We all know this image, right? June Cleaver from “Leave It To Beaver”. She always wore her Sunday best (even to mop the floor), wore her pearls daily, cooked dinner in heels and showcased a spotless house always. So, we should do the same, right? Being the perfect mom is expected….or is it?
There’s no virtue in pretending you can do it all — or breaking your neck trying to. It isn’t worth it. All that does is heighten your stress levels. In other cultures, women flock around a new mother to help ease the child-care burden. So create your own “village” of friends and relatives, along with your spouse, and take turns supporting each other to get chores done, tend to responsibilities and take a bit of downtime.
You also need to recognize your limitations and be willing to make some compromises. The laundry may sit unfolded an extra day or two. The kitchen counters may have to display yesterday mornings crumbs just a bit longer. You may not be able to do everything on your list, and that’s the trade-off in order to squeeze in some relaxation. You HAVE to take time for yourself. Walk the dog, curl up in your favorite chair and grab a book, watch your favorite sitcom or chat on the phone with a friend. It may not seem like a lot, but when you have your hands full juggling the demands of life and motherhood, those 20 minutes will feel like a godsend. Trust me!
Never wake a sleeping baby. I was so confused as to what to do when I brought my children home for the very first time. As a breastfeeding mom, going to long between feedings at night left me miserable and super uncomfortable. I decided to talk to my pediatrician directly about waking my little one up, even when he was snoozing soundly.
During the first few weeks, your pediatrician may recommend that you feed your baby every two to four hours—day and night—to ensure that he or she gains weight properly. Once your pediatrician feels that your newborn has gained enough, he or she will say it’s OK to wait until your baby wakes up for feedings. Again, check with your healthcare provider. Each and every baby is different, thus their needs are different. It’s best to consult with a doctor always.
Is baby teething?
I was always told to freeze teething rings for relief. A super cold object to chew on was best for a teething, unhappy infant. Or is it?
To ease the pain of teething, babies chew on teething rings. But, it is always best to chill the rings in the refrigerator, not the freezer, as direct contact with extreme cold can harm your baby.
So you’ve brought you precious new baby home. At every diaper change you are careful to fold his/her diaper down to avoid irritating their umbilical cord stump that is busy healing. Most friends, neighbors or mothers will tell you to swab the umbilical cord stump with alcohol at every diaper change. But is it really necessary?
Swabbing with alcohol may actually slow down the healing process. Today, doctors recommend keeping the stump clean and dry until it falls off. Allow it to heal on its own! If you notice any redness or signs of infection, talk with your healthcare professional as soon as possible.
Food allergies trigger more than reactions. They can also initiate misinformation and misconceptions that may discourage food allergy sufferers from seeking help for their children or inspire them to blame any ailment their child may have on food allergies.
Here are the most common food allergy myths:
Any negative reaction to a food is a food allergy.
- Adverse reactions to food can have many causes. If something does not “agree with your child,” it does not necessarily mean your youngster is allergic to it. Food allergy is a very specific reaction involving the immune system of the body, and it is important to distinguish food allergy from other food sensitivities. Whereas food allergies are rare, food sensitivities are more common.
Just a small taste can’t hurt.
- To your allergic child’s immune system, even a tiny amount of a problem food is enough to trigger an all-out attack. Children with severe allergies can have life-threatening reactions. For example, a child allergic to peanuts can have a severe reaction when a spatula is used to serve them a peanut-free cookie was previously used to make a peanut-containing cookie.
All food allergies in children resolve as they get older.
- As a child grows older, some may tolerate foods that previously caused allergic reactions. This is more likely to happen in the case of allergies to milk, eggs, and wheat, in which the symptoms may decrease by late childhood. It is not clear in all cases, however, if the improved symptoms are an indication that the allergy has disappeared or the child really wasn’t allergic in the first place. On the other hand, children rarely outgrow allergies to peanuts, tree nuts, fish and shellfish.
Some Children are allergic to food additives.
- Although some food additives– sulfites and tartrazine—have been shown to trigger asthma or hives in children, these reactions do not follow the same pathway observed with food.
If your child was not allergic to it before, they can’t be allergic to it now.
- The onset of a food allergy is brought on by a genetic susceptibility and exposure to the problem food. The more exposure to the problem food, the higher the risk of developing an allergy to it if you’re child is susceptible.
Children with food allergies are allergic to many foods.
- Most people with food allergies are allergic to fewer than 4 foods.
Has your little one ever woken up with a crusty, runny, bloodshot eye? Perhaps you’ve even experienced the same thing as a grown-up. It’s terrible and really miserable for the one who has contracted it.
But, there are myths that surround pink eye.
