St. Mary’s Hospital to implement quiet time in maternity ward
A period of ‘quiet time’ will soon be implemented in the maternity ward at St. Mary’s Hospital. This 60- to 90-minute period will include restricting visitation, adjusting brightness levels and reducing noise in the ward, and asking staff to talk to patients only if necessary.
A recent study by McGill University shows that approximately an hour of uninterrupted quiet time can have positive health benefits for both mothers and their newborns. The study’s lead author, Safina Adatia, says lack of quiet time can lead to sleep deprivation, stress-induced cardio-vascular issues, postpartum mental health disorders and can impact immune function. Another study in the United States showed that in a 12-hour period, people walk in and out of a mother’s hospital room approximately 53 times.
McGill researchers have suggested a quiet period every afternoon may help alleviate these potential health repercussions. This has also been introduced in several other units, including the intensive care ward. In their reports, members of the staff have noted positive effects on patients during these periods.