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Archive for the ‘infant care’ Category

http://mamabirth.blogspot.com/2011/12/if-you-are-asking-my-opinion-yes-you.html

Read this excellent blog about why mothers need childbirth classes, whether birthing in the hospital or at home.  Understanding this can help us on our journey to have better births in the United States and lower cesarean rates.

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By Joy Rhodes, virtual assistant to Jane and Mom of three boys

I recently had my third son this past summer and was looking forward to breastfeeding him just like I breastfed my other two sons.  Having had wonderful breastfeeding experiences with my other two boys, I was quite surprised when I experienced pain while breastfeeding with this baby.  I knew that the latch looked right from the outside, but something was not right if there was pain.  Jane Bradshaw, my wonderful International Board Certified Lactation Consultant and friend, always told everyone that breastfeeding should never hurt, so I started investigating other possibilities.  I noticed that my baby seemed to eat all the time with hardly a break.  I would sit for two hours at a time on the couch with a baby that seemed to eat and eat and eat and not feel satisfied.  He would sleep a bit and then wake up hungry again.  He was getting milk, but it seemed to take him so long to get it.  That in combination with the pain was wearing down this mommy quick.  So I made an appointment with Jane to do a weight check and a breastfeeding snapshot to see exactly how much milk he was getting in a feeding and also have her look at his latch to make sure I was not missing any problem areas.

The first thing Jane checked was his tongue.  She noticed that he did not stick his tongue out of his mouth and it did not rise very high when he cried.  These were two very good signs of the possibility of a tongue-tie in combination with the breast pain and long feedings.  Sometimes you can see the frenulum visually, but in my son’s case he had a very deep rooted tongue-tie that was not easily seen until the Ear Nose and Throat Specialist found it underneath the web-like tissue.  Even my son’s doctor did not see the tongue-tie because it was one that was not commonly seen with an initial look in the mouth.  Thankfully he was getting enough milk to gain weight, but I had to work harder with pumping and compressions to get all the milk to him in a feeding (not to mention the pain I was feeling!).  Jane suggested a visit to the Ear Nose and Throat Specialist in Lynchburg, VA, Dr. Andrea Kittrell.   I made an appointment and had the procedure done that day.

No one likes to see their baby in pain and worries about having any kind of procedure done that would cause it.  My son cried a little when he came back to the room from the procedure, but the pain afterwards was very minimal.  He breastfed immediately and I felt a difference right away!  No pain from nursing at all, right there at the doctor’s office.  Jane gave me some post-procedure exercises to do with him to help him learn to use his tongue better, and he was soon sticking out his tongue with gusto and enjoying the new-found freedom to move his tongue.  Feedings improved dramatically and there was NO pain.

Jane told me that tongue-ties are very common, and most are undiagnosed because moms give up breastfeeding because of the pain.  Many people live with the pain of breastfeeding and just assume that it is normal and something to have to struggle through in order to give your baby the best food, breastmilk.  I think of many friends and family members who pushed through with breastfeeding and eventually gave up around six months because it hurt too much or the baby was not gaining enough weight because they thought they didn’t have enough milk.  I agree with Jane, it’s not supposed to hurt!   I wish they would have gone to an IBCLC and got a solution to ease their pain so that they could enjoy the incredible bonding experience of breastfeeding their baby for as long as possible, not to mention the tremendous benefits of breastmilk for their baby.    If you have pain from breastfeeding, make an appointment with Jane Bradshaw or another IBCLC in your area today to find relief.

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A sweet mother called this week, worried because her milk supply is too low.  Her baby cries and is no longer satisfied.  We talked a while and she said she has been breastfeeding according to the information in the book ‘Babywise’.  Her baby was 4 to 5 months old, sleeps 9 to 11 hours at night and she breastfeeds 5 times during the day and he recently dropped another feeding.  I encouraged her to breastfeed more often and she texted me that in less than 24 hours she could tell the difference and that she had more milk.   This is the email with resources I sent her.

