Staying Healthy During Pregnancy

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Please click on the links below for some great articles on staying healthy during pregnancy.

How to Stay Healthy While You Are Pregnant 

Planning Your Healthiest Pregnancy by Age

Stress During Pregnancy Affects Fetal Development

Extreme Morning Sickness

9 Tips to Prevent Flu During Pregnancy

Dental Care and Pregnancy Tips

Battling Pain During Pregnancy

Pregnancy Should Not Be an Excuse to Stop Exercising

Women Trying to Conceive or in First 3 Months of Pregnancy, Should Not Drink Alcohol; New Guidelines Recommend

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Why Birth Matters

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The importance of how we are born and how we birth our children is a key component in prenatal and perinatal psychology. These early experiences help shape us as humans. Having a gentle birth allows for the best start for mother and baby; but also for humanity. Programs such as the Mother-Friendly Childbirth Initiative – (Coalition for Improving Maternity Services), The World Health Organizations Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative – (WHO), and Baby Friendly USA – (Baby Friendly USA) have begun to implement the much needed preventions and evidence based measures to help mothers have healthier births. Preventing unnecessary medical or other  birth related trauma essential. How you were born and raised plays a large role in how we birth and raise our future children. It takes more than just awareness of the issue, it takes action and understanding to change policies and archaic methods that no longer benefit us as a society.

Here are a few videos from YouTube that touch on the importance of birth.

Midwives Know Birth Matters – YouTube Video

Birth Matters – A Song About a Very Important Event

Ina May Gaskin on Birth Matters: A Midwife’s Manifesta

You Might Need a Prenatal and Infant Psychology Specialist if…

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Early intervention is the best prevention.

  • Are you unsure whether you and your baby have bonded well or if something has gotten in the way of building a positive bond, such as a hospitalization for you or your baby, postpartum depression, adoption or foster care, extreme fussiness or severe parent stresses?
  • Does your baby have trouble taking in comfort by looking away, stiffening or arching away when held, or doesn’t calm down when comforted?
  • After 6 months of age, does your baby not show any stranger awareness or does not respond differently to parents and unfamiliar people?
  • Is your baby excessively clingy or anxious? Will he or she not move away from you even for a short distance to explore toys or interact with other children?
  • Are you having a hard time liking your baby, or if it seems as though most of your interactions are negative or upsetting?
  • Are you worried about your baby’s sleeping, feeding, toilet training, or other concerning behavior?
  • Do you feel that you overreact, yell, or hit your child, or feel extreme distress when your child shows certain typical or unusual behaviors?
  • Are you concerned about how your own experience of being birthed, raised, or parented might affect your own parenting?
  • Are you or your baby having trouble with breastfeeding or other feeding methods?

These are only a few examples of how prenatal and infant psychology could benefit you and your baby. If you are concerned about yourself or your baby, please contact contact me at InfantPsychology@gmail.com for more information.

“Attachment behavior is any form of behavior that results in a person attaining or maintaining proximity to some other clearly identified individual who is conceived as better able to cope with the world.”  – A Secure Base, John Bowlby

The Importance of Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology

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Growth and development are generally the only factors that individuals think about when it comes to the life of their unborn child. However, studying psychology provides a much clearer image of just how these developments are occurring. It is believed that consciousness, our personality, drives and ambitions, are all developed in the months between conception and birth. Taking a scientific approach, we are able to see that from conception we are remembering, feeling, and aware beings that have personalities and traits that will  continue to develop into adulthood. Women help shape the lives of their unborn children by events that happen to them while pregnant.  Her thoughts and feelings during pregnancy also play a major role. Communication between mother and child during these critical months is essential  How your child behaves cannot be predicted with absolutely certainty, however mothers that support the emotional and intellectual needs of their unborn, tend to have mentally healthy and happy children. A father’s role  is also essential to the health and wellbeing of the child. Bonding early will help parents have a deeper and more meaningful relationship with their children from the beginning.

Although this is only a small example of the importance of  Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology there are some great websites and resources below that can give you more information if you are interested.

Happy Holidays!

