Decisions You Have To Make During Pregnancy | 15 Important Decisions for You And Baby Before Birth

Decisions You Have To Make During Pregnancy | 15 Important Decisions for You And Baby Before Birth

There are several lots of important decisions you need to make during pregnancy that will have a huge impact on you and your babe.

When it comes to childbirth, it’s always best to be overprepared rather than underprepared. You have many options to go through to make those major choices, but we have narrowed down the ideal pregnancy checklist with 15 things you need to cross off.

This list will help make the experience a lot easier, so you can get all your prep done before the little one arrives.

**Want Freebies For You And Your Baby? Get $330 Worth Of Gear! I have partnered with many companies to give you the best baby freebies online including Nursing Pillow, Pregnancy Pillows, Nursing Covers, Baby Leggings, Baby Clothes and so much more. You can find out how to get your freebies in this post right here.

By the way, this post contains affiliate links at no extra cost to you. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. 

Decisions You Have To Make During Pregnancy

15 big decisions to make during your pregnancy

Where To Give Birth

 

No matter how early you are in the pregnancy, it is always worth thinking about where you would like to give birth.

This needs to be your first and most important decision because it impacts who you pick to be your healthcare provider. Think about whether you want to have your baby at home, a hospital, or even a birthing center.

Your obstetrician will have specific privileges at some hospitals, so you should ask them to help schedule you in for your labor.

Some midwives may not be able to deliver at hospitals, so they will need to attend a home birth if you choose this option.

Birth location is a very special and personal choice, and you will need to find or switch doctors early in your pregnancy.

Most providers can accept patients until 34 weeks, but you can rest assured knowing that you have already locked down the best doctor or midwife for your child’s welcome into the world.

Must Read: 

 

Breastfeeding Choices

 

The American Academic of Pediatrics (AAP) says that new mothers should breastfeed their babies for the first six months.

Then you should balance breastfeeding with some solid foods for about a year or more. I breastfed past the two-year mark with all three of mine and that’s perfectly acceptable.

However, breastfeeding is a personal choice. Not every mother is comfortable breastfeeding a newborn, so it all depends on your own lifestyle and needs.

If you decide to breastfeed, you will need to stock up on some nursing items like breast pumps, milk storage bags, nipple creams, nursing pillows, and so on.

A lactation consultant can help answer all your questions before the baby comes, and they can give you tips on how to get your baby to latch on if you decide to breastfeed.

You should also take a breastfeeding course because contrary to popular belief breastfeeding doesn’t always come naturally to mama and baby. Those first few hours are critical so it’s really important to go in knowing what you’re doing.

Milkology is a great option and it’s cheap and quick. You can see it here or you can click on the banner below.

milkology

 

Labor Pain Management Methods

 

Childbirth is not a pain-free experience. You may opt for an epidural to help manage the pain or go for an unmedicated birth.

There are a few options for you, so you should speak to your gynecologist to lock in a decision months before your due date. But you can always change your mind if you need to while giving birth. So don’t fret over it too much.

Choosing your labor pain management method will also impact where you give birth.

For instance, if you want an epidural, you will need to be admitted to a hospital.

 

 

In the meantime, try to take some childbirth classes to know what to expect. Labor can last for several hours and knowing what your body will go through will help you decide whether you want a medicated birth or not.

Some women handle the pain better than others, so this choice comes down to your personal preference.

Taking a labor course will help you make these important decisions and just like a breastfeeding course, a labor course is a super important step you should take to prepare for birth.

Here’s the best one online and you can do it at your own pace in about 3 hours’ time. You will learn EVERYTHING you need to know. Honestly, this course is amazing. You can find it here.

 

Finding a Pediatrician

 

Your newborn baby will need to get an immediate checkup after birth.

They will be taken for a routine exam in the hospital within 24 hours after being born.

This will be done by the medical staff or your pediatrician. Then your baby will need to undergo their first wellness health checkup a week after their birth.

Therefore, you will need to have a great pediatrician on speed dial before the baby arrives since you will rely on their support. Start interviewing potential doctors in your area when you are in your third trimester to ensure that they will be a good fit.

Also, read reviews. I got stuck with a terrible Pediatrician with my first kiddo and had to change. Not a fun or easy experience.

 

Hiring a Doula

 

A Doula is a birthing expert that can help you through the process. Even though you do not need to hire them, they are extremely helpful.

They are trained to provide a lot of emotional, educational, and physical support.

Doulas are not qualified to give any medical care, but they can encourage and motivate you through labor. They will go over your birthing plan and answer any questions you have.

Doulas can also guide you on the different positions for more comfort and help you practice some breathing techniques.

You can ask them to massage any aches, and they have great advice for any postpartum support you may need.

Interview reputable doulas in your area to choose the right person because you will be spending a lot of time with them.

 

Cord Blood Banking

 

This is a process where blood leftover from a newborn baby’s umbilical cord gets collected for medical purposes in the future.

This can be used to provide cancer treatment for your child down the line. I really wish I had done this for mine but I didn’t know about it at the time.

