If you missed our video call, this is the information you missed! Tune in and feel free to ask any questions you may have!
“Hey, I know I’m due in a few weeks and I’m sure the answer is no, but do you have availability to take me on as a client?”
We often get last minute calls from people desiring doula services so it’s never a surprise and we are happy to help. We’ve even been hired during early labor!
I totally lost track of time
We get it! Pregnancy moves faster than lightening for most people. It’s as if you blink and those visits go from monthly to weekly and BAM before you know it, you’re close to or at your due date. The mind can play so crazy tricks on you with thinking you can call next week or get things settled in just a bit. If time got away from you, don’t let that deter you from having the support you desired when you thought about hiring a doula in early pregnancy!
I thought we would be fine without doula support
Maybe you’ve read all of the books and attended all of the classes and just felt really prepared. When it came right down to it though, your partner is feeling a bit unsure. I mean, let’s really think about it. In the past, partners were given a cigar and told to head home and await the news there. Now, they are expected to not only be present, but also to care for you physically, emotionally, and educationally while also maintaining unbiased care and support. That’s tough for anyone to handle, but especially a loved one who is 110% invested in you as a person and the child your about to bring into your lives! Talk about pressure!
Last minute freak out
Ack! pack the bags, clean the house, finish the nursery, get on those daycare waitlists, find a nanny, pick out the carseat, and find someone to watch the pets for labor. Sound familiar? Those last minute freak outs are extremely common and having a doula on speed dial can be the sanity you never knew you needed. Being able to reach out and feel the comfort and support from an expert can ease nerves, calm worries, and help you look forward to the big birthday celebration!
The Birth Haven team is dedicated to helping you have the most positive birth experience possible and we want you to know it’s never too late to bring on a doula to your birth or postpartum team. We’re here to help make your experience the best it possibly can be. We want you to have positive and memorable experiences as you venture into this new adventure of parenthood for the first or fifth time! Give us a call!
As I attended my first training to become a doula, I was taught that not only was I supposed to support people in childbirth, but that I was also responsible for defending their birth plans and to advocate for their wishes. What I failed to recognize, was collaborative care mattered and I was not responsible for the outcomes of births. Add to that, the method of giving birth wasn't as important as the family having the best experience possible and making decisions with their doctor or midwife.
As I began training doulas, I've taught the importance of doulas taking a back seat to decision making and trusting that their clients are capable of making decisions on their behalf. Does this mean doulas are under a gag order? No! Does this mean we work for the hospitals and not our clients? No! This means that we will give unbiased information when asked for it and will support clients in communicating with their doctor or midwife if they desire more information. You see, doctors and midwives have ample years of training and clinical expertise. Doulas cannot replicate what they bring to a pregnancy and birth and should be respectful of their breadth of knowledge and intuition. We can't possibly know whether or not something is medically necessary because we don't have the skill set to clinically assess our client.
If you’re seeking doulas who disagree with your chosen care provider, give you unsolicited advice and information, and take over your birth like its their own, then we are not the doulas for you. The Birth Haven stands on the premise of non judgmental support and care. We are there to assist as you become a parent for the first or even fourth time. We are there to cheer you on as you make decisions that are best for you and to work cohesively with the care team you have chosen.
Doctors and midwives in our area have grown to love The Birth Haven doulas because we are a compliment to them. We foster collaborative relationships and care and seek to help our clients/their patients have the best experience possible, as defined by them.
Desire a better birth or postpartum experience on your terms? We're just a phone call away!
Have you always thought about becoming a doula, but just haven’t known where to begin? Have you worried about the pay, the hours, or how to even get started? We have the perfect opportunity for you. Register for our “So You Wanna Be a Doula” event and learn everything there is to know and more!
Learn from industry leader, Julie Six in this free intro to doulas. Julie has been a doula for over a decade, is a doula trainer, and dual business owner in Central Kentucky. She along with her husband and three children reside just outside of Lexington and she loves nothing more than to help others succeed in their passions. If you have been even the slightest bit curious about serving families in your area through pregnancy, birth and postpartum, this is a wonderful opportunity for you to take part in!
People from across the Bluegrass are welcome to attend.
Sunday August 4th at 6:00pm
Baby Moon 2891 Richmond Rd Suite 103
Some adults will never understand or they choose to not want to understand the value of having overnight support as a new parent.
“I stayed up all night with my baby and I survived.”
“Why would anyone want to give up their baby at night?”
“I just don’t understand.”
Here’s the deal. These well meaning people may just not truly understand the value of overnight care. Here are our responses to them in support of parents everywhere who are choosing to be well rested over being sleep deprived:
I’m so happy you survived staying up all night with your baby. Here at the Birth Haven we want parents to thrive and not just survive. We want them to remember these early days with their baby fondly and not clouded by yawns, short tempers, and frustration. Knowing a baby is being cared for by a professional who truly loves and adores the babies she works with, allows our clients to easily go to bed and get the rest they so badly need. They wake up fully functional, happy, and excited to embrace the day and all it brings for them and their baby. It’s truly okay to not understand. The absolute beauty of parenthood is that we al get to choose our own path. Whether enduring sleepless nights or getting substantial rest, there isn’t a wrong way to do it. You get to choose your methods and our clients get to choose theirs!
The beauty of parenthood is that no matter what, we all have a choice.
