Blog Posts by FitPregnancy

  • Giving Birth in America: Do You Know Just How Lucky You Are?

    From our Ask the Labor Nurse blogger Jeanne Faulkner:

    Reader emails from around the world, like the one copied below, provide an opportunity to contrast our experiences with pregnancy here in the United States with those of women from other cultures and parts of the world. This reader asked that I not use her name. She has lived in the US one year. The subject line read: Urgent advice needed.

    Hi Jeanne,

    How are you doing? I am from India residing in California. I am totally LOST and I really do not have any clue about how it works here when it comes to deliver a baby. In the USA, things are pretty different from India. I didn't even know that I needed to get registered with a hospital and decide the name of the baby before I get discharged. What all things should I do and what all things do I need to know, as I am due in November. Time is approaching and I am not sure if I have taken care of everything. Please advise and tell me what all things to do before and after

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  • Sleepless in Brooklyn: Don't Let the Bedbugs Bite

    What does it look like when the walls coming crashing in on you? For me, it looks like hours-hours-of online research about bedbugs.

    I'm not the most high-strung, anxiety-prone person I know, and this doesn't happen often enough that I can recall the last time it did, but everyone once in a while I lose it. I consider the experience a panic attack, since it's characterized by obsessive and paralyzing thoughts and I Just.Can't.Relax.

    I bring this up of course because that's what I did yesterday, for most of the day, while Leo was in school and Aaron-coincidentally-was off in Atlanta for a 3-day business trip. It started in the morning when I noticed 3 bites on Leo's hands and arm. I hustled the poor kid to school as fast as I could, avoiding eye contact with his teachers, then raced home to dispatch with the high-priority freelance tasks of the day so I could settle in for a good long panic about bed bugs.

    Here's what I learned:

    1. Bed bugs are not dangerous, just a

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  • Older Parenthood (and wearing sweatpants to your kid's school)

    I walked my 5th grader to her classroom on the first day of school this week. As I looked around at the other parents, I recognized once again that I'm one of the older mothers in the hall. I was 39 when I had this daughter; what my obstetrician called: Advanced Maternal Age. It's not like I'm really old, but now, ten years later, as I stand outside the classroom, three things cross my mind:

    1) Dang, these parents are young and

    2) There's no way I could show up here wearing sweats and a dirty pony tail like they can and

    3) I'm glad I'm not as stressed out about everything as they are.

    I don't know if it's age or experience, but I was a lot more worried and stressed when I was one of the 20-30-something parents than I am now, parenting in my dotage.

    Here's the thing about the sweats and ponytail. One day last year, I overslept, pulled on my workout gear, wiped off my day-old mascara and drove my daughter to school. One of her classmates asked if I was her

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  • My Birth Story

    From Fit Pregnancy's Adventures in Babyland blogger:

    Well, as you may have seen from the announcement here, Tucker was born almost two weeks ago! The days since have passed in the expected blur, with my mother-in-law coming to cook and help out when we got home from the hospital, and then my mom coming out from Oregon this week. We are sleep deprived and in a bit of shock, I think, but elated.

    I thought I'd share my birth story, in case anyone was interested.

    To start with, I spent most of my pregnancy researching and obsessing about natural childbirth. I bored way too many of my friends to tears going on and on about it, and for that I apologize. I read endless midwife memoirs full of birth stories, I studied up on my Ina May Gaskin (I highly recommend starting with "Ina May's Guide to Childbirth" and then if you want to read a really well-written midwife memoir, try "Baby Catcher," by Peggy Vincent), I made Ben and my parents watch "The Business of Being Born." We went to

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  • How to Respond to Others' Remarks: Nursing

    I got the sweetest email from Lisa. She wants to know what she should say when people ask when she's going to stop nursing her 2-year-old. She's happy, her toddler's happy and her fiancé's happy. It's everyone else who has a problem. I don't suppose telling them to "mind their own damn business," is really Lisa's style.

    Read More: A Smart Start

    Women all over the world nurse well into the second year and beyond. What's the big deal? Frankly, I don't know. It's hard enough to get women in the US to nurse for 6-months. Anything beyond that and women ought to get a prize. I nursed most of mine for a year or two and only quit when my babies and I were ready.

    There was a very old woman I chatted with as I nursed my daughter in the park. My daughter was two-ish and just not ready to let it go yet. The woman said, "Good for you sweetie. You nurse as long as you want. She's not going to go off to grade school nursing so you might as well enjoy it now." I loved that old woman. I

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  • A Win-Win for Breastfeeding

    Nurse longer and enjoy better health later, studies say

    The longer you breastfeed, the less likely you'll develop a syndrome linked to heart disease, stroke and diabetes, according to recent studies in the journals Diabetes and Obstetrics and Gynecology.

