Baby Care Basics

Baby Sleep Miracle

The baby sleep miracle has been created by Mary Ann Schuler. She is not only a clinical psychiatrist but also an experienced specialist but also a mother. With over two decades of clinical psychologist experience, she has also put to test the methods and techniques in this book. The baby sleep miracle the exact plan that has helped to resolve issues of sleeping for babies. Every night, your child can wake you up, and this can be consistent almost every day, it further results in you not getting enough rest and get sleep deprived. This is a book about the sleep tricks which will help get your child to be at ease and get to sleep. What's more, they work even without you having to buy expensive pacifiers, dangerous swings or relying on the outdated conventional methods like Ferberizing. The book will; help you to cut your risk of depression that is caused by sleep deprivation by far, improve your baby's health and prevent risks of damage to the nervous system, and much more. The baby sleep miracle is presented to you digitally. This book is dedicated to helping the mothers and fathers around the world who have sleepless nights. More here...

Baby Sleep Miracle Summary


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Author: Mary Ann Schuler
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Highly Recommended

This book comes with the great features it has and offers you a totally simple steps explaining everything in detail with a very understandable language for all those who are interested.

This book served its purpose to the maximum level. I am glad that I purchased it. If you are interested in this field, this is a must have.

Welcoming Your Baby to the World

Ou've been waiting for your baby's birth for a long, long time. When it finally arrives, depending on how events unfold, your experience of the birth itself can be more or less positive than you expected but, no matter what, you'll be thrilled to have your baby in your arms at the end of it. After the initial excitement of meeting your new little family member, you may start to wonder where the manual is on how to care for your bundle of joy. With a new baby, you're on a steep learning curve, but the nurses and doctors in the hospital do their best to have you up to speed with the work of new parenthood before you take your baby home. In this chapter, I talk you through the birthing process and preparing to care for your new baby during your stay in hospital after the birth.

Holding your baby at last

Being able to see, hold and touch your baby is the greatest gift after nine months of waiting not counting the time you waited before you conceived Together you and your partner will remember and savour this moment forever. If you plan to breastfeed and are feeling well enough, offer your baby the breast when you first get to hold her to see whether she wants to suckle. The sooner you start to practise breastfeeding, the quicker you'll both get the hang of it.

Coping when your baby needs special care

If your baby is born prematurely or has trouble breathing after being born, you may not get the chance to hold him straight away. Instead, you may see him whisked away to intensive care or a special-care nursery. Being separated from your baby is extremely distressing, and the joy you expected to feel may be replaced with tears and worry about his wellbeing. The hospital staff usually makes sure that you get to see and hold your baby as soon as possible, even if only for a short cuddle. After they have assessed your baby's condition, they keep you informed about his progress and encourage you to be with him as much as possible. If your baby has to stay in hospital after you're discharged, you may decide to make daily trips to the hospital to be with him. The combination of trying to recover from the birth (especially after a caesarean section), worrying about your baby, travelling to hospital and expressing milk is exhausting for mothers and emotionally very draining. Whether you stay...

Understanding that baby care doesnt always come naturally

Baby care is an acquired skill, not something you know instinctively. Managing nappy changes and feeding, bathing and dressing your baby take practice and you'll often wish you had three hands Similarly, it takes time to get to know your baby and discover what she needs, and when. As you and your baby get to know each other, baby care does gradually get easier. If you and your partner start practising baby care together while you're still in hospital, you'll both feel more confident by the time you take your baby home. Just because you've worked long and hard to have your baby doesn't mean that caring for a newborn is any easier for you than for other new parents. In fact, in some ways it may be harder for you, because you and others around you may expect you to slip right into baby care without any problems since you finally have the baby you've wanted for so long.

Getting to know your baby

Every baby is unique with a distinct personality. There are no 'good' or 'bad' babies, but some babies are easier to care for than others. Very early on you get an idea about your baby's temperament How she responds in different situations, how regular or unpredictable she is, how easy or difficult she is to settle, and how placid or energetic she is. This is the first step in getting to know your baby and can help you to work out how to best care for her. If your baby is nothing like your imagined baby, her temperament can take some getting used to. Give yourself time to get to know your baby and to figure out what works for her. section on getting to know your baby Click on the Your Baby is Unique tab in the For Parents section and then follow the worksheet instructions.

Coping with Baby Care 247

Baby care is relentless and many new mothers find the job much harder than they thought. Your life is dictated by your baby's needs, leaving little, if any, time for you. Until your baby is settled into a routine and that can take many months your day is pretty unpredictable and you usually find you achieve little apart from caring for baby and getting through (some) household chores. You may even feel a bit lonely after the rush of visitors is over. And you certainly need more sleep than you get. Considering the workload, feeling worn out is normal. But if you feel really low, irritable and worthless, have trouble enjoying your baby (or anything else), can't sleep even when your baby sleeps and your appetite changes, you may be suffering postnatal depression (PND).

Your babys appearance

Considering what they've just been through during labor and childbirth, it's no wonder that newborn babies don't look like the sweet little angels seen on television. Instead, your newborn will first appear somewhat messy looking. If your baby is like most, his or her head will be a bit misshapen and larger than you expected. The eyelids may be puffy, and his or her arms and legs may be drawn up as they were in the uterus. He or she may be somewhat bloody, wet and slippery from amniotic fluid. In addition, most babies will be born with what appears like skin lotion. Called vernix, it'll be most noticeable under your baby's arms, behind the ears and in the groin. Premature babies, especially, are coated with it. Most of this vernix will be washed off during your baby's first bath.

Holding and carrying your baby

At first you may feel a little awkward or nervous about holding and carrying your baby. But over time you'll feel more and more comfortable. And you'll soon learn what positions the baby likes all babies have their Dress your baby in clothes that keep the legs free. If you want to cover the baby, place a blanket over your baby after he or she is secured in the car seat with the harness buckled and adjusted. During the first few months of life, babies differ in their ability to control their neck muscles and head. Until you're sure your baby can hold up his or her head quite well, lift the baby gently and slowly so that his or her body is supported and the head doesn't flop back. When putting your baby down, gently support the head and neck with one hand and the bottom with the other. With experience you'll discover the best position for calming and comforting a fussy baby. You might try holding him or her along the length of your arm, facedown, with the baby's head at the bend of your...

Bonding with your baby

And affection promote bonding and recognition. They also help your baby's brain develop. Just as an infant's body needs food to grow, his or her brain needs positive emotional, physical and intellectual experiences. Relationships with other people early in life have a vital influence on a child's development. Some parents feel an immediate connection with their newborn, and for others, the bond takes longer to develop. Don't worry or feel guilty if you aren't overcome with a rush of love at the beginning. Not every parent bonds instantly with a new baby. Your feelings will almost certainly become stronger over time. It also takes time to learn how to interpret your baby's cries and signals and to figure out what he or she likes and needs. Even as a newborn, each baby has a distinct personality. If you have other children, they'll also be learning how to relate to their new sister or brother. At first most of your baby's time is likely to be spent eating, sleeping and crying. Your...

Thinking About Your Baby

Protective bond with their baby from the very beginning of their pregnancy and spend a lot of time thinking about their baby right from the start. So, if you've been hoping for a baby for a long time, you'll probably spend a lot of your pregnancy thinking about your baby.

