Posts Tagged ‘pregnancy’

By Jane Bradshaw, RN, IBCLC, RLC, Childbirth Educator, HypnoBirthing Childbirth Educator

What’s wrong with this statement? How could a woman benefit from Prepared Childbirth Classes if she definitely wants an epidural?

1. Because a laboring woman can not always have an epidural when she wants it. Usually she must be in active labor and progressing, effacing and dilating. It is worth it to know comfort measures to cope with labor until that point.
2. An epidural may slow or stop labor. If that happens more drugs are given to stimulate labor to ‘move it along’, usually pitocin. Both of these, the epidural and pitocin, are strong, serious drugs that can cause fetal distress. Parents need to understand these drugs well before choosing them, knowing the benefits, risks and alternatives, how to ask questions and discuss these with their care providers. Then they need to be able to consider their options to make the best decisions for themselves and their baby.
3. Sometimes an epidural, Plan A doesn’t work (roughly 10% of the time) or it may work on only 1 side only numb one area and not others. Then what do you do? Women who don’t have Plan B are more likely to feel totally unprepared, disappointed, upset, fearful and have more pain.
4. Sometimes labor goes too quickly to get the epidural! These quick labors are usually healthy but very intense. It is worth it to know techniques to help yourself through a fast & furious labor, just in case.
5. A woman or her baby may have a medical condition, at any time that makes her unable to have an epidural. This is a rude awakening if a woman has planned on getting it, and is not prepared to cope without one, again causing more fear, tension, and pain.

What do childbirth preparation classes, commonly known as Lamaze, teach that would benefit a woman who plans to have an epidural?

1. The normal process of labor and delivery. Many mothers fear labor and the knowledge acquired in childbirth classes can reduce fear, tension and pain.
2. All benefits, risks, and alternatives of treatments and medications, including epidurals, that are possible during labor so the woman and her partner can make smart, informed decisions.
3. How to talk with your care provider about your medical choices in labor. During labor, much of what happens to you is optional. Know your options!
3. Lots and lots of risk-free, non-medical comfort techniques for labor.
4. Techniques that promote a healthy labor, ways to help it progress normally, so it is as short as possible which is good for both mother and baby. Who wants a long labor anyway?

Prepared birthing classes are good for EVERY expectant couple!

Call Best Start Parenting Center for more information about Prepared Childbirth Classes or visit our classes page on our website by clicking here.


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After being told her newborn son was dead, mother Kate Ogg was able to cuddle and caress her baby’s limp body back to life, astonishing doctors. TODAY’s Amy Robach has this incredible story.

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By Karen Gehl, ICCE

I am going to share a secret with you….I love to take self-help quizzes. You know the ones…”Are You Married To Your Perfect Mate”, “What Is Your Exercise Personality”, “What Is The Perfect Diet For You?”….I have taken them all, including one I saw recently titled “Are You a Candidate for Natural Childbirth?”

I have to admit, I was intrigued. Isn’t a woman born a candidate for natural childbirth? Isn’t that one of the major characteristics that differentiates us from our male counterparts and defines us as women? And if a woman isn’t a candidate for natural childbirth, what kind of birth does that mean she is a candidate for???

As a childbirth educator I have always stressed to my pregnant clients that their body knows what to do during pregnancy. The woman’s body knows how to move internal organs and parts out of the way to make room for the growing baby inside her uterus. Her body knows to grow a placenta, an organ she has no need for unless she is growing a baby. Her uterus knows how to expand from about the size of a fist to the size necessary to accommodate her baby, regardless of what size that baby ends up being, and then return to its original size after the baby is born. Her body also knows when and how to begin the process of moving the baby out of her uterus when the baby is finished developing and is ready to be born. And if all of that isn’t enough to impress you, consider that the woman’s body will make milk uniquely designed for her baby!

This is what I have been teaching for years. Could it be that I have been teaching it wrong all this time and that some women are just not “candidates” for birth the way nature intended it to be? I decided to take the quiz myself and find out!

I answered questions about:
• my tolerance for pain (which is not especially high),
• my confidence in my body (hmmm….I have sort of a love/hate relationship with my body),
• my feelings toward strenuous exercise (ick! I hate to sweat!),
• how strong my support network is (my closest relative is 200 miles away) …
… on and on the questions went and I answered all of them honestly.

Then I tallied up my answers and determined my score. The result of my quiz revealed……drum roll please……that I am NOT a candidate for natural childbirth! Wow! What a revelation! I wonder how differently my births would have gone had I known that I was indeed “NOT a candidate for natural birth” back when I was delivering each of my two children…… NATURALLY!!!

I am a woman. I am not only a candidate for natural childbirth, I was made for natural childbirth! I am not super woman. I am not a martyr. I am not any better at giving birth than any other woman on the planet. I just believed I could do it, because that is what my body is designed to do, because I am a woman!

Click here to read Karen’s birth story!

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Take 17 minutes out of your day to watch this very informative video about the US Infant Mortality Rate from http://reducinginfantmortality.com/.  Listen to Obstetricians, Doulas, Neonatologists, Midwives, Psychologists, Pediatricians, and other Physicians explain how our health care system is failing babies and mothers and what we can do about it:

Reducing Infant Mortality from Debby Takikawa on Vimeo.

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Have you heard pros and cons of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS)? “It’s good – – -it’s bad, it’s no worse than sugar” . . . . .

Well I’m becoming more convinced each day that we need to eat as close to our great-grandparents diet as possible. The more processed the foods, the more chance for problems, additives or changes that make the food bad/dangerous for us, and especially pregnant moms, babies and children.

“It turns out that many foods sweetened with HFCS contain mercury, left as a residue in the production of caustic soda, a key ingredient in HFCS. And worst of all, the FDA and the industry have known about this potential toxin and has continued serving it up since at least 2005.”

Read this article from the Huffington Post for more information, then check your pantry for some of these food items that may contain mercury.

Click Here to go to Article

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