Pregnancy Is Literally As Hard As An Endurance Sport

https://www.scarymommy.com/pregnancy-hard-endurance-sport

As it turns out, I am closer to an endurance athlete than I ever imagined. That’s not my opinion, that’s what six researchers found in a study published by Duke University that focused on finding a limit to human endurance. Apparently and shockingly, pregnant and lactating women live in the limit zone. What the what?!?

(Click link above to read the article)

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)

Give bicarbonate to pregnant women to ease delivery – new study

Fascinating!

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/2018/01/17/give-bicarbonate-pregnant-women-ease-delivery-new-study/

Women struggling in labour should be given bicarbonate of soda to boost their chances of a safe and natural birth, a study suggests.

British researchers say the commonly available chemical, given in drink form, rectifies acidity around the womb and could significantly reduce the number of women forced to undergo emergency caesarean sections.

(click link to read about this new study)

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)

Evidence on Eating Dates to Start Labor

https://evidencebasedbirth.com/evidence-eating-dates-to-start-labor/

This has been a hot topic in the doula world for a while.

(Click link above to watch the video on EBB website regarding dates and labor!)

In today’s Q & A, part of our Natural Induction Series, we’re going to talk about eating the date fruit or Phoenix dactylifera to induce labor naturally. The date fruit contains a high percentage of carbohydrates and fats and also includes 15 different types of salts and minerals, proteins and vitamins, such as riboflavin, thiamine, biotin, folic acid, and ascorbic acid. Some Islamic scholars interpret verses in the Quran to mean that dates are one of the best foods to eat for childbirth. There have been three smaller randomized control trials on eating dates to induce labor and one observational study that asked women about how often they eat dates to induce labor.

In this video, you will learn:

  • About the studies that have been conducted on eating date fruit to find out whether it can improve birth outcomes with:

    • Cervical ripening
    • The use of labor induction/augmentation with oxytocin
    • Postpartum blood loss
  • If eating date fruit during pregnancy is safe

 

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)

Can Mental Illness Be Prevented In The Womb?

http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2016/10/22/498843225/can-mental-illness-be-prevented-in-the-womb

(click link above to read on npr.org)

Every day in the United States, millions of expectant mothers take a prenatal vitamin on the advice of their doctor.

The counsel typically comes with physical health in mind: folic acid to help avoid fetal spinal cord problems; iodine to spur healthy brain development; calcium to be bound like molecular Legos into diminutive baby bones.

But what about a child’s future mental health? Questions about whether ADHD might arise a few years down the road or whether schizophrenia could crop up in young adulthood tend to be overshadowed by more immediate parental anxieties. As a friend with a newborn daughter recently fretted over lunch, “I’m just trying not to drop her!”

Yet much as pediatricians administer childhood vaccines to guard against future infections, some psychiatrists now are thinking about how to shift their treatment-centric discipline toward one that also deals in early prevention.

In 2013, University of Colorado psychiatrist Robert Freedman and colleagues recruited 100 healthy, pregnant women from greater Denver to study whether giving the B vitamin choline during pregnancy would enhance brain growth in the developing fetus.

(click link at top to continue reading)