Feeling ready to take your baby home

After your short stay in hospital it's time to gather your belongings, take your baby home and embark on a new phase in your life. You may suddenly wonder whether you're ready for this challenge, but there's no going back. Many new parents feel quite anxious about taking their baby home from hospital. It's perfectly normal to feel worried about looking after a newborn when you've never done it before. But you can rest assured that no one will do a better job of caring for your baby than you and your partner. Initially, IVF parents may worry more about baby care than new parents in general. This is probably because infertility and IVF treatment can rock your beliefs about your ability to look after your baby and keep your baby safe. But, of course, you're as competent as anyone else and over time you get back your trust in yourself and feel more confident about caring for your baby.

Wondering whether your baby will be okay

From time to time every woman thinks about the wellbeing of her unborn baby and hopes that her baby will be born healthy. After IVF treatment, you may be even more preoccupied thinking about whether your baby is developing normally and will be okay. For some women who conceive with IVF, worry about the welfare of their baby stops them from fully enjoying the fact that they're pregnant especially in the first few weeks of their pregnancy. However, these feelings don't usually last and in the second half of pregnancy, when they feel the baby moving, most women worry less and often feel quite blissful.

Coming Home With Your New Baby

Parenting doesn't come with a job description, but practice makes perfect Getting to know your baby Unlocking the secrets of a great routine Missing life as it used to be Finding support finally, you're home with your new baby and after just a few days in hospital, you're supposed to know how to look after her It can be scary to realise that your baby depends solely on you and your partner, especially if this is your first baby. Parenting is a tough gig that doesn't come with a job description. It takes time to get to know your baby and to figure out her likes and dislikes and how to make her content. And you'll find plenty to worry about Is she putting on enough weight Is she developing normally Why doesn't she sleep She cries a lot is something wrong All new parents worry about something, but on top of all you've been through with IVF, your worries about your baby's wellbeing can be overwhelming. In this chapter, I talk about why the first three months with a new baby are usually...

Babycare basics

Once the excitement of birth is over and you're traveling home from the hospital, the reality may sink in that you and your partner are on your own now with a tiny person whose life depends on you. It's normal to wonder how you'll take care of your baby and to feel nervous or anxious about it. No doubt you'll become a whiz at changing diapers, maneuvering the car seat and bathing the baby. The following sections give you the basics you need to get started with baby care and home safety.

Your newborn

1 1 hen the nurse put my baby boy in my arms for the first time, the v chaos of the delivery room disappeared. I was surprised at how natural it felt to hold this new little life. I looked over everything his hands, his feet, his eyes and his incredible mass of curly black hair It was such a relief to see for myself the beautiful child I had delivered. The wait is over. In the last nine months, you've spent endless hours in preparation and anticipation of the day you'd look into your baby's face. And now that day is here. Even though you're probably eager to go home and start your new life, take advantage of your time in the hospital or birthing center. Many mothers are surprised by how much privacy time they want after birth. Although your family and friends will want to hear about your labor and birth and how you and the baby are doing, you might feel that you'll need to limit calls and visits. It's OK to turn off the phone, and the nurses can help restrict visitors to ensure your...

Your babys world

In the first few weeks of a newborn's life, it may seem like all he or she does is eat, sleep, cry and keep you busy changing diapers. But your baby is also taking in the sights, sounds and smells of his or her new world, learning to use his or her muscles and expressing a number of innate reflexes. You won't always know how your newborn is feeling, and sometimes it will seem as though he or she is communicating in a foreign language. But you can learn about how your baby experiences the world and relates to you and others. In turn, your baby will learn your language of touching, holding, and making sounds and facial gestures. Discomfort. Your baby may cry because of wet or soiled diapers, gas or indigestion, and uncomfortable temperatures or positions. When babies are uncomfortable, they may look for something to suck on. But feeding won't stop the discomfort, and a pacifier may help only briefly. When the discomfort passes, your baby will probably settle down. Overtiredness or...

Apgar Virginia 19091974

In 1959 Apgar left Columbia University to attend John Hopkins University in pursuit of her master's degree in public health she also studied statistics to improve her research skills. In April of 1959 Apgar was appointed by the director of the National Foundation-March of Dimes (now the Dimes Birth Defects Foundation) to assist in its effort to promote public awareness of birth defects. From 1967 to 1972 Apgar served as Director of Basic Research of the National Foundation. She later co-authored the book Is My Baby All Right (1972), which dealt with birth defects, with Joan Beck. Apgar died August 7, 1974.

Appointments with your health care provider

Your visit to your health care provider this month may focus on tracking your baby's growth, confirming your due date and watching for any problems with your health. In addition to performing the fundal height check, your health care provider may check your weight and blood pressure and ask you about any signs and symptoms you've been experiencing. If you haven't done so already, you may get to hear your baby's heartbeat using a special listening device called a Doppler.

Rh antibodies testing

When you're not pregnant, your Rh status has no effect on your health, and if you're Rh positive, you have no cause for concern during pregnancy either. But if you're Rh negative and your baby is Rh positive which can happen if your partner is Rh positive a problem called Rh incompatibility may result.

Complications during weeks 37 to

It's normal for the vigor of your baby's activities to decrease somewhat during the last few days before birth. It's almost as if your baby is resting, storing energy for the big day. But generally, the number of movements shouldn't drop a great deal. Decreased frequency of movement may be a signal that something is wrong. To check your baby's movements, lie on your left side and count how often you feel the baby move. If you notice fewer than 10 movements in two hours or if you're otherwise worried about your baby's decreased movement, call your health care provider.

Digestive disturbances

At the beginning of labor, the uterus begins to contract (squeeze). These contractions are what move your baby down the birth canal. Contractions (labor pains) often begin with cramping or discomfort in your lower back and abdomen that doesn't stop when you change position. Over time, these contractions become stronger and more regular.

How the baby comes out

The human pelvis has a complex shape, making your baby negotiate several maneuvers during labor and delivery. Your pelvis is widest from side to side at the top (inlet) and from front to back at the bottom (outlet). The baby's head is widest from front to back, and the shoulders are widest from side to side. As a result, your baby must twist and turn on the way through the birth canal. In addition to making these turning maneuvers, the baby is simultaneously descending farther down the vagina (visual 2). Finally, the top of your baby's head appears (crowns), stretching your vaginal opening (visual 3). When the vulva has stretched enough, the baby's head will emerge usually by extending the head, lifting its chin off the chest and thus emerging from under your pubic bone (visual 4). The baby usually emerges facedown but will turn to one side very quickly as the shoulders turn to take the same route (visual 5). Next, the shoulders are born one at a time, and with a great slippery rush,...

Post Caesarean restrictions

During your first week at home after a Caesarean birth, restrict your activities to taking care of yourself and your newborn. Avoid heavy lifting or other activities that could put a strain on your healing wound. Ask your health care provider for recommendations about everyday activities, such as walking up and down stairs or lifting anything heavier than your baby.

Early eye characteristics

It's perfectly normal for your newborn's eyes to be puffy. In fact, some infants have such puffy eyes that they aren't able to open their eyes wide right away. But don't worry, within a day or two, your baby will be able to look into your eyes. You may also notice that your new baby sometimes looks cross-eyed. This, too, is normal and will be outgrown within several months. Sometimes babies are born with red spots on the whites of their eyes. These spots are caused by the breakage of tiny blood vessels during birth. The spots are harmless and won't interfere with your baby's sight. They'll probably disappear in about 10 days.

Immunizations and vaccinations

Soon after your baby's birth, an antibiotic ointment or solution, commonly either erythromycin or tetracycline, is placed onto his or her eyes. These preparations are gentle to the eyes and cause no pain. The hepatitis B vaccine can protect infants from any possible contact with this virus. Therefore, your baby may be given this vaccine in the hospital or birthing center shortly after birth. Alternatively, the hepatitis B vaccinations may be given along with other immunizations at two months.

