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How do I deal with a baby that cries all the time? 2018-07-12T11:15:26+00:00

How do I deal with a baby that cries all the time?

This is a question that millions of parents around the world will be asking right now. Here are some answers to commonly asked questions from new parents regarding crying babies.

 

Why do babies cry?

All babies cry- even an entirely healthy newborns will cry somewhere between 1 and 3 hours altogether each day, as crying is a baby’s only way of communicating their needs. As a new parent, it can be difficult to work out what your baby is telling you; is she hungry, hot, cold, thirsty, wet, bord, looking for a cuddle, tired or over-stimulated?

However, you will gradually begin to recognise your baby’s different crying patterns and anticipate her needs. As babies grow, they learn other ways to communicate, such as making eye contact, noises and even smiling, all of which reduce the need to cry.

My baby is two weeks old and cries all the time. I’m feeling so tired. Will things get better?

You will almost certainly find that things improve with time – babies grow and change and you will also grow in confidence as a parent. However you need to know how to cope with, and hopefully enjoy life at the moment and you may need some additional help and support to manage this.

Until your baby is 28 days old, you are still officially under the care of a midwife, even if you have not really had any visits since around day 10. It’s still ok to call the hospital/ midwife to ask for advice and support if you are feeling overwhelmed with your crying baby. Your health visitor will also visit you at home from day 10 postnatal, and they will be able to offer advice and support if you explain the problems you are having. In addition to this, it is important to have someone ie close friend, partner, mother, who can give you practical support with things like chores whilst you care for your baby.They can always can the baby out for a walk so that you can get some rest.

The crying is getting on my nerves – what should I do?

Most of the time, a baby who cries a lot will not do themselves any hard, but may cause stress and worry for you. If your baby seems to resist every effort you make to calm them down, it can be hard not to feel rejected as well as frustrated. Parents sometimes blame themselves, feeling that they are doing something wrong. If you know your baby’s needs are met, shes not ill, and you have tried everything you can think of to calm her down but nothing has worked, it’s good to have a coping strategy in place for how to deal with situations when you feel overwhelmed. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Take deep breaths
  • Put your baby down – place baby somewhere safe ie in the cot and leave the room for a few minutes out of your hearing until you feel calmer. Try not to leave a baby screaming for more than 5 minutes.
  • Play your favourite music and let your self relax – babies like music too and you may find that this soothes them!
  • Call a friend or relative to take over whilst you take a break
  • Talk to your health visitor about local support groups or mother and baby groups where you can share your feelings and experiences and discuss new ways of coping with your baby’s crying.
  • Take baby out for a walk or drive. Often the motion helps to calm babies down.

Should I pick her up every time she cries?

Although this is a matter of personal choice, you should never feel you are spoiling your baby by attending to her cries, or by giving her plenty of cuddles or carrying her around with you if this comforts her. Crying is initially a baby’s only method of communication. It is meant to get your attention and is designed to affect you so that you will quickly find out whats needed. As long as you have checked all baby’s needs have been met, leaving them to cry for a couple of minutes to use the toilet for example wont do any harm. Some babies will learn to comfort themselves but others don’t – babies are all different.

My baby cries for hours every evening. Could this be colic and is this serious?

Colic  is fairly common in newborn babies, affecting around 10-15 percent of infants. It usually appears in the first few weeks of life. Babies suffering with colic may lift their head, become rd in the face and draw their legs up in pain. So what is colic? The definition of colic is quite simply ” uncontrollable crying in an otherwise healthy baby”

To be termed “colicky” a baby needs to cry or fuss for more than 3 hours per day, for more than 3 days in a week. Although colic can occur at any time of the day, it is more common in the evening and is traditionally worse at 3 months of age. There are several theories as to what colic is, why it happens and the courses of treatment. Research has shown It is more common in boys, bottlefed babies and firstborns. If it has not settled by 5 months, you may want to visit your doctor for advice.

 

 

 

Taking medicines in pregnancy – what is safe to take? 2018-07-11T10:55:22+00:00

Taking medicines in pregnancy – what is safe to take?

The advice to pregnant women is to avoid taking any medicines in pregnancy  if at all possible. If you do need to take medication, check with your midwife of doctor first, or ask your pharmacist for information on over the counter drugs. The list below offers some guidance.

Antiemetics

Antiemetics are prescribed to prevent nausea and vomiting usually for women that suffer severe morning sickness. Your doctor will recommend one that is safe to take during pregnancy.

Antihistamines

These are drugs that are usually taken to prevent allergy symptom such as itchy eyes, rashes and sneezing. Most of these should be avoided during pregnancy. If you have severe hayfever, chat to your doctor about safe medications in pregnancy

Painkillers

If natural remedies, such as a head massage to relieve a headache, or warm bath to ease backache don’t work, then paracetamol is generally considered safe for short term use in pregnancy. Ibuprofen and aspirin should be avoided altogether unless specifically prescribed by a doctor.