Or you can donate it for another child who may need a transplant. You can choose whether you want to store this blood from the cord in a private bank by paying a fee.

Alternatively, you can donate it to the public blood bank.

If you want it in your own cord blood bank, then you will need to choose the right one and get their collection kit approximately six weeks before you are due.

Let your doctor know your final decision, and they will be prepared to collect the blood for you moments after birth.

 

 

 

Delayed Cord Clamping

 

If you have decided to collect blood from the umbilical cord, you cannot delay clamping the cord to prevent clots.

This is a standard procedure that you will need to discuss with your doctor to see if this is something that they can consider without risking your health. Clamping of the cord can usually be delayed by a few seconds to 5 minutes.

 

Saving Your Placenta

 

Nearly half an hour after giving birth, your body will get rid of the placenta.

If you choose to keep the placenta for any symbolic reasons, you will need to talk to your doctor.

You may want to drink it in a smoothie or consume it in the form of pills. The placenta can be helpful with postpartum recoveries by boosting your mood and production of breast milk.

However, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises against eating the placenta because it can lead to infections for you or the baby.

If you want to save the placenta for personal reasons, tell your doctor in advance to use methods that will lower the risk of infections.

 

Think About Circumcision

 

If you are giving birth to a baby boy, you will need to think about whether you want them to be circumcised or not.

Many parents go this route for cultural and religious reasons.

However, there are also medical advantages of circumcisions to help prevent urinary tract infections and other sexually transmitted diseases in the future.

 

Research Baby’s Shots

 

Newborn babies come into this world with low vitamin K levels, which is necessary to form healthy blood clots.

A vitamin K deficiency for a new baby can be life-threatening because there is a risk of bleeding out if they cannot clot correctly.

Parents have a right to decline these shots, but it is always better to get them once they are born.

Your baby may also need a Hepatitis B vaccine.

Ensure that you do the research beforehand and are prepared to sign all consent forms before giving birth.

 

People in Delivery Room

 

Although most family members and loved ones would love to cram into the delivery room to support you, it is always best to choose who you want to be there before going into labor.

This way, you can avoid all the stress and family dramas, especially if hospitals only allow a couple of people in there with you.

You can also choose when to let someone inside. If you permit a friend and partner, they do not have to be with you the entire time if you need some privacy.

 

Delivery Room Experience

 

After picking the person you want in the delivery room with you, the next step is to think about the environment you want to set before going into labor.

Some mothers prefer curating playlists to listen to music while giving birth.

This is useful if you want some motivation or soothing sounds, especially during breathing exercises.

Alternatively, you can also bring some essential oils and a diffuser to help you cope with stress.

If you want peace and quiet, you can also hang a “Do Not Disturb” sign outside the door so nurses will know to keep their voices down.

 

Immediate Touch

 

Skin-to-skin or kangaroo care involves keeping your naked baby directly on your chest. This helps newborns regulate their body temperature and stabilize critical signs.

It can also soothe the cries of your babies and lead to healthier weight gain and breastfeeding progress.

If you want to go through this process with your child, make sure to inform your care provider even if you are undergoing a c-section.

 

Baby’s First Bath

 

Your baby will be born covered in a white and waxy substance known as vernix. This is where the baby will need a sponge bath a couple of hours after they are born.

However, some people prefer delaying the first bath for an entire day. This is because vernix can help keep the baby warm while regulating their blood sugar.

New mothers also avoid washing their babies before bonding with some skin-to-skin contact.

Unless there is a medical reason, you can delay washing your newborn baby for a few hours. Plan the best way to give them a first bath before going into labor, and let your doctor know to prevent any last-minute surprises.

 

Using Pacifiers

 

Although there are benefits of using pacifiers to lower SIDS, they can lead to ear infections and other dental problems as the baby grows.  Learn more about preventing SIDS here.

Research the benefits and risks of using pacifiers before deciding whether you want your child to have one. If you want to use a pacifier, you will need to think about ways to introduce it to the baby.

Some may be happy accepting it from the get-go, but others can be hesitant to take it. Some nurses in the hospital may also offer a pacifier to help calm the baby, so you should always let them know your decision before birth if you are comfortable using pacifiers or not.

In the end….

Childbirth is always full of unknown factors, even though some women may be having their third or fourth child. With each child you’ll have important Decisions You Have To Make During Pregnancy.

It’s always an unnerving experience for mothers, despite how much experience they have. Stay flexible with your choices and decisions.

That way, you will not get disheartened if something does not go your way entirely.

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Good luck mama!!

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15 big decisions to make during your pregnancy

Month 2 Of Pregnancy | What To Expect

Month 2 Of Pregnancy | What To Expect

So you’re in your second month of pregnancy. Congrats! You’re moving right along!

Below is everything you need to know and what to expect from 5-8 weeks of pregnancy.

**Want Freebies For You And Your Baby? Get $330 Worth Of Gear! I have partnered with many companies to give you the best baby freebies online including Nursing Pillow, Pregnancy Pillows, Nursing Covers, Baby Leggings, Baby Clothes and so much more. You can find out how to get your freebies in this post right here.