Emotional Development

When you're drawing up your list of life's miracles, you might place near the top the first moment your baby smiles at you . . . Today, she looked right at me. And she smiled . . . Her toothless mouth opened, and she scrunched her face up and it really was a grin . . . The sleepless nights, the worries, the crying all of a sudden it was all worth it . . . She is no longer just something we are nursing and carrying along somewhere inside, part of her knows what's going on, and that part of her is telling us that she's with us (Greene 1985, pp. 33-34).

Understanding prenatal testing

Pregnancy is often a time of great anticipation. You may be wondering about a number of things concerning your baby. Will you have a girl or a boy Will he have blue eyes or brown eyes Will she be funny like her dad and smart like her mom How will it feel to finally hold your baby in your arms Along with feelings of excitement and joy, you may have moments of doubt and anxiety. What if something goes wrong with the pregnancy Will your baby be healthy These are completely normal feelings experienced by most pregnant women. It may reassure you to know that most pregnancies more than 95 percent are healthy and result in the safe delivery of a healthy baby. Still, in some instances you may wish to know specific information about your baby's health before his or her birth. Maybe your weight gain or the size of your uterus suggests that you're carrying more than one baby. Perhaps because of your age or family history you're at increased risk of carrying a baby with a chromosomal problem or...

Understanding pain relief choices in childbirth

Sometimes, you won't know what kinds of pain relief you want until you're in labor. Each woman's labor is unique to her. Your perception of labor pain will differ from that of other women in labor. In addition, your capacity to deal with pain during childbirth can be affected by factors such as the length of your labor, the size and position of your baby, and how rested you are as labor begins. No one can predict how you'll cope with the pain of your first labor, and subsequent labors often don't follow the same pattern.

Contraceptive choices after delivery

In the blur of sleepless nights and diaper changes, it's easy to forget about birth control. But the fact is, even before your first postpartum menstrual period, there may be a chance that you could become pregnant again if you have unprotected sex. Conceiving again within six months of your delivery carries certain health risks for you and your baby, not to mention the stress of being pregnant while caring for a newborn. For these reasons, it's important to consider your birth control options after your baby is born.

Finding out what works for you

When you have a new baby, everyone wants to give you their opinion about what's best for baby whether you ask for their advice or not The staff in the postnatal ward tell you as much as they can about the tricks of the trade during the short time you're in hospital, and after you go home your visitors all give you their two bob's worth about how to feed, burp and settle your baby. All this can make you feel as though you know nothing and your self-confidence can take a turn for the worse. Growing a confident parental identity takes time, and when you've undergone lengthy IVF treatment, it may take a bit longer because you may have lost some of your self-confidence in the process (see Chapter 11). Don't give yourself a hard time if you find baby care challenging at first because it really is. By all means listen to people's advice, but keep in mind that every parent-baby relationship is unique and what works for one person may not work for you. You'll figure out what works for you and...

Resting while you can

After giving birth you'll no doubt want some well-earned rest, but resting in hospital is easier said than done. Between meals being served, nurses checking on you, cleaners tidying up and your baby needing your attention, you often have precious little time for rest. If you have your own room, ask not to be disturbed if you want to rest if you're sharing a room, pull the curtains around your bed and hope that people get the message. Ask the nurses to look after your baby in the nursery so that you can get at least one night's good sleep before you go home. When you're rested, you have more energy to handle the demands of baby care.

Keeping visitors at bay

The phones will be ringing hot between your friends and family and soon they'll all know that your baby has arrived. Just like you, they've waited a long time to see this baby, so now they want to meet her pronto. Being showered with attention, flowers and presents after giving birth is wonderful, but you may find entertaining people exhausting when you and your partner are trying to get to know your new baby.

Sewing a tear or an episiotomy

Small tears will usually heal on their own . Ask the woman to rest for a couple of weeks after the birth . She should keep her legs together as much as possible, although she should move them regularly. Others should do her household work for her and help her with the new baby

Wondering whether youre producing enough milk

One of the many things that new mothers worry about is whether they have enough breast milk for their baby to thrive. If your baby is putting on weight every week and your maternal and child health nurse is happy with her progress, you should have no need to worry. If you're not sure whether you're producing enough milk or you have trouble breastfeeding your baby, a lactation consultant can come to your rescue. To find a consultant in your area Mother Nature is clever because the more your baby suckles, the more milk you produce. If you're keen to breastfeed your baby but concerned about whether you have enough milk, the best way to increase your milk supply is to let your baby suckle more frequently for a few days. If you plan to breastfeed your baby and try very hard but just can't manage, you may feel disappointed and frustrated. But please don't feel guilty about it If breastfeeding becomes a nightmare, revert to plan B formula.

Letting sleeping babies lie

Sometimes you worry about your baby when he's asleep Is he really breathing So rather than having a well-earned break while he sleeps, you get all worked up about whether he's alive. You may even wake him up just to be sure he's okay 1 Avoid sleeping baby in your bed for his first year. 1 Keep all soft toys and pillows away from baby's face. i Place baby on his back to sleep. Stick to these rules and get peace of mind while your baby sleeps. At the SIDS website ( you can find everything you need to know about how to provide a safe sleeping environment for your baby.

Getting Into the Feed PlaySleep Routine

A well-tested method to get your baby into a settled pattern is the feed-play-sleep routine. If possible, you and your partner should take time to learn this routine and use it for your baby, because life takes a turn for the better when you have a well-rested baby. I Time for play Even newborn babies need 'play' time. Your baby learns a lot about the world around her just from lying on a blanket on the floor for a little while, and her kicking and stretching help her physical development. The older she is, the longer she can stay awake to play and look around. i And so to bed Babies need a lot of sleep. If your baby sleeps less than 16 hours per day in the first few months, she probably isn't getting enough sleep. Table 20-1 shows how much sleep babies need in the first few months of life. Your baby does a lot of growing and developing while she sleeps and when she's rested she cries less, is easier to feed and learns more during 'play' time than when she's tired. Getting your baby...

Caring For Baby Around the Clock

As a stay-at-home parent with a new baby, you're on call 24 7. Most parents get through the newborn period feeling slightly dazed partly because the workload comes as a bit of a shock and partly because they don't get enough sleep but they're generally happy and content in their parenting role. However, some new parents become very worn down, struggle to get through the day and don't get much enjoyment out of caring for their baby.

Hooking up to Maternal and Child Health Services

When you have a baby, you become part of an amazing local government service provided Australia-wide known as Maternal and Child Health Services. Your local Maternal and Child Health Centre is notified when your baby is born and one of the maternal and child health nurses (also known as child and family health nurses) contacts you to arrange a time to visit you at home to meet you and your baby and tell you about the services that the centre provides. Your taxes are put to good work here the services are free. Over the next few years you'll have regular contact with this nurse or one of the other nurses at the centre. The services that the centre provides include i Assessing your baby's health and development i Giving you immunisation advice i Measuring and weighing your baby regularly to make sure that he's growing as expected

Rejoining the Workforce

No matter how much you enjoy being a stay-at-home parent, your circumstances may force you to consider returning to paid work while your baby is still young. Or you may want to go back to work after some time at home. Be aware that your plans to return to work may change after you've spent some time at home with your baby. Returning to paid work when your baby was six months old may have seemed like a good plan when you were expecting, but after you have your baby, you may not be ready to be separated from him so soon and leave him in someone else's care while you work. Unless finances dictate otherwise, you're allowed to change your mind, but if you plan to go back to your old job, you need to inform your employer if you decide to extend your leave. 1 If you worked continuously for your employer for 12 months or more before you had your baby, you have a legal right to 12 months unpaid leave and to have your old job back within that year if you decide to return to work, as long as you...

