Category: Hospital 101
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42 results
Hope For Preemies
Medical advances are improving the quality of life for many babies born preterm. Find out how the March of Dimes NICU Family Support Projects is helping give families hope and pave the way to better preemie survival rates.
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HUGGIES® Hospital Prep 101 Checklists
You're about to meet the most awesomest little person ever. What are the quintessential essentials? Explore and print out checklists for a baby first aid kit, the changing table, what to pack for dad, baby naming tips, third trimester to-dos, the ultimate library and the mom-approved hospital bag.
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Bringing Home Baby: 4 Tips for Your Hospital Homecoming
I’ll never forget the day we brought our newborn son home from the hospital. He looked impossibly small in his brand-new car seat and his feet stuck out from under his tiny cotton gown. I sat in the backseat with him on the ride, and when we pulled into the driveway of our little while house the whole family greeted us on the porch.
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Tips for Moms on Bed Rest
When I was 30 weeks pregnant with baby #3, I went into pre-term labor and was told I’d need to be on bed rest for the remainder of my pregnancy. It turns out the baby (and my body) didn’t seem to care that it was my oldest’s 5th birthday (with all kinds of fun stuff planned) the following week. Or that my (then) 2-year-old son was about to start Mommy and Me soccer. Or that my husband’s job tends to take place in about 30 of the 50 United States.
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Hospital Packing List
Jane Buckingham, Huggies Partner and Author of Modern Girl's Guide to Motherhood, shares tips on what you do and don't need at the hospital, including leaving valuables at home.
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The Best Advice from a Million Huggies Fans
To celebrate one million fans, we're sharing your best tips!
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Dr. Bill & Martha Sears: Supersmoothie Recipe for Digestive Aid
<p>THE SIPPING SOLUTION: OUR SUPERSMOOTHIE RECIPE AND TOP DIGESTIVE AID FOR THE INTESTINAL UPSETS OF PREGNANCY</p>

<p>In our medical practice we select the sipping solution as our top home remedy to both provide good nourishment for baby and be easy on the queasy gut of mommy.  Sipping on our supersmoothie throughout the day provides easy-in / easy-out “good gut” feelings.  Blended food is more easily digested, and sipping throughout the day also helps insure you get enough fluids, since dehydration aggravates nausea.  In formulating this recipe we made sure it contains most of the extra nutrients you need for you and your baby.  Try sipping on our supersmoothie all day as your breakfast, lunch, and snacks.  Then have a normal, healthy dinner.  Here’s why the sipping solution is such an intestinal-friendly way to eat at all stages of pregnancy:</p>

<p><b>Sipping throughout the day relieves reflux and heartburn.</b> Once your growing baby starts pressing on your full tummy, heartburn or reflux often follows. Blended, liquefied food empties faster from the stomach so that you experience less heartburn than if you gorged on big meals.  Because blended food enters the stomach slowly and exits quickly from the stomach, there is less leftover to reflux.</p>  

<p><b>Sipping increases nutrient absorption. </b>  Nutrients in blended foods are often absorbed more efficiently.   </p> 

<p><b>Sipping eases constipation. </b>  The supersmoothie is a natural laxative.  Your blender takes over much of the hard work of your upper intestines.  The more pre-digestion that occurs at the top end, the less wear and tear and waste is leftover for the bottom end.  Liquid food passes more quickly through the intestines.  During pregnancy many mothers find smoothies more settling than solid foods.  Also, the high-fiber supersmoothie is a natural laxative.  </p>

<p><b>Sipping results in less mood swings.</b>   When pregnant mothers sip on the supersmoothie throughout the day their blood sugar and insulin levels are steadier, resulting in steadier moods.  </p>

<p>Sipping results in less fatigue.</b>   A steady supply of nutrients gives mom a steady supply of energy.</p>
 
