After giving birth, there will be only one thing on your mind — holding your baby. In the majority of cases, mothers can hold their babies immediately after birth (it only makes sense, since they're the ones who did the birthing.) But in some cases, like when theres a problem with the baby that needs immediate medical attention or in the case of other medical interference like C-section, moms may have to wait a while before holding baby. And even then doctors do their best to get baby to mama ASAP. But what about if you have an epidural? How long after an epidural can you hold your baby? It's definitely an important question to ask.
Since skin to skin time immediately after birth has so many well established benefits, like increased bonding between mother, easier adaptation to the outside world for baby, boosted mental and physical development, and more according to Fit Pregnancy, it makes sense that holding the baby should be the first priority after birth. Luckily, even if you have an epidural, where you'll be numbed from the waist down, you'll still be able to hold your baby immediately after giving birth.
According to Healthline, as long as your baby is in a stable condition, breathing properly, and doesn't have any other medical condition preventing you from holding them, you'll be able to hold and nurse your baby right away. Additionally, Very Well noted that, although you likely won't regain all of the feeling in your legs and feet for a few hours after giving birth and the removal of the epidural catheter, you can still hold and bond with your baby.
Even if you're planning to have an unmedicated birth, knowing that you can still reap the benefits of skin to skin time right afterwards if things don't go as planned can relieve a bit of your stress going into labor.
No matter what "type" of labor you have, the first goal should should always be letting you bond with your baby as soon as possible.