Tag Archives: baby

Rave – Baby Slings, Costly to Buy, Easy to Make

Baby slings are a great item to have. They are very popular today because they are great! Yet often they come with a hefty price tag.

Here is a site that shows you how to make your own sling. Or if you really cannot do it, which I know some cannot. Then you can order one.

Bottom line they are a wonderful tool for mothers. Your hands become free. Babies become happy. I love them. Whether at home, or shopping in the mall, baby slings are number one for me.

Top Reasons

* You can have a life! When your baby is in a carrier your hands are free, so you can do other things. It is so simple to cook, clean, play with other children and work when your baby is in a carrier.
* Soothes fussy babies. Nothing soothes our baby like walking around with him in the sling. “Quick-get the sling!” is a phrase that is often heard in our house.
* Your baby needs to be close to you for his emotional and psychological well being. It teaches him that the world is safe. And since you are right there to love and meet his needs, he discovers that the world is a safe place to be and that he is loved.
* Babies who are held more cry less! Because her needs are met right away and she feels safe and secure.
* Get in rhythm with your little one. Carrying your baby puts you in harmony with him. He is more likely to sleep when you sleep when he is carried during the day.
* Happier Babies. Every baby that we have met that is worn is happy and full of life. I have never seen a worn baby scared of the world. They are alive, joyful, and curious.
* Optimal learning environment. Can you imagine anything better than exploring the world through the safe arms of your mother? She gets to experience all the visual, auditory, and kinestetic stimulation that you do! Best of all, she doesn’t get over stimulated. You regulate her intake of sensory experience and she can always take a break and just gaze up at your face (my favorite thing).
* Breastfeeding is so easy in a sling. Breastfeeding in a sling gives your tired arms a break and lets you talk on the phone or eat (we know how hungry you are now)!

Rave – Baby Slings, Costly to Buy, Easy to Make.

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Breastfeeding Problems Solved

Almost half of breastfeeding moms quit before their baby is 6 months old and often it’s because they’ve run into problems that are actually pretty easily solved. If you’re thinking of stopping, read on for quick solutions to common problems…

My baby is due and I want to breastfeed but I have very small nipples that don’t stick out like normal ones. Will this make it difficult?

Many women have nipples that are ‘inverted’ but this shouldn’t prevent your baby from nursing because it’s not actually your nipple she suckles on – it’s the areola (the darker area immediately surrounding it). The most important thing is to make sure your baby is properly latched on – you’ll probably feed him for the first time within 30 minutes of the delivery and there will be lactation consultants of nurses close by to help you. Some women find that breast shells can encourage inverted nipples to protrude more – a lactation consultant can advise you.

My baby is just over a week old and my nipples are really suffering – they’re cracked and bleeding and nursing is painful. Should I give up and switch her to the bottle?

It’s not unusual to feel some discomfort when you first start breastfeeding but you shouldn’t still be getting it a week on and certainly not to the extent you describe. Most cases of sore and cracked nipples are caused by incorrect latching on. If your physician isn’t qualified to check your technique it’s worth contacting a lactation consultant who can visit you at home – if it solves the problem it’s money well-spent. Other reasons your nipples may be sore include overdrying or excessive moisture; it’s also possible that your baby has passed on a yeast infection if she has one in her mouth (if your physician thinks this is the problem she can prescribe an anti-fungal medication).

Once you’ve perfected your latching-on technique, keep feeding but nurse your baby on the least sore side first so that when you transfer her to the other breast she’ll be less hungry and will suckle less vigorously. If your nipples become so sore you can’t bear to nurse, gently express milk by hand.

My breasts are constantly leaking milk! I wake up with my T-shirt and sheets soaked and go through several boxes of nursing pads a week. Every time I go to latch on my baby she gets a face full of milk! Is this normal?

When your breast milk comes in, around four days after your baby’s birth, it’s common to have an overabundant supply and for your let-down reflex to be so powerful that milk sprays out when you start to nurse. It can cause problems, with your breasts becoming engorged (literally too full), and your baby finding it hard to latch on because the skin on your breasts is stretched so tight there’s no ‘give’. If this happens you may have to express a little milk before feeds, to help her grab hold! Thankfully this oversupply will diminish by the time your baby is around 6-8 weeks old – breast milk is produced on a supply and demand basis, and as soon as  your body becomes accustomed to your baby’s needs your milk supply will balance out.

