Most Recent Posts

Your due date, the calulated day when the baby is due, is the most important information you should know. Not because the baby will be born exactly on that day, only 5% of all babies are born on their due date, and 80% are born within 2 weeks before and after the due date. Your due date is important because everything being...

Vaccination During Pregnancy

Vaccines are given to pregnant women to protect the mother and the baby against serious infectious diseases. When you get vaccinated, you are protecting yourself. And you are also sharing some early protection with the baby too. Both the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the American Congress of Obstetrics and Gynecology (...
Preeclampsia is one of the most deadly medical problems affecting pregnant women. Preeclampsia complicates up to 10% of pregnancies worldwide and contributes to both maternal and infant morbidity and mortality as well as accounting for about 1 in 7 preterm births in the United States. Below are the most recent recommendations...
Toddler Communication Skills: 2 to 4 years Language development explodes from between the ages of two and four, as their vocabulary, understanding and communication skills flourish. These skills are an essential foundation for how they will interacting with others and they significantly impact cognitive, social and emotional...
Vision and Fine Motor Skills Development 2 years - 4 years This is a fun age for children and parents alike. Rapidly advancing cognitive and fine motor skills allow your child to engage in a wide variety of activities and games. Fine motor skills (small muscles in the hands, fingers and thumbs), are crucial for play, writing,...
Toddler Milestones: Gross Motor Skills 2 - 4 years By the age of 2 your child will be very mobile and getting into all sorts of mischief. As she transitions between toddler and preschooler she will refine her skills, and develop new more advanced ones, such as skipping and hopping. As with other areas of development there is a...
Welcome to Toddlerhood: Social and Emotional Development 12 - 24 months Your toddler’s social and emotional development will form the foundation of how she will  develop relationships, express emotions and cope with change and adversity in later life. In her second year of life her awareness of herself and the outside world...
Welcome to Toddlerhood: Cognitive Development 12 - 24 months As your child approaches her first birthday, her cognitive skills are still very basic. In the second year of life brain development is rapid, as she begins to interact more with the outside world. As she develops through childhood and into adulthood her cognitive...
Welcome to Toddlerhood: Communication 12 - 24 months It’s a wonderful feeling when your baby begins to communicate with you. The first time they say “mamma” or “dada” is cause for much celebration. The skills your baby learns in the first two years of life lay an important foundation for a lifetime of communication and...
Welcome to Toddlerhood: Gross Motor Skill Development 12 - 24 months By her first birthday your child will have already reached many milestones on the way to walking: rolling, sitting, crawling, creeping, standing and maybe even cruising around the furniture or walking holding on with one hand. Her muscles have grown and become...
Welcome to Toddlerhood: Vision and Fine Motor Skills Development 12 - 24 months Have you ever cut or burnt your index finger or thumb, on your dominant hand, and had to wear a Band-Aid? If so you’ll know how important fine motor skills are for doing the simplest of tasks, from doing up a button, to using scissors, through to...
I don’t know about you but I remember my early school years fondly. Homework was minimal and we spent our evenings playing with friends, creating art or lego masterpieces and maybe taking part in one or two organized activities each week. Fast forward to 2016 and our kids are growing up in a very different time, where the...
Many of us worry about the effects of overindulging, over the Festive Season, and well we should! Eating large amounts of carbohydrate and fat rich food over a short period of time is a big shock to your system. But not wanting to be a party pooper I’d love to give you some good news: Drinking freshly squeezed orange juice with...
Oh the joys of being a woman:  periods, monthly mood swings, lumpy breasts, and for many, recurrent Urinary Tract Infections! UTI’s account for nearly one in four bacterial infections in women, over 50% of us will develop a UTI in our lifetime. It has long been said that cranberries are good for UTIs but new research suggests...
The rocky road of self neglect I hit rock bottom when my youngest was about two years old. Standing over the kitchen counter eating cold fish sticks and potato smiles, I thought to myself “I deserve better”. The early years of parenting were tough and I used my busy-ness as an excuse for self-neglect. I ate badly, slept...
I am often asked by my patients "How long should I wait after an early pregnancy loss or miscarriage before getting pregnant again?". These questions usually have several different components. One is, when does fertility begin after a miscarriage, and the other is when is is safe to get pregnant again after a miscarriage. ...
Postpartum

Cesarean Scar Defect (CSD)

