My friend Dan called me at work and I could sense the excitement in his voice. His wife was out of town with both their kids. Did I want to meet him at the sports bar tonight? The Bruins were playing the Canadians. The Celtics were wrapping up their regular season. And, drum roll please, the Red Sox and Yankees were on, too!If there was ever a night for some serious male bonding over greasy burgers and cold beer, this was it. I said yes, before even checking with my wife, even though she was eight months’ pregnant, we had a toddler in the throes
How to boost bonding and ease baby’s entry into the world The moment of birth comes as a great shock to a baby. Life inside the womb is cozy—warm, dark, quiet, soft, liquid, and all embracing. Suddenly, after some brutal squeezing, that comforting environment vanishes. Now there is bright light, noise, hard surfaces, loss of body contact, and this strange sensation of being surrounded, not by liquid, but by air. No wonder the baby lets out a cry of panic.Observations of newborns reveal that they are far less traumatized by the drama of being born
For most new moms, lacing up their sneakers and hitting the gym are perfectly safe things to do at six weeks postpartum. Your doctor or midwife will give you the green light on exercise when he or she feels you’re ready.While we’re never going to advocate for a new mom shedding her baby weight as fast as can be, know that there are elements of exercise that give postpartum women a boost - and they have nothing to do with weight loss. Here are four reasons to get your heart pumping during your postpartum period: A mood boost Researchers are quick to
A few tips for making the most of your ob/gyn appointments Unlike some visits to a doctor’s office, a prenatal appointment is usually quick and pleasant. It is primarily designed for you and your health care provider to receive updated information regarding you and your baby, listen to your baby’s heartbeat, and rule out any complications.To maximize the time you spend with your ob/gyn, take these suggestions from The Smart Mother’s Guide to a Better Pregnancy.Make a list of your concerns and present them at the beginning of your
Sex easily falls to the wayside during pregnancy. Research shows that good sex has a significant impact upon not just the relationship, but also a woman's ability to have an easeful and even joyful birth.Unfortunately, sex during pregnancy can be quite complicated for a variety of physical and emotional reasons.This week’s video will outline how to overcome these hurdles and make sure you continue to enjoy the wonders of sex as you embark on the first steps of parenthood.Watch more videos at Full Frontal Fatherhood.Here's a
Giving birth is like running a marathon: You'll get better results if you prepare. In labor and delivery, your body will get the workout of a lifetime – especially your pelvic floor, the muscles that support your uterus. Prepare for the big day with these tips. When contractions start, you'll be glad you did. Step 1: Do Kegels Kegel exercises aren't just for better sex; they also improve strength and endurance in the muscles of your pelvic floor. Syed Rizvi, M.D., of the Women's Health Foundation Bakersfield, California, suggests getting familiar with kegel
As you're preparing for baby's arrival, you may be reading up on parenting advice and consulting with your doctor about dietary and fitness changes you should make to keep your baby healthy. Getting ready for a baby is a large task on its own, but there have been some women who have managed to pull off historic feats during their pregnancies. Three of these expectant moms stand out amongst the rest - here are their stories. Running all the way to the delivery room As of October 2011, Amber Miller had completed eight marathons - three of them while pregnant and
A doctor fesses up about what she would do differently You would think that a doctor would get pregnancy and new motherhood right. But even with all the medical knowledge I’ve garnered as an osteopathic physician and urogynecologist, I still found myself stumbling through the postpartum period after each of my daughters was born.The weeks after childbirth are a delicate time. Looking back, I can see the mistakes I made in caring for myself as my body healed and my heart and mind adjusted to my new role. To save you from the same fate, I’m sharing the top
Congratulations! You made it to the second trimester. Finally, morning sickness is a thing of the past. You've discovered a new found energy. And your baby bump is adorable. The second trimester is a time to be cherished. So enjoy it! Here's how:Be spontaneous: Catch a matinee movie. Take a road trip. Do something on a whim. The second trimester is the time of your pregnancy when you can still embrace your independence, (ahem, you don't need your partner to tie your shoes... yet). So when your co-worker asks if you want to go out for happy hour - say yes!
Don't wait until delivery day to begin building a relationship with your son or daughter. Though sight unseen, you can still nurture a bond with your baby that will last a lifetime. Here's how: Use your voice Your little one is growing and changing at an incredible rate. By the second trimester, his or her hearing develops and your baby will be influenced by outside noise. Of all these new sounds he or she is taking in, your voice will be the most familiar and comforting. After all, your baby has been listening in on everything from your conversations to your
Let's call a spade a spade: When it comes to childbirth, Hollywood almost always gets it wrong. If your knowledge of labor and delivery is largely informed by what you've seen on the big screen, then you're in for a surprise or two. Here are some of the biggest myths about giving birth that movies perpetuate: Myth No. 1: Labor begins with your water breaking We all know the scene: A woman and her partner are out shopping. One minute she's absolutely fine, and the next she's looking wide-eyed and surprised as she nervously exclaims that her water has broken.