<p><b>DR. BILL AND MARTHA’S PREGNANCY SUPERSMOOTHIE</b> </p>
<p>8 oz. green vegetable juice</p>
<p>8 oz. carrot juice</p>
<p>8 oz. pomegranate juice or grape juice</p>
<p>1-2 c. Greek-style, organic, plain yogurt</p>
<p>1 c. blueberries (fresh or frozen)</p>
<p>2 kiwis</p>
<p>1 banana</p>
<p>1 c. other fruit (strawberries, papaya, mango, pineapple, etc.)</p>
<p>3 oz. tofu</p>
<p>¼ c. ground flaxseeds or 2 tbsp. flaxseed oil</p>
<p>¼ c. wheat germ</p>
<p>1 tsp. cinnamon</p>
<p>1 tbsp. blackstrap molasses</p>

<p>Mix all ingredients in a blender.  Supersmoothies taste best when they are fresh and still have that bubbly milkshake consistency.  Keep blender with unused smoothie in the fridge for later sipping, and blend just a bit to refresh. Or, put smoothie in a cool container to sip on at work.</p>
<p>Makes 8 cups.</p>

<p>Special additions (optional):</p>
<p>Figs for extra fiber and sweetness. </p>
<p>1-2 tbsp. peanut butter for extra energy and satiety</p>
<p>Organic milk or coconut milk instead of juice</p>
<p>Organic kale or spinach for an earthy taste and extra folic acid</p>
<p>Pomegranate (when in season): scoop out the seeds and flesh</p>
<p>1 tsp. spirulina for extra iron and B12</p>
<p>A multi-vitamin/multi-mineral protein powder (see AskDrSears.com/supplements) </p>

<p><b>Nutritional content: </b> Depending on your special additions and the nutritional content of your multi-mineral/multi-vitamin/protein/omega-3 supplement, this recipe is a perfect balance of around 20-25 percent healthy fats, 25 percent protein, and 50-55 percent healthy carbs, which makes it the calorie equivalent of two meals and two snacks:</p>
<p>Calories:      1,000–1,400 </p>
<p>Protein:        50-70 grams</p>
<p>Fat:               20-30 grams</p>
<p>Carbs:          120-150 grams</p>
<p>Fiber:            25-30 grams</p>
<p>Calcium:       800-1,000 mg.</p>
<p>Vitamin C:    200-300 mg.</p>
<p>Iron: 		18-25 mg.</p>
<p>Folate: 	200-300 mg.</p>
<p>B12:		2-3 mcg.</p>

<p>Antioxidants:  at least 10,000 ORAC units (a measure of antioxidant levels) – double the minimum recommended level.</p>


<p><em>Dr. Bill and Martha Sears are the co-authors of over 40 books on parenting and health, including the bestselling “The Baby Book”, “The Birth Book”, and the upcoming “The Healthy Pregnancy Book”, due out September 2013. With the experience of over 40 years in pediatric practice while raising 8 children, Dr. Bill and Martha stay busy as frequent guests on television and radio programs and speakers at conferences, as well as running their own parenting website, www.AskDrSears.com.</em></p>
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What Drugs Are Safe to Take While Breastfeeding? Latest Details Released

By Michele Zipp, CafeMom

When you are a breastfeeding mom, you worry about what you are putting into your body because you assume that everything can go directly to baby through your breast milk. You don't want to eat too many spicy foods or else your baby could get painful gas and you should lay off the Prozac because ... well, babies plus Prozac is bad. Some moms believe some beer is okay when breastfeeding. Any mom on any kind of prescription drug clears that pill with her doctor to make sure it's safe to take. But sometimes the answers aren't clear and we take our questions and concerns to Dr. Google or online communities like CafeMom and ask other moms what their experiences are with breastfeeding on insert prescription or over-the-counter drug here.

But now the American Academy of Pediatrics has finally come out with a new report telling us what drugs are safe and not so safe to take while breastfeeding. It's been 12 years since they last had anything to say about it. 

The quick answer on what drugs are safe to take when breastfeeding is always going to be to consult with your doctor first. The latest feedback from doctors as a result of this study is that we should avoid drugs whenever possible, especially certain painkillers, psychiatric drugs, and herbal remedies.