By the way, this post contains affiliate links at no extra cost to you. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. 

 

Month 2 Of Pregnancy | What To Expect

 

The second month of pregnancy is from week five to week eight.

But You will essentially feel the same as you did in your first month. During this time you will go to your first doctor’s visit and they will give you several tests and confirm your pregnancy.

You will set up a prenatal timeline for your visits and get your insurance or financial plan squared away with your provider. You will very likely have your first ultrasound during this time as well to confirm your babe’s heartbeat.

Now let’s talk about your baby first and then we will talk about what you’ll be going through.

 

Your Baby

 

At the end of month 2, your baby will be 1 inch long and weigh about 1/30 of an ounce. So little and sweet….

 

Facial Features Developing

 

During this time your sweet babe’s little facial features will start developing.

Each ear begins as a little fold of skin at the side of the head and eyes, a nose, a mouth also begin to grow.

Your baby still looks like a little alien but he\she gets more human-looking by the day.

 

Heartbeat Starts

 

During your second month, your baby’s heart is now beating around 80 beats a minute.

Your baby’s heart has already started to fully form, and by now will have four hollow chambers.

When you go in for an ultrasound they’ll check to make sure it’s beating and at the right pace. This will give you peace of mind that your babe is developing appropriately.

 

 

**Must Reads: 

 

Toes And Fingers!

 

 Your baby’s arms, hands, fingers, feet, and toes are fully formed by the end of the second month and he/she will even be wiggling around a bit, but you won’t be able to feel it yet, of course. 

 

YOUR BODY 

 

Fatigue 

 

A lot is happening inside your body right now, with the cells coming together to form an embryo.

You will go through huge changes and you’ll likely feel beyond exhausted. It’s hard work making a baby and you’ll feel it..

It’s like constantly climbing a mountain while you’re sitting down.

This is one of the hardest parts of the first trimester and the number one complaint during this time, but it does pass, I promise you.

 

Morning Sickness

 

This is the second main complaint about the first trimester.

Morning sickness for some is not too bad, but for others it is debilitating. It can really complicate life when you need to eat and you’re starving but you can’t keep it down or you’re trying to work but your body WILL NOT LET YOU.

But there are some things you can do to help yourself.

First, try drinking ginger tea or even eating ginger cookies or candies.

There are also teas made just for morning sickness like this one, and they can help tremendously.

Studies show ginger works for reducing nausea and vomiting during pregnancy.

Also, try taking your prenatal vitamin during dinner rather than on an empty stomach. Ritual makes the best prenatal on the market, hands down.

second month of pregnancy symptoms

 

Constipation

 

During pregnancy, high levels of the hormone progesterone slow down the muscle contractions that help get food through your system.

Add that to the extra iron you’re getting from your prenatal vitamin and you end up feeling full and bloated along with constipated. Not fun.

This begins around the second month of pregnancy and it slowly gets worse.

By the second and third trimester, you can get pretty uncomfortable. If it gets too bad you can talk to your doctor about using something like MiraLAX.

The best thing to do is keep your intestines moving early on by eating plenty of fiber and drinking plenty of water. This will help you during your whole pregnancy so be diligent.

 

Vaginal Discharge 

 

One thing you’ll definitely notice is a heavy increase in vaginal discharge.

Most pregnant women will start secreting sticky, white, or pale-yellow mucus early on in the first trimester and thereafter.

Increased hormones and vaginal blood flow cause the discharge as a way to prevent infections as your cervix and vaginal walls soften. Your body is smart like that.

It would be good to use pads to help protect your clothing because the discharge can become constant. Here’s a good one that works well for this purpose.

 

Mood Swings

 

This is when you start to get really moody. There’s no doubt, it can be tough on you and everyone else.

So just be aware that your moods may start to swing back and forth like a pendulum.

There’s not much you can do about it. Getting plenty of rest will help some and eating enough.

 

second trimester symptoms of pregnancy

 

Bloated Feeling

 

You may not look pregnant yet but your stomach will feel very bloated.

Here are a couple of things you can do to ease the bloat:

  1. Eat smaller meals more frequently, instead of giant meals when you’re hungry.
  2. Have a well-balanced diet full of whole grains, fresh fruits, vegetables, beans, and other fiber-rich foods.
  3. Avoid too many high-fat foods and grease traps. They’ll make you bloated AND you’ll feel awful.
  4. Eat fewer foods that cause gas, including beans, cabbage, legumes, broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts.

 

 

Food Cravings And Aversions Too

 

We’ve all heard of women craving certain foods during pregnancy, and it’s all #facts.

But that usually doesn’t happen until later on.

What you don’t hear too much of is the fact that you’ll most likely have food aversions too.

This is especially common during the first trimester and early in the second trimester when you tend to be more queasy and nauseated.

Some foods will gross you out so bad and unfortunately, this may stick for some things.

I had an aversion to ground beef during my pregnancies and now… I just can’t do it… and it’s been years.

Just eat nutritious foods during this period and it will hopefully pass for you soon.