Antibiotics

There are antibiotics that are safe for use in pregnancy. Penicillin based ones are usually prescribed, or if you have an allergy to these, there are other safe alternatives. The following ones should be avoided in pregnancy:

  • Tetracyclines – These can affect the development of a baby’s bones and teeth. It may lead to discolouration of the teeth.
  • Streptomycin – This can cause damage to the ears of the growing fetus and result in hearing loss so should be avoided in pregnancy
  • Sulphonamides – These cause jaundice in the baby and should not be given in pregnancy

 

Laxatives

If you are suffering from constipation, try natural dietary remedies first such as eating fibre and plenty of fluids. If these don’t work then over the counter laxatives are safe to take during pregnancy. Ones that contain bulking agents are the best.

Antacids

Heatburn is a common problem in late pregnancy due to the pressure of the baby on the stomach. Antacids are generally safe to take but avoid sodium bicarbonate as the sodium is absorbed into the bloodstream.

 

Diruretics

These are water retention tablets that should be avoided. If you have sudden swelling in your face, hands or feet, you should talk to your midwife or doctor as this is one of the signs of pre-eclampsia

Cold and Flu remedies

As these are remedies which often contain a variety of ingredients, which can include antihistamines and other decongestants that are best avoided in pregnancy, it’s important to check the label carefully and talk to your doctor or pharmacist before taking any of these. Try natural remedies such as steam inhalations before resorting to medicines.

 

Steroids

Anabolic steroids should not be used in pregnancy. It’s safe to use mild steroid creams short term for eczema, although avoid using these over a large surface area. Steroid asthma inhalers are safe, as are the steroids prescribed for other conditions if your doctor knows you’re pregnant

Planes, trains and automobiles: why is breastfeeding on the move still taboo? 2018-07-03T12:27:53+00:00

Planes, trains and automobiles: why is breastfeeding on the move still taboo?

Following national success, Lansinoh relaunch the UK’s Feed with Confidence Awards, designed to celebrate the people and places across the UK who are supporting breastfeeding mums.

 

In 2016, just under 750,000 babies were born in the UK with over 80% of mothers starting to breastfeed their babies.  However, according to Public Health England latest statistics on breastfeeding prevalence at six to eight weeks after birth, the number of new mums breastfeeding at this time is 43.7%.[1] This number is low, especially when compared to countries like Norway, which achieves rates of 80% at 3 months.[2] Why does the UK have some of the lowest rates of breastfeeding in the world?

 

To understand this issue, Lansinoh carried out research amongst 1000 people, looking at perceptions of breastfeeding in public. The study found that people feel uncomfortable with women breastfeeding on public transport, people over 65 are more accepting of mums breastfeeding in public spaces, and people in Wales are more comfortable with breastfeeding compared to other regions in the UK.  The Equality Act 2010 made it illegal to ask a woman to stop breastfeeding in public, so why is breastfeeding in public such a national taboo?

 

A government study found that although 72% of the British public outwardly support public breastfeeding, over half of breastfeeding mums take steps to cover up and 34% feel embarrassed and uncomfortable.3 Research carried out by Lansinoh found that 37% of men and 41% of women find women breastfeeding on a bus uncomfortable, whilst mums breastfeeding on the underground were frowned upon by 34% of men and 44% of women.4 Although a third of those surveyed admitted that they were not comfortable seeing a woman breastfeeding in front of another woman, the research also found that the longer the journey, the less people find an issue with a mother breastfeeding in a public space.

 

“Breastfeeding is an incredibly important part of relationship building between mother and baby and we’re committed to helping and supporting mums who choose and are able to breastfeed. The Feed with Confidence Awards 2017 received hundreds of nominations from across the UK” explains Kevin Vyse-Peacock, CEO, Lansinoh Laboratories. “We’ve relaunched the campaign to continue to celebrate not just the places that support breastfeeding mums, but also the people who encourage and support breastfeeding in public.

 

Experts agree that there are positive health benefits for both the child and the mother.

Breastfeeding is known to provide protection against infections, diarrhoea and vomiting in babies and it is thought to reduce the risk of obesity and other diseases in later life.

For mum, breastfeeding lowers the risk of breast and ovarian cancer.

 

Michelle Lyne, Professional Education Advisor at The Royal College of Midwives (RCM), says: “Evidence clearly shows that breastfeeding in line with WHO guidance brings optimum benefits for the health of both mother and baby. The RCM believes that breastfeeding also has a positive impact on mother-baby relationships and nurturing of maternal and infant mental health.

