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Your Baby's Sleep Patterns

by Guest
Posted August 5 2010 05:18pm
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Babies sleep patterns are unpredictable, but here are some guidelines that might help.

Between birth and 3 months: Your baby will probably sleep between 14 and 18 hours per day. As well, by about 6 weeks, most babies will sleep one long period of about 5-6 hours. While you’d probably prefer something that’s similar to your old schedule, like midnight to 6 a.m., your baby will probably prefer something more like 7 p.m. to 1 a.m.

Between 3 and 6 months: Your baby’s sleep needs will shrink to 14-16 hours and then to 12 to 14 hours somewhere between 6 months and 2 years of age.

Remember, when it comes to babyies and sleep, “normal” is hard to define. Even the experts sometimes disagree on what parents should expect. As long as your baby is fed and comfortable, don’t worry if they’re below average on the sleep scale.

It might help you to keep a sleep activity log for a 7 day stretch. It may show that your baby does have a clear sleep-wake pattern, which will help you to figure out with to be available for your baby’s ‘best times.” These logs can also be helpful to your health care provider, if you find your baby’s sleep patterns are a problem.

How much did your baby sleep for the first few months? Share your experience and how you cope with other parents by leaving a comment below!
 

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Bleeding After Birth

by Guest
Posted August 5 2010 05:50pm
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It’s normal for a new mom to have vaginal bleeding called lochia. It can last for several days immediately following the birth. It’s also common for new moms to experience pain in several areas of their bodies. Pain is common with an episiotomy, tears or an incision. Another familiar effect is mild muscle aches related to the birthing positions. If you had a vaginal birth, you may have bruising or tears in your perineum that required stitches. This area will be sore, especially at first. If you’re breastfeeding, you may also have sore nipples because it’s so new.

These and many other symptoms are normal following childbirth. What’s important is—any bleeding and pain should be decreasing each day, not getting worse.

You should have a heavy to moderate flow on days one to three after your baby is born. Flow should decrease some each day. You may notice a slight increase after breastfeeding or physical activity. This is normal.

The normal pattern of bleeding should show bright red to dark red blood on days 1 to 3 after your baby is born. After this, blood should change to pink and then a yellowish white. Some women still have some yellowish-white flow at six weeks postpartum; others have none by day 10.

If you do pass any blood clots, they should be smaller than a loonie in size.

Any odour you notice should be earthy-smelling, like during your period. There should be no foul odour.

Any noteworthy change from these normal patterns should be reported to your healthcare provider, as it may signal infection or some other problem that requires treatment.

If you pass any clot that is the size of a loonie or larger and/or you soak a sanitary pad in an hour or less, you need to go to the nearest hospital emergency department. This could be a postpartum hemorrhage that needs medical attention right away. This is also true for bleeding that returns to a heavy flow and/or to bright red after it has changed to a pink or white, lighter flow.

 

 

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Pain After Birth

by Guest
Posted August 5 2010 05:51pm
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You may or may not have pain after a vaginal birth. Bruising in and around the vagina can be uncomfortable. A vaginal tear, with or without stitches, can be painful. An episiotomy is usually painful after birth. However, any pain in your vagina that is not improving, or is getting worse may be a sign of infection or another problem. You need to have this problem treated by your healthcare provider.

Abdominal cramping is experienced by women when the uterus continues to contract after the birth of the baby. These contractions help to seal the blood vessels from the area where the placenta came off. These contractions also help the uterus begin its process of healing and returning to its pre-pregnant state. Women who are breastfeeding may feel the after pains more after the baby breastfeeds.

Urinating after a vaginal birth may feel a little uncomfortable at first. However, pain or burning when you pee usually means that you have an infection. It is very important to tell your healthcare provider about this—so you can get the necessary prescription for treatment.

It is not unusual for new mothers to have some soreness in their lower legs, especially if they had some swelling in their legs and feet following the birth. It is important to watch for pain, tenderness,redness and/or a lump in your leg. This could be a blood clot; in which case, you would need to see your healthcare provider right away for advice and treatment.

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Breast Discomfort After Birth

by Maxine
Posted August 5 2010 05:52pm
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For women who are breastfeeding:

Breastfeeding women may have all-over breast discomfort when their breasts begin to fill with milk, usually between 3 to 5 days after birth. This is usually relieved with breastfeeding. Wearing a good support bra without underwires or a nursing bra will help as well. Sometimes, though, your breasts can become too full of milk or engorged, if the period between feedings is too long or your baby is not drinking enough during feedings. This can be quite painful and if your breasts remain engorged, you may develop an infection of the breasts called mastitis.

Another source of pain for breastfeeding women is a blocked milk duct. This will appear as a tender lump in your breast and, if it is not unblocked, an infection may develop in the milk duct.

Signs of these infections include flu-like symptoms such as fever and/or chills, muscle aches and generally feeling unwell. You should contact your healthcare provider right away, as you will have to treat the infection.

For women who are not breastfeeding:
Women who are not breastfeeding may experience engorged breasts, leaking of breast milk and breast pain. These symptoms may appear between 3-5 days after your baby is born; some women may have breast pain for up to 14 days. Wearing a good support bra without underwires or a good sports bra continuously for the first 72 hours will help. Ice packs that are put on the breast for 15 minutes and left off for 45 minutes may also ease the discomfort. Cool cabbage leaves that are placed around the breast and inside the bra will help with engorged breasts. Talk to your doctor about the use of oral pain medications to ease the breast pain. 

Medications to suppress the milk production are no longer recommended due to their side effects.

Nipple Pain
A common complaint of breastfeeding women is sore nipples. This can happen even with all kinds of breastfeeding help and support. The pain is most pronounced when your baby latches on but should subside a few moments into the feeding. This tenderness usually disappears within the first couple of weeks.

If nipple pain or burning is present all during the feeding, and releasing your baby and re-latching does not improve or eliminate the discomfort, you may have a yeast infection. It is important to see your baby’s doctor, as you will both need medication for treatment. You do not have to stop breastfeeding.

Your nipples should never be cracked and/or bleeding. If they are, you need to consult with a breastfeeding specialist, such as a Lactation Consultant or Public Health Nurse, either at a breastfeeding clinic or at home. They will be able to help you with your baby’s latch and positioning, which will prevent further nipple cracking.

 


If you're pregnant or thinking about having a baby, check out www.welcometoparenting.com. These interactive, online prenatal and parenting classes will provide information on pregnancy, labour and delivery, your relationship and a community of expectant and new parents just like you! Watch the overview video!

 

 

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