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A Totes Awesome Donation

Posted by: admin on Jul 27, 2016 in Uncategorized

NICU mom donates thermal totes for moms transporting breast milk.

Receive Greetings from the White House

Posted by: Mari Walker on Jul 27, 2016 in Babies, Family Fun, Milestones, Parenting, Pregnancy

You’ll probably receive a lot of congratulatory cards from your family and friends when your baby is born. But did you know you can get a welcome to the world card from the president and first lady for your baby?

4 Solutions to Common Car Seat Safety Problems

Posted by: admin on Jul 21, 2016 in Babies, Parenting, Pregnancy, Toddlers

1. Problem: You already have a car seat, but are unsure of the proper way for it to be installed.

Solution: Click here to view our list of local organizations that provide nationally certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians that can teach you how to properly install your child’s safety seat free of charge.

2. Problem: You are worried about accidentally leaving the baby in the backseat.

Solution: Woman’s is now offering free backseat reminder tags. While the hang tags are not intended to replace parents’ alertness, they serve as an extra reminder for parents to check for their child in the backseat. Visit womans.org/LookBACK to download and print a hang tag at home or find locations to pick up a printed one.

3. Problem: You need to purchase a car seat, but aren’t sure which one is safest.

Solution: You can compare different makes and models by clicking here and utilizing the easy-to-use tool to find a car seat according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s best practices recommendations.

4. Problem: You have recently been in a crash and do not know if you should keep the same car seat or not.

Solution: Many car seat manufacturers recommend you replace your car seat after any crash. Sometimes your insurance may allow you to include the cost of replacing your child’s car seat in your claim; however you should check with your insurance provider to be sure. REMEMBER: Some strain on a car seat after a crash may be visible, but some may not.

 

Boy, Am I Nervous!

Posted by: Mommy-Go-Round Guest Blogger on Jul 14, 2016 in Pregnancy

Almost as soon as I made the decision to opt for the elective 16-week gender ultrasound, the nerves set it. I’m no longer just pregnant. There is a he or a she in there. A baby with an identity.

Who is this baby going to be?

In five years, would I be bringing him to baseball practice or bringing her to ballet practice? In 25 years, would I be pinning a corsage on a tux or pinning a bridal veil? Even just thinking about how fast they grow up is enough to bring me to tears, and he or she isn’t even born yet.

The gender itself isn’t really making me nervous. It’s more about the uncertainty of not knowing. But whether it’s a boy or a girl, I’ll adapt and manage either way.

UPDATE! READ BELOW!

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I wrote this post the day before my gender ultrasound. It’s a girl!!!!!!

Beat the Heat, Check the Backseat

Posted by: admin on Jul 13, 2016 in Babies, Parenting, Toddlers

Looking back can save your child’s life. While the hang tags are not intended to replace parents’ alertness, they serve as an extra reminder for parents to check for their child in the backseat.

What Every Woman Contemplating Pregnancy Needs to Know About Zika

Posted by: Dr. John Storment on Jul 12, 2016 in Pregnancy

With summer fully upon us and outdoor activities increasing, Zika virus and its implications for pregnant women has been at the top of most news stories. The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the Zika virus an international public health emergency, only the fourth time it has declared this state, prompted by growing concern that it is causing microcephaly, the development of unusually small heads and brain damage in newborns. The medical concern and the media have created lots of questions for our clinic.

Officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have urged pregnant women against travel to about two dozen countries, mostly in the Caribbean and Latin America, where the outbreak is growing. In Brazil, more than 5,600 cases of microcephaly have been reported since October, and while it has not yet been proven Zika is causing any of these cases, the evidence is strengthening.

Zika virus is transmitted primarily to people through the bite of an infected mosquito from the Aedes genus, mainly Aedesaegypti in tropical regions. These are the same type of mosquitoes found in several parts of the United States, including Louisiana. With the mild winter we in the South have experienced this year, there is major concern that Zika could pose a big problem for our region this spring.

While cases of transmission have been documented primarily through mosquito bites, transmission of the virus has also been linked to blood transfusions, perinatally from mother to unborn child (the big scare), and sexually transmitted during intercourse.

People infected with the Zika virus typically have symptoms that are relatively mild. Only one of five people infected with the virus develop symptoms, which can include fever, rash, joint pain and red eyes. Those infected usually do not have to be hospitalized. The virus does not appear to linger in the body, and people who recover from the infection are immune.