 

Thes second month of pregnancy is like an exciting rollercoaster of physical and emotional symptoms. All you can do it sit back and try to enjoy the ride.

Good Luck!

 

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second month symptoms

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pregnancy Symptoms You Need To Know From Month One Till Birth

Pregnancy Symptoms You Need To Know From Month One Till Birth

 

Pregnancy is such an exciting time in a woman’s life. But it comes with a cascade of physical changes that can happen overnight.

Your body is thrown into total chaos and it is very overwhelming. It’s good to know exactly what to expect.

A typical full-term pregnancy can range anywhere between 37 to 42 weeks, and this is divided into three trimesters.

Each trimester will last approximately 12 to 14 weeks, which is roughly 3 months. During this time, you will experience physiological and hormonal changes that a very intense. After all, growing a human inside you takes a lot of work so be prepared for one crazy ride!

Here we will guide you through your pregnancy symptoms month to month so that you can be prepared to cope with these changes as they happen.

****Want Freebies For You And Your Baby?  Get $330 Worth Of Gear! I have partnered with many companies to give you the best baby freebies online including Nursing Pillow, Pregnancy Pillows, Nursing Covers, Baby Leggings, Baby Clothes and so much more. You can find out how to get your freebies in this post right here.

This post may contain affiliate links. 

Pregnancy Symptoms You Need To Know From Month One Till Birth

pregnancy symptoms for 9 months

0 to 3 Month Pregnancy Symptoms

 

The initial three months of your pregnancy are known as the “first trimester.”   The official start of your pregnancy should be from the first day of your last period.
You won’t look pregnant at all on the outside during the first trimester, but your body will go through many changes to accommodate a growing fetus.
The hormonal and physiological changes are not the same for everyone.

Some experience symptoms more harshly than others. You may feel a rapid increase in estrogen and progesterone, which will create a pregnancy “glow” that everyone compliments.

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Or alternatively, you may be very sick from it all. It’s a very individual experience.

The estrogen increase will improve the formation of blood vessels, advance the transfer of nutrients, and support the development of your baby.

Progesterone levels will also be high during this time, and you may feel your ligaments and joints loosening throughout your body. Your ureters that connect your kidneys with the bladder will increase in size, and the uterus will get much larger.

Your posture may also change as your breasts grow bigger month to month and the equilibrium in your body changes due to your uterus growing in size.

Changes in weight will contribute to this as well.

Your tummy will transform from a flat and concave to a convex shape, which will curve your back to shift the effects of gravity forward, thus changing your balance.

Your body will feel like it’s getting a good workout even from the smallest movements, which is why you will start feeling tired more often. It can feel a bit like you’re always climbing an upward hill or even a mountain.

This additional weight and the shift in gravity can slow the circulation of your blood and other fluids in the limbs, which is why you retain more water that will gradually leave you feeling bloated. This is one of the more annoying symptoms and it will continue throughout your pregnancy.

In these initial weeks after conception, your hormone levels change a fair bit to support the growing fetus and placenta, and this will increase your heart rate. Other early symptoms of pregnancy are morning sickness, constipation, and headaches. So sometimes the whole thing can be pretty difficult. But it does get better!

Your first trimester is the most critical period when your baby develops its organs, finishing around the third month.

Therefore, you should always maintain a balanced and healthy diet with extra folic acid to prevent neural tube defects.

It is also wise to stop smoking, drinking alcohol, and taking prescription medications unless your doctor says otherwise if you have those things going on.

A home test can reveal your pregnancy during this time, then you will need to go to your first doctor’s appointment around 6-8 weeks after your last menstrual cycle. The doctor will then confirm that you are pregnant by taking a blood or urine test.

They may use a Doppler machine to conduct a vaginal ultrasound.

pregnancy symptoms from start to finish

This is an exciting experience because you will hear your baby’s heartbeat for the first time.  It’s quite magical if I do say so myself.

During this first appointment, they will do lots of tests, things like blood tests to examine your nutritional levels, immunity, and any other indicators regarding your baby’s health.

It’s very important you start getting your prenatal care early on so that you can have as healthy a pregnancy as possible. So get a doc asap and get everything set up. Don’t wait.

A few more things to consider are cutting down on shellfish, deli meat, and coffee. These things can pose a risk to your pregnancy and your growing babe.

Only take prenatal vitamins after getting the green signal from your healthcare provider. Honestly, there are some really crappy vitamins that are not all that good for you.

Here at This Little Nest, we recommend Ritual Prenatal. It’s an extremely healthy and clean prenatal with all the right stuff. You can check out Ritual Prenatal Vitamins Here.

3-6 Month Pregnancy Symptoms

 

This is when your second trimester kicks in at weeks 13 to 27.

Unlike the first trimester, you will feel more relaxed knowing that you have safely and successfully made it this far. You will also finally start looking pregnant.

Many early pregnancy symptoms will start to disappear by the second trimester and your body will no longer be in shock from the sudden hormonal changes.