More from The Stir: New Health Risks Associated With Formula Make Breastfeeding Look Even Better

It used to be doctors told nursing moms to stop breastfeeding or stop taking meds, now that's not always the case. Dr. Hari Cheryl Sachs, a pediatric and maternal health expert at the Food and Drug Administration, said, 'Before assuming that you need to stop breastfeeding, there may be information that lets you know whether that really is advisable.' Many of these drugs do not significantly get into breast milk. However, some drugs like codeine, hydrocodone, and oxycodone are still discouraged, along with Prozac and Wellbutrin because their levels appear higher in breast milk. Paxil seems to be the better option with a lower amount showing up in mama's milk. St. John's wort and yohimbe should also be avoided.

You can check your meds online at LactMed, and of course, consult your doctor.

Are you worried about taking any medications while breastfeeding?

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How to Be a Dad Blog: Things You Should Bring but Will Probably Forget
<p>We can all remember what it was like when we first became parents, sort of.</p>

<p>Actually, only some of us can. The rest of us might only recall a fragmented series of half-remembered blurs. It’s pretty exciting, so it’s understandable that you might forget a few things in the flurry of the moment. Sure, we remember the important stuff like seeing and hearing our little one for the first time, but from then on out, memory can get a little iffy for things like the straw for your kid’s juice box, their shoe size, or even the kid’s name for a second.</p>

<p>I’ve personally lost count of how many times I’ve lost count and I’ve forgotten… um… something? </p>

<p>Maybe it’s their adorableness that makes a grilled cheese sandwich of our memories, or the loss of sleep and sudden, complete change of our lives. Who knows, but it’s totally normal. So, don’t worry about things slipping your mind or break dancing on the tip of your tongue forever.</p>

<p>Here are some things you might want to try and remember to bring when the baby starts to come and before you become parents. If you already have kids, consider this short list a reminder of some things you can’t even remember that you might have forgotten to bring the first time around.</p> <p>PAPERWORK</p><p>The baby is coming, however long it takes, but having your ID, insurance and medical papers with you will actually ease the process. You might want to write your birth plan on your body if you’ve made one, just in case you lose or forget it in 10 seconds.</p><p>CLOTHES</p><p>Wherever you’re having the baby, bring a change of clothes. Several. Okay, just grab suitcases stuffed with your entire wardrobe. It can take a while and sweating is not an uncommon occurrence during delivery. For goodness sake at least bring underwear! Double-up if you have to. Yikes.</p><p>FOOD</p><p>The amount of nervous energy even dad-to-be will expend tapping a foot or gripping an armrest is close to 1,000 calories per centimeter of dilation. Bring a satchel of food, but avoid strong-smelling ones. Follow the elevator/movie theater rule on smells and loud crunching sounds. (The sound of cattle munching on pop rocks is not a fitting background noise for the birthing area.)</p><p>CELLPHONE CHARGER</p><p>Why isn’t this just “cellphone?” Because it’s the charger we always forget, right? Plus, the charger acts like a reminder rubber band for the phone. You should probably bring a portable generator as well just in case you get stuck in an elevator or stranded on a desert island.</p><p>CAMERA</p><p>It’s up to the mom. If she wants you to put your phone under a car tire, so there isn’t even the slightest chance it could go off and capture anything during delivery, then put it in reverse, bucko. If your phone can’t take pictures, you probably need to say goodbye to your flip phone or pager and say hello to this century; you’re going to want to document all the amazing things your new baby does without a tripod or a camera that needs a shoulder strap.</p><p>CONTRACTION APP</p>
<p>If you are having a baby naturally, there is no cooler thing than emailing all your friends a record log of your wife’s contraction history. They’ll absolutely love it and so will she. Come to think of it, post it on Instagram, too! Fun for everyone, on the entire planet…right? But really, this app can come in handy when you are deciding when exactly to leave for the hospital, and you won’t want to be bothered with the old school method of counting and reading time.</p><p>PUSH GIFTS</p><p>Nothing says ‘I love you, champ, you’re doing great’ like getting a gift after each big push. There are, however, a lot of pushes, so keep it simple and cost-effective. Even if it’s just cheesy puffs or her favorite candy. If she wants, you can make a game of it and she can try to catch them in her mouth.</p><p>HAND PUPPETS</p><p>Labor can take a long time, so relaxation and stress relief is important. Everyone loves a puppet show, so dad can keep mom and the nurses/midwives entertained. Throw a couple of extra tube socks and a magic marker in your bag and you’re set. <p>Showtime!</p><p>You’re probably going to forget some or all of these, so print this out and make a hat out of it or something, just in case. And, maybe even add a bunch of other useful points not listed here. Check out Huggies Mommy Answers [link] for more information and articles, it’s a great resource for new parents. </p>


