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What Comfort Measures Will Help Me Cope with the Pain of Labour?

by Guest
Posted August 25 2010 03:31pm
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We all react to pain a little differently and, because we are not the same, the methods to relieve pain may or may not work for each of us.  Think of some of the actions you use when you have pain, such as a sore muscle, toothache or headache. Some of these may help you or your partner cope with labour.

Pain relief methods may include changing the space we are in, such as dimming the lights, making the space warmer or cooler, or shutting out any noise. Using our senses such as playing music, day dreaming, or using smells or scents, taking a warm bath or shower, massage, or putting hot or cold packs on an area may also help. Some might find distraction such as reading, meditating, watching a movie or T.V. show, going for a walk or focussing on an object or our breathing helpful.  Even changing our position can help ease pain.  For example, leaning against a wall or against an exercise ball may help moms who are having pain in their lower back during labour.  

Using a range of these pain relief actions may help you cope with your labour.

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Hearing Tests For Baby After Birth

by Guest
Posted August 25 2010 04:27pm
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Each year in Ontario, approximately 4 in 1000 babies are born deaf or hard of hearing. Hearing difficulties have a huge impact on your baby’s development, so catching and treating the problem early can help your baby get the best start in life.

Before newborns leave the hospital, their hearing is checked using a machine called a Distortion Product Otoacoustic Emission (DPOAE). A small earphone is place over your baby’s ear and soft sounds are played. Technicians monitor the ear’s response to these sounds. The test takes just a few minutes and will not hurt your baby.

Your baby will be given a pass or a refer result. A refer result will require your baby to have a second hearing test, using a different machine. This test is often done before you take your baby home.

Even if your baby receives a pass, watch for signs of hearing loss as your baby grows. Signs you should look for in your baby include:

  • No response to noises
  • No reaction to your voice
  • No cooing or babbling
  • Unintelligible speech

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Supporting Mom in Labour - Guidelines to Follow

by Guest
Posted August 25 2010 03:35pm
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Strategies to help support a mom-to-be during labour.

What can you as a father, partner or companion do to help during labour? 

Just be there. Just your physical presence at some points during the labour may be all that a labouring woman needs. She may not want to be massaged or have her hand held. All she may need is your reassuring presence.

Get physical. Physical support is key in labour. You can try various strategies to help mom get as comfortable as she can be. These strategies may include: walking, helping her find a comfortable position, giving her a massage, using hot or cold compresses, or reminding her to move around, giving her food and drink (if allowed), helping her bathe or shower, helping her through contractions or distracting her with books or music. Your most important physical role is to stay calm, watch her non-verbal cues and listen to what she says.

Show your soft side. Emotional support is very important to women in labour. You’ll be providing this by giving her verbal encouragement or support, maintaining eye contact and giving her information about what’s happening.

Be an advocate.
If mom is too tired or in too much pain to make decisions, have a copy of your birth plan, and use the following questions to help you make an informed decision

  • Why is this test, screen, procedure or treatment being done?
  • How will this test, screen, procedure or treatment be done?
  • When will this test, screen, procedure or treatment be done?
  • What are the risks to baby if we have this test, screen, procedure or treatment?
  • What are the risks to baby if we have this test, screen, procedure or treatment?
  • Are there any alternatives?
  • What might happen is we don’t do this test, screen, procedure or treatment now?

Worried that you won’t be heard? Introduce yourself to the medical staff right away (but wait until contractions have passed before talking to them). You may have to do this several times if you are labouring in hospital, as another staff member will cover for meal breaks or when the staff who have been with you leave at the end of their shift.

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What Happens To My Baby After Birth?

by Guest
Posted August 25 2010 04:27pm
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You've waited patiently – and some days, impatiently – all these months to see the sweet face of your baby. Then, only a few moments after the birth, the nurse or staff want to whisk your baby away for several assessments.  These tests must be done, but only to ensure that your baby is in good health.  Some of these exams, such as the APGAR, can be done with baby laying on your chest or abdomen skin-to-skin. Other tests can be delay until after the first hour of birth to allow time for you and your baby to bond. These assessments, performed on all newborns, also help keep new babies healthy as they adjust to life outside the uterus.

The following procedures will be performed on your baby:

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