Some women even feel pretty normal, like they’re not pregnant anymore. It’s only obvious because their body is continuing to change.

Since your body has begun to adapt to the new feeling of being pregnant, you may experience a surge of energy levels during the day and sleep more soundly at night. I actually had tons of energy during the second trimester with all three of mine and it certainly was a welcome change considering I was DEAD TIRED during my first trimester every time.

In terms of appearance, this is where your lower body will look pregnant in an obvious way as the uterus grows bigger. This is the perfect opportunity to go shopping for some gorgeous maternity dresses so you can avoid wearing clothes that feel too tight. Here are some great options that we recommend. 

Since you have gotten over the scary first trimester, now is a great time to tell all your family and friends about your wonderful news if you have not done so already. You can create neat and creative baby announcements and surprise everyone in a fun way.

Although the initial pregnancy symptoms will wear off at this stage, there are some new ones that you need to monitor consistently.

For instance, many women complain about heartburn, backaches, nasal congestion, and leg cramps. You will also gain weight much faster with intense
cravings that increase your appetite since you are now eating for two.

This is the exciting time when you should feel the baby move for the first time, at around 20 weeks. If it’s not your first pregnancy you may feel your babe wiggling around as early as 16 weeks! Many women do.

Your baby can also recognize and hear your voice, so you can enjoy singing or talking to them as a bonding experience.

Your medical visits during the third to sixth month will involve screening tests to unearth any genetic issues that may put you and your baby at risk.

At weeks 18 and 22, you will also need to undergo an anatomy ultrasound that will scan and measure your baby’s lungs, brain, heart, and kidneys. During these scans, your doctor can find out the sex of the baby if you want to know.

At weeks 26 and 28, you will also be checked for gestational diabetes, especially if you have a family history of developing diabetes. The doctor will make you ingest a drink packed with glucose before drawing blood to see how you react to sugar during this stage of pregnancy.

6-9 Month Pregnancy Symptoms 

If you have made it to week 28, congratulations! That’s absolutely wonderful.

This is where you will start having more medical checkups because your baby will be due soon. Your doctor will frequently call you in to test your urine for protein, check your blood pressure, and monitor fetal heart rate. Your fundal height will also be measured, which is the length of your uterus.

If you experience a lot of swelling in your hands and legs, this is where your doctor will address the issue in more detail.

Other tests include determining your baby’s position and cervix checks to ensure that your body is fully preparing for childbirth at a steady pace.

 

pregnancy symptoms from start to finish

Around weeks 36 and 37, your gynecologist should be screening you for Group B Streptococcus (GBS) by taking a quick swab from the vaginal area. This is essential because the bacteria can be harmful to newborns during delivery.

If your GBS test is positive, you will need to get antibiotics during your pregnancy to avoid passing it on to your child.

Your doc will also likely restrict your travel during this trimester because your body is in the most delicate state.

Most cruise ships and airlines will refuse to take passengers that are over 28 weeks pregnant, so avoid booking any holidays. If you need to go anywhere for an emergency, you will need permission from your doctor.

Women have had trouble with flying so it’s important that you listen to your doctor. The pressure and changes associated with flying have sent some women into preterm labor. This is why you may be refused.

If you haven’t taken a pregnancy and labor course at this point this is the time to get it done. You can do it online in just a few hours. Here’s a course created by a labor and delivery nurse and educator that we like to recommend. It’s quick and simple and it will teach you everything you need to know.

The Due Date

 

When you are at weeks 37-42, you should physically and emotionally prepare to welcome a new family member into the world.

The count down till your due date is a fun and exciting time!

Typically, the due date is an estimated date of delivery that is counted from the first day the last time you had your period, even though conception only takes place about two weeks after this date.

However, note that the due date is most effective for those who have regular periods. If you have had a history of irregular menstruation cycles
throughout your life, your delivery date will not be the most accurate prediction.

You’ll likely get a surge of energy right before your baby comes and go into nesting mode. This is a good time to fully prepare, make sure you have everything you need ( check this post ) and pack your hospital bag if you haven’t already.

It’s also a good idea to prepare and freeze some meals ahead of time and clean up your house as much as possible.

 

how to have a confident childbirth

Your body will feel pretty uncomfortable at this point and it may be REALLY hard to sleep but you’re almost there so hang in there!

If you don’t go into labor on or near your due date your doc may want to induce you to get things going, especially if your baby is getting really big.

In The End…..

Pregnancy is a daunting experience, no matter how prepared you are. It is always best to monitor your pregnancy symptoms month to month and never miss a doctor’s appointment so that you and your babe get the best care possible.

Prenatal care is critical before the big day, so you should get all the proper tests on time and keep your doctor’s number on speed dial to give your baby the best first birthday.

We wish you all the luck in the world and congrats on your pregnancy!!

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pregnancy symptoms for 9 months

Scared Of Childbirth? Here’s How To Have A Confident Birth

Scared Of Childbirth? Here’s How To Have A Confident Birth

Having a confident birth begins your parenting journey on the right page.  You know the kind of day where you start out stubbing your toe and then everything seems to be messed up?  That’s NOT how you want to start parenthood.