My question to you is…sleep or no sleep?
Enjoy every moment,
On average, a wedding costs $35,000+ for a one day event that you'll remember for the rest of your life, but what happens to all of the other incredible events that come later? Flowers, location, food, cake, apparel, music, and more. It all adds up and it's all worth the price tag to those getting married, but what about welcoming a new baby into the family? We hire a wedding planner for weddings, say hello to the baby planner aka doula!
The Birth Doula
She's your go to person for everything birth related. She can give you the best tips on registry items you can't live without, and even the top names in the area in case you're wanting to avoid the latest trends. Maybe you have no idea what hospital or doctor to go to or even understand that midwives work in and out of hospitals. How about what classes to take, what to do about normal pregnancy discomforts, and dealing with the emotional highs and lows? One phone call or text away is where she is. A constant supporter of your choices, cheerleader when you need it, and a shoulder to cry on when necessary. Who wouldn't want someone like a doula at their birth?
The Postpartum & Infant Care Doula
Does the umbilical cord look ok?
Is the baby getting enough to eat?
How many wet and dirty diapers are there supposed to be?
I'm exhausted and need sleep, how doI do that and everything else?
My family and friends want to help, but they just want to take the baby from me.
What are safe sleep protocols?
How do I get her to latch right?
How do I clean bottles?
The list truly goes on an on and on. In the hospital, you're taken care of as is your baby, but coming home is another story. Your Postpartum and Infant Care doula is your sanity in the days your sanity is tested! She's there to remind you of the things you know, to trust your instinct, to get sleep, to take care of yourself, and to teach you tools and techniques to soothe your baby and make life easier overall! She's your saving grace when coming home with a new baby.
For more information on how you can have the ultimate new parent experience, contact us!
You've loved your baby throughout pregnancy, whether you've carried this little one yourself or have welcomed them into your heart and home after their birth. No matter how your family starts, The Birth Haven is Kentucky's source for trusted postpartum doulas and night nanny's. Sometimes known as night nurses, our experienced infant care specialists are recommended by local pediatricians, obstetricians, and families all over the Bluegrass. What makes our services the ones you need?
The Best Training Available
Our specialists under go training that is second to none. They gain knowledge about a vast variety of subjects including soothing, swaddling, recognizing signs of postpartum anxiety and depression in family members, breastfeeding, bottle feeding, proper sleep habits, safety guidelines, CPR/First Aid, and much more. They have a knowledge base that allows for proper referrals, explaining common newborn concerns, and pointing you in the right direction when it comes to common baby items and even what diaper cream is best!
We've been around for awhile
Our reputation definitely goes before us. Families all over Central Kentucky have received optimal care and compassion from our team over the past 5 years. Whether it be night nanny services or day time care, we've been in many homes and helped many families not only get the rest they need, but also give guidance and knowledge when desired.
Our Sickness Policy
With a sniffle or sneeze, if we feel we are coming down with something, another person will come and care for you. Our priority is to our clients and ensuring that your family stays as healthy as possible. This is especially important to those with preemies. We have a range of both vaccinated and non vaccinated doulas and can service any need. Just tell us what's important to you and know we have the perfect person for you and your family!
Our Team Approach
As the owner of The Birth Haven, I stand behind those I send into homes. You can be assured they have been chosen to be on our current team because of their compassionate care, trustworthiness, impeccable knowledge base, safety guidelines, clean background check, and continuing mentorship and training. Our team model allows us to serve families on both short and long term basis and to always have back up in case of sickness or family emergencies ensuring you're never left without care. If I place my name behind someone, know they will be amazing!
What are you waiting for?
We know you're exhausted. Whether your still pregnant or have a newborn or even a 6+ month old, give us a call. Chances are high that we will be the perfect fit for you and your family. We know your baby is your pride and joy. We would be honored to help you be the parent you want to be with ample sleep and encouragement. Contact us today and find out our availability!
Once the pregnancy has been announced, many expectant couples has a flood of questions as they prepare for the birth of their baby.
The Birth Haven's MaterniTEA is an informative one hour class that gives you the opportunity to learn about pregnancy related classes and to ask specific questions about your upcoming or current pregnancy.
Grab a cup of tea and settle in to learn, laugh and prepare for your upcoming birth.
If you're reading this and nodding your head, don't sleep! You can REGISTER for the next MaterniTEA TODAY!
As you might have guessed, MaterniTEA educates expectant couples on all things related to birth, including DOULAS!
Ever wondered what a doula is or desired an opportunity to meet multiple doulas in the span of an hour? Join us for this unique opportunity to ask questions, get to know doulas, and see if having a doula for your birth or postpartum experience is right for you!
The Birth Haven's Meet the Doulas events take place after each MaterniTEA at 8:00pm for your convenience.
Learn more about these free educational classes focusing on pregnancy, birth and the postpartum period HERE!
Every day there are 10,829 babies born in the United States.
With only 12 percent of Americans having paid maternity leave, it's creating tons of extra stress on new parents in our communities during their first few weeks postpartum.
Despite the support from your partner or relatives, you may find yourself feeling overwhelmed and faced with more stress and challenges than you thought. More families are seeking out that added support to help nourish their families as they transition home with their new baby.
Postpartum assistance dramatically reduces the risks for postpartum depression, anxiety and stress related conditions.
