Should the government punish anti-vaxxers?

In ever-controversial vaccination news, Australians may lose big if they don't keep baby's records up-to-date. The country's Prime Minister Tony Abbott proposed cutting off government aid to parents who refused vaccines for their children.If approved, the new penalties will go into place in January of next year, rendering 10 percent of Australians ineligible for government assistance and family-related tax benefits totaling $15,000 per child. The bill is aimed strategically at …

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Pregnant? It’s time to rethink your Facebook posts

Add this to the list of items to nix now that you're pregnant: Over sharing on social media. Not only do your online pals not want to hear about another row with morning sickness - but by laying off Facebook posts, you may be doing best for baby too.As if we really needed a study to confirm it, researchers at the University of Michigan surveyed the nation to talk about over sharing parents on social media. The results are hardly surprising: Parents talk way too much about their kids …

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The surprising thing your newborn leaves behind in your body

Perhaps to prime us for a lifetime of our children leaving things behind, it turns out that babies shed fetal cells before being born. These cells live inside the mother's body, even years after a child has been delivered - meaning that as moms, we carry a physical piece of our babies with us wherever we go. Sounds sweet, doesn't it?Researchers don't quite know what these cells mean for moms. One thought is that they exist to help ensure that mom's body doesn't reject a …

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Buying breast milk online is risky business

File this one under "things no one should have to tell you": Buying breast milk online is a bad idea. As you await your baby's arrival, you may be making plans for nourishing your little one through exclusive breastfeeding. But the best intentions - and the best breast pump - don't always make for a freezer stuffed with excess bottles. Low supply can affect any new mom, and once baby arrives, you may find yourself looking for ways to supplement your child's …

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New word: Baby lag

The out of sorts feeling you get when you've been up three times in the middle of the night with a crying or feeding baby and the next day you have a headache, upset stomach and general disorientation.  Baby lag is like jet lag, only worse because there is a cumulative effect of sleep deprivation. A 2012 study commissioned by Johnson Baby Products of 1000 new parents showed by about 50% got only four hours of sleep per night.-- As cited in Wired Magazine 2/13 and the MacMillan Dictionary

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Quiz: 7 things new moms might not know

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Healthy diet, healthy child – even years later

What can you do to ensure your child stays healthy years down the line? Take care of yourself before and during pregnancy. This advice is nothing new, but across the pond in England, a new report shows that the vast majority of health care providers don't monitor or advise women on health, nutrition and exercise.This study, released by the Infant and Toddler Forum, called doctors, midwives and parents alike to view preconception and pregnancy as a "window of opportunity" that …

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For better newborn bonding, try snuggling

One of the best ways to bond with your newborn is also the simplest and sweetest: skin-to-skin contact. Write this one into your birth plan, whether you deliver vaginally or by Cesarean. Snuggling with your freshly born baby - sans clothing or blankets - is the surest way to promote feelings of bonding, comfort and safety. Many family-focused hospitals already put this into practice, but be sure your health care team knows how you feel. No matter the type of birth you have, you want that bundle …

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Prenatal exercise gives baby’s heart a boost too

Here's yet another reason to hit the gym during pregnancy: Prenatal exercise is not only healthy for mom's heart, but baby's too. It turns out, taking up a regular fitness routine can lower your baby's risk of cardiovascular disease down the line, according to new research out of Michigan State University.This news is particularly useful for women at risk for pre-term birth, as underweight babies often suffer from high blood pressure. If left untreated, high blood pressure …

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Delayed cord clamping, better for baby

Of all the contentious items of pregnancy and childbirth, who knew choosing when to cut the umbilical cord would inspire so much debate? First, let's back up. When babies are born, they are still connected to mom by this cord - and the cord must be cut and clamped shortly after birth to separate the two.In the 1950s, it was considered early to clamp the cord 1 minute post birth, and late after 5 minutes. Nowadays, it's customary to do so immediately, usually 15-20 seconds …

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