<p><em>About How to Be A Dad</em></p>
<p><em>How To Be A Dad (HTBAD) is a not so much a “how-to”, but a “how-not-to” entertainment website for parents… or anyone who’s ever had parents really. Follow Andy Herald and Charlie Capen, two sleep-deprived friends with nothing left to lose but their sanity as they learn to be dads and try to look smart doing so. They’re not experts, but that isn’t gonna stop them from pretending. You’ve been warned.</em></p>
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1 Simple Thing to Do in the Delivery Room to Make Breastfeeding Easier

By Mary Fischer, CafeMom

If you are planning on breastfeeding your baby, odds are good you're pretty passionate about your choice. You want to do everything possible to ensure it's an easy transition and a positive experience for both you and your newborn.

And while there is plenty of info out there to help you learn as much as you can about seamlessly getting your baby on the boob, there may be one simple thing you can do right after giving birth that will help you get off to a good start. According to a new study, skin-to-skin contact in the delivery room between mom and baby is linked to an increase in exclusive breastfeeding.

Yep. That's it. A mom's intention to breastfeed, coupled with having her newborn placed in her arms for skin-to-skin contact immediately after birth, increases the chances of breastfeeding being a success.

Huh. I guess that makes sense. So much of breastfeeding involves bonding and connecting with your infant. It only seems fitting that having that experience right from the start would make learning to breastfeed easier for both mom and baby.

Hold up -- maybe that's where I went wrong when I had my son. I only breastfed him for a couple of weeks (long story) -- but I guess I should note that I did not have skin-to-skin contact with him after his birth.

No, it wasn't by choice. (Gah. I'm not that horrible.) 

You see, I was in labor with my little guy for about 24 hours, and somewhere towards the end, I suddenly spiked a fever. They weren't sure what was going on, so as soon as he came out, the nurses whisked him away to check him over and make sure he was ok. Turns out he was just fine, and several minutes later, he was presented to me all swaddled up like a little burrito. 

And while I do remember getting a brief lession in how to breastfeed, there was definitely no skin-to-skin stuff involved. I didn't have the heart to unroll him from his cozy little bundle.

But I wonder if I had ... is there a chance breastfeeding would've come more naturally to me? I guess there's really no way to know for sure, but it's possible that it could've had some sort of a positive impact.

Oh well, there's really nothing I can do about it now -- but if you're having a baby in the near future and have your heart set on breastfeeding, you should definitely put this little trick in your back pocket and give it a shot if your birth experience allows for it. (Every little bit helps when it comes to offering the boob.)

Are you hoping to breastfeed your baby?

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6 Tips for Finding the Right Midwife

By Adriana Velez, CafeMom

If you're looking for a midwife or doula, especially if you're new to your area, where do you begin?

Here are some tips for finding the right midwife practice for you.

  1. Online search. Let's just get the obvious one out of the way first. You can start by googling "midwife practice" and the name of your city. That's a great start, but you'd probably like to get some more personal feedback on what's out there, right?
  2. Networks of like-minded women. Look up your local La Leche League and see what recommendations their members have. See if there's an attachment parenting group nearby. These groups will probably have Facebook groups where you can post a request for recommendations and then follow up with more questions.
  3. Check community boards. Not everyone who wants to find a midwife is a total granola. But chances are, you'll find ads for midwife practices at health food stores, nursing supplies stores, yoga centers ... you get the idea.
  4. Check out professional organizations. The American College of Nurse-Midwives website has a practice locator. You can also call them at (888) 643-9433.
  5. Ask your insurance company. The stark reality now -- most of us will need insurance to cover most of the costs for delivery. Most health insurance companies have an online directory of midwives whose care they cover.
  6. Do an interview. Once you've got a few options, it's a good idea to come in for an interview to find out if the practice is a good fit for you. BabyCenter has a printable midwife interview sheet to help you. And be flexible! You may not find exactly what you want, but you can probably come close.