In the birth world, there are fantastic resources that work seamlessly with every family's schedule to provide a helping hand as parents learn how to care for their newborn, establish routines and begin their postpartum healing process.
Whether it be a nanny, night nanny, postpartum day doula or overnight doula, parents are no longer navigating the uncertainties of newborn care without compassionate and professional support.
Newborn Care Specialists
Getting the hang of your newborn care routine is no easy feat for any parent. Newborn care specialists are there to guide your transition home with your baby, making sure parents feel confident with the process and schedules of newborn care and offer resources and support throughout the first few weeks after birth.
These women are nannies that offer night time care for parents looking for a little extra sleep. The postpartum recovery process is an exhausting one and the extra set of hands to help care for the newborn of the house is often heaven sent. These nannies will take over the care while parents rest, sleep or relax, providing a huge stress relief to sleepy new parents. Their hours are flexible and care plans usually can be customized to cater to even the busiest schedule. They often support the family after the immediate postpartum time or help locate someone who will continue on in their absence.
This postpartum team is your lifeline of support. Your postpartum doula offers the professional training of a newborn care specialist, the flexibility of a nanny and so much more. Doulas not only help parents feel confident as they learn the basics of newborn care, feeding and sleep patterns, but they also assist mothers as they recover from birth and nurture the rest of the family. Doula care plans can be tailored to suit the needs of every family, including overnight and early morning care shifts. Doulas help care for siblings, lend a helping hand with tasks around the house and even craft meal plans, and speed up postpartum recovery. Your postpartum doula helps you from the very beginning and always works alongside the family's parenting style without any judgement or bias to provide the care you want for your new baby.
Postpartum doulas are trained to provide resources for breastfeeding, breast health, postpartum recovery, newborn care and development, and even placenta encapsulation. These women are passionate and experienced in all things birth, postpartum, and newborn and dedicated to easing the postpartum transition for local families. Life with a postpartum doula means less stress and discomfort, more affirmation and more nurturing support. It means loving care from the day of hire through the moment your confidence soars and you are ready to hand us to the next family waiting for the same optimal care. Services are offered from newborn through the first 2 years of life.
Doulas are the ultimate combination of newborn care specialists and night nannies, providing the comprehensive support and care strategies that uniquely adjust to the needs of every family.
If you or a family member is expecting, consider how postpartum doulas can dramatically improve your baby's early postpartum care all the way through their future development.
That drive home from the hospital or birth center doesn't have to be intimidating.
The postpartum doula revolution is transforming and revolutionizing the experience of introducing a new baby to your family.
When it comes time to bring home baby, there's definitely a learning curve.
There may be a learning curve as you acclimate to your new role as a mom, but there's still a long road to recovery ahead. As you settle in at home, it makes a huge difference to gather the support and resources that nourish a swift recovery.
Not all postpartum resources are created equal. We took some of the guess work out of postpartum planning by giving you a good place to start.
The Boppy pillow is a breastfeeding mother's best friend. This "u" shaped pillow is specifically designed to help new breastfeeding mothers comfortably breastfeed and find the position that works best for them. The pillow is also great for propping up your newborn safely and even offering a comfortable place to sit when you're still sensitive from birth. This wonder-pillow comes in a wide variety of patterns and colors and has a convenient washable cover. My Breast Friend is also a wonderful addition to your feeding pillow collection. We suggest the professional model that can be wiped clean after any spit up or other accidents. Have twins? They make the perfect pillow just for that!
Brondell Swash 1000
It might seem like a luxury item, but a bidet seat is nice to have in those first few weeks home with baby. Wiping can be downright uncomfortable if you're healing from a vaginal birth. Whether you're opting for a bidet attachment or a full seat, it's a great way to stay fresh and comfortable as you heal. The Brondell Swash 1000 has a warmed seat, adjustable water temperature and pressure settings to keep you feeling clean throughout the phases of postpartum bleeding and healing. You can angle the stream of water in different ways or directions. Having a bidet is a more sterile and comfortable alternative to a simple spray bottle and it's gentle enough to use on your first day home.
Your perineum is likely to stay sore and uncomfortable for at least the first few weeks. Making some frozen pads ahead of time can help give you some soothing relief for the discomfort. Take a quality overnight pad with wings and gently unwrap the wrapper where it can be repackaged. Fill a small spray bottle with alcohol-free witch hazel, pure aloe vera gel, and 5 to 10 drops of lavender, frankincense, rosemary and geranium essential oils. The essential oils are optional, however they can help promote surface healing, prevent infection, and reduce inflammation. Spray the pads thoroughly but don't soak through the pads, re wrap them and neatly stack them in the freezer. Be sure to ask your doctor or midwife if this option is safe for you!
Nalgene Water Bottles
It might seem like a no-brainer to stay hydrated as you heal, but many women find themselves dehydrated and struggling with a low milk volume. A Nalgene Bottle is a brightly colored reminder to drink up and stay hydrated. Fill a few bottles in the morning and scatter them throughout the house to always keep a refreshing drink nearby.
Nursing Tanks and Bras
A good nursing garment makes the world of difference. These tanks and bras are soft, comfortable, durable (which is more important than you'd think) and easy access for feedings at all hours. These tanks will be an every day staple for the first few weeks of your postpartum recovery and the more comfortable you are, the speedier that recovery will be.
