A few years we did some research into the impact of baby care books that suggest parents should put their baby in a strict routine. We were particularly interested in whether parents felt these books worked, how they made parents feel and if they impacted upon interactions with their baby.
As part of this we found that some books were telling parents not to always respond to their baby or to reduce the interactions that they had with them.
We found that about a quarter of parents said that the books led them to delay responding to their baby when they cried or when their baby indicated they needed something.
Around one in six parents also said that the information led to them not always picking up or cuddling their baby when they wanted to.
Now, if a parent makes an informed decision that they wanted to try this approach for whatever reason with their baby that is one thing. But, many of the parents who attempted to do this were then saying that they felt terrible for doing so. Trying to ignore and avoid their baby’s cries left them feeling anxious and guilty. When many of them invariably ‘cracked’ and went to their baby, they then felt like failures.
Babies are pretty much tiny helpless mammals. They are born needing everything done for them and have a huge survival instinct to stay close to you.
When they cry, it’s their main way of communication. They cry when they need something – whether that is food, comfort, connection or simply ‘it’s a bit scary on my own’. They’re incapable of trying to ‘manipulate’ or to drag you out of bed simply for kicks.
So much research shows that responding to babies helps them feel more secure and confident. It teaches them that when they need something, their needs will be met. And that is a very good thing in helping them see the world as a good place.
Never, ever feel bad for responding to your baby. Never let a book override your instincts. No one lies on their death bed going ‘you know what, I really wish I hadn’t cuddled my baby so much’. You are the expert in your baby. Listen to you.
Forward leaning inversion is fantastic move that encourages pelvic alignment through strengthening the ligaments to align. Please don’t try this if you have raised blood pressure, you’ve been told you have increased amniotic fluid, if this is painful, or if you feel dizzy as going upside down may not help!
This video is fantastic for demonstrating! #all4birth #optimisingphysiology #optimisinganatomy
Posted @withregram • @mummapod ⭐FOREWARD LEANING INVERSION ⭐
In short, it is a technique that creates room in the lower uterus. The baby can then use that space—with the natural pull of gravity—to snuggle into a more ideal position for birth
Kneeling afterward also allows temporarily lengthened ligaments to align the uterus with the pelvis. The cervix may become less tipped or tight and then be able to let the baby’s head position better, and the cervix to dilate in labor more easily.
Please be care when attempting this technique. Don’t drop into place. Move slow and be controlled to prevent falls and protect your placenta.
You can do Forward-leaning Inversion in early labor as your daily inversion, but if labor hurts or lasts longer than expected, then do another Forward-leaning Inversion at that point.
This technique is particularly helpful for a tight or swollen cervix.
With thanks to the amazing @spinningbabies
And @biomechanics_for_birth for their amazing techniques assisting with labour dystocia.
Sharing one of our new articles! The first trimester is a time in pregnancy where so many changes, and in fact baby grows the most in this time than any other period in pregnancy! Finding out you're pregnant can bring many questions and feelings, whether it was a planned or unplanned pregnancy. Here at All4Birth, we hope to guide you through preconception, pregnancy, labour and into parenthood and support you in this time of your life!
Doula and yogabirth teacher @natalie_meddingsdoula has authored a 4-part article series about the first fortnight following the birth of your baby on All4Birth.
"There may be uncertainty surrounding this period, but one big definite is the need to take care of yourself. The baby will be one hundred per cent consuming in those first weeks, so if you are to be properly rested and nourished, you’ll need help. A partner can support to a point, but an extra pair of hands or someone with experience around, like a doula, or reliable relative, will be a gamechanger".
Check out part 2 of the series 'The first fortnight; make yourself a priority' by clicking the link in our Linktree (in our bio).
Black communities in London are more likely to breathe illegal levels of air pollution than White or Asian ones.
Pregnant women exposed to air pollution are more likely to have children who are premature, underweight or stillborn and to have reduced live birth rate and maternal depressive symptoms.
The first-ever research study has launched today that will speak directly to black pregnant women and mothers living in London boroughs to determine black mothers’ knowledge, behaviours and attitudes to air pollution.
Thanks to @globalblackmaternalhealth and @impactonurbanhealth
Click on the link in our stories tab to take part!
The first trimester can be such a lonely time, not necessarily wanting to shout from the rooftops, whilst also not having a lot of energy, feeling terrible day to day, all whilst people don't know what is going on! Read Annie’s real life story on her experience of the first trimester! We’ll be sharing a new blog post later this week with first trimester tips and tricks!