Do you have any other suggestions for finding a midwife practice?

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Pregnant With Twins? You May Not Need a C-Section After All

By Mary Fischer, CafeMom

Of the moms you know who've had twins, did any of them have a natural birth? I honestly can't think of one twin mom I've ever bumped into who hasn't had a C-section to deliver them. It isn't surprising since the assumption seems to be that it's the best route to go when dealing with more than one baby.

But a new study published in the New England Journal of Medicine shows that twin births can be vaginal, and that delivering via C-section isn't always necessary as long as things are progressing normally.

Of the 2,804 women who were studied, only 44 percent of those who planned a vaginal birth wound up having a C-section. Moms who had scheduled C-sections, however, had them 91 percent of the time.

And while there are some expectant moms who are probably much more comfortable delivering twins via C-section, there are likely many who would much rather have a vaginal delivery but assume it's either too risky or not possible.

I mean, yeah, there's always the fear that one of the babies will be breech, or some other complication will pop up and a C-section will wind up being necessary anyway. Still, shouldn't moms-to-be at least have a shot at going for a vaginal delivery if that's what they believe is best for them? 

This study is such great news for women who are hoping for a more natural birth experience, and if nothing else, hopefully it will help them choose the right doctor to deliver their babies. If a vaginal birth is important to you and yourOBGYN tells you he/she would rather just plan a C-section and call it a day -- it might be a red flag that you need to get a second opinion and find a doc who is a little more in line with honoring your wishes.

The experience of giving birth is so powerful and emotional, and every mom deserves to carry out her delivery the way she wants to -- whether she's pregnant with one baby or two.

Are you expecting twins, and if so, are you planning a C-section?

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Fewer Moms Having C-Sections Before 39 Weeks
<img src="http://images.newscred.com/30f9656d186d57dcd2c5a4a45d5fcc12" height="333" width="500">