 

“For women who choose to breastfeed it is so important that they feel supported not only by midwives, but by their family and friends too. Women should not feel guilty or embarrassed about breastfeeding in public and as a society we must continue to develop a culture of positive support for women who wish to breastfeed and educating the public is key to this.

 

“Women breastfeeding should not be made to feel uncomfortable or guilty. The Equality Act 2010 makes it illegal for anyone to ask a breastfeeding woman to stop breastfeeding, or cover up or leave a public place, such as a cafe, shop or public transport.”

 

Kellie, the 2017 Feed with Confidence Winner said “I was delighted to win the Feed with Confidence 2017 Award. I have worked very hard to create a warm and inviting space for everyone. It can be very daunting for new mums to breastfeed in public and it’s important that they are supported and made to feel welcome”.

 

The Feed with Confidence Awards 2018 are recognising people and places that help to support mums and positively change perceptions. To make a nomination, please visit www.lansinoh.co.uk/feedwithconfidence. The closing date for entries is the 31st December 2018 and the winners will be announced in January 2019.

 

 

 

Below are some breastfeeding tips to help mums when they are out and about:

 

  • If this is your first time venturing out, buddy up and take a friend with you. They can offer you support if you need it.
  • Join a breastfeeding group. It’s great being around other mums who are breastfeeding. They have a wealth of knowledge and experience. But you will find that you also have lots of knowledge other mums will find helpful too.
  • If you feel uncomfortable feeding in public, wear a sling or loose clothing. But remember that once baby is latched, you show no more breast than the woman at the next table with her sun top on! Once you’ve started feeding in company a couple of times, you’ll start feeding with confidence!

 

-ENDS-

 

Notes to the Editor:

Lansinoh was founded by Rasheda Hagen in 1984 to offer breastfeeding women a safe and effective alternative to the highly cosmetic products that were available for nipple soreness – a major reason for failing to establish successful breastfeeding relationships.

When mums choose to breastfeed, Lansinoh believes they should have the support and encouragement they need to experience all its benefits, and ensure baby feels the same. We’ll always take our mothers seriously and their needs personally, creating high-quality products mums want and can trust as they nurture their babies and develop a special bond only formed in motherhood.

World Health Organisation (WHO) recommend exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months (26 weeks) of a baby’s life.   After that, giving a baby breast milk alongside family foods for as long as mother and baby want, will help them grow and develop healthily.

For more information about the Royal College of Midwives position statement on Infant Feeding, visit: https://www.rcm.org.uk/sites/default/files/Infant%20Feeding.pdf

 

 

 

 

 

Visit www.lansinoh.co.uk for the full range of products and more information. www.twitter.com/lansinohfamily (@lansinohfamily)
www.facebook.com/LansinohFamily

[1] https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/breastfeeding-at-6-to-8-weeks-after-birth-2017-to-2018-quarterly-data

[2] http://www.infactcanada.ca/goodgood.htm

3 https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-mothers-are-anxious-about-breastfeeding-in-public

4 All figures unless stated otherwise are according to research on a nationally representative sample of 1000 UK adults carried out by ID Insight Consulting on behalf of Lansinoh, 2017.

 

What Every Parent Needs to Know About Children’s Scars 2018-07-03T12:17:19+00:00

As parents, we know that young skin is sensitive and precious, and it is natural for parents to worry that any damage will leave a visible scar. From babies exploring their new world to school children in the playground, accidents and injuries are commonplace. In fact, more than two million children under the age of 15 experience accidents in and around the home every year, for which they are taken to A&E units1. Sadly, some children will also suffer from significant trauma caused by surgery, burns or a serious accident.

Here, Mr Nick Wilson Jones, Consultant Paediatric Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon, from Welsh Centre for Burns and Plastic Surgery, Morriston Hospital gives his top 5 tips for parents worried about their children’s scars:

 

  • Acceptance – many parents ask me if their children’s injury will leave a scar and are naturally particularly worried about highly visible areas such as the face.  The reality is that if you have a burn or graze and it hasn’t healed in 10-14 days or a surgical or traumatic wound that cuts through the deep layers of the skin, then a scar will form.  The sooner that you can accept this, the more able you are to move on to protecting and treating the scar.

 

  • Encourage body confidence –  the children who cope well with scars, are those who are encouraged to talk about it. Whether it’s a small facial scar or a larger area of scar, it can have a psychological impact on children. So, giving young people – and yourself – the confidence to talk about their scar and to answer other people’s questions is vital.

