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Skin-to-skin contact by fathers and the impact on infant and paternal outcomes: an integrative review
National University of Singapore.
National University of Singapore.
Linköping University, Department of Social and Welfare Studies, Division of Health, Activity and Care. Linköping University, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3256-5407
2016 (English)In: Midwifery, ISSN 0266-6138, E-ISSN 1532-3099, Vol. 40, 207-217 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]


to summarise research evidence on the impact of father-infant skin-to-skin contact on infant and paternal outcomes.


an integrative literature review.


PubMed, ScienceDirect, PsycINFO, and Cumulative Index to Nursing & Allied Health.


studies included were: (1) published in English between January 1995 to September 2015; (2) primary researches; and (3) focused on fathers providing skin-to-skin contact with their infants and its impact on infant and paternal outcomes. The Joanna Briggs Institute's Critical Appraisal Checklists were used to appraise the scientific rigour of the studies.


twelve studies (10 quantitative and two qualitative) were included in this review. Father-infant skin-to-skin contact had positive impacts on infants' outcomes, including temperature and pain, bio-physiological markers, behavioural response, as well as paternal outcomes, which include parental role attainment, paternal interaction behaviour, and paternal stress and anxiety.


a father's involvement in providing skin-to-skin contact seems to be feasible and beneficial to both infants and fathers. However, there has been a scarcity of literature that exclusively examines fathers' involvement and perceptions related to skin-to-skin contact in the postpartum period. Future research should examine skin-to-skin contact by fathers and its associated benefits, as well as fathers' perceptions on father-infant SSC among varied populations.


a father's involvement in providing skin-to-skin contact should be promoted during the postnatal period. Father-infant skin-to-skin contact is a valuable alternative, especially during the unavailability of mothers due to special circumstances, including medical emergencies and caesarean section.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 40, 207-217 p.
Keyword [en]
Fathers; Infant; Kangaroo care; Literature review; Skin-to-skin care; Skin-to-skin contact
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-130587DOI: 10.1016/j.midw.2016.07.007PubMedID: 27476026OAI: diva2:953308
Available from: 2016-08-17 Created: 2016-08-17 Last updated: 2016-08-23

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Mörelius, Evalotte
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