I’ve discovered a hard, tender patch on one of my breasts near my armpit – is it anything to do with nursing my baby?

This sounds like a blocked milk duct – these are pretty common near the armpits because milk glands are concentrated in those areas. Ducts can become blocked if you leave it too long between feeds or don’t feed for long enough, and women who tend to produce a lot of milk are more likely to get them.

There is a risk that a blocked duct can develop into mastitis but the solution is simple: feed your baby as often as you can and offer her the affected side first – the hungrier she is the more vigorous her sucking, and this alone may help dislodge the blockage. Positioning her so her chin points towards the blockage will also help, so latch her on in the underarm position with her body lying on a pillow placed at your side, and gently massage the tender area as she feeds. If she doesn’t feed for very long, hand express to fully drain the milk and mention the problem to your lactation consultant. If these measures don’t clear the lump, have your physician check it as a precaution.

My physician wants to put me on anti-depressants to help me cope with post-partum depression. Could the medication harm my baby if I continue to breastfeed?

Many new moms suffer from depression after the birth but rest assured that there are a number of anti-depressants that have no adverse effect on a nursing baby. As a precaution, and to set your mind at rest, inform your physician that you’re breastfeeding and ask him to prescribe a drug that is known to be safe. Let your baby’s pediatrician know you’re taking it, and watch out for any possible side-effects, which could include your baby seeming excessively drowsy or difficult to settle, or colicky. Keep in mind that your baby’s health and wellbeing depends on yours – and you’re likely to be happier if your depression is treated.

My sister had mastitis when she was breastfeeding. How can I avoid it?  

Mastitis is an infection that often develops out of a blocked milk duct. It causes flu-like symptoms including a fever, chills, and aches and pains; you’ll also notice a hard red patch of skin on your breast. The infection needs to be treated with antibiotics and you should continue to nurse your baby throughout, starting feeds on the unaffected side, to keep up your milk flow. Hot or coolpacks can help relieve soreness but if you find feeds too painful, hand-express your milk and ask your lactation consultant for guidance.

Many moms develop mastitis when they return to work and are not feeding their baby as regularly. If you’re expressing milk at work, try to schedule it when you would normally have nursed your baby or do it at least every four hours.

Help! I recently returned to work and my baby is getting expressed breast milk from a bottle during the day. But when I try to nurse her in the evening, she refuses the breast. Could it be she prefers to bottlefeed?

If you’re pumping milk at work this should keep up your milk supply but it’s best to try and do this at the times you would have nursed your baby. Many working moms cut down to just once a day, during their lunch hour and since milk is produced on a supply and demand basis, your flow will reduce if you’re not feeding your baby or expressing to the usual schedule. This means that when you latch your baby on after work, there may not be as much milk as she’s used to and she may get frustrated – especially if she has worked out that she doesn’t have to work so hard to get milk from a bottle! Try to get past the problem by latching your baby on as soon as you get in instead of waiting until she’s really hungry, when she’ll get particularly irate at having to suckle hard in order to feed. Try waiting until she’s drowsy too, as many babies will feed while they snooze.

 Item Courtesy of Super Nanny

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Edgy Mama: Postpartum doulas are a hot new trend

Postpartum doulas are a hot new trend of doulas. But you may not know that there are two varieties — birth doulas and postpartum doulas.

The birth doulas are the ones who attend women throughout labor and birth. They’re the back masseuses, the push cheerleaders, the partner calmers. Basically, they’re hired as non-medical physical and emotional support for a very intense process (regardless of the experience, I think we can all agree that giving birth is intense).

Postpartum doulas, on the other hand, help take care of mom after the birth, once she’s back home with the new squalling addition to the family. PPDs (as I’ll henceforth refer to them) are the non-medical physical and emotional support for what’s also a very intense process — bringing a new baby home, caring for it and integrating it into a household.