Getting the support you need

A key to being able to combine baby care, paid employment and running a household without going under is having the necessary practical support. When you take on paid work, your partner may need to make some adjustments to his or her work schedule, so that household responsibilities are still accomplished. i Most mums felt that the time they spent at work was about right and were happy to combine baby care with employment, but 26 per cent felt that their working hours were too long.

Making the best of bed rest

You can't go to work, weed your garden or play tag with your children. You can't shop for groceries, take a walk around the block or meet your friends at the movies. How can you make the best of the situation Start by focusing on the fact that you're doing what's best for you and your baby. Your health care provider wouldn't suggest bed rest otherwise. Total bed rest can Increase blood flow to the placenta, helping your baby receive maximal nutrition and oxygen. This is particularly important if the baby isn't growing as rapidly as he or she should. Plan for your baby's arrival by buying any necessities, either online or from catalogs. Learn about newborn care how to bathe, dress, breast-feed, handle and soothe your baby. Your pregnancy has ended without the dreamed-of outcome. You have no new baby to hold in your arms.

Facing Life at Home with a Newborn

Bringing a new baby home can be a bit of a shock nothing prepares you for the time and energy required keeping up with the needs of a newborn. Baby care is a skill that you learn, not one you're born with. Every newborn is different and you need time to figure out what works for your baby and what doesn't. Trusting that what you're doing is right for your baby and feeling confident in your role as a mother takes a bit longer for some IVF mums, but over time your confidence grows and you enjoy your baby more and more. I explain how to establish a good feed-play-sleep routine for your newborn in Chapter 20.

Maternal health problems and pregnancy

When you have an existing health condition and become pregnant, it can change the way your pregnancy proceeds. The good news is, with the help of your health care provider, most problems can be managed in a way that's safe for both you and your baby. This section explains how pregnancy might interact with some health conditions. If your asthma is well managed during pregnancy, there's little chance you and your baby will have an increased risk of health complications. Talk with your health care provider about what steps to take. If medications are needed, they aren't likely to affect your fetus and remember, if you can't breathe well, that can hurt your unborn child. Left uncontrolled, asthma can cause problems for both you and your baby. If it causes low oxygen levels in you, it will also decrease oxygen available to the fetus. This could result in a slowdown in fetal growth and even fetal brain damage. If you have severe episodes of asthma during pregnancy, you're likely to be...

The Pill Progestin Only Pills POPs

Unlike contraceptives that contain estrogen, proges-tin-only pills do not reduce the amount of breast milk. A small amount of the hormone does get into breast milk, however, although this has not been found to have a negative effect on babies. If you strongly prefer birth control pills over other methods of contraception, the progestin-only pill is the best choice while you nurse your baby. If you do not breastfeed or if you nurse but also give your baby supplementary foods, you should begin taking the minipill soon after delivery, because you will begin ovulating again. For convenience, you may want to ask your health care provider for a POP prescription before the birth or soon after. When you stop breastfeeding, you can either continue with the progestin-only pill or you can switch to the combined pill. Breastfeeding women who are fully nursing and whose periods have not started can delay the use of other contraceptive methods for a while. Information on...

Who looks after you now

To make sure that everything is going well with you and your baby during your pregnancy, you have regular antenatal care check-ups. Your antenatal care alternatives depend on your preference, whether you have private health insurance, whether you have a straightforward or complicated pregnancy, and where you live. The options are i Private obstetrician If you have private health insurance, you can see the obstetrician of your choice. Your obstetrician cares for you from early in your pregnancy until after your baby is born.

Dilation of the cervix

Dilated Cervix

Remember that contractions have a positive purpose, which is to help you deliver your baby. The pain won't last forever it has a definite time limit. And pain relief options are available, one or more of which many women choose as part of their birth plans.

What to do for the baby

When the baby is born, even before you cut the cord, dry him, put him on his mother's belly, and cover him with a blanket. The mother's body will keep the baby warm, and the smell of the mother's milk will encourage him to suck. Be gentle with a new baby. A new baby's heart should beat between 120 and 160 times a minute about twice as fast as an adult heartbeat. Listen to the baby's heart with a stethoscope, or place 2 fingers over her heart. Find out quickly how fast the baby's heart is beating to see if she needs help . Count the heartbeat for 6 seconds, then multiply by 10 (or add a 0 if you count 12 heartbeats in 6 seconds, the baby's heart is beating 120 times a minute). After the baby has good color and is breathing well you can take the time to count the heartbeat for 1 full minute .

Help the baby breastfeed

The first milk to come from the breast is yellowish and is called colostrum . Some women think that colostrum is bad for the baby and do not breastfeed in the first day after the birth . But colostrum is very important It protects the baby from infections Colostrum also has all the protein that a new baby needs. Breastfeeding can help the mother relax and feel good about her new baby.

Chorionic villus sampling

Creative Drawing Ideas

Part of the placenta is a membrane layer called the chorion. Tiny, hair-like projections called villi extend out of the chorion and act as routes for nutrients, oxygen and antibodies from you to your baby. These chorionic villi contain fetal cells complete with your baby's DNA. As in amniocentesis, analysis of fetal cells in the sample can reveal whether your baby has a chromosomal abnormality, such as Down syndrome, or another genetic disorder, such as Tay-Sachs disease, if there's reason to look for them. Rh sensitization. As in amniocentesis, it's possible that some of your blood may mix with the baby's blood. If you're Rh negative, your health care provider will probably give you an injection of RhIg after the procedure to prevent you from producing antibodies against your baby's blood cells. Both CVS and amniocentesis can provide genetic information about your baby. The advantage of CVS is that it's available earlier in pregnancy. CVS can also detect a few extremely rare genetic...

Undertaking Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis

You can undergo several tests when you're pregnant to make sure that the foetus has the right number of chromosomes and, if you're at risk of passing on a severe genetic condition, that the foetus is unaffected by this condition. However, although this is all well and good if the test results come back normal, if the results reveal a problem with the foetus, you then have to make the heart-wrenching decision whether to terminate the pregnancy or continue knowing that your baby has a potentially severe health problem. PGD is performed at the bigger IVF clinics only, because the procedure requires extremely sophisticated lab equipment and specially trained and very skilled embryologists. If you have a known or suspected genetic condition and your doctor thinks PGD can be used to avoid passing this condition to your baby, you and your partner follow these steps

Stage 1 Early labor active labor and transition Early labor

During labor, the cervix opens (dilates) so that your baby can move downward into the vagina in preparation for pushing and delivery. Over time, the cervix will go from being completely closed to being completely open (complete) at 10 centimeters (cm), which is 4 inches in width. This opening is large enough for the baby's head to pass through. The uterus, which houses the baby, is a muscular, hollow organ. Think of it as a large, upside-down elastic bottle. The opening of the uterus (cervix) is the neck of the bottle. When labor begins, the cervix is closed. But contractions cause the cervix to open by creating pressure downward through the uterus. This force is directed through the uterus in two ways. During a contraction, your baby is subjected to pressure that forces him or her against the cervix. The contractions also cause the cervix to thin and pull up around the baby's head. Repeated contractions eventually stretch the cervix to a full 10 cm. Many factors can affect how your...