For our patients who are either pregnant or undergoing fertility treatment, we are urging them to cancel trips to areas of active Zika transmission. The most dangerous time is thought to be during the first trimester of pregnancy, although experts do not know how the virus enters the placenta and damages the growing brain of the fetus.

Further, since the virus can be transmitted in the urine, saliva, and semen for about 30 days after infection, we have deferred treatment in patients returning from areas endemic for that period of time. Communication with your doctor about whether you feel you or your partner may have been exposed is essential during treatment.

There is no vaccine for the Zika virus, so infection prevention is key. Avoid mosquitoes by wearing long shirts and pants, staying indoors, and using mosquito repellents with DEET. Also, dispose or treat any areas of free standing water where mosquitoes breed.

If you suspect you may have the Zika virus, avoid further mosquito bites. During the first week of infection, Zika virus can be found in the blood and passed from an infected person to another mosquito through mosquito bites. An infected mosquito can then spread the virus to other people.

Additionally, since Zika can be spread through semen, men should refrain from sexual intercourse or use a condom for at least 30 days after infection or traveling from a country suspected of having high rates of Zika.

If you are still concerned about Zika and your pregnancy, please visit the CDC’s website. Additionally, the New York Times recently published an article with informative questions and answers about the virus that we have found informative and helpful.

Gender Instincts

Posted by: Mommy-Go-Round Guest Blogger on Jul 07, 2016 in Pregnancy

Throughout this whole pregnancy, I never really had an instinct or even a feeling about the baby’s gender. My family and friends, however, are convinced it’s a girl!

To Doula or Not To Doula – That is the Question

Posted by: Mari Walker on Jul 05, 2016 in Babies, Pregnancy

The answer is easy – YES!

I’ve had two pregnancies ending in two beautiful daughters. The birth experiences were vastly different though, for many reasons.

With my first pregnancy, I read so many books and prepared myself as best I could to have a natural birth. I ended up choosing a C-section 24 hours after induced labor without much progress. My doctor recommended the surgery because of fears of the size of my baby, who was estimated to weigh more than ten and a half pounds. She was born weighing 9 lb 10 oz, and I was devastated by my choice. My support system was my husband, and while we both agreed what we wanted as far as birth went, we didn’t equip ourselves with the tools to make it happen in the face of medical suggestions.

I knew I wanted things different for my second baby’s birth, specifically a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean). While I wasn’t opposed to a C-section if necessary, I felt like my first surgery hadn’t actually been necessary in hindsight. What I really wanted was no regrets!

Enter – doula.

I waited pretty late in my pregnancy to research doulas (I have a superstitious and sometimes pessimistic nature and with the gestational diabetes I was pretty sure I’d be back on the operating table). Once we connected though, I knew that working with Rene’ Johnson from Birth Help would make all the difference for our birth experience. Rene’ has been supporting women for as long as I’ve been alive, and it was her extensive experience that led us to choose her services. There are a lot of doula options in Baton Rouge though, and I can say a doula is worth every penny and then some!

My husband and I took natural child birth classes offered by Birth Help, and they helped us immeasurably. We learned a lot (and I thought I’d been so prepared through my reading before the first pregnancy), and we gained new ways of communicating with each other and with our doctor.

Having a doula meant having someone intimately familiar with childbirth present throughout labor, and she also was so helpful during the pregnancy, encouraging our doctor-patient communication and helping explain things we didn’t understand and think through all our choices.

Our doula was key to our labor induction, which we did as naturally as possible (you can read our birth story here). She recommended different positions to try and kept encouraging me even through the hardest parts. Although I ended up with an epidural, I was able to achieve a VBAC, and I know I wouldn’t have ever been able to do that without my team’s support. My doula’s experience and encouragement combined with my husband’s love and presence helped me meet that VBAC goal.

If I ever have another child (and that’s a HUGE if), I wouldn’t hesitate to hire a doula again, although this time I’d do it earlier in the pregnancy! No matter what your plans for birth, I would highly recommend a doula as part of your child birth support system!


About Mari

Mari Walker lives in Baton Rouge with her husband, Shawn, and daughters Jane (born November 2011) and Livia (born March 2016). A freelance communications professional originally from Oklahoma, Mari also blogs at silvermari.com.