A cesarean scar defect (CSD), is also known as a "deficient uterine scar" or "scar dehiscence" following a Cesarean delivery. A CSD involves the myometrial defect at the site of a previous Cesareandelivery scar.  The incidence of cesarean section scar defect reportedly rangesbetween 1 in 20 to 1 in 2 women with prior cesarean...
Below are some resources to find out more about chemicals and dubstances that may affect you, your fertility, or your pregnancy: NJ Department of Health NIOSH CDC Website  
Question: I have a perfect 6 month old daughter and we will start ttc next month. I will be 37 in August and would LOVE to have twins. I have been eating diet to increase chances for twins (as well as male) My questions are: 1. Many say to wait until as close to ovulation to conceive male so we were going to try that. However,...
Many women want their partner actively involved in their birth. For some women that means they want him to be their main source of physical and emotional comfort. For others, simply having him there to hold a hand and stroke their hair is enough. Whatever role a woman wants her partner to play, there are a few ways to encourage...
The best (and only) correct website to calculate your fertile days is babymed.com. Scientifically proven. Researchers analyzed more than 50 popular websites and smartphone apps that offer to predict a woman's "fertility window," or the days during a woman's menstrual cycle when she can become pregnant.They found that the...
Do not use Accutane when trying to get pregnant and during pregnancy! According to the Canadian Medical Association in response to a recent study that said Canadian women are not heeding pregnancy warnings about the use of isotretinoin, a potent but effective drug that treats severe acne. The drug, originally marketed under the...
A recent study from Canada finds an elevated risk for diabetes when a person has both depression and metabolic syndrome; the diabetes risk is higher when the two disorders are combined than when only one or the other disorder is present. A second study, from Europe, finds similar elevated risk for diabetes and other...
One of my pregnant patients recently asked me if she should keep her heart rate no higher than 140 beats per minute when exercising?  Answer:There is presently no scientific basis and no official recommendation to keep the heart rate during pregnancy below certain levels. Physical activity during pregnancy has benefits beyond...
The US Preventive Services Task Force issued an updated recommendation for screening all adults for depression. The last update, in 2009, did not recommend screening all adults over 18 but the 2016 update does. Depression in anyone 15 and older is one of the leading causes of disability in the US. Screening Recommended for...
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has published GUIDELINES AND A TRAVEL ADVISORY FOR PREGNANT WOMEN as well as TRAVEL HEALTH NOTICES concerning the Zika virus. Also read about COUNTRIES WITH THE ZIKA VIRUS. 1.All pregnant women who traveled to an affected country should see their doctor. 2.All pregnant women who traveled to...
This Swedish study suggests that  children of mothers with PCOS polycystic ovary sydrome have an increased risk of developing ASD autism spectrum disorder, regardless of sex.  [bmed_ad_r]The authors of this study a matched case–control study nested within the total population of Sweden (children aged 4–17 who were born in...
Nutrition