————

Dear _________,

I’m so glad you are seeing a response with an increase in your milk supply already.  It will work, and you will see your milk grow and grow until it is abundant again.  I want you to come home, grab a plate of food, put your feet up, nurse the baby and read all this stuff I’m sending you on your computer, watch TV and snuggle up to your husband.  You can do a lot of “couple time” while the baby is in your lap, which Gary Ezzo doesn’t understand.

(more…)

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excerpt from Elizabeth Pantley, The No-Cry Picky Eater Solution

Is your child unwilling to taste a new food? A picky eater often has to be

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exposed to something new as many as ten to fifteen times before even tasting it! Children trust familiar things in their lives and are often suspicious of something new and different—this applies to food too. A food that has an unusual appearance, color, smell, or texture can be off-putting to a young child. That’s why repeated exposure helps. Eventually the unusual food becomes familiar, and at that point, the child becomes open to the idea of tasting it and giving it a fair evaluation. Knowing these facts gives us insight into how to introduce new foods and what to expect when we do. Here are a few tips:

~Begin by putting a tiny bit of the new food—such as two chickpeas or one Brussels sprout—on your child’s plate along with regular favorites. Don’t expect him to eat it, and don’t make a comment if he pulls it apart, smells it, or smashes it. Allow the experimentation to occur—it’s the first step to acceptance. If you’ve displayed the new food on your child’s plate eight to ten times and he still hasn’t eaten any, then gently encourage him to take “just one bite.”

~Pick one or two new foods at a time and put one on your child’s plate three or four times per week for several months. When he sees it enough times he’ll eventually give it a taste.

~Let your child observe you eating the new food. Mention to your spouse or a friend that you enjoy the food so that your child’s hears your comment. Studies tell us that when children are certain their parents or other important people in their lives really like a food (not just eat it out of duty, but actually enjoy it, they decide it’s a good thing to try for themselves.


Melissa, mother of of five-year-old Brenna, four-year-old Gianni, two-year-old Giulio, and nine-month-old Brydie shares her idea: “To introduce my kids to some new foods, I create a food treasure hunt. I have the kids play in their room so I can put out the food and make a map to each place with clues to the next food spot. They don’t get the next clue unless they try the food at each spot. I try to have only two new or not-so-keen-on foods along with about three things they do like along the way. The treasure at the end is dessert!”

~If you are eating with another adult, offer that person a taste of the new food. Ask her in advance to try it willingly and declare it tasty. When a child sees someone else being adventurous, he may be more willing to do so himself.

~After your child has tried the food and found it at least minimally acceptable (meaning he doesn’t spit it out or gag on it!), try putting it out as an appetizer before dinner is served. If your child is hungry, and it’s the first thing offered, he may actually eat a bite or two.


Catherine, mother to eight-year-old Ben and four-year-old Birdy tells her tale: “I put kale on his plate and put kale on his plate and put kale on his plate. My son tried it and grimaced, and we praised him for trying it. Pages flew off the calendar, and his beard grew down to the floor, and then one day he ate it without comment. And then one day he ate it and said, ‘This is actually not as bad as I thought.’ After which a pair of bluebirds draped the banner of joy around my shoulders!”

This article is an excerpt from The No-Cry Picky Eater Solution: Gentle Ways to Encourage Your Child to Eat—and Eat Healthy by Elizabeth Pantley. (McGraw-Hill, 2011)

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The Real Diaper Association, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization, provides support and education to parents all across North America for the use of simple, reusable cloth diapers. The goal of the Real Diaper Association is to put more babies in cloth diapers. To do this we aim to create a cultural shift in understanding cloth diapers-their environmental impact, their ease of use, their accessibility, and their acceptability. The Association will help parents understand that cloth diapers are real diapers.

Members of the Real Diaper Association will support reliable scientific and demographic research into health and environmental benefits of cloth diapers. The Association will then distribute this research to members, local governments, health care providers, environmental organizations, and others.