“I’m there to talk to moms and answer questions, and I do whatever I can to be there for them and their family when they’re incorporating a new family member,” says Asheville-based postpartum doula Molly Rouse. “I’ll do laundry, clean house, cook, help with the baby — whatever the mom needs.”

Would I have been willing to pay for this kind of support after bringing home my babies? Holy hell-on-a-breadstick, yes. Where were these postpartum doulas when I was popping out offspring?

They’re new on the scene, according to Rouse, who says the woman who has been certified as a PPD the longest in Asheville has only been doing this for about two years. Rouse was certified last December (doulas don’t have to be certified, but many have gone through a certification process).

Despite being new, postpartum doulas aren’t difficult to find. There’s a Web site, called http://www.wncdoulas.com, which lists a number of both types of doulas who work in the area (yes, there are still more of the birth than postpartum variety, though Rouse aims to change that). To learn more about Rouse herself, visit her Web site: http://www.nurtureyourfamily.net.

As far as I can tell, a baby nurse is for the baby. A postpartum doula is mostly for the mom, but she can take care of babies too. And if there’s something she can’t help mom with, she can refer the new mommy to someone who can.

“Molly came in and helped me when I really, really needed it,” says Asheville resident Erika Villa, who struggled with postpartum depression after her third child was born ten months ago.

Rouse referred Villa to a local therapist who specializes in treating postpartum depression. And she helped her out at home.

“She really encouraged me to care more for myself, which is what I needed to be encouraged to do,” Villa says. “She let me sleep, which I really needed.”

Birth doulas typically offer one or two postpartum visits to check in with mom, and they can refer moms to specialized care if needed, such as a breastfeeding specialist or psychologist. But they also can refer mom to a postpartum doula, who has training in breastfeeding and baby care — and who can help to clean the house, cook dinner, and care for older kids if needed. Win!

“The best part for me is feeling a connection with the mom and knowing that the little things I do can make a big, big difference,” Rouse says. “I’m into nesting and cleaning. I love doing that sort of nurturing.”

Can you see me drooling here in North Asheville?

Rates vary among PPDs. Rouse offers a sliding scale of $15 to $25 per hour. She adds that she’s open to bartering and that the Doulas of North America organization offers financial aid for families on Medicaid (http://www.dona.org). Families can hire ppds for just a few hours a week or more, depending on their needs.

“I’d recommend a postpartum doula especially to people who are new moms, have a difficult baby, or don’t have family in the area who can help,” Villa says. “We as moms all try to be supermoms, sometimes without even being aware of it. We feel we have to take care of everything ourselves. But we don’t.”

Indeed, sister. So soon-to-be grandparents, here’s a great gift for your kids who are having kids: a PPD. I was lucky enough to have a grandpa who gave me cash for cleaning help when my two were newborns. But had there been ppds around then — one of those would’ve been my preferred investment.

of doulas. But you may not know that there are two varieties — birth doulas and postpartum doulas.

The birth doulas are the ones who attend women throughout labor and birth. They’re the back masseuses, the push cheerleaders, the partner calmers. Basically, they’re hired as non-medical physical and emotional support for a very intense process (regardless of the experience, I think we can all agree that giving birth is intense).

Postpartum doulas, on the other hand, help take care of mom after the birth, once she’s back home with the new squalling addition to the family. PPDs (as I’ll henceforth refer to them) are the non-medical physical and emotional support for what’s also a very intense process — bringing a new baby home, caring for it and integrating it into a household.

“I’m there to talk to moms and answer questions, and I do whatever I can to be there for them and their family when they’re incorporating a new family member,” says Asheville-based postpartum doula Molly Rouse. “I’ll do laundry, clean house, cook, help with the baby — whatever the mom needs.”

Would I have been willing to pay for this kind of support after bringing home my babies? Holy hell-on-a-breadstick, yes. Where were these postpartum doulas when I was popping out offspring?

They’re new on the scene, according to Rouse, who says the woman who has been certified as a PPD the longest in Asheville has only been doing this for about two years. Rouse was certified last December (doulas don’t have to be certified, but many have gone through a certification process).