 

  • Stay sun safe – scar tissue has poorly functioning melanocytes, the body’s natural protection against UV, so it very important that you protect a scar from the sun’s rays – at home or abroad.  Make sure your child avoids long exposure to the sun, especially in the peak time of 12-3pm, and follows gold standard protection advice: use a factor 30+ sunscreen, wear a hat and suitable clothing such as sun suit or rash vest.

 

  • TLC – for the first 12-18 months, a scar is still in the maturation phase, but there are steps you can take to help your child’s scar to heal well. For example, regularly apply moisturiser to help hydrate the tissue and massage the area.  Specific treatments such as silicone gels are also suitable and easy to use for children to help improve the appearance of a scar – and can be applied up to two years after the injury.

 

  • Don’t let it hold you back – it’s so important for children of any age to be outside and active, so a scar shouldn’t stop them from enjoying life. While you will naturally feel cautious of any further injury, you need to encourage your child to return to their normal routines. And, if you’re on holiday, as long as you follow sun protection guidelines and protect the scar from over exposure to UV, children can play on the beach, swim in the sea and enjoy outdoor activities.

 

KELO-COTE® is an advanced formula, clinically proven silicone treatment to improve the appearance of scars resulting from surgery, C-sections, cosmetic procedures, burns, as well as general trauma.

For more information Visit the website here

What is placenta accreta? 2018-07-02T16:52:38+00:00

What is placenta accreta?

The placenta is a fleshy organ that provides your unborn baby with oxygen and nutrients, enabling your baby to grow healthily. Sometimes problems can arise with the placenta, some problems being more severe than others. So what is placenta accreta?

The placenta is meant to be lightly attached to the walls of your uterus. But in some relatively rare cases, the placenta becomes embedded too deeply into the uterine wall. When that happens, it’s known as placenta accreta.

What are the signs of placenta accreta?

It’s hard to diagnose placenta accreta by  symptoms alone, because oftentimes there aren’t any. Your doctor may first notice the condition on a routine ultrasound exam.

Are there any tests for placenta accreta?

An ultrasound is the best way for your doctor to determine whether your placenta is abnormally attached to the uterus.

How common is placenta accreta?

The condition is relatively rare — occurring in about 1 out of every 2,500 pregnancies.

How did I develop placenta accreta?

You’re at increased risk for placenta accreta if you’ve had a number of  c-sections or if the placenta is lying very low in the uterus (a condition known as placenta previa).

How will placenta accreta affect my baby?

Typically placenta accreta won’t have any negative impact on your baby’s development, although it does carry some increased risk of premature delivery. But it’s when push comes to shove (literally) that the problems occur, because it’s very hard for the placenta to separate from the uterine wall. This can cause severe and dangerous bleeding during delivery.

What’s the best way to treat placenta accreta?

All you really have to do is keep up with your OB visits so that you get good prenatal care. Your doctor will be prepared for a tricky delivery (and you can almost certainly expect a c-section). In some cases, you may be given a complete hysterectomy at the time of delivery in order to prevent a severe, life-threatening hemorrhage.

What can I do to prevent placenta accreta?

Unfortunately, there’s not much that can be done in the way of prevention. If you’ve had the condition before, or had multiple c-sections, be aware that there’s an increased risk of it occurring again with a future pregnancy.

Second baby after 7 miscarriages and spending a fortune on IVF 2018-06-14T11:20:31+00:00

A woman who suffered seven miscarriages and spent thousands of euros on IVF treatments before finally having her second child has called for a one-stop fertility advice shop in Ireland after ‘getting the runaround’ from experts.

Sarah (not her real name), 43, now has her hands full with a nine-month-old daughter and nine-year-old son.

But she has revealed the heartbreaking journey she and her husband Niall (not his real name), 45, endured in their attempts to have a second child that finally ended when they went abroad to have IVF using a donor egg.

The couple says they were given different advice at every step and it was only when one consultant bluntly told Sarah, “You have no chance with your own eggs” that they made the right decision.

She said: “We went to various places and they all have different things to tell you, so you don’t know what’s right or wrong.”

The ‘lightbulb moment’ came when, after tests gave her husband’s sperm the all-clear, one consultant pointed them in the direction of using a donor egg.

“It felt like the last chance saloon,” said Sarah. “We went to discuss the findings at a clinic in Dublin and we spoke to a woman who was very blunt – which we loved.

“She turned to me and said, ‘You will have no chance of conceiving with your own eggs’.

“It was hard to hear and I did get upset. It was the first time I broke down in a consultation.

“But we are the kind of people who need a truthful approach. It made us think about our chances and realise that we were at the end of the road with my own eggs.”

Sarah and Niall were recommended the IVF Cube clinic in Prague and were soon filling in forms to find a suitable egg donor.

But looking back she is still frustrated by the process that led up to that point.

“I just wish in Ireland, and maybe in every country, that there was a one-stop shop that people in my situation could go to,” she said.