<p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">Moms can be convinced to change their minds about having their babies before they are at full term, according to a study released this week in the journal Obstetrics &amp; Gynecology. </span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">For years, medical groups have been encouraging moms to wait until their baby has remained in utero for 39 weeks. At the same time, the number of women choosing to induce labor or have an elective cesarean section for non-medical reasons has been rising. </span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">Just last month, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists reiterated its recommendations, encouraging moms to avoid early elective deliveries. </span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><span style="font-weight: bold;"><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">The study </span></font></span></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">Twenty-five hospitals in California, New York, Florida, Illinois and Texas implemented what's called the Big 5 State Prematurity Initiative, a program that used a tool kit designed to help hospitals eliminate elective deliveries of babies before 39 weeks of gestation unless medically necessary. Thirty-eight percent of births in the United States occur in these five states. </span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">In just one year, there was a remarkable decrease. "These 25 hospitals overall saw an 83% drop in early-term deliveries," said Dr. Edward McCabe, a pediatrician and medical director for the March of Dimes Foundation, which developed the tool kit and partly funded the study. In January, nearly 28% of babies were born at 37 or 38 weeks, but by December, that number had dropped to 5%. There was a corresponding increase in births at 39 to 41 weeks, McCabe said. </span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">A cultural change has to occur for more hospitals to help mothers wait just a little longer, he said. With this tool kit, labor and delivery nurses were empowered to tell moms-to-be if there was a medical reason to deliver the baby before 39 weeks. </span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><span style="font-weight: bold;"><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">Why women deliver early </span></font></span></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">Often it can be a matter of convenience. A doctor may be going out of town, and the mother may want to ensure that doctor delivers her baby. Or grandma and grandpa may be coming a little earlier than the due date. Some couples may even try to have their baby before the end of a year, so they can claim a tax credit. They may think that it's OK, because they've been told or have heard that 37 weeks of gestation is full term. </span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><span style="font-weight: bold;"><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">What is full term? </span></font></span></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">"It wasn't until recently that we recognized that there are more complications and mortality at 37 weeks," McCabe said. </span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">"Important growth and development occur throughout pregnancy&nbsp; — all the way through the final few weeks," according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "If the mother is healthy, current research indicates that delivery should not be scheduled before 39 weeks' gestation." </span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">According to a 2007 CDC study, infant mortality risk for babies born at 37 or 38 weeks is 1.5 times higher than babies born at 39 to 41 weeks. </span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">"That's a 50% higher risk of infant mortality," McCabe said. Mortality at 39 to 41 weeks is very low, he said. </span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">In 2009, researchers showed that delivering a baby a week or two before 39 weeks, or even three or four days before that milestone is reached, can have a significant impact on the child's health. </span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">For one, babies need every extra day for their lungs to mature. McCabe said he hopes more hospitals will consider banning elective inductions and C-sections unless medically necessary. One way for this to change is to make it clearer what full term really is. </span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">"The nomenclature is changing," he said. "Thirty-seven and 38 weeks are now considered 'early term.' It's not yet official, but there is a movement toward calling 39 to 41 weeks full term. It's in the literature; people are using it." </span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">It's hard to say exactly how many women choose to induce labor before 39 weeks. In 2008, 23% of babies were born because the mother's labor was induced, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. It's unclear, however, how often labor was induced before full term, as the data is gleaned from medical records that don't specify at what gestational age a baby is born. </span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">Data from a 2006 report from the National Institutes of Health found an estimated 2.5% of all babies in the United States were delivered by C-section at the mother's request.</span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><br></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">Source: CNN <br></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">Image: 3pix Studio Associato di Garelli, Maccolini e Piana / Getty Images<br></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><br></span></font></p><p><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><br></span></font></p>
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Study Finds Baby's Spit-Cleaned Pacifier Is OK
As a parent, there are undoubtedly a few things you do now that before you had children you thought were gross: Changing diapers, wiping up vomit and using your own spit to clean off a child's pacifier, just to name a few.

Though it's hard to admit, most parents have done the latter. You're out at the mall when your kid drops his pacifier and there's not a place to clean it nearby. So you pick it up, suck on it a bit and hand it back to your baby.

What's the harm?

Turns out cleaning a recently dropped pacifier with your saliva  meaning you put it in your mouth before inserting it back into your baby's  may actually help strengthen your child's immune system and keep him from developing certain allergies, according to a new study in the journal Pediatrics. When parents cleaned pacifiers in this way their children were significantly less likely to develop eczema, a skin condition considered to be the most common early form of allergies.

The study

Researchers enrolled about 180 Swedish children in the study and took samples of their saliva. Babies whose parents had put the pacifier in their own mouths to clean it had a different microbe soup, if you will, then those whose parents had either rinsed the pacifiers under water or boiled it.

At 18 months the children whose parents licked the pacifiers had one-third the risk of developing eczema compared to children whose parents used a different cleaning method.

The scientists also looked at the number of respiratory infections among the children. They found that both groups, on average, had the same number of infections, no matter how the pacifiers were cleaned.

Behind the results

It seems counter-intuitive  wouldn't adding your germs to the floor dirt on the pacifier make your baby sick?

Scientists think that sucking the pacifier transfers some of Mom or Dad's bacteria to the infant. Research has shown that babies need to be exposed to a wide variety of bacteria, viruses and other organisms to help their immune systems develop and mature properly. If this doesn't happen early, the baby's system tends to overreact to harmless particles like cat hair, pollen, or various foods, treating them as if they are dangerous, which can lead to allergies.

Our emphasis to keep things exceedingly clean over the last few decades may actually be depriving a baby's immune system of some of the organisms it needs to help it thrive, according to the study.