  Confidence is key, and it is possible without going to medical school!

Hi, I’m Hilary.  I’m the curly head behind the website Pulling Curls, the nurse behind The Pregnancy Nurse, and the creator of The Online Prenatal Class for Couples.

I’ve been a nurse since 1997 and I have 20 years of labor and delivery nurse experience.  I am an expert at helping families have a confident collaborative hospital delivery.  I’m excited to give you some ideas to use at your own birth.

Scared Of Childbirth? Here’s How To Have A Confident Birth

how to have a confident childbirth

 

Getting Your Confident Birth

 

Benefits of a Confident Delivery

Everyone likes to feel at ease.  I like to compare it to driving somewhere.  When I moved to a new town I had to give myself often double the amount of time to get to my destination. 

However, with time I got more confident and I’m grateful that I don’t have that pit in my stomach finding the places I need to go.

Labor is very similar, except you don’t get to choose your timeline. 

If you spend the majority of your time in labor wondering where you’re going, what will be next, and if you’re making the right choices — you won’t be able to relax and enjoy the anticipation of meeting your new little person.

The stress you feel at delivery can transfer to that sweet babe who’s sharing the same blood system as you and you don’t want that.   Staying calm will benefit both of you.

ALSO, one of the things I have heard most from moms who felt confident is that they just feel better about how they handled things.

  Now, I’ll be the first to tell you that I have zero judgment for how people handle labor as someone who has spent so long at their bedside.  That being said, sometimes people carry some feelings about how they handled labor or the delivery that weighs on them.  There is absolutely NO need for that — but it’s also something that families appreciate when they have a confident delivery.

 

Elements of a Confident Delivery

 

Know what to expect

I don’t want you to think that I can teach you exactly how labor will go.  The most predictable thing about labor is how unpredictable it will be. 

It involves both you, your baby, and our good friend mother nature — so you’re navigating through uncertain territory.  

That being said, I think you can have a pretty good idea of what’s next, and what type of bumps to expect coming up ahead. 

  That type of thing takes experience though — seeing lots of different births with people with different backgrounds and medication situations — so don’t take your friend’s word for what will happen, because each one can be very different.

 

Know how to get the information you need

 

Talking to your healthcare team can sometimes be more difficult than you’d prefer.  Learning the words and the information you can get from them is such a skill. 

Remember, they are setting their own boundaries and they also can’t tell the future — so you have to be thoughtful about what they can tell you.

 

Make good choices

 

Once you have a basic idea of what to expect, and how to get information, now you need to know how to make the important choices that matter to you most. 

How do you combine all that knowledge to make yourself feel as comfortable and confident as possible during the birth of your babe? 

 

how to have a confident childbirth

 

How to Get Your Confident Delivery

 

I think your confident delivery starts with three things:

Experience

You can’t get a confident delivery talking to friends about their birth experiences.  That’s a one-person experience that doesn’t translate to yours.  Looking to more broad information can be helpful in this instance.

Big Picture 

What are the things you REALLY need to be concerned about?  There is a lot to take in during a hospital birth — what do you need to pay attention to?

What is your end goal?

Is your end goal a vaginal delivery without an epidural, or is it a safe mom and baby?

Back to the driving analogy, yes — often our goal is to get to a place on time, but I think we’ve all been caught up in traffic or a weather pattern and realized that our main goal was safety and no one getting hurt.  Being mindful of an attainable end goal is so important (and remembering that end goal may shift during the process).

 

How I Can Help You Have a Confident Delivery

 

While most confidence comes from experience, birth makes that tricky.  The second best thing is education, and walking hand in hand with someone who knows their stuff.

I love educating new moms about their upcoming birth.

I love teaching and have created an engaging prenatal course that allows you and your partner to get ready on your own timeline.

I love what Samantha had to say: 

“Hilary presented real information with a blend of humor that encourages memory and a feeling of realness many online classes fail to achieve.”

I have seen it, time and time again how much happier couples are when they have taken a prenatal class before delivery.  They’re less stressed, they know the moments to savor and feel more bonded by the experience.

I hope you’ll find a class that works for you.  There are a good number of prenatal classes available online, and if you don’t think mine is a good fit for you, there are certainly lots of options out there (honestly, I just don’t think they have the winning combination of my experience and engaging teaching).

If you’re still not sure, I have a free class that I offer that tells more about third-trimester testing, what to expect at delivery and even some information on postpartum care.  It’s a great test drive to see if I can get you the confident delivery you desire. 

It truly is possible!

Hilary Erickson has 20 years of experience in a labor and delivery unit. She has been a nurse since 1997 and she has been writing about pregnancy and childbirth since 2005. You can have a look at Hilary’s blog over at Pulling Curls right here. 

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how to have a confident childbirth

10 Most Beautiful Breastfeeding Pictures That Will Give You The Feels For 2021

10 Most Beautiful Breastfeeding Pictures That Will Give You The Feels For 2021

Breastfeeding is such a lovely thing and it shouldn’t be so controversial. It’s a shame that some people are uncomfortable with it or that our society sexualizes it.

