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Tuesday, December 30, 2014


Baby names still following trends 

I recall when I was trying to conceive and experiencing miscarriage, I thought it would jinx my pregnancy if I started picking out baby names.'s hard to resist thinking about what you will call the baby that is or will be coming into your life.  Here is the top 10 list compiled by as cited by the Huffington Post:
Continuing down the popular girl names list, Madelyn has risen up to no. 10, bumping Chloe off the top 10 list. On the top 10 boys' names list, Caden and Logan have replaced Jayden and Jack. The rankings are based on the names of over 406,000 babies born in 2014 to moms registered on the BabyCenter website.
Most Popular Girl Names:
1. Sophia
2. Emma
3. Olivia
4. Ava
5. Isabella
6. Mia
7. Zoe
8. Lily
9. Emily
10. Madelyn
Most Popular Boy Names:
1. Jackson
2. Aiden
3. Liam
4. Lucas
5. Noah
6. Mason
7. Ethan
8. Caden
9. Jacob
10. Logan

Sunday, December 28, 2014


Pregnancy Over 40 and Sleep Deprivation

I remember being so tired when my daughter was a baby that I would just cry.
 Even when she slept through the night, for some reason, I couldn't fall back asleep. It was probably a combination of hormones and worry. This article talks about how new parents really do suffer sleep deprivation:

See Also: Pregnancy Over 40 (

Most adults need at least five hours' shut-eye to function prop-erly and some need eight. But almost two thirds (64%) of parents with babies and under-twos get just three-and-three-quarters hours, according to a poll for Silentnight. Over the course of two years - even accounting for regular power-naps - that means the majority are awake for 912 hours on baby duty.
Sleep expert Iftikhar Mirza said: "Lack of sleep and becoming parents goes hand in hand, but parents can help themselves by trying to get their babies into a routine early, eating healthily and taking gentle exercise to release endorphins, which should lower the risk of mood swings."


Friday, December 26, 2014


What Would You Do If You Were Told Your Unborn Baby Had Down Syndrome?

By Isla L Brookview

Let's face it - miscarriage is not a pleasant topic. Nobody wants to talk about it since it is a touchy subject so many times it is just brushed under the rug. There is a reason that expectant parents are told to wait until the three month mark before they disclose that a baby is on the way.
I have a great deal of personal experience in this area. Having suffered from recurrent miscarriages for years, I feel the pain of couples that deal with this. I have had a few chemical pregnancies around the 6 week mark, blighted ovum discovered on a 8 week ultrasound, as well as a very late miscarriage at 17.5 weeks that caused a great deal of pain and heartache.