“They can have tests and then speak to somebody who says, “Okay, these are your options. You’re not going to get pregnant yourself – your best route is to go donor egg. This is where you go, this is what you have to do’.

“If a clinic we’d been at previously had told us that three four years before we may not have gone down the donor route at that stage. But we might have done and I could be sitting here with four kids because we would have had more time.”

She added: “We felt you do get the runaround, especially in Ireland, with the different places you go to.

“You’re getting mixed communications, different things told to you, so you’re going on different paths all the time.

“When a consultant tells you something, you firmly believe that’s the way to go so you’re all in.

“If that doesn’t work you get turned onto a different route and then you’re 100 per cent on that one. It’s mind-boggling.”

Sarah suffered a miscarriage the first time she got pregnant, but soon after conceived a son naturally who was born without complications.

However, when they attempted to add to their family another five miscarriages followed, including one after a successful IVF cycle.

Two more rounds of the fertility treatment failed to provide the joyous news they had hoped for and the cost was rising.

Friends would say to me, ‘There’s going to come a time when you’re going to have to stop – you can’t just keep doing this to yourself’,” Sarah explained.

“I kept saying, ‘I’m not ready yet, I’m going to keep going’.

“But in the back of your mind you do wonder, ‘When is it going to be the end? We have one healthy, happy boy and we’re very lucky – why do I keep putting myself through this?’.”

She insists using donor eggs remains a controversial subject, but feels the process offers women struggling to conceive a ‘brilliant’ option.

Sarah said: “I definitely think there is a stigma. I wouldn’t broadcast the fact that I went down the donor route.

“That’s because I wouldn’t want people looking at our daughter and having their opinion put on her.

“We have no issues whatsoever. She’s our daughter 100 per cent.

“But you just don’t know what people could be thinking and there’s definitely a narrow-mindedness with certain people.

“Having said that, I think it’s getting better because it’s getting more and more common that people are going down the donor route.

“And it’s absolutely brilliant to have the option of using donor eggs. I believe 100 per cent that we would not have our daughter without a donor egg.”

Once the decision was made to use IVF Cube Sarah says the process was ‘seamless’.

A frozen batch of Niall’s sperm was sent over – ‘to cover all angles’ – and he flew out to the Czech Republic to provide a fresh sample.

She explained: “I went over the night before, the transfer happened the next morning and I have to say IVF Cube is fantastic.

“You could see on a screen when they were implanting the egg into the lining of the womb. I would have never seen any of that here in Dublin. When I had IVF once before it wasn’t like that.

“It just gave you that confidence, I definitely came out feeling confident.”

The cost was also a factor. One cycle of IVF in Ireland costs around €4,500, while the bill rises to around €7,500 if using a donor egg.

At IVF Cube the figures are €2,900 and €5,900 respectively.

Sarah had one of the five fertilized eggs/embryos transferred and implanted and two weeks later a pregnancy test showed a positive result.

The couple then had the agonising wait before a scan at six weeks showed everything was in order.

“It was still very scary because we’d been there before so many times before,” she said. “It was always between six and nine weeks that I miscarried.

“The only good thing was that it was a younger, stronger egg.

“But we had really good care at a hospital in Dublin, seeing the consultant every two weeks, and we now have a little girl. She’s nine months and she’s absolutely brilliant.”

Sarah and Niall’s journey was not over yet, however.

Despite having two more frozen embryos available in Prague, they had made the decision to stop at two children.

But at the start of this year she fell pregnant again, this time naturally.

“We never thought we would conceive naturally, it was such a small chance of it happening,” she said.

“Whilst we had previously made the decision not to have another baby, when this came along it made us think maybe we would.

“I went to see a consultant for an early scan and there was no heartbeat. The foetus was there but I was miscarrying.

“That was my seventh miscarriage.

“When that happened I just said, ‘No, let’s just leave well enough alone’.

“There’s nothing to say, if we go down the IVF road again, I wouldn’t miscarry and I just can’t go through another one.

“It’s too much on my body, too much emotionally, too much for the family.

“So our job is done now.”

The trend for women to have babies later in life is nothing new.

Recent figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) showed the number of 45-plus females bearing children in Ireland doubled in the last decade

In 2007 there were 118 cases – in 2016 it was 295.

Donor eggs are used in many IVF treatments for older women, with those 20s often the providers.

The use of donor eggs in Prague is strictly controlled by European Union legislation. Donors remain anonymous throughout the process and are pre-screened for genetic and health issues.

Hana Visnova, medical director of IVF Cube and a specialist in assisted reproduction, said: “The supply of donor eggs we have access to means that, especially for older women, we offer a much better chance of a successful fertility journey.