The Real Diaper Resource Center supports our members and their local Real Diaper Circles with the information and tools they need to spread the use of cloth diapers. Through the Resource Center, RDA plans national campaigns, distributes educational information and sponsors research. Our members have access to the Resource Center through our website, through local Leaders, through our national convention, and through the information we distribute in pamphlets, email lists and other publications.

Through local Real Diaper Circles, the Association organizes members who advocate cloth diapers locally, meeting with new parents face-to-face to make their diapering choice easier.

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Question

We’re about to take our first airplane trip with our one-year-old. We flew quite a bit before she was born, but now we’re not sure what to pack or how to make this trip successful.

Learn about it

Even if you racked up your share of frequent flyer miles before your baby was born, forget what you know of travel so far. Flying with a little one is a whole different story.

If you fear turning into one of those families we’ve all met aboard planes — those with squalling, unruly, squirming children who tend to bring out the same traits in their fellow passengers — take heart. My oldest child, Angela was just 14 days old when she took her first flight, and since then, I’ve taken many more trips with my four children. I know that you can travel with your little ones and enjoy the process. Forethought and preparation are the keys.

Planning the trip

The details of your trip often can mean the difference between success and disaster. Keep these ideas in mind as you plan:

Examine all aspects of the journey when you book your flights. Aim for direct flights so that you can avoid changing planes. If you have to make a change, avoid short layovers that give you too little time to get from gate to gate, and conversely avoid long layovers that require lots of idle time in airports.

When you make your reservations, give the agent the ages of all passengers. You may learn some important rules such as:

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When your baby wakes in the middle of the night, you probably have a routine to get him back to sleep. For Coleton

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and me, it was breastfeeding. I used to nurse him until he was totally asleep. Every hour, we had a very exact pattern: Coleton woke, I shifted him to the other side, I kissed his head, and then he nursed — a beautiful, soothing ritual. Sometimes he would wake up and pucker up, looking for the kiss and the shift. As sweet as this ritual was, after 12 months of this nightly/hourly ceremony, I desperately needed a change.

As with the writing of this book, learning how to break the association was a gradual, thoughtful process that required self-examination. I discovered that I was responding to Coleton so quickly and intuitively that I’d put him to the breast before he even made a real noise — he would just fidget, gurgle, or “sniff” and I would put him to the breast. I began to realize that, on so many of these occasions, he would have gone back to sleep without me.

I am a follower of the “never let your baby cry” rule, and I took it very seriously. What I didn’t understand, though, is that babies make sounds in their sleep. And these sounds do not mean that baby needs you. Babies moan, grunt, snuffle, whimper, and even cry in their sleep. Babies can even nurse in their sleep.

The first step to helping your baby sleep longer is to determine the difference between sleeping noises and awake noises. When she makes a noise: Stop. Listen. Wait. Peek. As you listen attentively to her noises, and watch her, you will learn the difference between sleeping snorts and “I’m waking up and I need you now” noises.

When I learned this eye-opening piece of information, I started “playing asleep” when Coleton made a nighttime noise. I would just listen and watch — not moving a single muscle — until he began to make actual wakeful noises. Some of the time, he never did; he just went back to sleep!

The idea, then, is to learn when you should pick your baby up for a night feeding and when you can let her go back to sleep on her own. This is a time when you need to really focus your instincts and intuition. This is when you should try very hard to learn how to read your baby’s signals.

You need to listen and watch your baby carefully. Learn to differentiate between these sleeping sounds and awake and hungry sounds. If she is really awake and hungry, you’ll want to feed her as quickly as possible. If you do respond immediately when she is hungry, she will most likely go back to sleep quickly. So, the key here is to listen carefully when your baby makes night noises: If she is making “sleeping noises” — let her sleep. If she really is waking up — tend to her quickly.

Excerpted with permission by McGraw-Hill Publishing from The No-Cry Sleep Solution (McGraw-Hill 2002).

 

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