Week 4 Early pregnancy

During the first weeks of pregnancy, your body begins producing more blood to carry oxygen and nutrients to your baby. The increase is greatest in the first 12 weeks, when pregnancy makes enormous demands on your circulation. By the end of your pregnancy, your blood volume will have increased by 30 percent to 50 percent. Increasing your fluid intake at this stage of your pregnancy can help your body adjust to this change. Your cervix, the opening in your uterus through which your baby will emerge, is beginning to soften and change color. Your health care provider

Other natural pain relief methods

Research continues to find other methods of pain relief that don't involve medication and are safe for both you and your baby. Some examples include hypnosis, acupuncture, reflexology and a procedure called transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), which uses electrical impulses to try to control pain.

Percutaneous umbilical blood sampling

With percutaneous umbilical blood sampling (PUBS), a sample of blood is taken from your baby through the vein in the umbilical cord. This diagnostic procedure can detect chromosomal abnormalities, some genetic problems and the presence of infectious disease. PUBS is also known as umbilical vein sampling, fetal blood sampling and cordocentesis. The unthinkable is happening Your prenatal test results suggest that your baby may have a problem. Amid the shock, worry and fear, one question surfaces What now To answer that question, start by scheduling a meeting with your health care provider. Talk about the findings and what they might and might not mean to you and your baby. If your baby may have a genetic condition, you might want to ask for an immediate referral to a genetic counselor or medical geneticist. Can my baby survive this condition If so, how long is she or he likely to live after birth Is it likely that my child will need surgeries or other medical treatments to manage the...

Medication generictrade Alprazolam Xanax

Symptoms to the typical demands of caring for a new baby. Now both of her children are in elementary school, and none of her friends have the same amount of pain and disrupted sleep that Florinda still endures. She saw a rheumatologist because she thought she might have lupus and was diagnosed by the rheumatolo-gist with FM due to her widespread pain and tender points on physical exam. Lupus was ruled out based on a negative history of sun-exposure rash, nonelevated liver or kidney enzymes, no history of fluid around her heart or lungs, or other signs common in lupus. She also had a negative ANA and normal sedimentation rate. She tried Amitriptyline first but found she gained weight, had difficulty thinking clearly and multitasking, and experienced dry mouth and constipation. She now orders Apo-zopliclone from Her doctor gives her a prescription for three months, which she faxes to the Canadian Web site. A pharmacist at the Web site contacted her for a medical...

Thinning and softening of the cervix

For some 270 days, your unborn child has been developing within your uterus. The time is now nearing for your baby to make his or her entrance into the outside world. But what triggers the miracle of birth is still somewhat of a medical mystery. Somehow, your body knows accurately most of the time when your baby has matured enough to live outside the uterus.

Examining the Possible Risks to Baby

'What's the risk of IVF to my baby ' is the most common question asked by couples considering IVF. To date more than two million children have been born as a result of IVF, so doctors have a lot of reliable information with which to answer this question. Mostly the news is good, but there are some adverse outcomes that, rare as they are, are more common among IVF children than children in general. This is often because multiple births are more common with IVF, but it's impossible to exclude the possibility that the IVF technique itself may also contribute to the increased risks.

In the operating room Getting ready

Most Caesarean births are performed in operating rooms specially set aside for that purpose. The atmosphere in the operating room may be a lot different from what you've experienced in the birthing room. Because surgery is a team effort, many more people will be there. In fact, if you or your baby have a complex medical problem, as many as 12 people may be in the room. The location of your abdominal incision will depend on several factors, such as whether your Caesarean birth is an emergency and whether you have any previous abdominal scars. Your baby's size or the position of placenta also will be considered. However, sometimes a low vertical incision, made from just below your navel to just above your pubic bone, is the best option. This incision allows faster access to the lower portion of your uterus, allowing your surgeon to remove your baby more quickly. Occasionally, time is of the essence. Seconds matter. Low vertical incisions also have less blood loss and allow for the...

How your body is changing

Hormones released throughout your pregnancy do two things. They influence the growth of your baby, and they send signals that change the way your own organs function. In fact, the hormonal changes of pregnancy affect nearly every part of your body. Your body is continuing to produce more blood to carry oxygen and nutrients to your baby. Increased blood production will continue throughout your pregnancy. It will be especially high this month and next, while pregnancy is making enormous demands on your circulation. If this is your first pregnancy, your uterus used to be about the size of a pear. Now it's starting to expand. By the time you deliver your baby, it will have expanded to about 1,000 times its original size.

Ten Tips for New IVF Parents

Waiting for baby Getting to know your baby Growing confident and getting baby care down pat As you close the door on your IVF treatment and enter the world of antenatal care, you can start to count the days until you finally meet your baby. The transition to parenthood is an amazing and joyous period that starts in pregnancy. But becoming a parent for the first time can be pretty daunting and unsettling, even if you've endured a long hard road to get there.

Reacting to Your Infertility Diagnosis

You may also feel shame about not being able to accomplish something that you and everyone else expects of you, or about your sexual capacity being questioned. And you may feel guilty if, for a fleeting moment, you wish that your best friend would miscarry or you resent your sister's new baby.

Problems of labor and childbirth

Even if you're doing everything right as you go through labor and childbirth, complications can occur. If something does go wrong, trust your health care provider to do the best for both you and your baby. If you aren't comfortable before birth with the care you're receiving, that's the time to make a change. It's important to trust your health care team when problems arise in labor because treatment usually must begin quickly. That's not the time to doubt your provider's skill. Your health care provider may induce labor for a variety of reasons. He or she may recommend labor induction if your baby is ready to be born but contractions haven't started yet or if there's concern for the health of you or your baby. Some situations in which you may be induced include Your baby is overdue. You're beyond 42 weeks, or in some cases 41 weeks, pregnant. Your health care provider is concerned that your baby is no longer thriving because your baby's growth has slowed or stopped, the baby You have...

Education And Prepregnancy Planning

In The Diabetic Woman, All Your Questions Answered, Dr. Lois Jovanovic says, It's so much easier to plan to have a baby by first getting your blood sugars as close to normal as possible, rather than having to play catch-up by manipulating insulin, diet, and exercise to quickly normalize blood sugars so your baby does not experience high blood sugars. She recommends that women who are planning on becoming pregnant should pretend they are pregnant. She also said that it's important to interview your physicians, Find an OB who has seen at least 5 type 1 diabetic women in the last year. You want a physician who really knows, and that women may have to travel to find high-risk doctors to meet their needs.

Feeding can be tricky

Whether you breastfeed or bottle-feed your baby, feeding can be difficult and problems are common with newborns. Almost half of the IVF mums in our study reported having feeding problems such as not producing enough breast milk, producing too much milk and the baby refusing to take the breast or bottle.

Your body during weeks 33 to

Your body is working hard this month to prepare for labor and delivery. Your baby is big and may be disturbing your sleep. Your muscles are sore from carrying this large bundle. Put it all together, and you're probably feeling tired most of the time. If you're worn out, take a break. Rest with your feet up. Fatigue is your body's way of telling you to slow down. Here's an overview of what's happening and where. Pushed up by your expanding uterus, your diaphragm is continuing to occupy part of the space normally reserved for your lungs, altering the way you breathe. As a result, you're probably continuing to feel as if you can't get enough air. If your baby drops lower into your uterus and pelvis this month, as some do, this will probably change. With some of the upward pressure on your diaphragm relieved, you may be able to breathe a little more easily. This month, your baby is settling into position inside your uterus, getting ready to make his or her grand entrance. If your baby is...

Problems with the eyes

My 8-year-old daughter is six years out from the full body radiation used to prepare her for bone marrow transplant. She had the first of two cataract surgeries Tuesday. It was an outpatient procedure, and she was a real trooper. The doctor was able to insert a permanent replacement lens, which is a good thing since it means we don't have to do the contact lens thing. I can't wait for the day when radiation is no longer a treatment for cancer Until then I have to acknowledge begrudging thanks, because it saved my baby's life.

