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Getting Pregnant Naturally & the Benefits of Natural Childbirth

26 Jul

Moms and Exhaustion

19 Jul

Genetic Diversity

13 Jul

Skin-to-Skin Love for Your Newborn

9 Feb

We love educating women on the benefits of midwifery care. In pursuit of that goal, I encourage you to read this blog in our series from midwife (and guest blogger), Lincey Knox LM, CPM of Heartstrings Midwifery.

Those first few moments after the arrival of your new baby are so important for both mother and baby. This is true not just medically, but emotionally and physically as well. Skin to skin love is not something only the mother can provide – in fact, the bonding between baby and father through skin-to-skin care is also vitally important to the process. Through these first snuggles, a newborn learns the scent of mother and father, learns to feel safe, helps establish breastfeeding, aids in the newborn’s transition to living outside the womb, and keeps him- or herself warm.

A newborn survives off of its instincts and reflexes during the first few weeks of life. Its greatest senses are those of smell, touch, and hearing. With skin-to-skin contact a new baby is able to utilize these three senses as (s)he can smell mother’s scent, touch mother’s skin, and hear mother’s heartbeat – the same sound that has been lulling baby to sleep for the past nine months.

“There are now a multitude of studies that show that mothers and babies should be together, skin to skin immediately after birth, as well as later. The baby is happier, the baby’s temperature is more stable and more normal, the baby’s heart and breathing rates are more stable and more normal, and the baby’s blood sugar is more elevated.”

Immediate skin-to-skin contact between newborn and mother should be standard of care for all deliveries. Even in the situation where a cesarean delivery is necessary, many obstetricians are beginning to facilitate skin-to-skin between mother and baby in the operating room, as its importance is recognized more and more. Hopefully this practice will continue as more care providers recognize the bonds that are formed during these precious first moments.


REFERENCES

http://www.nbci.ca/index.php?option=com_content&id=82:the-importance-of-skin-to-skin-contact-&Itemid=17

2 http://www.naturalchild.org/guest/jack_newman2.html

3 http://evidencebasedbirth.com/the-evidence-for-skin-to-skin-care-after-a-cesarean/

Invisible Documentary Viewing

19 Aug

invisible documentary viewing

 

In one of the most genius ideas of the summer, our D Moms Daily wellness expert Dr. Kate Naumes, ND has launched a monthly documentary viewing series at her office on the Katy Trail.

The next viewing takes place this Saturday, August 24 at 6 p.m. featuring Invisible, filmmaker Roz Mortimer’s beautiful and thought-provoking film that follows Inuit mothers and the challenges they face as harmful chemicals from their food begin to surface in their breast milk.

Space for the viewing is limited, so be sure to RSVP to frontdesk.naumes.nd@gmail.com if you’re planning to attend!

Dr. Naumes Talks Breast Feeding

5 Mar

Breast Feeding

 

This week, I’m finishing up our closeness series talking about a kind of intimacy with which many moms will be very familiar – the intimacy of breast feeding. There is overwhelming evidence that breast milk is the best food for your newborn. Unfortunately, not all moms can produce just the right amount of milk for their baby. Some women make more milk than they need, while others don’t make enough.

If  you are looking to increase breast milk production the following may be your first steps:

  • Get a good hospital grade pump (I like the Medela Symphony 2.0)
  • Sleep with your new baby at night
  • Stay hydrated
  • Decrease your stress
  • Hire a lactation consultant or ND-midwife experienced in lactation support
  • Speak with someone knowledgeable about appropriate milk augmenting herbs

If you find that the above simply doesn’t generate enough milk for your baby (in spite of your best efforts) consider alternatives to organic formula like milk banks and milk sharing. I’m not anti-formula in any and every situation — I just want you to know there are options!

Read more of Dr. Naumes’ post over at D-Magazines DMoms Blog

Demystifying the Doula

28 Nov

What is a doula?

As a naturopathic doctor having also received training as a midwife, I frequently discuss birth options with my newly pregnant clients. Should I have a home birth, birth center birth, hospital birth? Should I use a certified professional midwife (CPM), a certified nurse midwife (CNM), or an M.D.? No matter what you choose, I recommend that you have a doula at your birth.

A doula, as it pertains to childbirth, is a woman trained and experienced in childbirth who provides continuous physical, emotional, and some informational support to the mother before, during, and right after labor.

Let’s cut to the chase. Doulas of North America (DONA) International reminds us of the following facts:

Numerous clinical studies have found that a doula’s presence at birth:

  • tends to result in shorter labors with fewer complications.
  • reduces negative feelings about one’s childbirth experience.
  • reduces the need for pitocin (a labor-inducing drug), forceps or vacuum extraction and cesareans.
  • reduces the mother’s request for pain medication and/or epidurals.


Research shows parents who receive support can:

  • feel more secure and cared for.
  • are more successful in adapting to new family dynamics.
  • have greater success with breastfeeding.
  • have greater self-confidence.
  • have less postpartum depression.
  • have lower incidence of abuse.