Your Postpartum BFF
Did you know you don't have to figure all of this out on your own? Coming home with a new baby and tons of unsolicited advice can turn the most calm person into a frustrated and anxious ball of energy. Postpartum & Infant Care doulas are making the entrance to parenthood a joyous and fun experience. From helping you out of bed during the healing process to prepping meals, these incredible specialists are becoming an integral part of every new parent's bringing home baby plan.
Postpartum recovery doesn't have to be a pain.
Having the right supplies and support to keep your postpartum recovery on track is essential. Before your baby arrives, gather together all the supplies you'll need and reach out to an in home infant specialist so you can head home confident and prepared with your brand new baby.
Growing your family is one of the most exciting experiences you can have.
As your children grow, introducing a new baby to the mix can certainly come with it's fair share of challenges to navigate. If you're expecting another baby and you're worried about how you'll acclimate their siblings into life with a newborn, don't worry, you aren't alone.
The anxiety of how to best introduce your little one to the nest is one of the biggest worries of expectant parents.
Dont panic, it'll be fine!
Be the Voice of Your Baby
Since your baby can't speak up for themselves, you'll have to step in to help your toddler better understand what it's like to be a baby. Parents can take advantage of their children's fascination with newborns by explaining why babies do different things. Saying things like "when the baby cries it means they need something or they're uncomfortable" or even "when a baby holds onto you, they're showing you how much they love you" can help toddlers understand all the new sounds and actions of this new addition.
Spread the Praise
A newborn is constant spotlight and that can feel defeating or even threatening to a toddler that doesn't understand. When people comment about how beautiful or well behaved your baby is, be sure to interject that now you have two beautiful babies that are well behaved and amazing. Hearing parents tell strangers that their other kids are equally as important can be a huge sigh of relief to your little one and it takes the sting out of sharing the spotlight.
Double the Gifts
While most friends and family won't think to bring two of everything, having a couple backup gifts for your child to unwrap can help this process feel more like a celebration for them too. You can help change their mindset of them being the recipient to the giver by encouraging them to unwrap gifts and present them to the baby. Toddlers find it rewarding to be in control.
Highlight their Talents
Is your little one great at sports, drawing or singing? Highlight their talents by reminding them how great they are at these things and how lucky the new baby will be to have such a great teacher. Some kids even like to teach the newborn some tips in their first days home! Everyone needs a reminder sometimes about how talented they really are.
While it's all well and good to say you'll be able to evenly split your time between your kids, it just isn't realistic. When you can't devote one on one time to your older kids, sharing time with your baby care is a great way to do it all. While feeding the baby, you can read books to your toddler or watch their favorite movie. Plenty of hugs and cuddles are a must. Postpartum doulas can also help ease this transition through sibling care or infant care so you can get that much desired one on one time in with each child.
It's not as tough as you might think!
Although it's certain that you'll have some setbacks, tantrums or meltdowns from your little one about all the change at home, preparing them for the baby's arrival can make a big difference. Learning to change your language and the way you support your older children can help them feel empowered and confident when they realize they'll always have your heart.
I never thought I'd find myself the recipient of an e-mail full of vitriol and nastiness, but this morning I awoke to just that. Truly, I had to read it a few times, before I posted it on my private Facebook page to garner help from friends to solve the mystery. I'd never been called such names before, so surely I must have done something to evoke such a passionate email full of colorful language and grammatical errors. Nope, this person just emailed the wrong person and that "wrong person" happened to be none other than me. As it happens, I'm not one to gently and slowly back away and as such, I thought, let's use this little interaction to do some good in the world, shall we?
It all started this morning when my alarm went off at too-early-o'clock. I grabbed my phone to turn it off and noticed a brand new email: Subject: Your enabling irresponsible women (yes, "your" instead of "you're", but I digress.) I opened it to find this little gem:
Now, I'll admit that maybe I should have just deleted it and gone on with my life, but I also recognized that silence just begets satisfaction and could be misperceived as a willingness on my part to accept whatever has been thrown at me. Instead, this is how I chose to respond:
Dear J travers,
Waking up this morning to your e-mail was quite surprising and I’ll admit that I ended up posting a screenshot to my Facebook page because I had absolutely no idea what you were talking about. I mean, I've never been on Fox News before. I used the assistance of dear friends to figure out your mistake though! It makes complete sense that in your minimal search, you determined emailing me would be your easy button instead of taking notice that I’m not even in the same state as the organization you despise so much. Yep, you emailed the wrong place, as my business is not affiliated with another non- profit for homeless pregnant people.
Instead of getting angry and lashing out at you for sending this email to a complete stranger who has nothing to do with the non-profit, Birth Haven of New Jersey, I’d like to take the opportunity to say hello, and help you understand a bit more about what I do.
The Birth Haven in Kentucky is a premier doula agency providing birth and postpartum services to those in our area who are expecting a baby. A doula is a person providing paid supportive services to families who desire unparalleled professional support during pregnancy & the postpartum period. We are labor coaches and much more, providing comfort measures, calming new parents to be, and helping them get off to a great start. We also provide postpartum & infant care services- helping with overnight care so families can get much needed sleep and become more confident as brand new parents. We are also aware of the signs of postpartum depression and help people as they heal and recover from birth.