“We pride ourselves on our facility being modern and state of the art, and it is great to hear that Sarah’s experience was an extremely positive one.”

Since opening seven years ago, IVF Cube has treated hundreds of women every year from the UK and Ireland.

The average age of women using donor eggs at the clinic is 42.

 

Stress of having a baby in the first 6 months due to infant colic 2018-06-14T10:49:03+00:00

How will the Duchess of Cambridge cope with the stress of three? As Spring greets the newest addition to the Royal family, the Duchess of Cambridge is now the proud mum of three children and a new study suggests her stress levels are about to soar, especially is her baby suffers from infant colic!

The study by Infacol, called Stress in the First Six Months showed that , 95% of parents find having a baby stressful and three children seems to make the balancing act harder than ever.

“With three children, you don’t have time for yourself, and you feel under even more pressure to live up to the expectation of being the perfect parent because you’re supposed to know the ropes”, says Tanya Budden, a midwife from Cambridge.

The Duchess of Cambridge admitted that she found the expectations of being a perfect parent very hard to live up to, and 82% of parents in the study agree with her. To the watching world, she’s impeccably turned out and has the support of a loving husband who seems to take fatherhood in his stride. However, the Duchess has experienced a “lack of confidence and feelings of ignorance” and found parenthood a “huge challenge”.

Stress in the first 6 months

Stress in the First Six Months highlights a range of issues such as financial worries, loneliness, pressure to return to work and lack of sleep. Around 90% of parents stated that a strain on finances is one of the most stressful things about having a baby. In the UK, new parents will spend around £9,364 on their new born in the first 12 months, but with the average UK households disposable income being around £27,000, parents are having to adjust their lifestyle to meet the needs of their new baby.

Moreover, out of 886 parents surveyed 75% said that household finance was their main concern when deciding to return to work. And, according to the Office of National Statistics, the number of working mums has surged by 2 million in the past twenty years.

Lack of sleep

A lack of sleep also contributes to parent stress levels, with 94% of new mums and dads admitting that that they aren’t getting as much sleep as they’d like. Research has found that parents with babies under the age of 6 months only get between 1 to 3 hours of uninterrupted sleep a night and only 1 in 5 parents get the recommended 8 hours sleep a night.

Infacol, Stress in the First Six Months: Analysis of attitudes and experiences from primary research conducted amongst recent parents, April 2018

According to a survey of 500 parents carried out by Owlet Care https://blog.owletcare.com/the-state-of-unrest-forparents/

A contributing factor to lack of sleep can be attributed to prolonged bouts of crying caused by Infantile Colic, which is stressful for 85% of new parents.

Infantile colic is a common problem that affects up to 1 in 5 babies, and usually begins when the infant is just a few weeks old.

Signs and symptoms include:

• Intense crying bouts

• Crying in the late afternoon or evening that lasts several hours

• The baby’s face is red and flushed when they cry

• The baby clenches their fists, draws their knees up or arches their back while crying

 

Awareness

However, 1 in 3 British mums admit that they were not aware of Infantile colic prior to the birth of their child. This is why Infacol, Britain’s Number One Colic Remedy, and Cry-Sis, the only parenting charity dedicated to supporting parents through excessive infant crying, have launched the first Infant Colic Awareness Campaign. The campaign has been designed to educate and support parents to ensure they can experience the joys of parenthood to the full.

For more information on infantile colic, you can visit www.infacol.co.uk. To get advice on excessive crying, including one-on-one phone support, visit www.cry-sis.org.uk.

 

References:

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/03/23/duchess-cambridge-admits-suffers-lack-confidence-pressure-perfect/

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/03/23/duchess-cambridge-admits-suffers-lack-confidence-pressure-perfect/

https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/personalandhouseholdfinances/incomeandwealth/bulletins/n owcastinghouseholdincomeintheuk/financialyearending2017

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/womens-business/11258147/Most-first-time-mums-dont-return-to-work-out-ofchoice.html

https://www.theguardian.com/money/2017/sep/26/surge-number-uk-working-mothers-dependent-childrenemployment

Post-pregnancy months are critical for back health, warns leading osteopath 2018-06-11T15:41:30+00:00

Post-pregnancy months are critical for back health, warns leading osteopath

 

New mums risk chronic long-term back pain if they ignore niggling aches and pains in the 12 months after giving birth, warns a leading London-based osteopath.

Mr Michael Fatica, lead consultant osteopath at The Mayfair Clinic, London, says new mums are especially vulnerable to back injury in the first weeks and months after giving birth, and this is exacerbated by the need to quickly resume everyday activities, with the addition of holding a new-born.