Read more of Dr. Naumes’ post over at D-Magazine’s D-Moms Blog

Fertility 101 in the Oak Cliff Advocate

29 Sep

Fertility 101

CORRECTION: Class actually begins November 15th!

“The ladies at Oil and Cotton Creative Exchange have announced a fall schedule that includes the usual suspects — bookbinding, watercolor painting, photography, silkscreen — as well as a not-so-usual offering: “Preconception and Fertility Optimization” with Dr. Kate Naumes. “There is nothing quite like it available in Dallas,” Oil and Cotton’s Shannon Driscoll says of the class. The seven-week series, which began Sept. 27, is the second time Oil and Cotton has touched on the subject. “We tested the idea this spring with five couples, and it was extremely successful,” Driscoll says. Naumes is a naturopath, midwife and primary care physician with a special interest in women’s and children’s health, and the class is for those interested in learning how to enhance their health in preparation for optimal fertility. Naumes suggested the class to Oil and Cotton with the idea of exploring a question each week through art. “I needed help developing and facilitating the art component of each class and thought, ‘Who better than Oil and Cotton?’ ” Naumes says. She teaches how to protect oneself from exposure to substances in the environment that can decrease fertility and harm a developing baby, and the class is meant to be an opportunity to meet other Oak Cliff and Dallas couples with similar hopes and fears.”  See article here 

• Oil & Cotton, 837 W. Seventh

The Mark of a Supermom

17 May

“Mothers of twins do not just get twice the bundle of joy—they are also healthier than other mothers… according to Shannen Robson and Ken Smith, of the University of Utah…. Although all women face a trade-off between the resources their bodies allocate to reproduction and those reserved for the maintenance of health, robust women can afford more of both than frail ones. And what surer way to signal robustness than by bearing more than one child at a time? In other words, the two researchers conjectured, the mothers of twins will not only display greater overall reproductive success, they will also be healthier than those who give birth only to singletons.” –  Read the rest of the article at The Economist

Are you wanting to get as healthy as possible before conceiving? Sign up for my Preconception Class (more info). Already pregnant? My childbirth education class is a great way to prepare for a natural childbirth. Struggling with infertility and looking for a natural and less expensive solution than IVF? Schedule an appointment today.

Join us for Holistic Childbirth Education

6 Mar

Are you pregnant? Do you know anyone who is pregnant? I am teaching a childbirth education series starting in April. This class will bring together parents in an inspiring environment to prepare for childbirth as they explore their pregnancies and unique experiences through journaling, discussion, and creative hands-on projects. Join us to emotionally, physically, and mentally prepare for your birth. Join us so that you can create a community of support for yourself as a parent of a young child.

More on the class here.

OR

To sign up, visit:
http://shop.oilandcotton.com/product/natural-childbirth-class

Got Milk?

2 Feb

I am beginning to emerge from my very warm, very loving mother cave and wanted to share a few things that I’ve learned in the last few months.

Not all moms produce just the right amount of milk for their baby. While most do, some women make more milk than they need and some not enough. At the play group, we talk about it and it seems that most moms make the right amount but that there are always a few over producers and a few under producers.

It seems that low producing moms all agree that having a good hospital grade pump (ex: Medella’s Symphony 2.0), sleeping with baby at night and milk augmenting herbs are all great tools for increasing milk production.

I wanted to talk a little about moms helping moms. If you make a lot of milk, consider donating to low producing moms (or mothers of adopted babies), and if you don’t make enough milk (in spite of your best efforts) consider alternatives to formula like milk banks and milk sharing.

Milk banks are an incredibly valuable resource. However the cost of milk (around $4/oz I’ve found) can be quite expensive. Insurance, if it pays at all, will only pay in the case of a very short list of medical conditions

Mother’s Milk Bank Austin
Mother’s Milk Bank of North Texas

Milk sharing is a far more efficient, far more environmentally friendly, and a far less costly means of obtaining human milk for your baby. It can be harder to set up though; some communities have milk share groups or message boards, but most milk sharing happens informally among friends.

I can help you maximize breast milk production. Your body is very smart. There is no milk better for your baby than your own milk. I want to help you make the most milk you can for you child. Schedule an appointment to find out what you can do to increase your supply weather you have had a breast reduction, have gone back to work, or are pregnant and want to continue nursing your other baby. If you are currently taking medications that are not compatible with breast feeding, there may be natural solutions that don’t interfere with your ability to make safe milk for your baby. I hope to hear from you soon.

Nursing in Public

19 May

Ah, junk mail! I was looking through a catalog for new baby gear and came across a “nursing cover”. It describes the product: “Nurse privately even in public! This stylish nursing cover is contoured and generously sized to fit securely around mom and baby for hands-free nursing coverage” $36.

I’m saddened at the cultural constraints placed on breastfeeding women in the Western world. Breast-feeding without a nursing cover is more comfortable, more intimate, and less expensive. I think one reason we are encouraged to cover our breasts while feeding is that our culture is uncomfortable with the duality of women’s breasts as both sexual body parts and body parts that provide nourishment to our babies.
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