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Recent Comments

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hospital vs homebirth

Thu Oct 8 5:40 AM by Zeph in Pregnancy & Parenting

Human birth is risky. My great-grandmothers only gave birth at home because that was the only option. I like the idea of a birthing center near a hospital. Many hospitals also provide both safety and comfort.

Sadly, not all hospitals are equal and women on government assistance are often pressured into setting a date to induce their labor to work around the doctor's schedule. I've been putting off getting pregnant because I don't have health insurance right now, but there is a hospital near me that gives women a ton of options

Now, I could be able to afford a birthing center uninsured, but my BMI is too high for my local birthing center. I also feel that my nearest hospital has more options, because everything changes when you begin labor.

OMG, twins! Advice & thoughts?

Mon Oct 5 6:53 PM by rowan in Pregnancy & Parenting

From watching my friends with twins, I guess the hardest thing is the sleeping. They might not wind up on the same sleep schedule and then they might wake each other up with crying. So uh.... yeah.

I think for twins just plan on more of everything - more diapers, more clothes (anything interchangable is good) etc. I think the "stuff" angle is true for pretty much anyone, you don't need as much as you think (but more with twins). I used to have a list but the site I kept it on disappeared suddenly. :(

Letting kids use knives (and other dangerous implements)

Mon Sep 28 8:51 PM by ablotial in Pregnancy & Parenting

We didn't have knives at home until I was ... 9 or 10? But they gave us butter knives with school lunch right from the get go, so ... yeah. I never complained about this at home though because I was lazy and liked to be pampered and have my mom cut up my food and spread the butter for me :P

And I did have trouble when they finally gave me real (actually sharp) knives. Steak knives were fine because they were serrated, but I had trouble with paring knives telling which side was the sharp side and often used them upside down trying to saw through something with the dull edge. I finally learned to look closely and learn the difference when my dad got frustrated with how slow it was going for me and slammed his hand down on the knife to push it through (a carrot? celery? can't remember now) and almost cut off his thumb :/

What do you wish you had known?

Fri Sep 18 3:14 PM by rowan in Pregnancy & Parenting

Hm. I dunno, I don't really feel quite as terrified about things as I did for the first several years. Which isn't to say there aren't moments...

Prenatal genetic testing

Thu Sep 17 9:08 AM by rowan in Pregnancy & Parenting

MOD HAT: I have moved the vaccination discussion to a new thread. Please discuss vaccines there.


Wed Oct 7 9:25 PM by Aum in Pregnancy & Parenting

^ Why did the doctor tell you to forbid visitors who haven't had the vaccine? If you've had the vaccine then you're protected, so it's irrelevant if people bring the virus around.

As you stated above, you understand immunology, so I'm certain you then understand that vaccines don't provide protection at rates of 100% and that a newly immunized person may not have had sufficient time to develop antibodies. Additionally, the infant, the one most in need of protection, hasn't yet been vaccinated.

I realize that, but the doctor's suggestion doesn't make sense. The chances of an adult having asymptomatic whooping cough and passing it onto a newborn are pretty small. I've never heard of a doctor saying to keep a newborn away from relatives on the off chance they might give them something. Yes, there are common sense protections... but it seems a little hyperbolic.

Real stats for C-Sections?

Sun Oct 4 2:18 AM by Gnarlbanya in Pregnancy & Parenting

Thinking about this topic a little more, I think it's important that we remember that statistics just indicate trends and don't actually tell much of a story as far as individual circumstances go. By that I mean that while in some countries the c-section rate is statistically higher than in other places, it doesn't mean that an individual's decision to have a c-section in those countries is necessarily a flawed one. Nor does it mean that all doctors in those countries are scalpel-happy and just want to get babies out so they can take off to play golf or go for lunch, as I've seen it put on other pregnancy forums (not here).