    Researchers followed 704 women from the time they became pregnant. After two decades, 120 had been diagnosed with metabolic syndrome, symptoms of which include belly fat, high blood pressure, abnormal cholesterol levels and insulin resistance. However, those who'd breastfed for up to five months or longer had much lower odds of receiving that diagnosis-39 percent to 56 percent lower than women who breastfed for less than a month.

    Women diagnosed with gestational diabetes fared even better. Their risk for metabolic syndrome several years after pregnancy dropped 44 percent to 86 percent, depending on how long they breastfed; more than nine months of breastfeeding reduced their risk to one-seventh the rate of women who

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  • When Kids Get Sick of Their Parents

    From Fit Pregnancy's Mom Appetit blogger Zoe Singer:

    Why did we decide to drive to the Outer Banks of North Carolina? From Brooklyn. With a two-year-old? Ah well, we did, anyway, and day two of our trip was a ten-hour creep through beach-bound traffic. Ugh.

    Leo handled himself quite well. True, he sang out "I want to get oooouuuuttt! I wannna go to the beach!!!" at regular intervals. But I think we all did. I felt terrible putting him through that trip. Toddlers don't even sit still long enough to finish a meal, and we strapped our kid into a seat for an entire day. It felt inhumane. So I turned up all my entertaining mom skills, shuffling from sticker book to this little piggy to "look! A truck!" at manic speed as we slowly, slowly nudged our rental car down the endless highway.

    Naptime came, and I sat there enforcing silence and pretending so hard to be asleep that I got a crick in my neck. Leo alternated slurping away at his binky and throwing things. Naptime went

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  • Get Your Child to Eat Veggies

    How to instill healthy eating habits and deal with fussy eaters.

    Your toddler clamps his mouth shut, turns his head away and screams-loudly-as if you're inflicting the worst kind of torture on his fragile soul. The offense? Vegetables.

    "Children tend to 'hit the wall' with their eating habits somewhere between 18 months and 24 months," says Laura Jana, M.D., a pediatrician in Omaha, Neb., and a co-author of Food Fights: Winning the Nutritional Challenges of Parenthood Armed with Insight, Humor, and a Bottle of Ketchup (American Academy of Pediatrics). "It probably correlates with becoming more independent." Here's how to help yourself-and your nutritionally resistant child-through this challenging time.

    1) Instill good habits early When your baby begins eating solids (often at about 6 months), be sure to include lots of vegetables-and lots of variety. "Expose your child to different flavors and textures," Jana advises.

    2) Be persistent "It can take several tries

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  • Breastfeeding Revisited (a response to all your comments)

    From Jeanne Faulkner, R.N., Fit Pregnancy's Ask the Labor Nurse:

    Whew, I really ticked off a few people with my blog last week about breastfeeding modestly. Most readers appreciated the concept of "middle ground," neither hiding under a tent nor full-on exposure, there were a few readers who found my attitude shameful. It seems pulling the boys' perspective into this was a bad plan. What can I say? Now that I have a lot of teenage boys in my life (all of them kind, sensitive, intelligent and respectful) I see things through different points of view. I wonder if I'd substituted "shy people, religious people, old people or people from cultures that value modesty" for "boys and men" if they would still be upset with me. A few comments made it out like I blame women who are victims of violence and am defending men. Really? That's what you took away from that blog? Naah, I'm just saying maybe a t-shirt or a scarf is a nice way to go.

    My point wasn't to say that anyone should

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  • Breastfeeding Modestly (They're Still Boobs!)

    Since this is World Breastfeeding Week, our website is dedicated to providing all the information and statistics to support breastfeeding as the best way to go. As I pondered what insight I could offer, I paid more attention than usual to women who were breastfeeding in public and realized they were everywhere - women with their boobs out.

    Breasts have played a very big part in my career. I've seen more naked breasts than the bouncer at a strip club. I've grabbed thousands of nipples and guided them into babies' mouths when their brand new mothers didn't know how to aim them yet. I've helped moms take their nipple rings out and put burn dressings on their cracked, chaffed and oh-so-painful breasts. I can carry on a full conversation with a woman wearing nothing at all and might not even notice. That's how immune nurses get to nudity. Doctors aren't anywhere near as comfortable with it. Their visits are brief and their patients usually pull a top on. With their labor and postpartum

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Pagination

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