tori.mccain⁠
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Share your worst/funniest toddler meltdown stories below! I'm sure almost all of us mamas who have a toddler can relate. 🙋⁠
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#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #momhumor #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣ #mommychick
That's my kind of mom friend. 😂 Tag that mama w That's my kind of mom friend. 😂 Tag that mama who is your happy safe person. ❤️⁠
📷: @lifeandtimesofmom⁠
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#motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #momhumor #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣ #mommychick
8 Ways to Beat the Winter Blues When You're Stuck 8 Ways to Beat the Winter Blues When You're Stuck Inside⁠
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⁠When the snow first starts falling, it’s a great feeling. Your house is cozy inside, school is cancelled—three cheers for a snow day! The kids are excited and you can’t help but feel some excitement, too. However, after a few days of being snowed in, we can all start to get a bit stir crazy, especially with our littles cooped up at home with us. We're sharing eight creative ways to beat those winter blues when you feel like you’re stuck indoors! {Click 🔗 in bio to continue reading!}⁠
📷: @cecileadams⁠
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#winterblues #snowday #snowedin #winter #winterwonderland #winterfun #wintertime #home #indoorideas #motherhoodthroughinstagram #momlife #motherhood #momstruggles #momprobs #mumlife #mommylife #parenthood #motherhoodunplugged #realmoms #momstatus #thatmomlife #realmomlife #momsofinstagram #mommychick #motherhoodrising #ig_motherhood #uniteinmotherhood⁣ #babychick⁣
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