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Happy Holidays!

I’m looking forward to all the exciting new things that are to come in 2015. I would like to thank my guest bloggers and all my subscribers for a great year and for taking the time to read my blog.

I look forward to providing more great content in the new year!

Drew

3 Benefits of Aqua Aerobics During Pregnancy–Guest Post

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Guest Blogger, Kaitlin Gardner from An Apple Per Day, has written an excellent article on exercise and aqua aerobics during pregnancy!  Enjoy!

3 Benefits of Aqua Aerobics During Pregnancy

I learned a lot with my first pregnancy, which is precisely why I handled my second pregnancy a little differently: namely, I moved. In fact, I kept moving for the entire pregnancy and guess what happened? I was able to shed the pregnancy weight significantly faster after my second baby than after my first one. Why? I exercised throughout my entire second pregnancy. Now, I didn’t run marathons (although some have done this!), and I didn’t lift weights. I simply had fun—in the pool!

Don’t get the wrong idea: aqua aerobics is not just for water babies, or people who have enjoyed a lifetime affinity for the water. It’s easy enough that anyone can do it, and you don’t even need to know how to swim! Staying in the shallow end gives you plenty of choices for engaging exercises that challenge muscles as much or as little as you would like to. Check out the many ways to approach aqua aerobics here:

My Ultimate Guide to Aqua Aerobics

Water Aerobics and Water Fitness Exercises

Water Aerobics During Pregnancy

Let me back up a little. During my first pregnancy, I probably behaved like many first-time moms: I was careful. I also didn’t ask enough questions. If I had, I would have found out that exercising during pregnancy is not only possible, it’s encouraged! I know the title of this article is “3 Benefits of Aqua Aerobics During Pregnancy,” but there are so many more! Here are just a few, and then I’ll expand on a few of them.

Studies show that regular exercise during pregnancy has multitude of benefits, including:

Keeping weight under control
● Reducing the chances of gestational diabetes
● Reducing tension and stress
● Reducing an expectant mom’s blood pressure
● Improving mood
● Improving sleep
Weight Control

Let’s face it: At the end of the day, pregnant or not, you must burn calories to maintain a healthy weight. A 130-lb. person will burn about 470 calories per hour aqua jogging. Make your calories count and give the baby what it needs by making healthy choices: lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, plenty of lean protein (beans, chicken, and turkey) and complex carbohydrates such as brown rice and whole grains. Keep processed foods and sugar to an absolute minimum in order to give your body the best reward it can receive from aqua aerobics.

Reduced Tension/Stress

Aqua aerobics feels good. Whether it’s winter and you are easing yourself into a heated outdoor or indoor pool, or it’s summer, and the cool water is a welcome relief from the heat, aqua aerobics takes place in a soothing environment. With water’s natural buoyancy properties, you’ll feel the weight literally lifted away. And who wouldn’t like to feel “light as a feather” when she is pregnant?

Improved Sleep

Next to proper nutrition, or perhaps even more important when you are pregnant, is getting enough sleep. According to the Sleep Foundation, as little as 150 minutes per week of moderate to vigorous activity can provide a 65% increase in sleep quality. When you exercise during the day, and give yourself the whole-body workout that aqua aerobics provides, your muscles will have been challenged from head to toe—which means they will need sleep as much as you do.

Not only did I feel better during my second pregnancy, according to my friends and family, I looked better! More sleep at night helped me have a refreshed look in the morning. The outdoor activity kept my skin color glowing. My blood pressure remained normal and my weight gain stayed right within the range that my doctor wanted me to target.

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Kaitlin Gardner started An Apple Per Day to explore her passion for a green living lifestyle, and healthy family living. She and her husband have just moved to rural Pennsylvania, where they enjoy exploring the countryside and discovering interesting and out of the way places. She is also learning how to paint with watercolors.

Protect, Promote, and Support Breastfeeding

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This week August 1st-7th  is World Breastfeeding Week. Check out WorldBreastfeedingWeek.com for more information! Or check out the great links provided by WBW below!

WBW Poster

WBW Presentation

WBW Action Folder

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