 

During the immediate post-pregnancy period, new mums tend to be impatient to resume their regular activities,” says Mr Fatica. “When they’re frequently holding a baby at the same time, they cause the spine to bend sideways to counter the constantly growing weight. Although in isolation these are not bad movements, the repetitive daily nature of them during nine months or longer can have lasting, and damaging repercussions on a mother’s back and spine.

The stress and trauma caused to the body during pregnancy and child birth, particularly following a ‘C’ section, weakens the back muscles. However, the natural instinct of new mums is often to ignore their own ailments while they fully focus on their baby.

While this is understandable, Mr Fatica says some simple, daily changes should be adopted which can reduce strain to the back.

 

New mums should:

 

  • Hold their baby close to their centre rather than with their arms stretched out in front
  • Try to limit the time the baby is positioned on their hips
  • Try to sit-down when holding their baby for long periods of time
  • Take care with car seats – forward bending and twisting is the easiest way to injure a lower back disc
  • Use baby carriers sparingly as they reduce the awareness of the heavy weight being carried, which results in bad posture

 

Mr Fatica is also keen to highlight the “sway back” posture that is often adopted by pregnant women in the later stages of pregnancy and causes considerable stress on the lower back. This is when the woman pushes her tummy forwards and leans backwards to counterbalance – a similar posture is adopted when carrying a heavy box. This posture only serves to aggravate an already weakened back and can lead to neck pain, as a result of the head protruding forwards as a counterbalance, in addition to frequent headaches and general discomfort in the shoulder area.

Mr Fatica continues: “Exercise is so important for helping pregnant women to maintain good physical strength to support the baby. The muscles are being put under immense stress, so it’s vital the body is in the best shape possible.”

Exercise

Some simple exercises can be performed two to three times daily to alleviate back pain during and post-pregnancy:

 

  • Stand against a wall for a few moments with your heels, bottom, middle back and head touching the wall to “reset your posture”. This is particularly beneficial in the latter stages of pregnancy.
  • Lie on your back and slowly flatten the arch in your back rhythmically 10-20 times (should take approximately 60 to 90 seconds)
  • Go swimming – even having a “paddle” in the pool will help take the pressure of your back, but the breast-stroke should be avoided.
  • For pregnant women only – sleep on your side and support your neck with the right amount of pillows to keep your neck straight, not tilted to one side. A lot of women know how to take care of the baby bump by supporting the tummy with pillows but often forget about their own spine.

 

“While back rehabilitation and treatment is often low down on a new mum’s list of priorities, the stress of childbirth can highlight and even worsen a pre-existing weakness in the lower back,” adds Mr Fatica. “It’s therefore important for new mums to see an osteopath or chiropractor to get their spine examined and treated properly early on, to avoid it developing into a chronic problem.”

The Mayfair Clinic, London, is one of the UK’s leading osteopathic clinics, providing patients with the very best osteopathic treatment available for back pain, neck pain and sciatica. It is also the only osteopathic clinic in the UK able to provide their unique combination of state-of-the-art technologies to treat back and neck pain. For more information visit themayfairclinic.com

Bonding with your baby in the early days after birth 2018-06-05T11:58:02+00:00

Bonding with your baby in the early days after birth

First time parents are in for the experience of a lifetime! After surviving 9 months of pregnancy, a wardrobe of maternity clothes, baby showers, and decorating the nursery with care, you have gone through the exciting, heroic experiences of labour and birth.  You are ready to leave the hospital to begin your new life as first-time parents!

Handling the First-Time Parent Jitters

For many first-time parents, bringing a baby home from the hospital is an exciting experience mixed with apprehension.  Silent questions such as “How will I know…”, “How will I cope…,” and “But, what if…” mingle with exuberant joy as you look down at the precious bundle sleeping in your arms.  You’ve got the first-time parent jitters!

Not to worry!  Siblings and friends with children, parents, and in-laws have been waiting for this moment, too.  They will offer expert advice on feeding, diapering, and proper baby care.  Books galore are also available, written by baby doctors and psychologists offering guidance on parenting, and the latest in child development research.

When it comes to reading material, be prudent about book selection.  And, don’t be afraid to set down boundaries on visiting times for over-eager friends and relatives. While you can learn proper baby care from the expertise of others, you and your spouse also need time alone with your baby, to bond.

 

Bonding with Baby

The bonding process starts within the womb but once the baby is born, skin to skin contact and early breastfeeding can help with that mother- baby attachment. Dads can also benefit from skin to skin contact with their baby to help strengthen their bond.

More frequently than not, bonding with baby will include touch.  This is important, because it is through touch your baby will come to know you.

Cradling your baby in your lap, and gently stroking him or her is the most basic form of bonding between baby and parent.  Nestling the newborn at your neck is another bonding-touch that provides baby with a sense of security.  Support the baby’s head and neck with one hand, and his or her bottom with the other.