Your reaction to your pregnancy

Whether your pregnancy was planned or unplanned, you may have conflicting feelings about it. Even if you're thrilled at being pregnant, you probably have extra emotional stress in your life right now. You may worry about whether your baby will be healthy and how you'll adjust to motherhood. You may also have concerns about the increased financial demands of raising a child. If you work outside the home, you may worry about being able to sustain your productivity throughout pregnancy, especially if your work is very demanding. Don't berate yourself for feeling this way. These concerns are natural and normal.

Your partners reaction to your pregnancy

Encourage your partner to identify his doubts and worries and be honest about what he's feeling, both the good and the bad. You do the same. Discussing your feelings honestly and openly will strengthen your relationship with your partner and help the two of you start the important work of preparing a home for your baby.

Your partners involvement in Caesarean birth

Most hospitals encourage your photos of your baby, and the surgical team may take some shots of you, your partner, and the baby before the surgery is even over. Be aware, though, that most hospitals don't allow direct filming of the operation. Before your partner starts snapping photos or rolling tape, make sure he asks permission.

Your emotions during weeks 13 to

Your baby is probably starting to seem more real to you this month, especially now that you're growing out of your jeans and you've been able to hear your baby's heartbeat during visits to your health care provider. You're likely also finding that your nausea is easing off, you're sleeping better, and your energy is returning. As a result, you're probably feeling less moody and more up to the challenge of preparing a home for your baby. Strike while the iron is hot. While your mood and energy are up, start taking care of the housekeeping details of pregnancy. If you're interested in childbirth classes for you and your partner, investigate the options and get signed up. Ask friends and family to recommend pediatricians or other health care providers for your baby. Once you've identified a few candidates, schedule meetings with them so that you can discuss philosophy and office procedures (see Decision Guide Choosing your baby's health care provider on page 359). Now is also a good time...

Your body during weeks 21 to

This month you're starting the second half of your pregnancy. Your uterus will expand beyond your navel, and you'll probably feel your baby's first kicks. These are a far cry from the fluttery, butterflies-in-the-stomach movements of last month. Here's an overview of what's happening and where. To accommodate your increasing lung capacity, your rib cage is enlarging. By the time your baby is born, the distance around your rib cage will have expanded by two to three inches. After your child is born, it will return to its pre-pregnancy size. Changes in your respiratory system are likely continuing to cause you to breathe slightly faster, but any shortness of breath has probably lessened. Sometimes your breathing will become even easier late in your pregnancy, when your baby begins to move down into your pelvis in preparation for birth. Your breasts are continuing to grow larger this month and are now probably ready to produce milk. You may see tiny droplets of watery or yellowish fluid...

Weeks 2 and 3 Ovulation fertilization and implantation

The lining of your uterus, which will nourish your baby, is developing. Your body is secreting follicle-stimulating hormone, which will cause an egg in your ovary to mature. As you ovulate and the egg is released into your fallopian tube, the hormones involved in the process estrogen and progesterone cause a slight increase in your body temperature and a change in secretions from your cervical glands. When fertilization occurs, the corpus luteum a small structure that surrounds your developing baby starts to grow and produce small amounts of progesterone. This helps support your pregnancy. Progesterone keeps your uterus from contracting. It also promotes growth of blood vessels in your uterine wall, essential for your baby's nourishment. As your baby implants, you may notice spotting, a scanty menstrual flow or yellowish vaginal discharge. You may mistake it for the start of your normal menstrual period. This spotting may in fact be a first sign of pregnancy. It comes from the small...

Tips for when youre feeling overwhelmed

When you bring your baby home, there will probably be times when you feel exhausted, stressed or overwhelmed. One of the most important ways to Get out of the house. Being housebound with a crying newborn day after day can make anyone stir-crazy. Take your baby out for a walk or find someone to watch the baby for a few hours while you get out. Consider swapping child care with other new moms or joining a child-care cooperative. Simplify. Keeping the house clean doesn't have to be your priority right now. Getting enough rest and taking care of your baby are more important than having a spotless house. Accept some clutter in your life. During mealtimes, use shortcuts such as paper plates, frozen dinners or takeout foods. Don't feel guilty for bowing out of some commitments or turning down others. Establish some routines. Even though your baby's eating and sleeping patterns will change frequently during the first year, try to find ways to adapt your life to his or her daily routine. Try...

The importance of hormones

Hormones are the chemical messengers that regulate many aspects of your pregnancy. The hormone progesterone is produced first by your ovaries and then by your placenta. It keeps your uterus from contracting. It also promotes growth of blood vessels in the walls of your uterus, essential for your baby's nourishment. Your ovaries and placenta also produce estrogen. It causes growth and changes in your uterus, endometrium, cervix, vagina and breasts. Estrogen also influences many key body processes, such as the amount of insulin you produce. Your placenta produces two other important hormones human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) and human placental lactogen (HPL). HCG helps maintain the corpus luteum, which is the mass of cells that remain in the ovary after the egg's release from a mature follicle. HPL is the hormone most involved in your baby's growth. It alters your metabolism to make sugars and proteins more available to your baby. It also stimulates your breasts to develop and prepare...

The breast or the bottle

Do you plan to feed your baby with breast milk or formula No matter whether you choose the breast or bottle, the first few weeks with your newborn are likely to be demanding and exhausting. Both you and your baby are adapting to an entirely new reality, and that takes time. Throughout this adjustment, remember that feeding your newborn is about more than the nourishment. It's a time of cuddling and closeness that helps build the connection between you and your baby. Whether you feed by breast or bottle, make every feeding a time to bond with your baby. Stroke his or her skin while maintaining eye contact. Find a quiet place to feed the child, where you're both less likely to be distracted. Cherish the time before your baby is old enough to start feeding himself or herself. That time will come soon enough.

Squat and wall slide Why do them

If you're able to squat every few minutes or so during labor, it may help open your pelvic outlet, allowing more room for your baby to descend. Squatting during labor is tiring, so you might want to prepare by strengthening the muscles needed. Practice squatting frequently during these last months of pregnancy. An exercise called a wall slide also may be helpful.

Preparing to breastfeed

Before you bring your baby to your breast, find a quiet location. Have a drink of water, milk or juice at hand for yourself because it's common to feel thirsty when your milk lets down. Put the phone nearby or turn it off. Place a book, magazine or the TV remote control within reach, if you wish. Next, get into a position to nurse that's comfortable for you and your baby. Whether in your hospital bed or a chair, sit up straight. Put a pillow behind the small of your back for support. If you opt for a chair, choose one with low arm rests or place a pillow under your arms for support. Put your feet up, too, if possible. When you're comfortable, move your baby across your body so that he or she faces your breast, with his or her mouth near your nipple. Make sure your baby's whole body is facing you tummy to tummy with ear, shoulder and hip in a straight line. You don't want your baby's head turned to the side rather, it should be straight in line with his or her body. Your baby's arms...

Positioning baby and bottle

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The first step to bottle-feeding is to make you and your baby comfortable. Find a quiet place where you and your baby won't be distracted. Cradle your baby in one arm, hold the bottle with the other and settle into a comfortable chair, preferably one with broad, low armrests. You may want to put a pillow on your lap under the baby for support. Pull your baby in toward you snugly but not too tightly, cradled in your arm with his or her head raised slightly and resting in the bend of your elbow. This semi-upright position makes swallowing much easier. Now that you're ready to start feeding, help your newborn get ready. Using the nipple of the bottle or a finger of the hand holding it, gently stroke your baby's cheek near the mouth, on the side nearest you. The touch will cause your baby to turn toward you, often with an opened mouth. Then touch the nipple to your baby's lips or the corner of the mouth. Your baby will open his or her mouth and gradually begin sucking. When feeding your...

