Longevity Institute Blog Dr Edmond Devroey's Blog


Why Do We Suffocate Our Newborns?

In nature no mammal ever obstructed the blood circulation of her newborn.
Why do we, humans, prematurely clamp the umbilical cord of our babies?
Do we know better than Mother nature?

In the womb a baby relies on his placenta for oxygen (and nutrient) supply.

The volume of blood (1) flowing to the placenta in the two umbilical arteries, (2) circulating in the placenta and (3) flowing from the placenta back into the baby represent a sizable part of the babies total blood volume.
After birth, the baby will have to use his lungs for oxygenation, which is to say that he has to switch part of his blood circulation from the placenta to the lungs.
During that switch the placenta gradually empties while the blood vessels of the lungs slowly enlarge as to accept the blood that no longer flows to the placenta.
Meanwhile the newborn starts inhaling very progressively, by little increments, while dribbling some fluid out of his airways and each time expanding his lungs a little more.

The switch is progressive and can take a few minutes to complete. The whole process unfolds naturally and needs NO assistance.

Clamping the umbilical cord BEFORE the end of the switch not only robs the newborn of part of his blood, it also abruptly suppresses his oxygen supply.
To avoid suffocation the newborn has no other resource than to explodes in a brutal respiratory effort. The process is painful and makes the baby cry loudly.

More reasons to improve childbirth

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