Why doctors are so bad at predicting pregnancy due dates

https://www.vox.com/2018/6/9/17435322/pregnancy-due-date-test-premature-birth

Only 4 percent of women give birth on their estimated delivery date. That’s because of the natural variation in how long it takes a baby to grow and because of our limited ability to predict due dates.

Medicine, it turns out, is surprisingly bad at measuring the precise age of a fetus or how far along a woman is into her pregnancy.

Having concrete information about a baby’s “gestational age” wouldn’t just help moms plan their pregnancies. It would also help doctors better determine whether a fetus is developing as it should, and what extra care may be needed for safer births. Doctors also have no way of accurately predicting whether a baby might arrive too early — a leading cause of infant death globally.

(Click link at top to read on vox.com)

It’s science: Pregnancy can be contagious among friends

https://www.mother.ly/news/its-science-pregnancy-can-be-contagious-among-friends

If it baby announcements seem to come all at once from a close group of friends, research shows there may be a reason: Pregnancy can be contagious.
“A friend’s childbearing positively influences an individual’s risk of becoming a parent,” concluded the authors of a 2014 study published in the journal American Sociological Association.
For the study, the researchers analyzed data on 1,720 women who participated in the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (ADD Health) in the United States from the mid-1990s to mid-2000s. Tracking female participants who were at least 15 years old in 1995 with home interviews throughout the next decade, the researchers saw that roughly half of the women had a child by the time the final interviews were conducted in 2008 or 2009.

(Click link at top to read the studies)

Prodromal Labor 101: What It Is, What It’s Not and How to Cope

https://www.motherrisingbirth.com/2017/11/prodromal-labor-101.html

Despite prodromal labor not being mentioned in the most common pregnancy books, you’ll still hear it frequently being discussed among friends, with care providers and in online communities.  Because of this discrepancy, it makes sense that there is confusion and frustration surrounding the topic.  In this post I hope to define prodromal labor, but more importantly offer onlutions and encouragement if you find yourself experiencing this frustrating phenomenon.

The reason why prodromal labor is not mentioned in pregnancy books is because it is more commonly known as pre-labor or even misnamed as false labor.  It seems as if our birthing culture uses these three terms interchangeably – prodromal labor, pre-labor and false labor.  This is so confusing!  If this has confused me, I bet I’m not the only one wondering what’s going on.

(click link above to read on MotherRisingBirth.com, an amazing resource…)

‘Ten Things I Always Tell Pregnant Women’

https://cupofjo.com/2017/10/erica-chidi-cohen-pregnancy-advice/

A conversation with Erica Chidi Cohen feels like one big pep talk. A doula, author and co-founder of LOOM (a education hub for pregnancy and parenting in L.A.), Erica has attended more than 300 births. “You’d think after so many years I’ve had my fill of babies,” she says. “But I’m always overwhelmed by the pure joy that fills the room. It’s a beautiful thing to watch a mother and child take each other in for the first time.” Her guidebook, Nurture, comes out tomorrow, and here Erica shares 10 things she tells new mothers…

 

Solid interview with my friend Erica Chidi Cohen. Click link at top to read on cupofjo.com, and order her book Nurture on amazon.com while you’re at it! 🙂

 

Group B Streptococcus Screening For Pregnant Women ‘Not Recommended’ By National Screening Committee (In the UK)

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/group-b-streptococcus-screening_uk_58d2861ee4b0f838c62e49a4

 

Screening pregnant women for Group B streptococcus (GBS) is “not recommended” by the National Screening Committee (NSC).

About 150,000 pregnant women carry GBS each year in the UK and, in some cases, will pass the bacteria to their baby in labour.

In January 2016, a couple appealed for the pregnancy screening to be made mandatory, after their baby died from an infection that could have been prevented if caught early by a simple test.

However at the time, the NSC said the test should not be offered to all pregnant women as there was “insufficient evidence” to demonstrate that the benefits would outweigh the harms.

Now, following a further comprehensive review of the evidence, the independent screening committee has stood by the decision to not recommended a national screening programme for GBS in pregnancy.

(click link at top to read on huffingtonpost.co.uk)

How to Align Baby for an Easier, Faster Birth

http://www.mothering.com/articles/align-baby-easier-faster-birth/

(click to read)

Your baby has an active role in her birth. She must rotate and tuck, hold and kick her body in certain ways to be born.

These movements, called cardinal movements, are instinctive to babies and differ for babies in different positions. Our babies and bodies birth quickest and safest when the baby is head-down, facing the mother’s back, crown first. But, sometimes babies need help taking up the most ideal position. Breech babies have their own cardinal movements to be born safely.

Babies who are lined up optimally for birth come out faster and easier than those who aren’t positioned perfectly.

Many cesareans happen because the baby is not able to get in the best position for birth.

There are a few different pelvic shapes or types. Some pelvic shapes require that the baby take a certain, optimal position, while others can accommodate a number of different ways out. Don’t worry too much about pelvic shape unless you already know yours is unusual or your babies have trouble descending.

For many women, their babies can be born backwards (posterior), upside-down (breech), face first, or with with their head tilted a bit (ascynclitic), but it’s typically a harder or more complicated labor and birth.

Modern life has us using our body in a way that confuses or restricts the baby’s movement.
Here is what you can do during pregnancy to provide for the best chance and good alignment and faster, easier birth…

(click link above to read this helpful article)

Tips For Dads On How To Be Involved During Pregnancy

http://blog.daddyncompany.com/my-life-as-a-dad-2/tips-for-dads-on-how-to-be-involved-during-pregnancy/

Pregnancy can be a confusing and even tough time for expectant dads. There’s so much mixed emotion – they’re a melting pot of excitement, nerves, love, hopes, dreams and fears. Yet most often, there are too few opportunities for dads to channel this energy into meaningful action that helps them feel involved during pregnancy. Many report being on the fringe of their experience, feeling unimportant, lost and left to figure it all out in isolation.

In my professional experience as an expectant and new dad specialist, expectant dads are hungry for more opportunities to be more involved during pregnancy. They want it to feel more ‘real’, to feel more connected to their pregnant partner and her experience, to their baby and to their becoming dad journey and themselves as a dad.

 Dads know it’s an important time – for them, their partner, their relationship and family – and have a sense that there is more to it than they are aware. They just don’t know what they can or should do to change their experience – and it’s not their fault. We should be doing MUCH more to prepare dads for fatherhood and birth than we are!

(click to read blog on blog.daddyncompany.com)