Thinking that pink eye, which is known in the medical world as conjunctivitis, can be spread only from someone else who has it is just one of the many myths about the condition. A virus can affect each person differently, causing conjunctivitis in one person and a respiratory infection in another. So what exactly is pink eye then?
Conjunctivitis is defined like this: The lining of the eyelid gets inflamed which can be caused by anything that inflames the tissues – irritants, like chemicals or dust, getting into the eye, allergies or a bacterial infection. In the case of irritants or allergies, the discharge from the eye is usually clear and watery and comes from both eyes. With a bacterial infection, which is the most common cause of conjunctivitis, a sticky substance is often present, yellow or green discharge pours from the eye, the area is often crusty and generally only one eye is affected.
In older children, pink eye is often caused by allergies, while younger children usually get it from a viral infection, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.
It’s best to check with your child’s pediatrician before diagnosing the problem. Whether it’s conjunctivits or allergies, your child’s doctor can advise you on how to help suppress the symptoms properly.
Myth: A nice clean cut is better than a jagged tear.
Reality: This isn’t true in all cases. Like any surgical procedure, episiotomy carries a number of risks: excessive blood loss and infection.
If an emergency arises, oftentimes an episiotomy is performed to deliver baby quickly. In any case, if you are hesitant about having an episiotomy, it is best to discuss with your doctor prior to delivery. Let them hear your wishes, your thoughts and listen thoroughly to theirs as well.
Some techniques for reducing perineal trauma that have been evaluated and found effective are: prenatal perineal massage, slow delivery of the head, supporting the perineum, keeping the head flexed, delivering the shoulders one at a time, and doing instrumental deliveries without episiotomy. (Others, such as perineal massage during labor or hot compresses have yet to be studied, but many women find them effective.)
What about you, mom? What were your experiences with delivery? Share with us!
Exercise must be stopped once you find out there is a bun in the oven. Say it isn’t so!
Reality: Exercise is good if it does not make you weary or overheated or extremely breathless. Generally, there must be sufficient oxygen to chat throughout the workout. Those not accustomed to heavy exercise can start brisk walking.
If you have been following a regular exercise program prior to your pregnancy, you should be able to maintain that program to some degree throughout your pregnancy. Exercise does not increase your risk for miscarriage.
If you are just starting an exercise program as a way of improving your health during your pregnancy, you should start very slowly and be careful not to over exert yourself.
Be sure to listen to your body. You know it best. Your body will naturally give you signals that it is time to reduce the level of exercise you are performing. Take frequent breaks, and drink plenty of fluids during exercise. It’s important to stay hydrated.
During the second and third trimesters, avoid exercise that involves lying flat on your back as this decreases blood flow to your womb. You should always include relaxation and stretching before and after your exercise program.
Before starting an exercise program, you should always talk with your healthcare provider first.
Baby is sleeping soundly, but it’s time for a feeding. We have always been told “Never wake a sleeping baby”. Well, that’s a myth mom!
While most babies will indicate when they need to eat, babies in the newborn period may not wake often enough on their own and should be awakened if necessary to eat at least eight times a day. Infrequent waking to feed can be caused by labor drugs, maternal medications, jaundice, trauma, pacifiers and/or shutdown behavior after delayed response to feeding cues.
If it’s feeding time for baby, then by all means scoop him or her up to nurse.
In addition, mothers who wish to take advantage of the natural infertility of lactational amenorrhea find that the return of menses is delayed longer when baby continues to suckle at night.
Research shows that when a mother breastfeeds early and often, an average of 9.9 times a day in the first two weeks, her milk production is greater, her infant gains more weight and she continues breastfeeding for a longer period. Milk production has been shown to be related to feeding frequency, and milk supply declines when feedings are infrequent or restricted.
If you don’t hold/nurse baby in the first few hours after delivery, you won’t bond adequately. That’s a myth, mom. If you had a rough delivery, perhaps a c-section, your new bundle of joy may be sent to the nursery while you are given time to rest. Maybe baby was having breathing problems at birth and needed to spend some time in the nursery. Being separated for a while is not detrimental to the mother/child bonding process.
According to parenting expert Debra Gilbert Rosenberg, this is one of the many myths that suggest that there is only one chance to do things right as a mother. “Although research has shown that the first few hours of a baby’s life are important, your relationship with your baby lasts a lifetime,” Rosenberg says.
The majority of women begin to feel the bond of motherhood before baby is even born. Experiencing the tiny kicks and seeing the profile of your child on a sonogram picture creates a bond…a love between a mother and her unborn child. You may not have even considered this, but it’s true. That bond begins when you learn you are pregnant.
A loving relationship over the child’s lifetime will more than make up for those missing few hours or even days or weeks of separation.