I suppose I am an enabler. An enabler of families making choices that are best for them! We are a luxury service who also finds helping others in need to be of vast importance, in fact we donated 18,000 diapers to families in our community last year and hope to double that this year!
Seeing as this is the season of giving, of love, of kindness, of compassion, and of helping those in need, I would like to thank you for introducing me to the amazing non-profit that shares my same name, where I will be sending a tax deductible donation in the coming days as a way to extend compassion to those in need. I am proud to be part of the solution instead of part of the problem. You may call that enabling or acting like a knight and shining armor, but I call it being human and extending grace to those around me.
I sincerely hope that the next time a news story appears that causes you such distress that you lash out on random strangers, you instead bottle it up and turn it into something more productive like having a cup of coffee with a friend and reliving good times or donating to a cause like No Child Wet Behind Kentucky!
Holiday cheer and blessings to you,
Julie- owner of The Birth Haven and according to you, douchebag
Want to extend kindness this holiday season in the name of our good friend J travers? We have a few ways in which to do so!
Birth Haven in New Jersey is an independent non-profit providing shelter, education, and support to pregnant people in Newton, NJ. They would love to accept any cash donations to assist in their ongoing support of people in their state. DONATE HERE
If you want to keep donations local and help The Birth Haven in Lexington, KY, please check out our No Child Wet Behind Kentucky Amazon gift registry and purchase diapers for our local beneficiary, The Nest. Although I wasn't planning on launching this years diaper campaign just yet, I felt this was the perfect opportunity to block out a scrooge and uplift our community. The registry can be found HERE if you wish to give.
Carry on and remember to be kind, love life, and snuggle those babies!
UPDATE: Although, I was never sure the person would ever e-mail back, I did receive a response, two in fact. The first one was actually an apology with a side of attempting to guilt me into feeling bad about shaming them for their "facts" and that I really need to shame where shame is due. This person was speaking of those pregnant homeless people, by the way.(insert eye roll)
The second email came just as I was reading the first one. Two minutes later to be exact. It was filled to the brim with disgusting rhetoric, name calling, and colorful language. Needless to say, the person apparently actually read the complete e-mail instead of the initial lines and really wanted to "give it to me". I've toyed with responding again and honestly don't think it's worth it. Instead, I'm getting back to work, supporting families in the bluegrass! Cheers!
What's the deal with Diastasis Recti?
There's a lot of buzz in the birth world around Diastasis Recti, but lots of new and expectant mothers still don't know what it's all about. Some women even go years without realizing that this is an un-diagnosed issue from a previous pregnancy.
What is it?
During our pregnancies, the body needs to accommodate a quickly growing baby with the resources and space it has. Our core muscles have to bend and stretch to make room for baby and this can leave tummy tissues strained, stretched and even damaged.
In most cases, the body is able to shrink back down to it's pre-pregnancy size and tighten these core muscles back together. For many women, these overworked muscles have a difficult time stretching back and they're left with a gap of connective tissue and a belly bump to go with it.
It's not always baby fat!
What many new moms think is leftover baby weight is actually damaged connective tissue that won't go away with standard diet and exercise alone. This damage often creates a ridge down the center of the abdomen and weakening core muscles. Diastasis Recti is damaged tissue and some exercises can actually do more harm than good. Crunches and other strenuous ab workouts can tear the muscle and connective tissues or cause them to stretch even further apart.
How To Check for Diastasis Recti
After teaming up with Alison Ankiewicz, DPT, pelvic health physical therapist at Inner Dynamics Physical Therapy in Ocean, New Jersey and Melinda Fontaine, DPT, pelvic physical therapist at the Pelvic Health and Rehabilitation Center in Berkeley, California, BabyCenter.com published an article that illustrates how women can check themselves for signs of Diastasis.
"To check for a diastasis recti, lie on your back, with your knees bent and your feet on the floor. Place your hand palm down over your belly, with your fingers pointing toward your toes. Press your fingers gently into your navel area then slowly lift your head, drawing your chin to your chest. This causes your rectus abdominis to contract. If you feel a gap of at least two finger widths between the muscles as they contract, you have a diastasis. A gap of 4 or more fingers in width may suggest a more severe diastasis issue." [BabyCenter.com]
Diastasis and Other Health Concerns
Often times this diagnosis comes with a handful of other health concerns for women. Diastasis can cause symtpoms like chronic back and pelvic pain, urinary incontinence and even pain during sex. Even if you've never seen your "six pack abs" they're there and they work hard to keep your organs supported and functioning properly.
Solutions and Treatment
While most Diastasis cases will not benefit from standard exercises, working with a trained physical therapist can help pinpoint the affected abdominal tissues and encourage them to regain strength in a safe way. In more severe cases, women who don't plan to have another baby can seek surgical procedures that will reconnect and repair these tissues.
Preventing Diastasis Recti
While this injury can occur with even the fittest new mom, beginning your pregnancy with an already strong core and continuing to exercise during the course of your pregnancy can dramatically reduce the risks or injury like Diastasis Recti. Finding a physical therapist that specializes in postpartum abdominal recovery can help moms-to-be find an exercise regimen that will continually strengthen these muscles as they stretch to accommodate their baby. Stay away from deep core work, planks, and sit ups as muscles become stressed as they stretch and pull with the weight of your baby.