Takeaway

"Should we change our behavior based on this study?" asks Dr. Elizabeth Matsui, a pediatric allergist and immunologist at Johns Hopkins Children's Center and member of the American Academy of Pediatrics Section on Allergy and Immunology Executive Committee. "I would say no."

"But this study does bring up intriguing questions about the oral bacteria and how it might influence a developing immune system in a positive say to protect against allergy," adds Matsui. She says more studies are needed to see if these findings can be replicated.

Bottom line: The next time you're out at the mall and have forgotten an extra pacifier, don't be too concerned if you need to clean the dropped one with your own saliva.

Source: CNN
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C-Section Recovery: What to Expect
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<font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><br><br>If you're planning a Cesarean delivery or you want to be prepared in case you need to have a C-section, you might have questions about the recovery process. How much discomfort will you experience? How long will it take for your incision to heal? What breast-feeding positions might work best for you? Understand how to take care of yourself and your baby during C-section recovery.<br><br><span style="font-weight: bold;">Treat your C-section incision with care</span><br><br>It takes about four to six weeks for a C-section incision to heal. During the C-section recovery process, discomfort and fatigue are common. To promote healing:<br><br></span></font><ul><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style="font-weight: bold;">Take it easy.</span> Rest when possible. Try to keep everything that you and your baby might need within reach. For the first couple of weeks, avoid lifting anything heavier than your baby.</span></font></li><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style="font-weight: bold;">Support your abdomen.</span> Use good posture when you stand and walk. Hold your abdomen near the incision during sudden movements, such as coughing, sneezing or laughing.</span></font></li><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style="font-weight: bold;">Take medication as needed.</span> Your health care provider might recommend ibuprofen, acetaminophen (Tylenol, others) or other medications to relieve pain. Most pain relief medications are safe for breast-feeding women.</span></font></li><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style="font-weight: bold;">Drink plenty of fluids.</span> Drinking lots of fluids can help replace those lost during delivery and breast-feeding, as well as help prevent constipation. </span></font></li></ul><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><br>Remember to empty your bladder frequently to reduce the risk of urinary tract infections.<br><br><span style="font-weight: bold;">Look for signs of infection</span><br><br>Check your C-section incision for signs of infection. Contact your health care provider if:<br></span></font><ul><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">The incision is red, swollen or leaking discharge</span></font></li><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">You have a fever higher than 100.4 F (38 C)</span></font></li><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;">You experience increasing pain around your incision</span></font></li></ul><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><br><span style="font-weight: bold;">Experiment with breast-feeding positions</span><br><br>You can begin breast-feeding almost immediately after the C-section. To minimize discomfort, place a pillow over the incision while holding your baby. Breast-feeding positions that work well during C-section recovery include:<br><br></span></font><ul><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style="font-weight: bold;">Football hold.</span> Hold your baby at your side, with your elbow bent. With your open hand, support your baby's head and face him or her toward your breast. Your baby's back will rest on your forearm. It might help to support your breast in a C-shaped hold with your other hand. For comfort, put a pillow on your lap and use a chair with broad, low arms.</span></font></li><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style="font-weight: bold;">Side-lying hold.</span> Lie on your side and face your baby toward your breast, supporting him or her with one hand. With the other hand, grasp your breast and touch your nipple to your baby's lips. Once your baby latches on, use one arm to support your own head and the other to help support the baby.</span></font></li></ul><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><br>If you're having trouble breast-feeding during your C-section recovery or afterward, contact a lactation consultant for help.<br><br><span style="font-weight: bold;">Manage other postpartum signs and symptoms</span><br><br>While you're recovering from your C-section, remember that you're also recovering from pregnancy. <br><br>Here's what to expect:<br><br></span></font><ul><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style="font-weight: bold;">Vaginal discharge (lochia).