Despite being new, postpartum doulas aren’t difficult to find. There’s a Web site, called http://www.wncdoulas.com, which lists a number of both types of doulas who work in the area (yes, there are still more of the birth than postpartum variety, though Rouse aims to change that). To learn more about Rouse herself, visit her Web site: http://www.nurtureyourfamily.net.

As far as I can tell, a baby nurse is for the baby. A postpartum doula is mostly for the mom, but she can take care of babies too. And if there’s something she can’t help mom with, she can refer the new mommy to someone who can.

“Molly came in and helped me when I really, really needed it,” says Asheville resident Erika Villa, who struggled with postpartum depression after her third child was born ten months ago.

Rouse referred Villa to a local therapist who specializes in treating postpartum depression. And she helped her out at home.

“She really encouraged me to care more for myself, which is what I needed to be encouraged to do,” Villa says. “She let me sleep, which I really needed.”

Birth doulas typically offer one or two postpartum visits to check in with mom, and they can refer moms to specialized care if needed, such as a breastfeeding specialist or psychologist. But they also can refer mom to a postpartum doula, who has training in breastfeeding and baby care — and who can help to clean the house, cook dinner, and care for older kids if needed. Win!

“The best part for me is feeling a connection with the mom and knowing that the little things I do can make a big, big difference,” Rouse says. “I’m into nesting and cleaning. I love doing that sort of nurturing.”

Can you see me drooling here in North Asheville?

Rates vary among PPDs. Rouse offers a sliding scale of $15 to $25 per hour. She adds that she’s open to bartering and that the Doulas of North America organization offers financial aid for families on Medicaid (http://www.dona.org). Families can hire ppds for just a few hours a week or more, depending on their needs.

“I’d recommend a postpartum doula especially to people who are new moms, have a difficult baby, or don’t have family in the area who can help,” Villa says. “We as moms all try to be supermoms, sometimes without even being aware of it. We feel we have to take care of everything ourselves. But we don’t.”

Indeed, sister. So soon-to-be grandparents, here’s a great gift for your kids who are having kids: a PPD. I was lucky enough to have a grandpa who gave me cash for cleaning help when my two were newborns. But had there been ppds around then — one of those would’ve been my preferred investment.

By Anne Fitten Glenn, Edgy Mama

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Fact Fridays…New Study: How to Choose Baby Bottles

Many moms who start off breastfeeding ponder bottle issues, as they have to return to work or need to spend several hours away from the baby.

Breastfeeding expert Donna Dowling, associate professor of nursing at the Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing at Case Western Reserve University, could sympathize with the new mom next to her in a large baby store as she was also overwhelmed by the variety of bottle choices in the 12 x 8 foot display.

The expectant mom’s questions inspired Dowling to explore the research evidence behind the claims of manufacturers for their baby products.

Dowling said the bottles came in a variety of sizes and shapes. All are designed to mimic breastfeeding, according to Dowling and Laura Tycon, a nursing student at the university, from bottles shaped and pliable like a mother’s breast to complicated feeding systems designed to prevent the baby’s intake of excess air. In their reseach, it became evident that the designs of the bottles were based on research done during the 1960’s and 70’s that demonstrated differences in how infants obtain milk during breastfeeding and bottle feeding.

After reviewing research papers provided by the manufacturers about their baby products, Dowling and Tycon came up with some tips and report them in the Nursing for Women’s Health article, “Bottle/Nipple Systems, Helping Parents Make Informed Choices.”

 The final choice eventually comes down to the mother’s and baby’s preference.

 “Babies are different and have different styles of sucking, from the slow to the fast eaters,” Dowling said.