If you suspect you might have abdominal damage post-pregnancy, gathering second opinions from physical therapists and your general practitioner can help you properly diagnose your problem and put you on the right track to a safe recovery.
Don't tackle Diastasis at home on your own.
Avoid creating further damage to these important muscles and tissues in your body and you'll be on your way to a more healthy and confident postpartum transition.
What should I pack in my hospital bag? I think its one of the most popular questions seen on online forums and Facebook groups. You don't want to under pack, but you also don't want to hire a private bellhop to drag your bags all the way to labor and delivery and then postpartum after the baby arrives! Okay, so maybe that's an exaggeration, but you know what we're talking about! We've put together a list of the most common items you'll need during labor, birth, and the postpartum recovery time in the hospital. Best wishes on your upcoming birth and best wishes packing your hospital bag.
Desire some additional help planning for your upcoming birth? Be sure to ask about our birth doulas in Lexington, KY. Our doulas are well versed in helping you have the birth your desire while maintaining collaboration with your hospital and doctor or midwife! We'd love to speak with you!
Nothing is more fun that a trip to the pool, the beach, or a water park in the summer time.
Even for the strongest swimmer, water can be dangerous and safety is an important part of making a splash. If your little one is over four, it's a great time to introduce them to swimming lessons and teach them how to be safe around water. We put together some of our favorite tips and tricks to keep your family safely swimming this summer.
Smaller tots are particularly at risk for drowning and 2 inches of water are enough to be a major risk. Don't assume that your little one is safe on their own in the water just because they're comfortable swimming. While they're swimming, keep your kids within arm's distance where they can feel like they are swimming independently but are still safely within reach.
Flotation devices are important tools of the swimming experience and they can actually give your kids some swimming confidence while keeping them safely afloat. Flotation jackets, vests and suits are height and weight specific. Choose a swim vest that can buckle between the legs, covers the torso and comes up around the neck to keep their head afloat in case of emergency.
If water is too cold, children can become more at risk for hypothermia. Even on a summer day, cold water can shock our body temperature and can affect our focus in the pool. Babies need to be in warmer water and unheated pools are usually too chilly for them.
On the other end of the spectrum, hot tubs are not recommended for children under 18. Children can become overheated quickly and drown when they are overwhelmed by the jets in the tub. If you have curious tots at home, your spa should be in a fenced-in area where they can't explore the water unsupervised.
Swim lessons should be a staple in any kids life. Aqua Tots in Lexington is a great place to look for lessons for your child and the best part is, they begin at 4 months old! With a 5 star rating on Facebook, we trust parents and families of the bluegrass to know where to take kids for this important life skill.
The recent CDC statement pertaining to placenta encapsulation hit the press and the news is littered right now with the story of a baby becoming sick, potentially from the capsules consumed by the mother. Unfortunately, we've been waiting for the mistakes of others to occur and have been preparing in the best way we know how.
I was resistant to the idea of placenta encapsulation and was leery of offering it in our community. Once clients began asking about it, I made the decision to begin my quest for a program that would meet strict criteria. I found that in Placenta Prep, a two day intensive course developed by Deb Pocica, an expert in placentas. I knew that she had created this program out of a desire to bring strict standards to a service that seriously lacked them. Her curriculum exuded safety and protocols and I took the leap and added the service to The Birth Haven.
So why have we been cautiously awaiting someone getting sick from encapsulation? Without any real guidelines, encapsulators are learning from youtube, buying some equipment, and setting up business. Without any true training nor any understanding of blood borne pathogens, contamination, transporting organs and more, danger has always lurked. When the CDC statement was released, I was actually happy. That may sound strange, but I knew it would bring to light how incredible our standards are and why we have them. That being said, I think it's important for you, the potential consumer to understand them as well. When reading through the CDC statement, I saw the following things:
1.) The encapsulator is unknown. We have no idea if this person was properly trained or trained at all.
2.) We know the encapsulator transported someone else's organ and don't know what happened during transport.
3.) We know that the placenta was taken to an undisclosed location and encapsulated there
4.) We know that the placenta was sliced raw and dehydrated on low heat.
5.) We know the placenta was delivered back to the client for consumption and GBS was found in the capsules even though the mother had tested negative before and after the birth..
So what are Placenta Prep guidelines?
Postpartum Placenta Specialists are trained in person and not online. They are required to have hands on training and also have continuous support throughout the certification process and beyond. They must abide by strict guidelines and become certified in blood borne pathogens.
They are never to transport someones organ at any point. Our clients are required to transport, maintain the placenta on ice and move it to the refrigerator or freezer based on the time frame for encapsulation. If the placenta is left in a hot car, the family forgets ice, the placenta is taken to pathology, or there is a uterine infection during labor, we cannot and will not encapsulate it.
Each and every placenta encapsulated by a Placenta Prep trained/certified specialist is done in the clients home and never at an undisclosed location. This prevents foreign bacteria from being in the workspace from children, animals, and an potentially unsanitary preparers home. It reminds me of potlucks and not knowing what the kitchen of the preparer looks like. Scary huh? All surfaces are prepped and cleaned as per OSHA guidelines and the process is started and finished in the clients home. Some liken us to a HAZMAT crew if they happen to be present during the process because of our head to toe coverings, attention to detail, and strict and necessary guidelines. Bleach soaks are also used on all equipment to eliminate cross contamination from one placenta to the next as per OSHA guidelines.