Click the link in our story to read! 📲 #all4birth #firsttrimester #birthing #firstpregnancy...
Repost 👉🏽 I want to make some space today for the mothers who struggle with some pretty complex feelings about motherhood.
Let me be absolutely clear: mothers who are ambivalent love their children. But they also find many aspects of parenting really difficult, boring, frustrating, unfulfilling or unenjoyable.
Nothing is enjoyable 100% of the time. If you don’t love every minute, feel fulfilled by every aspect of motherhood, or think that this is your sole life’s purpose – you’re not weird or abnormal or less of a mother.
Kids can be really annoying sometimes. There. I said it. Parenting is a really tough gig and sometimes the days are not just long, but reaaaalllllly long.
There is so much pressure to demonstrate contentment in motherhood. To show that you love every second. To seem fulfilled and happy. But if you think about it, for many people it’s a completely different role. Your day looks entirely different. You have a little human making unbelievable demands of you day and night. You’re exhausted. Your other relationships are affected. If you don’t love it all, you’re normal.
One of the most helpful things you can do if you struggle with this is to find other people who are willing to be honest about it. One of the most toxic parts of maternal ambivalence is the sense of shame that often accompanies it. We can help each other by normalising some of these complex and sometimes difficult feelings.
I hereby invite you to go forth and be honest – get it off your chests, and find a sense of solidarity within the other incredible and ambivalent mothers in this community.
🌿 Aromatherapy is a simple, effective, non-intrusive, low-cost and completely non-pharmacological option to consider for managing labour and potentially prevent pain occurring. Midwife Alex Green has written about the use of aromatherapy in childbirth in the All4Birth article 'Aromatheraphy in Childbirth':
"There are a few studies that suggest that massage is the component that is more effective at relieving anxiety, rather than the properties in the oil. Massage is definitely proven to heat the skin, which can alleviate pain. This also allows quicker absorption of the oils, so they have the potential to work quicker. Therefore, it may be wise to prioritise massage as the mode of transmission, as you are most likely to achieve the desired outcome".
Did you use aromatherapy in your pregnancy and/or labour? How did you find it? Would you want to write about your experience for All4Birth?
💻📱To read the full article click the link in our bio!
REPOST 👉🏽 @babybuddyapp Remembering what to do and when throughout pregnancy and parenthood isn't easy - that's where Baby Buddy comes in!
Baby Buddy is the only free app in the UK that provides personalised daily snippets of information tailored to what stage you’re at during pregnancy or with your baby.
If you’re a parent or parent-to-be, try out our app now by heading to our bio 👆
#FeatureFriday #PregnancyApp #BabyBuddy #Parenthood #MumToBe #DadToBe #Pregnancy #PregnancyFeelings #BabyMilestones #ParenthoodApp #PregnancyInfo #ParentingSupport #Baby...
Resharing this fantastic real from @the_holistic_midwife (originally from @the_bushey_midwife)
Repost from @the_bushey_midwife 👇👇👇
“The 𝗽𝗵𝘆𝘀𝗶𝗼𝗹𝗼𝗴𝘆 𝗼𝗳 𝗯𝗶𝗿𝘁𝗵 is miraculous!
Before labour starts the cervix is about 2cm long, firm in consistency, thick, tightly closed and points towards the person’s spine.
During the early phase of the first stage of labour, irregular, mild and short lasting contractions make the cervix start to soften, shorten, thin and open up to about 4cm.
During the active phase of the first stage of labour, strong, regular contractions make the cervix open up completely to about 10cm when it is classed as being fully dilated.
Baby’s head then descends down into the vagina during the second stage of labour, encountering resistance of the pelvic floor and then extending upwards under the pubic bone and pubic arch.
As baby continues to descend, their head begins to emerge from the vagina, also known as crowning. The perineum slips over the nose, mouth and chin and then their head is fully born.
There is now an alignment of the shoulders with the head as baby rotates internally, also known as restitution. After this the body is born and baby can be passed to the birthing person!” - @the_bushey_midwife...
Yoga in pregnancy has so many benefits and promotes a whole-system, holistic approach to your pregnancy. It includes specially adapted postures and movements, breathing awareness and mindful relaxation techniques, and has many benefits - from coping with common aches and pains of pregnancy, to developing mindful movement and breath awareness.
To find out more, head over to our article written by @caitlinheavey_yogabirth. Caitlin introduces us to yoga in pregnancy and its many benefits - the link is in our story📲
This is such a useful #repost from @birthmode showing different birth positions in a hospital setting.
