Dads and Breastfeeding

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While moms and babies quickly come to mind when discussing breastfeeding, dads have a role in the breastfeeding relationship too. In fact, studies show supportive dads can positively impact breastfeeding rates. When a dad actively supports mom’s decision to breastfeed we see higher initiation rates and a longer duration of breastfeeding. Dads, you are important! Here are a few ways to support a nursing mom: Continue reading

Breastfeeding and Allergies

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Generally speaking there are no across the board dietary restrictions while breastfeeding.  Some herbs in large amounts might impact supply, a specific food might upset baby but for the most part nursing moms can eat as they always have. That said, some of us are blessed with special little ones, little ones that are sensitive or very allergic to certain foods. Some might assume their baby is allergic to breast milk itself, but aside from a very rare condition galactosemia babies are not allergic to human milk. The reaction is not to moms milk in general but something she is consuming. Continue reading

Bed-sharing, Is It Safe?

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Adding a new addition to your family often means life revolving around getting enough sleep to function.  Some families find co-sleeping (baby within arms reach but not necessarily on a shared surface) and bed-sharing to aid in the quest of adequate sleep during life with an infant.  With PSA campaigns, advice from family and varying recommendations from healthcare providers it can be confusing to decide what sleep arrangement works best for your family. Continue reading

Sibling Love

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Introducing a new baby into the home comes with joy but it also comes with challenges. One challenge that can occur is ensuring a healthy sibling relationship. There are lots of things you can do to encourage a good sibling bond and reduce any resentment siblings might have towards the new baby. Here are five tips to help older siblings adjust: Continue reading

Mom, You Are Important, Practice Self Care!

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If you have ever been on a plane you likely remember the flight attendant instructing you to always put your oxygen mask on before helping others. That is the perfect example for self care during motherhood. New babies can be demanding and before you know it your needs slowly get pushed to the back burner. While meeting your infant’s needs is important it can be impossible to do if you are suffocating. Here are a few quick self care tips: Continue reading

Sleeping Through The Night, The Elusive Milestone

IMG_20140703_194548Simply put, our culture is obsessed with infant sleep. Whether it is the pediatrician or a random stranger on the street, if you have a baby in your arms the question, “how does she sleep?” almost ALWAYS comes up. The frequent questioning leads many new parents to worry constantly about how, when, and where their infant is sleeping. I am not really certain why it is any business of a stranger, or why we feel compelled to ask (I’m guilty of asking too!) its become a normal question, as normal as asking someone how they are. It has become common small talk, but unfortunately it causes deep worrying for many new parents. It also leads to lying or sugar coating because we are so worried about what others will think. One UK study found that a third of parents lie about how well their children sleep.1 Dr. Sears mentions in his one book2 an even higher number of parents lie about how well and where their infants sleep. Under pressure new parents lie which in turn causes even more new parents to worry why their child is not sleeping all through the night. Next time you cousin Suzy brags about her eight week old sleeping twelve hours a night, remember she just might be sugar coating the truth! Continue reading

They Eat HOW Often?!

As a nursing mom, doula, and childbirth educator I get MANY questions about supply concerns because baby is constantly eating. I am not sure my answer to this offers relief or fear but the reality is it is completely normal for baby to eat what feels like ALL the time. In fact, some newborns spend 16+ hours at the breast in the first few days. I know I have shared this before, but this is such a wonderful article and what I often share with moms who are concerned about baby wanting to be physically attached to them at all times. http://www.drjen4kids.com/soap%20box/normal_%20newborn.htm#.Ui45FdLijAk Continue reading

Finding Your Village

In past centuries, most women witnessed childbirth multiple times before they experienced labor for themselves. Many women also assisted relatives with household duties and child care during the immediate postpartum period. When it was their turn to enter into motherhood, they knew what to expect. They had practical support and they had other mothers to model after. While some women still have this experience, many women in our culture do not. Continue reading