The raw method of encapsulation has been a topic of discussion for quite sometime. One camp says its not safe at all while others proclaim its safety and a persons choice to choose how they wants their placenta encapsulated. We will never apologize for taking that choice away from someone because we know the risks associated with encapsulating raw. Each placenta we encapsulate is done so using the Traditional method which includes steaming the product for 8-12 minutes and then placing it on a dehydrator at 165 degrees overnight. When someone encapsulates using the raw method, it creates a danger zone (food kept at 40-140 degrees). Food handlers know this danger zone all too well and we abide by those strict protocols. Raw encapsulation allows raw meat product(the placenta) to sit in the danger zone for hours, making it ripe for bacteria growth.
Since the placenta never leaves the sight of the client, it eliminates the last risk. Our clients know they are consuming their own placenta and not that of someone else. There is simply no way a mistake can be made and we are grateful for that security. This isn't like consuming Grandma's potato salad after all.
The Birth Haven supports your desires to encapsulate or to not. We value your personal research and commitment to your personal safety just like we value our own commitment to provide the safest standards possible for encapsulation services. Have more questions? Please let us know!
For additional reading on this subject check out the following:
If you ask a new mom about her sleep habits,
she might just laugh at you.
It's not her fault she's just tired.
Sleep deprivation is a very real phase of postpartum life, and a good night's sleep can seem like a distant memory. You might be one of the lucky ones if your newborn is snoozing through the night, but things could change a few months later.
Every baby is different and their sleep habits tend to change as they develop, which usually means less sleep for parents during these growth spurts.
Overtired or sleep deprived parents are usually more at risk for lowered immune systems and in some cases postpartum depression and anxiety. When we sleep we're actually going through two phases of sleep; dream sleep or non REM "deep sleep." Quality sleep is a good balance of both and in the first few months with a new baby, there's certainly no balance going on.
Sleep deprivation can take a toll on emotional health and even weigh heavy on your relationships at home. Not only can sleepless nights leave you exhausted, you can experience some physical pains, tension headaches and even stress on your breast milk supply.
Why won't my little one sleep?!
Newborns tend to sleep for 4 hours or less at a time, waking up frequently throughout the night. When parents wake up for their shift of baby care, they start the sleep cycle from scratch and keeps them from getting to the "deep sleep" stage they need to actually feel rested.
How to Get Better Sleep
Believe it or not, it is actually possible to get a decent night's sleep or at the very least you can catch up on some precious Z's.
During the night, trade off night feedings with your partner so you can each get a guaranteed few hours of sleep through the night or better yet, hire a Postpartum & Infant Care Doula to do the waking for you. Catching a nap on the weekends or during the day while your baby naps will also help you feel recharged after a long night. Try not to get too many naps to avoid oversleeping. Oversleeping can sometimes make you feel worse than getting no sleep at all and your natural rhythm will be thrown off at nighttime.
Avoid taking in too much caffeine, it might actually do more harm than good. Take in some power-foods that give you sustainable energy without any jitters or dehydration. Almonds are just some of the great snacks for sleepy moms in need of a pick me up
Long story short, sleepless nights might not be avoidable but we can sure make the best of them when we know what to expect.
Your doula can help get your baby on a sleep schedule that works for you, helping you get more sleep and giving your baby a good foundation for self soothing. We're here to help and just a phone call away!
Choosing care for your infant is one of the most difficult decisions a new parent can make. The options are vast, so how do you decide what is best for you and your baby? Should you pick a Night nanny, nanny, Infant Care Specialist, Postpartum and Infant Care Doula, Baby Nurse or babysitter? It's easy to get overwhelmed by options, pricing, and packages. Here are a few pointers from the experts to help you as you move through this important process.
References: Do they have them and are they good?
Previous clients should rave about the services online and in person. A willingness to provide written statements or phone referrals is essential to knowing you are receiving optimal care from a tried and true resource in the community.
Our Postpartum and Infant Care Doulas come highly recommended from clients all over the Bluegrass. Just ask, and we can obtain the most current references possible. Remember, this isn't our hobby, this is our profession and it shows! (We maintain confidentiality of all clients and therefore require express permission from them share referrals.)
Does the price fit the service?
$15 is what a teenaged babysitter charges and most families are not trusting their newborns to a sitter, especially overnight. Be sure to access credentials or vet the company through referrals before trusting your precious cargo to just anyone. Our infant care specialist doulas are vetted, certified by a professional organization, must complete continuing education to stay up to date, are insured, and come with the highest recommendations from our community. We can guarantee that our price will never be below standards of our profession-- believe us, we're worth it though!
Does the company stand completely behind their providers?
If a finders fee is the cost of doing business, that means the owner doesn't have a vested interest in what occurs after placement. Our experts are contracted on a regular and ongoing basis and work is contractually bound for a term of service. As such, the owner has an active role in the practices, continuing education, and certifications of the individuals working for you and caring for your little one. We stand behind each of our experts as do each family they have served. Members of our infant care team love what they do and it shows!
Night nurse vs Postpartum and Infant Care Doulas vs Nanny?
Night nurses must have a nursing background and may or may not be active in their role within a hospital setting or outpatient care. Many provide out of hospital services for a variety of patients and do newborn care on the side. Night nurses are skilled in physical care of the infant, but do not have the added expertise of caring for the family unit, providing sleep shaping guidance, lactation assistance for those breastfeeding, have a clear understanding of perinatal and postpartum mood disorders, and typically end services by the 6th week.
