Birth affirmations are a wonderful way to keep your mind in a good place before and during birth. This free website has some printable coloring pages with some great affirmations. There are even some specifically for waterbirth! If you have had a traumatic birth in the past or maybe it's your first one or you just want to enter birth in a very mindful way she also has a free workbook of sorts to work through. There is also a color book about homebirth to read to kids about ages 2-6 or so. All absolutely free! How cool is that?
A new study shows how some very common labor medications affect newborn behavior in the first hour. As the video below explains, there are 9 stages newborns go through after birth. Perhaps you've seen videos of the "breast crawl", which show babies finding their mother's nipple with minimal help. Keep in mind that these are unmedicated babies. If a mother has an epidural or gets Pitocin to speed up labor (and very often she gets both), it goes to her baby and depresses either the instinct to breast crawl or the ability to do so. The exposure to Pitocin and fentanyl was dose-dependent, meaning that the longer the mother had the epidural and/or the Pitocin the less likely it was for her baby to latch within the first hour.
It is very clear from other studies that breastfeeding sooner leads to better breastfeeding outcomes and less cases of dangerous jaundice. These relationships should be clearly explained and understood before labor, so that mothers know what they might be dealing with as a consequence of an intervention.
I'm a natural childbirth educator, lactation consultant (IBCLC), and doula in Athens, AL. Here is where I put healthy recipes, current research, and helpful articles for pregnancy, postpartum, and life in general. Check back often!