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Nursing Faculty Becomes the Second Iranian Certified HUG Teacher

Negarin Akbari, RN, MScN, Faculty of Nursing & Midwifery, Golestan University of Medical Sciences, Gorgan, Iran.

Negarin is a MScN graduate in the field of neonatal intensive care nursing from Tehran University of Medical Sciences. During her master education, she gained the knowledge and necessary skills to take care of premature and critically ill neonates.

Negarin has worked as a NICU nurse, and now is a faculty member at Faculty of Nursing, Golestan University of Medical Sciences. Over her working years, she managed to publish several NICU related articles and 6 books about neonates. She also received the "On Top" (Healthy and Sick Newborn Course) Certificate from the World Health Organization provided by India, and did numerous presentations and lectures.

Negarin’s passion is to help infants and their families. She trains nurses in the NICU and her goal is to improve nurses’ capabilities to better help families especially young parents in the NICU. Using HUG techniques with families, she found parents seemed less stressed, more content with their parental role, and more involved with their baby’s care.

Negarin's Story:
Maryam was born at 38 weeks and is hospitalized in the NICU because of TTN (Transient Tachypnea of Newborn). She has had four days of oxygen support and is breastfeeding. Mother’s milk is enough, and the baby has a good latch and sucking pattern. Mother seems satisfied. But the mother says that my baby sleeps a lot of time during the day, is that natural? How long do the babies sleep during the day? I'm worried that my baby sleeps too much and I’m scared this could reduce my baby`s intelligence quotient in future.

At first I explained to the mother as a nurse that babies sleep 16-20 hours a day and that`s natural. Babies have two types of sleeping, REM and Non-REM, that the meaning of REM sleep is a light sleep that includes symptoms of moving eyes rapidly, body movement, irregular breathing, making noises, and partly response to the drivers. In this kind of sleeping, Baby’s brain is growing and learning.

REM sleep cares are: Due to brief fussy or crying sounds during this state, caregivers who are not aware that these sounds normallyoccur may try to feed infants before they are ready to eat. Whereas the purpose of Non-REM sleeping is deep sleep that the infant doesn`t have any eyes or body movements and the breathing pattern is calm and regular and they are highly resistant to environmental drivers, that means they won`t wake up easily.

Non-REM sleep cares are: Caregivers (Mother or Nurses) trying to feed an infant who is in quiet sleep will probably find the experience frustrating. The infant will be unresponsive. Feeding will be a more pleasant experience if nurses and parents respect the infant’s cycles and needs by waiting until the infant moves to a higher, more responsive state. Even if caregivers use disturbing stimuli, chances are the infant will arouse only briefly, then 
become unresponsive as he or she returns to quiet sleep.
Also, I explained newborn’s erratic behavior can be confusing to mother, especially first-timers. But, we can learn how to “read” your baby’s zones – and then help the infant move to the best zone for eating, sleeping, or playing. Newborn zones are the states that all babies move through between deep sleep and out-of-control crying. The three zones are the Resting Zone (the sleeping baby), the Ready Zone (the baby who’s ready to eat or play) and the Rebooting Zone (the fussy or crying baby.) Because new babies have underdeveloped neurological systems, they cycle through these zones many times each day, and even within a single hour, so that one minute your infant might seem perfectly happy listening to you coo, and the next he’s red-faced and screaming. With HUG techniques and strategies many things are predictable (and possible)! Now I’m convinced that I can have a better, more friendly and supportive relationship with young parents.

Thank you, HUG

We have Maryam Mozafarinia to thank for bringing HUG Your Baby to Iran. As part of her Masters in Nursing, Maryam translated the HUG Your Baby DVD and resources into Farsi and became the first Iranian Certified HUG Teacher. In addition, she completed important research about using The HUG in a NICU setting. We are delighted to be reaching out to colleagues around the world!