In my business as a doula and childbirth educator I field a lot of questions regarding delayed cord clamping. I also field a lot of questions about cord blood banking, and as more people are deciding to do both, I am getting many questions about how they work together.
A lot of people think that you can only do one or the other; however, you can do both!
As more parents demand delayed cord clamping, more practitioners have made it their standard practice. Delayed clamping of the cord means that the umbilical cord is given time to transfer more blood to the baby after birth. This ensures that baby gets all the oxygen and nutrients needed to thrive. Compelling evidence has shown that premature cord clamping is a harmful and unnecessary birth intervention. When parents make informed decisions for their birth, they usually decide that delayed cord clamping is best.
However, what does that mean if you also want to cord blood bank?
Cord blood banking is a procedure done at birth. It is done by inserting a needle into the umbilical cord to remove and save some of its blood. When you cord blood bank you are saving the vital stem cells in cord blood to save for the future. Stem cells have the remarkable potential to develop into any cell and are used to restore, heal and rejuvenate many parts of the body. Stem cell therapy is the future of medicine.
But, if you want to cord blood bank can you still delay cord clamping?
For all of those concerned that you can only do one or the other (wait for it), you CAN do both!
If it is not already your practitioner’s practice, you can request that they wait to collect the cord blood until the cord stops pulsating. This means that the cord is no longer actively transferring blood into baby.
According to The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), “delaying cord clamping for 1.5-3 minutes is ideal. When the cord blood collection is begun no later than 3 minutes, the chances of a viable collection size are high.” ACOG’s findings on delayed clamping between 1.5 -3 minutes show innumerable benefits for baby. They also concluded that umbilical cord clamping should not be altered for cord blood banking.
So, the good news is that you CAN delay cord clamping so that your baby is protected at birth AND you CAN also cord blood bank so that your child is protected in the future. There are many blood cord banking companies. Do your research for the one that fits best for you.