Forget the old wives’ tale that holding a baby too much will spoil the child.  Yes, perhaps a baby should not be picked up each and every time they so much as squeak but a baby who is crying is communicating that their is a need. It could be a need for food, warmth, touch, love or feeling discomfort.

Quiet moments alone with baby without distractions are necessary to form the emotional connection between parent and child, essential to a healthy attachment.  An important bonding process noted by paediatricians in the late 1970s.  This process has been proved vital for both parent and child.

Newborns provided the benefit of gentle contact and tender touch by parents feel loved and secure.  This sense of well-being impacts both their emotional growth and physical development.

Parents who form this type attachment with their newborn make better parents.  They are better equipped and more willing to make the necessary sacrifices to care for their child; during infancy as well as through childhood. Unfortunately some unforeseen circumstances can interfere with this process such as postnatal depression, maternal illness and other major life events.

 

 The Importance of Touch

 

The importance of touch – gentle, loving contact when holding your baby, cannot be emphasized enough.  Rough handing and harsh jostling, especially with a newborn, can not only frighten your baby, but be life-threatening, as well.

Always be careful to support your newborn’s head and neck when you pick them up, or lay them down.  If you need to wake up your newborn, don’t startle them by jostling or shaking them.  Instead, gently tickle their feet, softly blow on their cheek, or tenderly rub the side of their head while speaking softly and saying their name.

Relish time with your baby.  Gently cradle him or her in your arms, and tenderly rub his or her back using slow, wide circles.  Or, caress your baby soothingly as you rock them.

Talk in a low, comforting tone, or quietly sing to them.  When eye contact is made smile, even if you aren’t sure whether or not their eyesight has developed enough yet to see clearly.

While it is true the importance of proper baby care (bathing, adequate nutrition, a safe, clean environment, play and nap time, and comfortable, warm clothing) cannot be over emphasised, neither can the healthy-bonding process between parent and child and the importance of touch.

Both vital ingredients that say, “You are loved!”

Is drinking green tea safe in pregnancy? 2018-06-05T11:37:24+00:00

Pregnant women would be wise to limit the amount of green tea they drink during pregnancy, and should be careful about taking any green tea supplements. Green tea is rich in antioxidants, and has a host of health benefits relating to dental health, blood sugar levels, cholesterol, and weight loss. But researchers have found, whilst examining the active constituent of green tea, the epigallocatechins, or EGCG for short, that it may affect the way the body uses folate. Folate is important for pregnant women as it prevents neural tube birth defects in babies.

 

The problem of green tea during pregnancy is that the EGCG molecules are structurally similar to a compound called methotrexate. Methotrexate is able to kill cancer cells by chemically bonding with an enzyme in the body called enzyme dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR). Healthy people have this enzyme also – it is part of what is called the folate pathway, which is the pathway, or steps, the body takes to transform nutrients like folate into something that can be used to support its normal functions.

 

But this chemical similarity means that the EGCG in green tea also binds with the enzyme DHFR, and when it does this, it inactivates this enzyme. When this enzyme is inactivated, the ability of the body to use folate is going to be affected. How much green tea is able to be consumed, or precisely how much folate absorption is affected, is unclear. Though the research article did say that drinking 2 cups of green tea a day can stop cancer cells (which is what methotrexate is targeting) from growing.

 

The good news on caffeine drank during pregnancy, from coffee and tea, is that a moderate amount is fine. Two studies, one by Danish scientists who interviewed more than 88,000 pregnant women, and the other by the Yale University School of Medicine, had similar findings on caffeine during pregnancy.

 

The concerns over caffeine were that it would lead to low birth weight or miscarriage. And this is still true of a very high daily intake of coffee. The Yale team found that drinking about 600mg of caffeine a day, which is about 6 cups of coffee, would reduce birth weight to levels that were clinically significant. The rate at which birth weight was reduced was established at being 28 grams per 100 mg, or 1 cup, of coffee per day. But they emphasized that this would not be significant for moderate caffeine consumption.

 

The Danish study found that drinking 8 cups or more of coffee per day (this would be about 16 cups or more of tea), would increase the chances of miscarriage, or stillbirth, by 60% compared to women who did not drink caffeine. They also found that moderate coffee or tea drinking did not pose significant risks. For those drinking half a cup to 3 cups of coffee a day, the risk of fetal death was 3% higher compared to non-caffeine drinkers. And for those drinking 4 to 7 cups of coffee a day, the risk increases to 33%. One cup of coffee equals about 2 cups of tea when comparing caffeine levels. The recommended amount of coffee drunk is up to 3 cups daily, or 6 cups of tea, by the UK food agency.