Background and aim Sleep and waking disorders are the main problems of preterm neonates in Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) that occur influence by many stimuli and care activities of NICU and this may have irreversible effects on their brain development. So that the objective of this study is to assess the effect of two care methods on the sleep and waking states of preterm neonates.
Method In a clinical trial study a total of 70 eligible preterm neonates with gestational age between 32–37 weeks and admitted to NICU were selected and randomly divided in two groups of kangaroo care and holding by mother without directly skin contact. Data collection process was carried out using the behavioral sleep and wake scale of Als. The researcher every two minutes observed and recorded the sleep and wake behavior of neonates of two groups, in 20 minutes pre intervention, during 70 minutes of intervention and during 20 minutes post intervention. The collected data were analyzed using variance analysis test via repetitive sizes and Independent T test.
Result The kangaroo care group in compare to holding group significantly had more quiet sleep and alert awake and less drowsiness (P<0/001), active awake, and crying states (P=0/002).
Conclusion Neonates had more beneficial and less undesirable states of sleep and waking during kangaroo care. So that kangaroo care may be helpful to improve sleep and waking states of preterm neonates in NICU.