If you’ve ever wanted to be the angel that helps ailing babies heal then you are in luck. Neonatal Infant Care Units (NICUs) all across the country are accepting volunteers to cuddle drug-addicted babies to help them heal.
The babies, who were born addicted to drugs, can’t really do much about their problem. But we can help them by providing our snuggly love which just might be what the poor babies need to get over their addiction.
And the babies need you now more than ever because there is now a huge increase in neonatal abstinence syndrome due to higher drug addiction rates in the US. According to The Center for Disease Control and Prevention incidents of NAS has increased 383% in the US since 2000.
NAS is a group of problems which occurs when a baby becomes exposed to addictive opiate drugs while in the mother’s womb.
These poor babies need a lot more care than the average baby because from the moment they are born they experience a host of painful withdrawal symptoms. There are special ways to comfort them, soothe their pain and eventually heal them and volunteers will be trained to do so.
Cuddle care programs are now available all over the country with the goal of helping the troubled babies born addicted to opioids.
The volunteers are considered much-needed assistance to busy nurses who are unable to continually care for the babies.
Pennsylvania nurse Jane Cavanaugh started a volunteer program at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital. She knew that she had to do something to help the babies.
“These babies going through withdrawal need to be held for extended periods,” she explains. “They need human touch.”
Maribeth McLaughlin, chief nursing officer and vice president of Patient Care Services at Magee-Womens Hospital of UPMC in Pittsburgh completely agrees with Cavanaugh. She is an overseer of a cuddle care program in Magee and strongly believes from her own experience that cuddle care works.
McLaughlin reports that on average “babies in withdrawal who are held often require less medication and go home sooner than babies who aren’t.”
“[Cuddling] is helping them manage through these symptoms,” she says. “They are very irritable; they are hard to console. This is about swaddling them and giving them that comfort and safe, secure feeling.”
So, if you want to join a cuddle care program care then a simple Google search should do as most states now have a cuddle care program. Go save some babies!!