UFO is upward, forward & open, which helps your baby descend by utilising gravity & keeping the pelvis as open as possible. As well as helping your baby different positions also help you; changing position can reduce feelings of pain or strain in a particular area, they give you a feeling of control rather than feeling passive & they can even help build oxytocin ❤️ ---
𝐔𝐏𝐑𝐈𝐆𝐇𝐓 𝐅𝐎𝐑𝗪𝐀𝐑𝐃𝐒 𝐎𝐏𝐄𝐍
Did you know that getting into certain positions can open the pelvis by 28%
During labour this is important as it creates more space for your baby to move into a good position and through the pelvis. This makes giving birth easier!
Gravity is on your side, helping your baby move downwards more easily
Leaning forwards moves the sacrum and coccyx out of the way creating more space
Find positions that will help to open the pelvis at the part where your baby is at that time
𝐆𝐞𝐭 𝐨𝐟𝐟 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐛𝐞𝐝
More often than not a bed is in the centre of a birthing room at a hospital. This is usually for easy access and if you require monitoring in labour, means there is more space around the bed for the equipment.
But contrary to popular belief 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐝𝐨𝐧’𝐭 𝐚𝐜𝐭𝐮𝐚𝐥𝐥𝐲 𝐧𝐞𝐞𝐝 𝐭𝐨 𝐠𝐢𝐯𝐞 𝐛𝐢𝐫𝐭𝐡 𝐥𝐲𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐨𝐧 𝐚 𝐛𝐞𝐝!! 𝐘𝐨𝐮 𝐂𝐀𝐍 𝐦𝐨𝐯𝐞 𝐚𝐫𝐨𝐮𝐧𝐝 𝐲𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐛𝐢𝐫𝐭𝐡𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐫𝐨𝐨𝐦! Even if your baby’s heart rate needs continuous monitoring, even with an epidural! However, if you want or need to be on the bed use it to support you in U.FO positions.
Here are some ideas of how to achieve U.F.O in a Labour Ward room:
-Wireless CTG Monitoring
-Utilise all the positions the bed can get into
‘Throne’ is a favourite amongst us Midwives! Put it up to stand and lean against it, all fours over the top or bottom of the bed
Any questions? 👇🏻
#activebirth #hypnobirthing #midwife #calmbirth #labourward #pregnancy #birth #prenatalyoga #birthmode #doula #antenatalpreparation #birthcoach #pelvis #uprightforwardsopen
This is great! Repost 👉🏽 @thepositivebirthcompany Ever wondered how big your cervix *actually* gets during labour? 😳 Well, here's the difference between 1cm (a pistachio) and 10cm (a tub of ice cream) 🤩
Your cervix dilates to 10cm during the first stage (or the up stage) of labour - this is what your surges (contractions) are doing! If you request, or consent to, an exam during labour, this is what the Midwife is checking for - to see how dilated your cervix is! Once you reach 10cm you'll be fully dilated and will transition into the second (or down stage) of labour and your body will begin pushing your baby out 👊
Your body is AMAZING. It was MADE to do this! 👏👏
🎥 ~ @anna_thenurse
[Video description: A cervical dilation chart is displayed, a pistachio is placed on the 1cm point and a tub of ice cream is placed on the 10cm point.]
"I was up and down having little ‘niggles’ and tried desperately to sleep. By 2.30am my husband woke to me listening to my tapes and doing my breathing exercises. ‘You’re in labour’ he said, and I was adamant that I wasn’t as I felt so calm and relaxed, and didn’t feel any pain".
The excerpt above is taken from Angharad's Real Life Story on the All4Birth website.
Did you try hypnobirthing? Or is it something you’d be interested in learning more about?
💻📱 To read the full Real Life Story and the accompanying article 'Hypnobirthing' by @sophiefletcher_author, click the link in our story!
Tea is a great way to naturally support your body and mind when you are preparing for labour. It can be such a daunting time, that settling down to relax with a cup of delicious tea, can do wonders for your nerves, but more importantly, the right herbs and flowers can support you even more than this.
Abbie, one of our digital leads at @all4birth is looking forward to her time to start sipping on some @hotteamama “the final push” later on in her pregnancy ☕️
In one of our latest articles, Bethan Thomas, founder of @hotteamama, takes a look at how tea can naturally support you with birth preparation in the third trimester - from raspberry leaf to calming chamomile and lavender.
You can read this interesting article by clicking the link in our story!