How To Eat Safe Food

There are always many opportunities to gather and share food, if it's during the holidays or in between. Whether you eat in someone's home, at work, or at a restaurant, it's important to get educated and be careful about what you eat. Food poisoning is a frequent occurrence and each year millions of people in the United States...
Question: I am 37-years-old and have not had a period for 2 years. What could it be? Dr.Amos answers: There are several reasons why a woman does not get her period (amenorrhea). The first reason is pregnancy, in which case the pregnancy test would be positive. Or breastfeeding. If there is no pregnancy, then other reasons...
Dear Honest Midwife, What’s the craziest thing you ever saw happen at a birth? Sincerely,Candyce Dear Candyce, One night when I was a student midwife I was monitoring a woman who was laboring in the tub. This was a client that I knew from prenatal care appointments. She had taken a Hypnobirthing class, and she wanted me to...
Dear Honest Midwife,My first birth was in a hospital and it was horrible. I had a long, painful labor, and they wouldn’t let me in the tub because they broke my water. I had pitocin, which hurt so bad I had to get an epidural. Then I couldn’t push hard enough with the epidural, so my son was pulled out with a vacuum. It was the...
When it comes to any momentous event in life, I am a diva and a perfectionist about what I wear.  If I don’t find that just right outfit for each occasion, I feel out of place, anxious, grumpy and downright sloppy. Allow me to illustrate with a few big life moments of my own. I chose the most gorgeous, springy, girlish dress...
Dear Honest Midwife, I have been a midwife for over seven years, doing home births. I have built up a good practice and really love working with women and babies. I am making decent money, enough that we are now finally making a comfortable living and have everything we need as a family. I should be happy, but I’m not. As a...
Dear Honest Midwife, I had a disappointing experience with my midwife recently. I planned a home birth for my first baby. I went into labor on my due date and 48 hours later had to transfer to the hospital. I was totally exhausted and I was still not fully dilated. I got an epidural and my midwife went home to get some sleep,...
Dear Honest Midwife,   I'm at 33 weeks with my first baby and planning a home birth. Lately I've been having serious swelling. My midwife checked my urine and says I'm spilling protein. She put me on a high protein diet and told me to take alfalfa tablets. The swelling hasn't gotten better and I've been following her directions...
Dear Honest Midwife,Thank you so much for willing to be honest and give up your entire livelihood and community to do so. I have struggled with the truth about home birth for years, and I realized it was like a religion to me. I knew all the "correct" answers to give to explain away problems with homebirthing. Within my small...
Dear Honest Midwife,  I'm trying to decide whether or not to hire a doula for my next birth. Do you think they really help? I have heard some people rave about doulas but have read some horror stories too! Any tips for how to pick the right doula? Or should I just skip it?  Thanks!Xandra  Dear Xandra, A good doula is a...
Dear Honest Midwife,I am using a midwife and she told me that for the gestational diabetes test I don’t have to drink that special soda, but I can instead eat a meal. She gave me a couple options of meals to eat. What are your thoughts on this? Thanks!Lindsay  Dear Lindsay, Before I became a midwife myself, I used one for my...
Welcome readers to Ask an Honest Midwife! I was a licensed midwife for six years and a Certified Professional Midwife for three years. Although I am now retired from the practice of midwifery, I am here to answer your questions about home birth, birth centers, natural birth, and anything else you ever wanted to ask a "crunchy...
Years ago my Grandfather was diagnosed with prostate cancer. I remember my whole family discussing and educating themselves on the options available and whether to do radiation, chemotherapy or surgery. Any of these three treatments would probably have taken care of the problem, but in the end they decided that surgery would be...
The answer is yes, maybe, and no. The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) is the group of medical and public health experts that develops the annual recommendations on who should be vaccinated with what and when. The committee is made up of experts in infectious disease and includes a consumer representative who...
Postpartum

My Postpartum, Part 2

I am finally in love with mothering. Finally. Finally. It's been 14 months since my daughter was born and it is only now that I can say I enjoy and embrace my role as a mother. Only now. But now I can honestly say I fall in love with motherhood a little more every day. I become more loving and grateful every day. I appreciate...
Postpartum

My Postpartum, Part 1

I stare down at her and I am filled with fury. Fury that she has wrecked my world. Despair, because I have to live in this hellish new reality. Resentful, that she needs me so much. Exhausted, because I am not sleeping well, even when she is. Anxious, because I worry about everything. Listless, because I don’t have the desire...
Every one of us knows that labor is no walk in the park. Let’s be real: it’s usually downright painful and despite what some people claim, there’s no such thing as orgasmic birth. However, the pain you experience in labor does not always mean you are suffering. Allow me to explain! A well known doula and childbirth educator,...
Yes, historians believe that George and Martha struggled with infertility – and suspect it was George’s issue. To review our history, George and Martha Washington were wed in 1759. Martha was a widow and had borne four children with her first husband, only two of whom survived past infancy. George adopted both children but,...
I don’t care if you had a natural birth. I don’t care if you had an epidural. I don’t care if you got induced in week 40 or if you went 10 days past your estimated due date. I don’t care if you pushed a baby out of your vagina or had one delivered through an incision in your abdomen. I don’t care if you breastfeed for one day...
In labor, continuous monitoring increases the risks of many interventions, including pitocin, epidurals, and cesarean birth, without improving birth outcomes for mother or baby. Asking a woman in labor to be still (and often in bed) so the monitor can do its job is not a benign request, since it can result in a longer labor and...
In any pregnancy, there is about a 3 per cent risk of delivering a baby with a birth defect (that's 3 out of every 100 babies born). Most of the causes of these birth defects are unknown – but medication exposures are known to cause very few. The vast majority of drugs and vaccines do NOT cause fetal harm. Pregnant women get...
There are many medical indications why a repeat c-section may be a safer option than a trial of labor after cesarean, such as a prior classical incision, prior uterine rupture or a history of three or more cesarean sections. However, there are also reasons why women may be told by their care providers that they are not “allowed...
These days there is a lot of awareness and information out there about postpartum depression and that’s great. But the name postpartum “depression” can be misleading because sometimes postpartum depression doesn’t manifest as typical feeling “down” depression. Sometimes it comes in other shapes and forms. So for anyone who has...

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