People really do need to get a grip these days….

Education is key and people need to understand that it is the most natural thing in the world.

That’s why we wanted to create this list of the Most Beautiful Breastfeeding Pictures of 2021.

I really love doing posts like this because I feel like it’s a way to truly honor mamas and motherhood. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do.

So scroll down and behold the glory of a mother nourishing and nurturing her child in the purest form.

Not all of these pics are from 2021… however, they’re our favorite right now so we consider them some of the best!

10 Most Beautiful Breastfeeding Pictures Of 2021

This first photo is from Tiff Delancy over on Instagram. She is a natural beauty who is wise and genuine. I really love this photo of her just being a sweet mama doing what comes naturally to her and her babe.

 

This is a lovely photo of Sherie Heather from Australia and her little boy, Reef. She says after a very long day & night this baby boy is content. You can see the original post over on Instagram right here. 

There’s nothing like a sleeping babe at your breast. It is so comforting for both mama and child.

Must Read: Care Package For Breastfeeding Moms. 

 

 

**Want Freebies For You And Your Baby? Get $330 Worth Of Gear! I have partnered with many companies to give you the best baby freebies online including Nursing Pillow, Pregnancy Pillows, Nursing Covers, Baby Leggings, Baby Clothes and so much more. You can find out how to get your freebies in this post right here.

In this photo, loulou Alexandera is showing motherhood in its rawest form. She is clearly tired, her breasts are leaking and she is resting while nurturing her little one. It’s beautiful in every way and it shows the realness of motherhood.

 

This image of Angela Burzo went viral a few years back and I still remember when it popped up on my Instagram feed. I was also breastfeeding and I could totally relate to how she was feeling. She was struggling and so was I.

Breastfeeding is so very beautiful but it is certainly not always easy and that’s what her photo was about. You should hop over to Instagram ( with the link above ) and check it out.

milkology

 

In the photo below Morgan Robinson is nursing her pretty little girl. They are both relaxed and lovely.

 

We adore this picture of laural liina tandem breastfeeding her toddler and new babe. I also tandem breastfed my toddler and newborn and I can confirm that it’s not easy.

But it was also very special to me and my babies. They had a special bond sharing the breasts with each other and mama.

If you ever get a chance to tandem breastfeed you should do it! It’s a beautiful and unique experience to nurture two babes at once!

 

Here is a photo by/of MONET NICOLE breastfeeding a brand new baby. This photo is beautiful and it’s in those first whirlwind days after a baby is born.

 

This photo from LINDEE HEFFNER  photos is just so sweet! Pictured here is a happy baby girl making loving eye contact with your mama. Baby’s thrive on eye contact, it helps them feel loved and it helps their brains develop and grow.

Lindee Hefner does an array of beautiful and intimate photography. You can see her lovely work here on Instagram.

 

Here is one of my favorite portraits of a beautiful mama breastfeeding her curious little cherub. All that skin and warm-looking sunshine from the window make a beautiful photo of mother and child. You can see the photo here From Pop Sugar.

 

This picture is one of our favorites. It’s a portrait of a quirky mama nursing her toddler while preparing to make a steaming cup of joe. Tops are clearly optional. We absolutely love it.

The photo is of Lauren Archer_ Doula And Lactation Specialist. 

You can learn more about her services and see her account by clicking on the link.

 

All of these beautiful women represent motherhood in all its glory and it’s something we should celebrate.

There are few things more natural and beautiful in this world than a mama taking care of her baby.

Below are few more great places to see more lovely photos of mamas being mamas.

Normalize Breastfeeding ( Instagram Tag Feed ) 

Breastfeeding Is Normal

The Breastfeeding Queen 

And go ahead and become a member of our pregnancy, breastfeeding, and mama group on Facebook.

It’s growing every day and we’d love to have you!!

These mamas made it into our list of the most beautiful breastfeeding photos of 2021. If you agree and want to spread breastfeeding awareness like we do then feel free to share this post on Pinterest or your favorite social media platform!

 

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breastfeeding photos

breastfeeding photos

 

How To Increase Milk Supply In One Day

How To Increase Milk Supply In One Day

Milk Supply can drop for a lot of reasons including stress, lack of sleep, dehydration, and a long list of other things as well.

Your period may suddenly start back or you may encounter something that is absolutely overwhelming and then suddenly your milk dwindles into a dribble.

But the beautiful thing about breastmilk is that you can boost it as quickly as you lose it.

Your body will respond to your efforts to build up your supply fast.

So don’t freak out if you notice a drop in your milk, just take a deep breath mama, and follow the tips below. You’ll be back up in no time.

**Want Freebies For You And Your Baby? Get $330 Worth Of Gear! I have partnered with many companies to give you the best baby freebies online including Nursing Pillow, Pregnancy Pillows, Nursing Covers, Baby Leggings, Baby Clothes and so much more. You can find out how to get your freebies in this post right here.

By the way, this post contains affiliate links at no extra cost to you. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. 

