The Colic Survival Guide

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Her newborn daughter was the perfect baby — for a week and a half. Then the screaming started. “She just cried nonstop, hours upon hours, pretty much all day,” Jenn Borst of Danbury, Connecticut, recalls with a shudder. “There was barely anything that would soothe her.” The wailing became a way of life for Borst, her husband and even her in-laws, who moved in temporarily to help. They took turns holding, rocking and soothing little Sydney around the clock. “The worst time was from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. We used to go in 15-minute shifts because she would just scream,” Borst says.

A pediatrician diagnosed Sydney with colic at 6 weeks...

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Preemie Development

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When I ballooned with pre-eclampsia 31 weeks into my second pregnancy, I thought my ob-gyn might prescribe daily periods of bed rest. Instead, he shocked me by saying: “We have to get that baby out — soon!”I panicked. We hadn’t moved our 2-year-old, Mathilda, out of her crib yet. We hadn’t discussed names or bought baby clothes. Damn it, I was in the middle of several writing assignments — I wasn’t ready to have a baby!

Ready or not, my son AJ was delivered, via C-section, the next afternoon. He weighed in at just 3 pounds 6 ounces and fit neatly into my husband Tony’s hand. Not that we got to hold him at first...

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Safe Baby Swaddling Tips

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Wrapping your wee one like a tiny burrito can soothe cries and help induce sleep, but it may not be the safest solution. Why? Because it’s actually quite common for newborns to have hip instability (thanks to mom’s hormones that relax ligaments). Tight swaddling around the hips can exacerbate the condition or even lead to hip dysplasia, where the hips are no longer centered in the socket.

“Hip dysplasia is actually the most common abnormality in newborns,” says Charles Price M.D., a pediatric orthopedic surgeon and director of the International Hip Dysplasia Institute...

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Baby Massage Techniques

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  • We’ve simplified baby massage into six simple strokes. Perform each one slowly, for about a minute, using moderate pressure applied with the pads of your fingers, not the entire palm of your hand. Keep your baby cozy by turning up the heat in the room and using a soft towel to cover her exposed skin.

    Before you get started, make sure you have the following gear nearby:

    • A comfortable flat surface covered by a blanket or a mat
    • A small amount of baby oil (olive oil works well, too)
    • Tissues or paper towels to wipe up excess oil
    • A soft towel or blanket to cover your baby
    • A pacifier, if it’s calming for your little one
    • Low ...
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1 Mom, 3 Birth Stories: Epidural, C-Section & VBAC

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When I was pregnant, I had an idea of what the perfect birth looked like. We took the classes. We read the books. We practiced the meditation.

Actually giving birth is so very different from hearing about it in class, reading about it in a book, and visualizing it in your mind. As parents, we learn to make the best with the gifts given to us. Looking back on each of my three, very different births, I feel fortunate to have experienced a vaginal delivery with an epidural, a C-section and an unmediated VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean).

I am often asked, “Which was the easiest?” The honest truth is that each labor and d...

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Postpartum Depression Linked to Pain During Childbirth

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While postpartum depression occurs for a variety of reasons, not many studies have tried to link pain during childbirth with the incidence of postpartum depression. A recent studypublished in Anesthesia & Analgesia says a link exists.

The researchers studied 214 women, 107 of whom received an epidural during labor per the patient’s request. Each of the 214 women were followed through six weeks postpartum. Researchers found that 14 percent of women who had the epidural had postpartum depression and 34.6 percent of women who didn’t have the epidural had postpartum depression...

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U.K. Tells Second-Time Mums Giving Birth at Home is Safe

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Giving birth at home will become the norm in the United Kingdom if the country’s National Health Service has its way. The NHS says home birth is “just as safe” as a hospital birth for second-time moms and as safe as a “small midwife-led unit” for first-time mothers. Why the change, and is the United States going to follow suit?

The sudden shift in the NHS’s recommendation may stem from the conditions in the obstetrics wards of British hospitals. In May, David Richmond, president of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, said that up to 300 babies a year are dying because of to NHS staff shortages...

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Early Elective Deliveries, Especially C-Sections, Are on the Rise

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A study by the University of Minnesota School of Public Health, which looked at millions of births in the United States in the last 15 years, found that nearly one in 25 babies were born earlier than medically needed through elective cesarean sections and elective induced labor.

“Our study showed that early elective deliveries are making up between 3 and 4 percent of U.S. births each year,” says Katy B. Kozhimannil, a researcher at the school.

Three to 4 percent of births might seem like a small number, but with nearly 4 million babies born in the United States each year, it adds up to about 140,000 babies...

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