 The researchers offer this advice:

     

  • The bottle and nipple need to fit the baby’s eating style. Baby bottles come with nipples that have slow, medium or fast flows of milk. The slower milk flows are for the younger babies who are encountering their first learning experience–feeding. Some babies are very flexible and will take any nipple if they are hungry while others prefer to stay with what is familiar.
  • Consider advertising claims that bottles/nipples prevent colic or were clinically tested objectively. Seek out the research studies to see if the claims matched the findings and who funded the study. 
  • Realize that no one product is best. All products are generally good in that they have bottle/nipple systems that have been based on reducing the intake of excessive air that could be uncomfortable for the baby and result in regurgitation or reflux. 
  • Give baby a chance to adapt to a new bottle. Don’t give up if the baby rejects the bottle on the first feeding. Too many changes of bottle and nipple systems can result in frustration for the mother and baby and be costly. 
  • Seek advice from friends, other mothers, or parenting websites for information about bottles. Also beware of costs when purchasing and changing from one system to another. Dowling also cautions about the complicated bottle and nipple systems: “The more parts and tiny areas in the components, the harder it will be to clean.”

She generally suggests the simpler systems. When choosing the different flow rates, first try a slow or medium flow and stay with that if the baby is comfortable.

The researchers have provided a list of seven brands of bottles with details about nipple shapes, bottle materials, venting systems, flow rates and benefits found. To view the article, visit http://nwh.awhonn.org.

Item Courtesy of Case Western Reserve University

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Mommy Mondays…Mommy and Baby Go Bye-Bye: Traveling While Breastfeeding

Heading out of town for Easter or Passover and wondering how to navigate the “liquids rule” while breastfeeding?
 
Now, a mother flying without her child will be able to bring breast milk through the checkpoint, provided it is declared prior to screening.

TSA is also modifying the rules associated with carrying breast milk through security checkpoints. Mothers flying with, and now without, their child will be permitted to bring breast milk in quantities greater than three ounces as long as it is declared for inspection at the security checkpoint.

Breast milk is in the same category as liquid medications.

When carrying formula, breast milk, or juice through the checkpoint, they will be inspected, however, you or your infant or toddler will not be asked to test or taste breast milk, formula, or juice. Our Security Officers may test liquid exemptions (exempt items more than 3 ounces) for explosives.

When traveling with your infant or toddler, in the absence of suspicious activity or items, greater than 3 ounces of baby formula, breast milk, or juice are permitted through the security checkpoint in reasonable quantities for the duration of your itinerary, if you perform the following:

  1. Separate these items from the liquids, gels, and aerosols in your quart-size and zip-top bag.
  2. Declare you have the items to one of our Security Officers at the security checkpoint.
  3. Present these items for additional inspection once reaching the X-ray. These items are subject to additional screening.

You are encouraged to travel with only as much formula, breast milk, or juice in your carry-on needed to reach your destination.

You are allowed to bring gel or liquid-filled teethers, canned, jarred, or processed baby food in your carry-on baggage and aboard your plane.

For information on creams, medicines, or other essential items for your child, please read our guidance on these items. Click here for the list of permitted and prohibited items.

Liquids and gels, including baby formula, breast milk, or juice, may be packed in your luggage and checked with your airline.

After clearing security, travelers can now bring beverages and other items purchased in the secure boarding area on-board aircraft.

For more details on navigating the screening process with your children, check out traveling with children.

Article and Photo Coutesy of TSA.org

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Fact Fridays…Guest Post: Top Tips for Problem Free Breastfeeding

 

Our post for this week’s “Fact Fridays” for breastfeeding is from Jodie Fuller, one of our MomPals or should I say MumPals, from across the pond! Jodie manages to write these gems while being mum-in-chief of http://www.my-babyshop.co.uk, http://www.my-beautyshop.co.uk, and http://www.my-bookstore.co.uk. I don’t know where she finds the time, bravo girl! Check Jodie’s sites when you get a chance for great baby products and to grab yourself some great practical products and gifts!

Top Tips for Problem Free Breastfeeding

Shall I? Shall I not? Why do we have a choice? Because of the invention of formula! Imagine if formula was never invented we would not be having this conversation! It is because of the freedom of choice and products available to us, that we are faced with some tricky choices. In the 3rd world and poor countries, formula is not available and therefore breastfeeding is the ONLY choice. Where formula has started to be introduced to poor countries, they now face the huge problem of newborns becoming sick due to poor hygiene and lack of sterile conditions formula requires.

A woman’s breast is DESIGNED to produce milk. Experts agree that breast milk is the best food for your baby; in fact, it is perfect food and completely clean, packed with anti-bodies and contains just the right amount of nutrients. Breastfeeding is also good for women, protecting them against breast cancer, ovarian cancer and hip fractures!

