Delayed Cord Clamping is literally what it says – delaying the clamping of your umbilical cord after your baby is born.
Scientists have shown that by waiting as little as 2 minutes after birth, your child can get an extra 33% of blood which can dramatically reduce the possibility of iron deficiency in their first 6 months of life.
Your umbilical cord and placenta hold approximately 240ml of blood. Of this, 100 – 130 ml of blood will transfer to your baby naturally, no matter how long you delay cord clamping for (as is shown by the image below from the British Medical Journal)
Some Important notes to Consider when making this decision:
- About 80 ml of blood is transferred to your baby during the first minute of delayed cord clamping. After 3 minutes there is only an additional 20ml which is transferred
- The World Health organisation recommends that delayed cord clamping happens between 2 and 5 minutes after birth
- Once the blood in the umbilical cord has coagulated, it cannot be absorbed by the baby and cannot be stored either as the stem cells are lost
- Delaying cord clamping will help prevent iron deficiency developing in newborn babies
- In some circumstances delayed clamping is not possible. This can occur when general anaesthesia is used on the mother in c-section deliveries. If you are planning a C-Section, and would like more information, please get in touch and we will advise you on the best procedure.
- Combined delayed cord clamping and storage have been done on many occasions and we recommend it to all our parents
- If you wish to donate your stem cells to the NHS or ANT you will not be able to delay cord clamping