Adding to the great induction debate A new study published in the journal JAMA Pediatrics suggests the length of your pregnancy may have an impact on baby’s brain. The research, led by Dr. David Figlio at Northwestern University, studied more than 1.5 million children in Florida.The three-year study involved single birth children born between 37 and 41 weeks gestation between 1998 and 2013. Eighty percent of the participants attended public school.The details Researchers looked to three measures of cognitive ability:State testing in math and
Let the sunshine, fresh blooms, and long lazy days of summer inspire you on your quest to find the perfect name for your son or daughter. Taking a cue from our warmest season, we’ve compiled 12 names that pay homage to summertime. Girls Helene: Subtle, sweet, and classic, this French name translates to “light of the sun.”Meadow: Bring to mind a lush green field and beautiful flowers each time you call out to your little one.June: More than just a month on the calendar, June is a simple, old-fashioned name that’s making a comeback.Genevieve:
Whoever came up with the saying “I slept like a baby” had no children. Here, the star of Nanny 911, Nanny Stella, shares her rules for getting good rest.Are you one of those couples who take turns to soothing the baby to sleep? Are you having baby sleep on your chest in the rocker? Are you driving baby around in the car or swaying baby to Carpenters’ love songs at 3 a.m.? Well, if you’re at the end of your rope and need some help, there is light at the end of the tunnel.My credentials and experience include being a postpartum doula and baby
I know this sounds like a bad sales pitch, but I have nothing to sell and this really is true. Over 95 percent of parents are doing something that has long standing negative implications for their entire family. When you are a new parent, it’s hard to have to think through every decision, particularly when it seems to work for everyone else. This week’s video shares this unfortunately common misstep. I will show you how to not just follow the herd and instead support your family to thrive.Watch more videos at Full Frontal Fatherhood.Here's a
Baby’s hungry and you’re bursting, but no one’s getting fed. Here’s what to do when Mother Nature throws a curve ball at your intentions to breastfeed Choosing to breastfeed is one of the first big decisions you’ll make as a new mom. And despite how natural it is supposed to be, it is actually just like many other learned things in life: It calls for a bit of practice, patience, and perseverance.In fact, sometimes it seems like there are just as many obstacles to breastfeeding as there are benefits. But being aware of what could go wrong
Forget trends, statistics, and peer pressure. Go ahead and have your best birth Many people think of me as an advocate for natural birth and midwifery care—and I am. However, while I have made choices in my own life that support that position, I am first and foremost an advocate for every woman to find a way to experience her best birth. If the ideal birth plan for you includes acupuncture and a warm bath leading to an at-home delivery, you should have the freedom to explore that experience. And if your perfect birth includes an epidural, Pitocin, or
I have to laugh when I think back at the blunders I committed in my sleep-deprived stupor during our oldest son Mason’s first few months. And I often marvel at the fact that my kids are each still in one piece.I’ve never shared these stories with anyone. But I know you won’t judge me, so here goes...Read more: Your ultimate guide to adjusting to motherhoodWhen Mason was 10 weeks old, our family stayed at my in-laws’ home, and all the baby gear was borrowed from my sister- and brother-in-law, Monique and Geoff. To share our room with
Prenatal tests—enough already! Choosing the perfect name—that conversation is getting way too old. And finding clothes for that ever-expanding bod? Make the torture end—now!Those are the cries of pre-birth stress, sister, and while they’re completely natural, you don’t have to suffer them willingly. Stress isn’t healthy for anyone, and, while we don’t want to scare you, research does show that stress can increase the risk of complications during pregnancy, and even cause preterm labor.But fear not—we’re here to help. Following are a
How to survive and thrive in a world where your new baby looms large Your hair is unwashed, you haven’t checked email in a week, and you have no clean underwear. Welcome to the “newborn zone,” a dimension controlled by a tiny dictator who has one priority: “Me. Now.”Of course, your infant is also your top priority. But there are a few other things you need to do, too. Like laundry. And showering. And fixing the occasional hot meal. And spending some time with your husband—remember him? And then there’s the messy house, the
As a first time mom, I didn’t start out understanding the importance of having a few good nursing outfits. After the birth of my daughter I had no time to go shopping
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Q: Is it OK to use a hot tub when pregnant?
Doctors generally recommend that you avoid using hot tubs while you are pregnant. During your first trimester, an elevated core body temperature could increase your risk of certain birth defects. Throughout pregnancy, women are more likely to faint, and fainting can be
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