The facts on bottlefeeding with formula

If you can't breast-feed or choose not to, you can be assured that your baby's need for nutrition can be met. Infant formula is designed to be an energy-dense food. More than half its calories are from fat. Many different types of fatty acids make up that fat. Those that go into infant formula are specifically selected because they're similar to those found in breast milk. These fatty acids help in the development of your baby's brain and nervous system, as well as in meeting his or her energy needs.

The basics of breastfeeding

Your baby's sucking stimulates nerve endings in your areola and nipple, sending a message to your brain to tell your body to release the hormone oxytocin. Oxytocin acts on the milk-producing glands in your breast, causing the release of milk to your nursing baby. This release is called the letdown (milk ejection) reflex, which may be accompanied by a tingling sensation. Soon you learn to use the let-down reflex as a cue to sit back, relax and enjoy precious moments feeding your baby. The stimulation of frequent nursing builds up your milk supply. The letdown reflex makes your milk available to your baby. Although your baby's sucking is the main stimulus for milk let-down, other stimuli may have the same effect. For example, your baby's cry or even thoughts of your baby or the sounds of rippling water may set things in motion. tually dries up. If you do breast-feed, your body's milk production is based on supply and demand. The more frequently your baby nurses, the more milk your...

The facts on breastfeeding

The longer you breast-feed, the greater these benefits are to you and your baby and, in many cases, the longer they last. Ideal nutrition. Breast milk has just the right nutrients, in just the right amounts, to nourish your baby completely. It contains the fats, proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals that a baby needs for growth, digestion and brain development. Breast milk is also individualized the composition of your breast milk changes as your baby grows. Protection against disease. Research shows that breast milk may help keep your baby from getting sick. It provides antibodies that help your baby's immune system fight off common childhood illnesses. Breast-fed babies tend to have fewer colds, ear infections and urinary tract infections than do babies who aren't breast-fed. Breast-fed babies may also have less asthma, food allergies and skin conditions, such as eczema. They may be less likely to experience a reduction in the number of...

Introducing a bottle to a breastfed baby

During the first several weeks of your child's life, it's best to nurse exclusively to help you and your baby learn how to breast-feed and to be sure your milk supply is being established. Once your milk supply is established and you feel confident that you and your baby are doing well with breastfeeding, you may give your baby an occasional bottle of breast milk. This allows others, such as your partner or a grandparent, an opportunity to feed the baby. If your baby receives a bottle of milk, you may want to pump your breasts for your comfort and to maintain your milk supply. The feel of a bottle nipple in a baby's mouth is different from that of the breast. The way a baby sucks from a bottle nipple also is different. It may take practice for your baby to be comfortable with a bottle nipple. A baby may initially be reluctant to take a bottle from mom because he or she associates mother's voice and scent with breast-feeding. When you give your baby a supplementary bottle, follow your...

Initial health care for the newborn

From the moment your newborn emerges from the birth canal, he or she is the focus of much activity. Once your baby has been delivered, your health care provider or a nurse likely will quickly clean his or her face. To make sure your baby can breathe properly, the nose and mouth are cleared of fluid as soon as the head appears and again immediately after birth. Your baby's umbilical cord is clamped with a plastic clamp, and you or your partner may be given the option to cut it. Then, the moment arrives You can hold your baby for the first time.

First bowel movements

Your baby's first soiled diaper which will probably occur within 48 hours may surprise you. During these first few days, your newborn's stools will be thick and sticky a tar-like greenish black substance called meconium. After the meconium is passed, the color, frequency and consistency of your baby's stools will vary depending on how your baby is fed. In babies who breast-feed, stools will be more frequent, generally soft, watery and golden yellow. In bottle-fed babies, stools will be less frequent, more formed and tan-colored, and have a stronger odor.

Expressing breast milk

You may want to remove (express) your breast milk for feeding your baby by bottle when you're unable to breast-feed. You can express your milk either with a breast pump or by hand. To help with let-down, find a quiet place to express. Relax for a few minutes before starting to express. Whichever type of pump you choose, make sure you can remove and wash with soap and water all the parts that come in contact with your skin or milk. Some breast pump parts are dishwasher safe. Without proper cleaning, bacteria could grow, and your milk wouldn't be safe for your baby.

Difficulty learning to eat

Whether you choose to breast-feed or bottle-feed, for the first few days after your baby's birth, you may find it difficult to interest your newborn in eating. This isn't uncommon. Some babies just seem to adopt a slow-and-sleepy approach to eating. If you're concerned that your baby isn't getting enough nourishment, talk to your baby's nurse or doctor. Occasionally, pokey eaters require tube feedings to help them along for a few days. Soon they'll catch on and breast-feed or bottle-feed with enthusiasm. Over the first week, a newborn will lose about 10 percent of his or her birth weight. Monitoring changes in a baby's weight helps gauge the amount of milk a baby is taking. Work with your baby's health care provider to monitor your baby's growth throughout his or her first year of life.

Choosing a birthing location

You have a choice about where to have your baby. This decision is often closely tied to your choice of a health care provider and where he or she has practicing privileges. Most women in the United States around 99 percent have their babies in a hospital. Others choose to give birth at a birthing center or in their own home. Today, hospitals treat childbirth less like a medical procedure and more as a natural process. Many hospitals offer a relaxed setting in which to have your baby, with options such as Birthing rooms. These are suites with a homelike decor, and sometimes a bath, where you can labor and deliver. The father or other labor partner can be an active part of the birthing team. In some cases, you may be able to recover in the same room after having your baby. Nursery. If you choose to have your baby taken to the nursery, you can still see him or her whenever you want. Having the hospital staff care for your baby for a few hours each day can give you some much-needed rest...

Working and breastfeeding

If these aren't options for you, you may choose to have your child-care provider give your baby bottled breast milk or infant formula. For a few weeks before your return to work, give your baby a bottle once or twice a week at the times he or she will receive them while you're at work. You can provide your baby with bottled breast milk by expressing milk during your maternity leave and freezing it, or by pumping while you're at work and saving the milk for the next day. Using a double breast pump is the most effective it takes about 15 minutes every three to four hours. If you need to increase your milk supply, nurse and pump more often. On your days off from work, nurse your baby as usual. If you choose not to express your milk while at work, you may pump milk at other times to provide breast milk for the next day. For example, pump after the morning feeding and after the feeding when you return home. As long as all of your milk produced in 24 hours is removed either by your baby or...

Your needs while youre breastfeeding

If you're like most mothers, your attention will be focused intently on the needs of your baby. Although this commitment is completely reasonable, don't forget about your needs. If your baby is to thrive, he or she needs a healthy mother. Consider There are no special foods to avoid when you're breast-feeding. However, if you know that certain foods bother you or appear to cause a reaction such as fussiness or gas in your baby, then simply don't eat them. Rarely, a breastfed baby is allergic to a component of your diet, such as cow's milk. To determine whether your baby is having trouble with your breast milk, cut out all dairy products from your diet for two weeks. Then slowly reintro-duce dairy into your diet, one food item at a time, while observing your baby for any negative reactions. Try to get rest as a new mother, as hard as that may seem at times. You'll feel more energetic, you'll eat better, and you'll enjoy your new baby best when you're rested. Rest promotes the...