How each person handles a miscarriage is very unique and personal no matter what stage of the pregnancy. My first miscarriage was in my second trimester and was also my first pregnancy. I kept it a secret from coworkers and most of my friends and family for the first few months. I was a naive optimist who thought that everything was going to go fine. After all - I had the usual signs of extreme morning sickness and fatigue, something my doctor assured me was a good sign that the pregnancy was progressing well.
I had just turned 35 at the time. I was often mistaken for being younger than my age so when I went for a visit to my doctor and her replacement - who didn't know me - told me not to worry about CVS testing because I was not old enough, I reminded him that I thought it was for women my age. I was told that I could get first trimester screening done as a less invasive procedure to determine any fetal abnormalities. It was a new technique done by blood tests and ultrasounds around the 11 to 13 week mark that was done at a private clinic and would cost a few hundred dollars. I wasn't sure that it was the right choice for us since I didn't feel my age either; I took care of myself and ate healthy - but thought I would go just in case.
I had the procedure at the end of my 13th week. When we were brought in to discuss the test results, my heart sunk. The genetic counselor told us we had a 1:2 chance of having a baby with Down Syndrome - or Trisomy 21 - as it is also known. Since it was now too late for a CVS test, only an amniocentesis would reveal the real results, and we would have to wait a few weeks before that could be done.
Time was going too slow for the next weeks following. I went home and researched online our test results - what the PAPA-a results and HCG ratios meant. If our baby was normal, it would have a very stunted growth pattern as indicated by the PAPP-a ratios. The baby had a nasal bone and most Trisomy 21 babies do not, so I convinced myself that everything would turn out normal. I looked through forums to find other women with results like mine. I couldn't find anyone given as poor odds as me, but I did find another woman with a 1:3 chance. We emailed each other and her amniocentesis revealed a chromosomally normal baby.
Finally - it was time for my amnio. It hurt a lot to get the procedure done, more than I expected, but by this time I was getting over my fear of needles. Because the odds of a Trisomy 21 pregnancy were so great, they sent the results to the lab for what they called a FISH test. This is basically a quick test where we only had to wait about 2 days for the results instead of a couple weeks.
The phone call from the genetic counsellor came. She said that the results came back positive for Down Syndrome since the FISH test revealed 3 copies of chromosome 21. I was in shock, never thinking that I would have a disabled child. I guessed that I was carrying a boy - something she also confirmed to be true. She explained that there were many options and that if we were to carry the baby to term, there would be almost a 50% chance that he would have heart problems. What would be the child's quality of life? Would he be healthy or in and out of the hospital? There were so many questions we had and this is a topic I never thought we would have to consider. From the data, sadly 90% of couples at the time chose to terminate the pregnancy through abortion once they discovered their baby had Trisomy 21.
During this time, we shared the news with some close friends. It was a hard thing to keep to ourselves. They mainly said the same thing - that they really didn't know what they would do if they were in our position. A couple told me they would abort. We struggled with how to handle our lives and had many discussions about the quality of the baby's life. My husband wanted to terminate the pregnancy and I wasn't sure. After all, I was a vegetarian that didn't believe in ending any person or animal's life. This was the ultimate curve ball to make to re-evaluate things.
We didn't have to make a decision in the end because it was made for us. We were advised by the doctor that there was "fetal demise". I suspected that there was something wrong because I had severe abdominal pains days prior and got checked out. An autopsy report revealed that he had a hole in his heart so never would have survived until birth. Although I was sad about the pregnancy ending, in felt a huge weight lifted as not to be put in a position to make a decision that would change my life no matter what - either I go against my husband's wishes and raise a special needs baby, or terminate the pregnancy like most people and live with tremendous guilt for a lifetime.
This late miscarriage was the worst one of all of them I have had. Perhaps having the worst experience possible miscarriage-wise first better prepared me emotionally for dealing with half a dozen more to follow. Each was painful in its own way but I would never wish my first miscarriage experience on anyone. It affected me in a way that would be hard for anyone who hasn't been through it to understand.
Like everyone who has personal experience having had a miscarriage or a partner who has, it is heartbreaking because you develop hopes and dreams of how your unborn child will turn out. I think it is human nature to get attached no matter what stage of pregnancy you are at, and people do not know the right thing to say when it happens a lot of the time. It makes others uncomfortable and they would rather just not bring up the topic at all - which can sometimes be worse to not acknowledge the baby in a way the parents would like. It is a touchy subject, but I personally feel having gone through it, the best response I got was a simple card and flowers to say I'm sorry, and it was just left at that with nothing else needing to be said.
All I can say now is that the tragedies I endured make me look at my children I had years later with such gratitude and appreciation.
Visit my site to see articles like this post as well as others to do with conception, pregnancy, and eventually becoming a parent.
Article Source:

Thursday, December 18, 2014


Pregnancy Over 40 - Don't Take The Baby Away After Birth

Most of us assume that everything the hospital does is good for our baby.
But what about whisking the baby off immediately after birth?  When I had my daughter they did take her for a few minutes because she had a slight problem breathing and they blew a little oxygen in her face.  It resolved itself and they cleaned her up and gave her back to me.   According to this article, taking the baby away may create some unnecessary stress. Read more:

It is standard practice in a hospital setting, particularly among Western cultures, to separate mothers and their newborns. Separation is also common for babies under medical distress or premature babies, who may be placed in an incubator. In addition, the American Academy of Pediatrics specifically recommends against co-sleeping with an infant, due to its association with Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, or SIDS.


Humans are the only mammals who practice such maternal-neonate separation, but its physiological impact on the baby has been unknown until now. Researchers measured heart rate variability in 2-day-old sleeping babies for one hour each during skin-to-skin contact with mother and alone in a cot next to mother's bed. Neonatal autonomic activity was 176% higher and quiet sleep 86% lower during maternal separation compared to skin-to-skin contact.