If I do a brief statistical analysis of friends/acquaintances etc who have given birth in the last few years, the majority had vaginal births, everything from quick and uncomplicated to lengthy and forceps delivery. I can't think of any who had c-sections as a personal choice rather than for a medical reason. Those who had c-sections either had scheduled ones for good reason (obstruction due to fibroids, placenta previa, breech after unsuccessful ECV) or an emergency one for good reason (pre-eclampsia, fetal distress, placental abruption etc). Australia apparently has a c-section rate of 20-25% which this sample would accord with. But given the reasons for the c-sections, I do wonder when I read that the WHO recommends a c-section rate of 10-15%, who exactly should have been turned away from this limited sample?

Red Raspberry Leaf capsules - ever helpful for labour or hokum?

Mon Sep 28 3:19 PM by artemiscuous in Pregnancy & Parenting

Oh, this is an interesting discussion and one that I'm finding interesting as I am in the early stages of my second pregnancy.

I really appreciate both perspectives represented here - of modern medicine and of herbalism - and I actually like a middle way of using both, insofar as they are meant to be used (I think both can be and often are misused and misunderstood). I think a well-studied use of herbal remedies can be very complimentary to good medical care. A friend of mine, who is a Western herbalist and clinical researcher, is very evidence-based and really changed my perspective on the place for herbs. It's easy for people to go overboard and claim too many benefits to herbal remedies, to push baseless hokum like homeopathy and chakra balancing, etc., and it's equally easy to denounce it all as unproven, because most clinical studies are not looking at herbs in a double-blind, well-constructed study, particularly in pregnancy, because of the risks if it is somehow dangerous (and many herbs can be, just because they can be quite potent, particularly in a tincture or other concentrated form).

public service announcement: eating lunch with your friend who's a new mom

Fri Sep 18 10:27 AM by Nachos in Pregnancy & Parenting

I honestly love holding other people's babies while they're eating. Did this for a new mum friend who needed to go to the loo and she turned back a few times because the baby was crying, but as soon as she was out of sight, baby was just fine.

let's discuss childhood injuries

Thu Sep 10 3:19 AM by DarkOne in Pregnancy & Parenting

When I was about 7 or 8 I was riding my bike and rode off the curb, flew off the seat, landed on the tube, and somehow managed to get a cut in my vaginal area. Apparently, it bled like a mofo. It turned out to be only a small cut, but I can only imagine what my mom felt like when her 8yo showed up at her door crying hysterically and bleeding profusely from her crotch.

medicated vs. unmedicated birth

Wed Oct 7 2:04 PM by Metcodon1 in Pregnancy & Parenting

I had planned on natural birth both times. My practitioner was an ob with a fantastic reputation for supporting natural birth and as the only doctor in her practice, she delivers all her own babies. Both times I delivered in the birth center inside a hospital. There was a bath tub, to labor or give birth in and the center policy let you walk around, eat, drink, etc. I took a hypnobirthing class and did a lot of yoga to prepare.

The first time I labored at home for 12 hours, and went in when the contractions were 3 minutes apart. When I got to the hospital I was 4 cm and all was well. Unfortunately, a couple of hours later the baby showed more and more signs of distress. My doctor advised that we do internal monitoring (my water was already broken). That showed that the baby was in even more trouble than we had previously thought. The only position I could be in and have my daughter's heart rate be stable was lying on my left side. I was already at 7 cm by this point and with no epidural in it was pure torture to hold still (moving caused her heart rate to drop). I managed to stay like that for 2 hours, at which point right as I was about to call the doctor and ask for drugs, she came and told me that my daughter was in distress no matter what I was doing and that a c section was the safest option. I agreed. So, to summarize, I labored naturally for 22 hours and had a c section at the end, despite everyones best efforts to avoid it. My daughter had been completely wrapped in her cord and so was not going to come out undamaged any other way.

Altering my mind about pregnancy

Mon Sep 28 9:09 PM by ablotial in Pregnancy & Parenting

My mom was 39 when I was born and 42 when my younger brother was born both naturally with no drugs or complications, and both of us were healthy and happy. The only thing I will say is my mom was noticibly "less fun" (read: less energy) than my friends' moms, who were often in their early-to-mid 30s when my mom was 50.