How To Increase Milk Supply In One Day

increase your milk supply overnight

Just a quick note: If you try these tips and your milk supply continues to go down you should contact your Healthcare Provider. There are several drugs that can be prescribed that will quickly and effectively boost your supply.

 

First, let’s look at the quick things you can do and then move on to more long term solutions as we go. 

 

Take A Nursing Vacation

 

Take a few days off and relax with your baby. Just sit in bed and breastfeed skin to skin.

This is an extremely effective way to boost your milk supply as quickly as possible.

It will help you defuse and de-stress too and that will also have a tremendous impact on your milk production as well.

Must Read: Care Package For Breastfeeding Moms. 

 

Add In More Feeding Time

 

This kind of goes along with the nursing vacation. Spend more time with your baby at the breast for extended periods of time.

Let your little one fall asleep while nursing. It’s such a sweet feeling to have them up against you nibbling along in their sleep.

 

Feed More At Night

 

It’s tough to do more feedings at night, but it can really help boost your supply. The idea is to not go more than four hours or so without feeding.

Your prolactin peaks in the middle of the night till late morning and feeding during this time really helps get your supply moving strong.

So even though it’s hard as heck, get up and nurse awhile.

milkology

 

Try Different Breastfeeding Positons

 

Changing breastfeeding positions will allow your baby to stimulate different parts of your breasts.

The milk ducts in that area will become activated and full and will start to make more milk overall.

This is a great way to get supply up quickly!

 

 

Use A Special Protein Powder

 

Using a protein powder to boost your milk is smart.

But did you know that lots of protein powders are contaminated with heavy metals and other toxins?

When picking a protein to increase milk you need to be mindful of things like this. That’s why we always recommend Milk Dust Protein Powder. 

It’s plant-based, clean, nutrient-dense and it is made especially for breastfeeding mamas like you.

You can try Milk Dust here. 

 

Avoid Pacifiers 

 

When your babe has a need to suckle just take it easy and give him\her the breast instead.

The more stimulation you give your breasts the more milk they’ll make.

You can resume using a pacifier if needed once your milk is fully restored.

 

Pump More

 

Pumping in between feedings with a good strong pump will help your body understand that you need more milk production right away.

Here’s a really good pump by Medela.

 

Use Breast Massage

 

Every breastfeeding mama should have a heated massager.

Not only can it help improve your milk supply but it can help when you have those dreaded clogged milk ducts. That happens to all of us at some point.

Massage can mean more milk in less time. Heat and vibration improve milk flow, which allows for a faster letdown, and improved output to help get things going. 

I always recommend this breast massager to breastfeeding mamas.

 

 

Stay Very Well Hydrated

 

You absolutely need to be well hydrated in order to make a hardier, plentiful milk supply.

Your body can’t make good milk when you’re running low on fluids yourself.

Not only that you will feel more tired and stressed when you let yourself get dehydrated, and it’s easy to do while breastfeeding.

I mean your babe is literally sucking away fluids.

So make this a top priority! You should drink lots of high-quality water and there are even hydration supplements just for breastfeeding.

I like this supplement right here. It will help keep you floating above water.

 

Do A Power Pumping Routine

 

Power pumping is a method of pumping on a schedule that mimics cluster breastfeeding to help produce more milk.

Check out this post from Exclusive Pumping.com to learn more about this super helpful way of increasing your milk supply quickly.

 

increase your milk supply overnight

 

 

Eat Foods That Will Boost Lactation

 

There are a lot of great foods that will boost your milk supply quickly.

They are called galactagogues (foods that may increase your milk production). Some popular ones include:

  • green/unripe papaya
  • pumpkin
  • protein-rich foods (e.g., chicken, eggs, tofu, and seafood)
  • fenugreek
  • oats
  • sesame seeds
  • brewer’s yeast
  • fennel
  • garlic
  • nuts

Oats and protein are especially helpful.

 

Take Your Vitamins

 

While you’re breastfeeding you should continue to take your prenatal vitamins.

This will help you replenish your depleted vitamin and mineral stores.

Ritual has an amazing prenatal supplement and I highly recommend it.

It is a purely formed vitamin created by women for women with everything you need.

The benefits of the Ritual Prenatal while pregnant are:

  • Neural Tube Support
  • Folate and Choline to support neural tube development.
  • Brain Health
  • Omega-3 DHA, Choline, and Folate for supporting fetal brain development.
  • Blood-Building
  • Bone Support
  • Calcium-helper nutrients D3, K2, Magnesium, and Boron help maintain bone health.

 

These nutrients will continue to help your baby via the breast in her early months so it’s an important step in creating the most nutritious full-bodied breast milk.

 

In the end….

 

Your breasts are amazing.

Even when you have a drop in milk supply they will respond to stimulation to quickly bring that supply back up.

They are meant to feed your baby and if you give them cues that you need more asap they will work that much harder and take care of business.

It’s always best to watch your supply for dips but if you find that it has suddenly decreased, using the tips above will likely help you produce more milk overnight and even more within the week.

Good Luck to you Mama!!

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