 It supports the baby’s immune system and is a natural protector! Knowing how your milk is produced will help you understand some of the initial problems you may be faced with.

Babies who are given nothing but breast milk for more than three months, have been found to have higher IQ’s than those given formula milk.

I will give you some top tips from myself and other mums who have overcome the problems you will face when breastfeeding, so you can find the strength to carry on when those around you may not be supporting you!

To do all you can to help the breastfeeding go well, consider this check list:

  • Make a firm decision to breastfeed (or not to) during pregnancy and stick to it!
  • Feed your newborn as soon as you can after delivery, this will help with bonding.
  • Don’t be put off if you can’t get baby to latch on first time, it takes practice, and is not your babies problem, other than the baby having actual, clinically “tongue tied”, there is no excuse why your baby cannot learn. It is getting into the right positions and then practice it.
  • Feed on demand day and night, it sounds wrong, but you will find great peace not trying to get a “routine” from day one! It is very stressful when you are constantly asked “are you in a routine yet”. You will find this will automatically fall into its own “routine” without being forced into one. Less stress for everyone!
  • Get your midwife to help you with latching on techniques and be patient.
  • Don’t give your baby a bottle in the first 4 weeks – this will just confuse the whole situation and will not solve any problem you thought it would solve. Baby will become confused about how to then latch on to the bottle and will have further problems switching back and forth.
  • Make regular contact with a local breastfeeding counsellor – I attended a breastfeeding group weekly which really helped morale and we shared problems and issues and got them resolved with like minded mums.
  • Be patient. Think of it as a skill you need to learn.
  • Ask for help WHEN you need it, don’t be too proud to get help

Breastfeeding gives you plenty of opportunities to bond.

I have breastfed two babies and although it was very tough, hard, draining at times, worrying and intense, I wouldn’t change what I did for the world.

I provided my daughters with the very best possible start with the very best milk (from me, made for them) and I feel liberated and proud to of done just that.

There are many products out there to support you in being comfortable in the breastfeeding world, and in my experience, a good, well supportive shaped pillow is a great one to have. 

Jodie Fuller

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Tasty Tuesdays???…Chef at Chelsea restaurant offers customers breast milk cheese – NYPOST.com

This Chelsea restaurant has gone from brasserie to brassiere.

Chef Daniel Angerer is letting diners at Klee Brasserie munch on cheese made from his wife’s breast milk.

“It tastes like cow’s-milk cheese, kind of sweet,” he told The Post.

The flavor depends on what the cheese is served with — Angerer recommends a Riesling — and “what the mother eats,” said Angerer, who once bested Bobby Flay on TV’s “Iron Chef.”

Breast milk doesn’t curdle well due to its low protein content, so a little moo juice has to be added to round out the texture, Angerer said.

After blogging about his efforts with the human cheese, customers started demanding a sample, he said.

“The phone was ringing off the hook,” the chef said. “So I prepared a little canapé of breast-milk cheese with figs and Hungarian pepper.”

The response has been generally positive from those who’ve tried the cheese, although many customers are too squeamish to attempt it.

“I think a lot of the criticism has to do with the combination of sex and cheese, but . . . the breast is there to make food,” said Lori Mason, the chef’s wife.

Since the restaurant began offering customers a taste, Mason has been inundated with creepy queries, she said.

“Some people who clearly have issues have . . . e-mailed me saying, ‘I wasn’t breast-fed as a child, so can I taste your breast milk?’ ” she said.

Mason politely declines the offer.

“I’m not here to walk people through their psychological problems,” she said.

That said, Mason is now prodding her husband to make gelato.

After inquiries from The Post, health bigs said yesterday that even though department codes do not explicitly forbid the practice, they have advised Angerer to refrain from sharing his wife’s milk with the world.

“The restaurant knows that cheese made from breast milk is not for public consumption, whether sold or given away,” a spokeswoman for the city Department of Health said.

Would you try breast milk cheese? Will this be the next trend for foodies? Let me know what you think…

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