Postpartum and Infant Care Doulas care for the entire family unit. They are trained specifically for newborn care and are current with all AAP guidelines. As we've stated, newborns and parents are our specialty and we wouldn't have it any other way. Our doulas act as "nanny's" as the roles are not much different other than our additional expertise in newborn care and the care of family unit. Our services don't stop at 1 month, 6 week, or even a year unless you're ready. Our Doulas are available throughout your parenting journey!
Sill having trouble deciding what is best for your family? Lexington's most trusted Newborn Care Team is available for phone consults as well as in person interviews. Give us a call and we are happy to talk through your options as you come to a decision that best suits you and your newest family member. Whether you need extra sleep, guidance on feeding strategies, a listening ear, or help when going back to work, The Birth Haven has all of your needs covered with your specific goals in mind.
With our No Child Wet Behind fundraiser right around the corner, we're gearing up to support our friends and neighbors.
Diaper need is real and it affects one in 3 households in every community.
We're gathering at Coldstream Park with our families and friends to raise money and collect packs of disposable diapers for our inaugural diaper drive event. Whether you're registering to run the 5K or just stopping by with diapers in hand to enjoy the local vendors and activities, it's sure to be a great day of fun for an amazing cause.
All our collections benefit The Nest in Lexington, Kentucky. This center is a safe haven for families that are in need of some physical and emotional assistance and resources. Having access to clean diapers through the center gives parents the opportunity to live healthier and more independent lifestyles as they break away from the negative cycle of diaper need.
Donations and proceeds from our event is distributed right back into our community through The Nest's program and the support that they bring to local families in need.
Our Sponsorship and Vendors
We're excited to join forces with some of Lexington's best to create an incredible day of family fun to enjoy. Triple Crown Chiropractic is one of the great vendors that we'll have the pleasure of teaming up with to spread the word and resources for chiropractic care from infancy straight through adulthood.
Anna Cox one of our favorite LuLaRoe distributers will also be at the event with some of the season's newest styles and patterns. You know we'll be taking the opportunity to stock up on a few new pairs of these beauties to keep us inspired all summer long.
One of Lexington's parks that is near and dear to our hearts is the beautiful biking and hiking trails of Coldstream Park. We're looking forward to the springtime views around the park where there's plenty of shade to enjoy for a picnic or a nap for your little 5K runners.
Baby Moon is also one of our sponsors and will be welcoming expectant parents to a free prenatal yoga session on the green. Bring your own blanket or yoga mat and a pack of diapers as your suggested donation for the cause. Baby Moon's professional yoga team can help you banish that pregnancy fatigue with a gentle and relaxing yoga session in the fresh, spring air.
Can't make it to our No Child Wet Behind Fundraiser?
We've added some new drop off locations locally for families to drop off packs of disposable diapers over the next few months. Even if you can't make it on May 21st at 2:00pm, your diaper donations are always welcome at The Birth Haven and our friendly drop off locations.
We're looking forward to the big day, have you gotten your teams together yet?
Every day, families in our community struggle to provide baby care items to keep them happy and healthy.
Diaper need affects one in three families, creating a very real need in our community.
Disposable diapers are actually more expensive at corner stores and pharmacies in low income areas, costing a family over $80 each month to outfit their baby in clean disposable diapers. Stretching the time between changing can create serious health risks for children and their families and severely damaging the quality of life for many infants.
No Child Wet Behind sets out to change these statistics, improving the life of babies, infants and toddlers one fresh diaper at a time.
We're teaming up with sponsors to benefit The Nest, a local center for women, children and families in need.
In the 1970s, Lexington combined the Lexington Child Abuse Council and the Women’s Center of Central Kentucky to create The Nest. This organization provides resources and education that families in crisis need to live healthier and independent lifestyles. They offer women in the Lexington area childcare, crisis management, domestic violence counseling and advocacy, parent education and support. Our No Child Wet Behind fundraiser and 5K event hopes to raise money and diapers for this amazing organization in our community.
How to Get Involved
Does this call to action speak to you?
There's tons of ways to help benefit our No Child Wet Behind Event this year. Whether you're taking part in the race, donating money or diapers to our drive or just spreading the word about the cause you are doing your part to make a real difference in the lives of families right here in Lexington. Raising awareness is the first step and taking action is the second. No matter how big or small your step is, you are making the world of difference for a family that needs your compassion and more importantly, your help.
Benefits of Sponsorship
We're fortunate to have a list of sponsorship that continues to grow as the event gets bigger. This annual 5K event draws crowds from surrounding cities and even states as we band together for this incredible cause. Baby Moon and our other generous sponsors are connecting with local families through this event, networking with other brands that share similar values and coverage on Lex18 News May 12th throughout the event. Our sponsors help us make the No Child Wet Behind incredibly successful for not only our beneficiaries but to the community that keeps our this event a successful contribution to our friends, family and neighbors.
With this event right around the corner, we call on our community to help us make a change for families in our area.
Support in whatever capacity helps our children stay healthy and gives families a fighting chance to transcend the limitations of poverty and the social problem of diaper need. Join us at our 5K and support this event however you can and help us make an amazing difference.