As others have mentioned though, there is this (overblown) line in many minds about age 35, so they will probably want to monitor the crap out of you. And there is a bit of a higher risk for chromosomal problems, like Downs. But if you are ok with that and unlikely to have a super early menopause, I say you know yourself best and it is better to wait until you are at a point where you are capable and mentally ready to support a baby. 40s are definitely not too late!

that time I got food poisoning when I was pregnant

Sat Sep 19 12:34 PM by spacefem in Pregnancy & Parenting

We have topics and questions all the time about what to eat when you're pregnant, so I wanted to share this charming story of an experience I had while pregnant with my second daughter.

I was only 10 or 11 weeks along and had been dealing with a "managable" level of morning sickness. This means that I could throw up at any time without warning, but in a cute pregnant way, not a dibilitating one. Most times, as long as there was food on my stomach I'd be okay, so I was careful to keep healthy snacks around - my favorite being cheetos, because you know, cheese is dairy right?

I was following all the good internet advice of not eating raw or uncooked foods, no deli meat, no salad bars, no soft cheeses, only low mercury fish, no food out of trunks of cars, etc.

We went to a wedding at a nice hotel. There was a buffet. I was one of the first people in line at the buffet because I had a two year old who looked like she might be hungry so I played that card, you know how it is. The food was delicious - salad with fresh lettuce, rice, beef strogonoff, mixed veggies. Everything that was supposed to be cold was cold and everything that was supposed to be hot was steaming hot.

sleep deprivation

Thu Sep 17 3:26 PM by robichek in Pregnancy & Parenting

Apparently there is a new book out called The Rabbit Who Wants to Go to Sleep and it is ALL THE RAGE.. ... 149617951X

If you are still breastfeeding, that may be an issue (not that I recommend that you stop breastfeeding). Topping up before they sleep could be warranted.

For my kid, we keep his room permanently dark and have a white-noise soundmaker outside his door and it works well. Also, although we didn't do a pure "cry it out" method, there were times at the beginning of his "sleep through the night" nights that he would wake up and whimper and we just would wait 2-10 minutes and he'd go back to sleep. That went away and now we don't expect a peep until at least 11 hours have passed. I think we as worried mothers are sort of complicit in creating their "need" for us.. If my boy knows I'll come in within 30 seconds of him making a sound, he'll want me to come in. If he's not sure how long it'll take, he'll go back to bed... Please take the preceding advice as something I might recommend only after the kid is 1 year old. Before then I would never just let him be... I used to rock him to sleep until my arms gave out.

non-religious parents raise okay kids after all

Wed Sep 2 3:37 AM by AndrewZealand in Pregnancy & Parenting

However, one thing I remember clearly from my childhood is being very afraid of death.

I remember when I first realized that we die when we get old. I told my best friend at the time and he got really upset. I never quite had the need for an afterlife, though I remember at about 10 I conceived that when we died maybe we came back again as someone else. This was before I knew that someone else had already thought of that :P

Presently I'm still open to the idea of some sort of afterlife when we die. One thing I find inspirational when I'm depressed is the thought that there might be some sort of new and interesting afterlife when we die. It can give me energy to keep on with this life. But the idea of eternal punishment for our sins in the afterlife? I'd say to the average man that's the same as "Life's a bitch and then you die and then you go to hell and suffer". The idea that we MIGHT get punished for our sins when we die, for most of us, only serves to make our lives more fearful and miserable and then of course when we die we may well find that no such punishment exists. Like the saying goes "Cheer up, it might never happen". The only usefulness I think of for the idea of afterlife retribution, is something with which to scare a tyrant who is so powerful that apparently nothing in this life can stop him or her abusing people and nature. By telling them that there might be something in the afterlife holding them to account, you might actually scare them into reconsidering their behaviour. But I'd say that for most people, hell or other afterlife punishment, is an unnecessary fear.