</span> Expect a bright red, heavy flow of blood for the first few days after the C-section. It might contain a few small clots. The discharge will gradually taper off, becoming more watery and changing from pink or brown to yellow or white. To reduce the risk of infection, use sanitary napkins rather than tampons. Contact your health care provider if your bleeding soaks a sanitary pad each hour for two hours, you pass a clot larger than a golf ball, the discharge has a foul odor, or you have a fever of 100.4 F (38 C) or higher.</span></font></li><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style="font-weight: bold;">Contractions.</span> You might feel contractions, sometimes called afterpains, during the first few days after the C-section. These contractions — which often resemble menstrual cramps — help prevent excessive bleeding by compressing the blood vessels in the uterus. Your health care provider might recommend an over-the-counter pain reliever if necessary. Contact your health care provider if you have a fever or if your abdomen is tender to the touch. This could indicate a uterine infection.</span></font></li><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style="font-weight: bold;">Sore breasts.</span> Several days after the C-section, your breasts might become firm, swollen and tender. This is known as engorgement. To ease discomfort, nurse your baby, use a breast pump to express milk, or apply cold washcloths or ice packs to your breasts. Over-the-counter pain relievers might help, too. If you're not breast-feeding your baby, wear a firm, supportive bra — such as a sports bra. Compressing your breasts will help stop milk production. Don't pump or rub your breasts, which will cause your breasts to produce more milk.</span></font></li><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style="font-weight: bold;">Leaking milk.</span> If your breasts leak between feedings, wear nursing pads inside your bra to help keep your shirt dry. Change pads after each feeding and whenever they get wet.</span></font></li><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style="font-weight: bold;">Hair loss and skin changes.</span> During pregnancy, elevated hormone levels increase hair growth and put normal hair loss on hold. The result is often an extra-lush head of hair. After delivery, however, hair growth decreases and your body begins to shed the excess hair all at once. Hair loss typically stops within six months. At the same time, stretch marks typically fade from red to silver. Skin darkening that can occur during pregnancy, such as dark patches on your face (chloasma), will also slowly fade.</span></font></li><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style="font-weight: bold;">Mood changes.</span> Childbirth can trigger mood swings, irritability, sadness and anxiety. Many new moms experience mild depression, sometimes called the baby blues. The baby blues typically subside within a week or two. In the meantime, take good care of yourself. Ask your partner, loved ones or friends for help and support. If your depression deepens or you feel hopeless and sad most of the time, contact your health care provider.</span></font></li><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style="font-weight: bold;">Postpartum depression.</span> If you experience severe mood swings, loss of appetite, overwhelming fatigue and lack of joy in life shortly after childbirth, you might have postpartum depression. Contact your health care provider if you think you might be depressed, especially if your signs and symptoms don't fade on their own, you have trouble caring for your baby or completing daily tasks, or you have thoughts of harming yourself or your baby.</span></font></li><li><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style="font-weight: bold;">Weight loss. </span>After your C-section, you'll probably feel out of shape. You might even look like you're still pregnant. Don't worry. This is normal. Most women lose more than 10 pounds during birth, including the weight of the baby, placenta and amniotic fluid. During your C-section recovery, you'll drop additional weight as your body gets rid of excess fluids. After that, a healthy diet and regular exercise can help you gradually return to your pre-pregnancy weight.</span></font></li></ul><font size="4"><span style=" font-family: Arial;"><br></span></font><br><font size="4"><span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style="font-weight: bold;">The postpartum checkup</span><br><br>About six weeks after delivery, your health care provider will check your abdomen, vagina, cervix and uterus to make sure you're healing well. In some cases, your health care provider might ask you to schedule the checkup earlier so that he or she can check your C-section incision. Your health care provider might do a breast exam and check your weight and blood pressure, too. Consider using this checkup as an opportunity to talk about birth control, breast-feeding and how you're adjusting to life with a new baby.<br><br>Also, be sure to discuss any questions or concerns you might have about your physical or emotional health. Your health care provider will likely be able to provide you with some advice and assurance as you adjust to life with your newborn.<br><br><br>©1998-2014 Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research (MFMER). All rights reserved.Terms of Use.<br><br>Source: Mayo Clinic<br>Image: spectrelabs / Getty Images<br></span></font><div style="font-weight: normal; font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial, Verdana; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; line-height: normal;">
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