Life After Gestational Diabetes

Posted by: Mari Walker on Jun 30, 2016 in Pregnancy

lifeaftergestationaldiabetes_imageMy experience with gestational diabetes wasn’t all bad, although I certainly wish it hadn’t been so long. Because I was diagnosed at 17 weeks and my pregnancy lasted nearly 42 weeks, I tested my blood sugar and maintained a strict diet for 25 weeks, or more than six months. It was so long that I completely filled the tracking log and had to make my own pages for the last few weeks. Good grief.

During labor, my blood sugar was tested every six hours. I didn’t have regular food intake, so the tests weren’t timed to two hours after eating. In fact, the numbers were usually higher than the 120 two hours after eating limit that I’d stuck to for those six months. Hearing the higher numbers stressed me out, but they were fine because they could be explained by juice or other intake. And I think they were testing more to be sure I didn’t bottom out.

My (induced) labor lasted more than 24 hours, so my blood was tested at least four times. The first time it was tested as I was being checked in, and the nurse pricked my finger on the pad – something you never actually do because it hurts much more than a prick on the side of the finger. It bled profusely and led me to remind the other nurses doing blood glucose tests to please use the side of the finger for the next two draws. I don’t even remember the last test though, since that would have happened during the drama of nearing pushing, or maybe they waited until after my baby was born to do one more test.

After her birth (you can read our birth story here), my daughter’s blood was tested every few hours for the first day or so of her life. Her numbers were great, so there was never any problem for her or concern about needing to supplement with glucose water, which would have been needed if her blood sugar levels were too low.

As for me, after birth I was told I could eat a “normal” diet, and my doctor recommended a non-diabetic meal like a cheeseburger (in my glucose log reporting any time I’d had a spike it was always a cheeseburger with me, and I had mentioned that in my notes when I emailed my logs). I happily obliged, although it took the hospital nearly five hours after the birth to get food to me!

I also ate a Cadbury Crème Egg that I’d had my husband buy for me (if I bought it I’d have eaten it!). My gestational diabetes was diagnosed just before Halloween, so I missed trick-or-treat candy, Thanksgiving food, a cake for my birthday, Christmas treats, Valentine’s Day chocolates and Easter treats. My baby was born the week after Easter Sunday, so the chocolate egg was still good if no longer “in season.” It tasted AMAZING.

My sweet tooth hadn’t disappeared, and resuming normal eating has been challenging because I want to eat ALL THE THINGS, specifically all the carbohydrates and sweet things. Getting breastfeeding established also increased my appetite, and I’m a voracious eater normally. I’m still working to find a balance for my diet, but I know I can. I learned a lot while managing the gestational diabetes, and I know I want to do everything in my power to avoid having type 2 diabetes, for which I’m at a greater risk now. I will have to have another glucose challenge test at some point, but my doctor said we could wait until after I’m finished nursing.

All in all, gestational diabetes was annoying but manageable. I’m certainly glad it’s in my rear view mirror, and I hope it stays there!


About Mari

Mari Walker lives in Baton Rouge with her husband, Shawn, and daughters Jane (born November 2011) and Livia (born March 2016). A freelance communications professional originally from Oklahoma, Mari also blogs at silvermari.com.

7 Reasons Why the Best Birth Days Are At Woman’s

Posted by: admin on Jun 28, 2016 in Babies, Pregnancy
  1. Our Name Says It All. After 48 years of specializing in women, we know exactly what women want: a personalized experience and excellent service.
  2. So. Many. Options. Out of nearly 70 OB-GYNs, you’ll definitely find one who clicks with your personality and with what you want for your baby’s birth day. Want to soak in the labor tub? Want to use the peanut ball? Want to listen to JT belt out “Can’t Stop the Feeling?” At Woman’s, you have options.
  3. Awesome Staff. You might not remember your nurse’s name, but you’ll remember how she made you feel. Our nurses love what they do and are honored to celebrate birth days every day.
  4. Breastfeeding Support. Though breastfeeding is natural, it’s not always easy. Our certified lactation specialists are there to help. Even after you go home, you can call our Lactation Warmline or go to our Breastfeeding Support Group for advice from a registered nurse.
  5. Feels Like Home. With large, private rooms and scenic views, we designed Woman’s to feel more like home than a hospital. We will even park your car with complimentary valet parking.
  6. We Expect the Unexpected Better Than Anyone Else. During or after birth, we have teams available on site 24/7 to provide the best mommy and baby care possible.
  7. Fertility. Sometimes the road to motherhood can challenging. Our partnership with Fertility Answers gives you access to a full-service fertility clinic.

Learn more at womans.org/birthday.

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