Figuring Out the Intricacies of Baby Feeding

Even if you have every intention of breastfeeding your baby, you may have problems and find this 'natural' process harder than you thought. Unfortunately, the advice about breastfeeding you receive can be conflicting and sometimes bad. If you have a strong wish to breastfeed your baby, don't give up, and remember that some breast milk is better than no breast milk your baby will benefit even if he's partially breastfed and topped up with formula. I talk more about establishing breastfeeding in Chapter 19. You can also try these resources if you're having problems If you really want to breastfeed your baby and try very hard but it just doesn't work, don't beat yourself up over it Babies who're given formula thrive too, and both you and baby may feel better if feeding isn't a constant battle.

Your emotions during weeks 29 to 32 Conquering anxiety

Feeling anxious and overwhelmed, especially if this is your first baby. To help keep anxiety at bay, review the decisions that need to be made before your baby is born. Is your baby going to see a pediatrician or a family doctor Are you going to breast-feed or use formula If your baby is a boy, are you going to have him circumcised Taking stock of where you stand on these issues will help you feel more in control of the situation now. Plus, it will make your new responsibilities seem less daunting once your baby arrives. The anxiety or even the natural anticipation you're feeling about your baby's arrival may be making it difficult for you to get to sleep or sleep through the night. If you're feeling restless or anxious at night, try some of the relaxation exercises you've learned in childbirth classes. They may help you get some rest, and doing them now will be good practice for the big event.

Graduating from sleep school

In some areas you can access hands-on practical advice about baby feeding, settling and sleeping by being referred to one of the existing private or public day-stay or residential mother-baby programs. These programs help you work on solutions to your baby-care problems. l Day-stay programs You and your baby spend the day with other mums and a team of health-care professionals who offer education about baby care, individualised practical help, and advice and strategies on how to deal with the particular difficulties you're experiencing. l Residential mother-baby programs If your baby is really unsettled, suffers from colic or reflux and cries a lot and you're at the end of your tether, you can be admitted to a residential mother-baby program for a few days. These programs give you a chance to rest and get on top of your problems with the baby. An experienced multidisciplinary team of health-care professionals including specialist nurses, a lactation consultant, clinical psychologist...

Having So Much to Worry About

As a new parent, you may find yourself worrying about your baby's wellbeing How do you know that she's had enough milk Is she too cold or too warm Is she getting a cold Much of this worry stems from being new in the job and not having any experience to fall back on. After a few months when you know your baby better, you start to feel more confident in your parenting role. I Were you anxious about caring for your baby when you left hospital after the birth This all makes sense Your maternal confidence takes a beating if you've been through hell and back to have your baby, you didn't feel very well looked after during the birth, you were worried about taking your baby home from hospital, you're somewhat sensitive and a bit shy, and or your baby cries a lot and is difficult to feed and settle. It's not terribly surprising that after such experiences your maternal confidence is diminished. More than half the IVF mums admitted to being anxious about taking their babies home from hospital....

Can you prevent a Caesarean

Can you prevent having a Caesarean birth Probably not. If your baby is in a breech position, you can ask your health care provider whether it would be possible for him or her to turn the baby into the proper position for a vaginal birth, a procedure called an external version. But the decision to perform a Caesarean will depend on your doctor's assessment of your health and the health of your baby. If either of you is in danger, a Caesarean birth may be necessary. Remember, your aim is to be a healthy mom for a healthy baby, no matter what it takes. Be sure you have a trusting relationship with your health care provider and her or his team. When something goes wrong in labor, it's best to have confidence in those who are advising you. Risks for your baby Caesarean birth also poses potential risks for your baby. These include Getting the unexpected news that you need a Caesarean can be stressful, both for you and your partner. In an instant, your expectations about giving birth and...

Planning the birth Have your say

I Whether you want to hold your baby straight away Making your desires known is important, but keep in mind that your birthing wish list may have to change if you or your baby don't cope well for one reason or another as the birth progresses. If you're in paid employment while you're pregnant, you need to make plans for when to stop working. The timing may depend on your physical health and the kind of work you do, but your personal preference is also an influence. You may prefer to keep working as long as you can because staying at home makes you worry too much about the birth. Or you may stop work early because you really enjoy spending time getting everything ready for your baby and treasure the opportunity to have long lunches with your friends and rest up before your baby is born. If you plan to go back to work during your child's first year, try to keep the timing as open as possible because the best-laid plans sometimes don't work out. After your baby is born you may find that...

Your body during weeks 37 to

Before you were pregnant, your uterus weighed only about 2 ounces and could hold less than a half-ounce. At term, it will have multiplied in weight by a factor of 20, to about 2 1 2 pounds and will have stretched to hold your baby, your placenta and about a quart of amniotic fluid. At the end of this month, after 40 weeks of growth and change, you'll go through labor and delivery, giving birth to a new human being your one-of-a-kind baby. Here's an overview of what's happening and where You may still be having some shortness of breath. If your baby drops lower into your pelvis before labor begins, which is more common among first-time moms, you may feel less pressure on your diaphragm. As a result, you may be able to breathe more deeply and easily during your final weeks of pregnancy. Your digestive system remains slowed this month, influenced by hormones. As a result, you may still be experiencing heartburn and constipation. If your baby drops this month, this situation may improve....

Taking the rough with the smooth

You may find some downsides of being an IVF parent. One is that your friends may be a few steps ahead of you You're still at home with a new baby while they're sending their kids off to school. Because a lot of parents' daily activities are tied in with the life stages of their children, you may no longer see so much of your 'old' friends when you become a new parent.

Sleeping through the night sometimes

So, if your baby sleeps through the night regularly, consider yourself lucky and if he doesn't, you're not alone. For some useful tips to help you to get your baby to settle himself back to sleep after he wakes up, check out the What Were We Thinking website If you're having problems getting your baby to sleep and are feeling frustrated and anxious, you may benefit from a stint on a mother-baby program Refer to Chapter 20 for more details on such programs.

Reaping the Rewards of Parenthood

If you're overwhelmed by the demands of caring for your newborn and wonder when life is going to feel 'normal' again, don't despair. After the first crazy few months of new parenthood the dust usually settles and things start to look up. You may get the odd night of decent sleep, your baby has some sort of a routine, you know what your baby wants when she 'calls', you feel confident about caring for her, and you get plenty of rewards for your efforts when your baby giggles and shows her toothless gums. Even if your confidence about caring for your baby is a bit shaky at first, rest assured that you're not alone and very soon you'll be an expert on looking after your baby. Research shows that confidence about caring for the baby grows over time and most IVF mums and dads find parenthood enormously rewarding and fulfilling. Perhaps the long and winding IVF journey, during which you realise that you can't take parenthood for granted, makes you appreciate and value parenting even more...

Feeling Better Three Months On

For the first three months after your baby's born, you and baby spend time getting to know each other and you may not be totally confident in your role as a parent. But a few months down the track when you know your baby better, have a handle on what makes her happy and settled and colic is a thing of the past, you start to feel more confident about what you're doing and find you're back in something resembling control again. A daily routine emerges that makes life more predictable and allows you to fit more into your day than feeding, changing and settling your baby. And your baby may even sleep through the night a real breakthrough for parents and baby.

My First Baby

My First Baby

Are You Prepared For Your First Baby? Endlessly Searching For Advice and Tips On What To Expect? Then You've Landed At The Right Place With All The Answers! Are you expecting? Is the time getting closer to giving birth to your first baby? So many mothers to be are completely unprepared for motherhood and the arrival of a little one, but stress not, we have all the answers you need!

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