Dr. John Krystal, Editor of Biological Psychiatry, commented on the study's findings: "This paper highlights the profound impact of maternal separation on the infant. We knew that this was stressful, but the current study suggests that this is major physiologic stressor for the infant."


Thursday, December 04, 2014


When Pregnant, Avoid Radiation As Much As Possible

I put all of my routine dental visits on hold while I was pregnant. First of all, my gag reflex was so strong, I probably would have vomited and second of all, I absolutely didn't want any exposure to radiation. According to this article, that may have been a wise choice. Read more:


Researchers studied about 4,500 women. They found women who had dental X-rays were more likely to have babies weighing less than five pounds. Specialists seem surprised by the fact since the amount of radiation pregnant women were exposed to was very low and generally thought to be incapable of inducing observable health effects.

Previous studies show young women who are exposed to radiation for spine problems before getting pregnant also have an increased risk of having a low-birth weight baby.


Tuesday, December 02, 2014


Pregnancy Over 40, Many Older Women Raise Children Or Grandchildren

 I've often said I'm old enough to be my daughter's grandma especially since I have some friends my age with grandkids older than her.
 But what about kids who really do have their grandma raising them? Bless these grandmas who step up to the plate and raise their grandchildren. I thought of this when I was at my daughter's preschool a couple of years ago. She had a little friend at her school who I found out lost her mother. I don't know under what circumstances, but the grandmother told me her daughter passed away. I always saw this little girl with her father and grandmother and I assumed the mother was always working or had some kind of crazy schedule. It never dawned on me that she had died. Another little boy has his great grandmother raising him (yes, I said great grandmother) Again, it's not my place to delve into their personal stories, but it certainly does make you wonder.

People frequently pass judgement on women over 40 who have babies...then you see these grandmas who are raising these very young children. It puts it all into perspective - us women are capable of amazing things at any age.

Sunday, November 30, 2014


Need some encouraging information about pregnancy over 40 and overcoming infertility? Watch this video here:

Friday, November 28, 2014


Pregnancy Over 40,  Trying To Conceive Over 40, Watch Out For Salon Chemicals

I've always wondered how hairdressers can stand being in a salon all day with the smell of hairspray and other chemicals floating through the air.
 There's a salon at my local mall (where I walk daily). Every time I walk by the hair salon the smell permeates out into the common area to the point that I pick up my pace to avoid it. Well, according to the following article, it's not just the smell that may be a problem. Hairdressers may be inhaling a number of dangerous chemicals.   I have an aunt who worked as a hairdresser for years. She was told by her doctor to change professions because she was developing lung problems. Read More:


Although there was no clear link between individual exposure and birth defects, frequent perming and spraying during pregnancy were associated with an increased risk of having a small for dates baby, say the authors.
Other factors, which could have biased the results, such as mother's age, weight, height and smoking habit, had only marginal impact on the results.
The authors conclude that while the risk seems to be moderate, hairspray contains chemicals, such as ethanol and acetone, that have sometimes been linked to reduced birth weight.

Hairdressing Linked To Birth Defects

Tuesday, November 25, 2014


How to Cure a Yeast Infection During Pregnancy

By Lisa R Armstrong
Due to hormonal imbalances and other disruptions to the body that can occur when you are expecting a child, yeast infection during pregnancy is quite common. The Candida albicans fungus thrives whenever there are imbalances in our bodies, which makes pregnancy a time at which you can be particularly at risk of developing an infection. Depending upon the stage of your pregnancy at the time you develop the condition, there are different options available for treatment. Natural treatment and prevention are considered the ideal treatment options, but under medical supervision there are alternatives that may be open to you.
If you develop a yeast infection during pregnancy, then you need to consult a doctor before you take any over the counter medications or prescription treatments. As you are carrying a child, any medications could potentially be harmful. Your doctor can advise you about what you can take safely. The alternative to this is to undertake natural preventative measures and natural treatments that will not have an adverse effect upon your baby.
One of the first concerns that expectant mothers will have is whether a yeast infection during pregnancy is harmful to their baby. If you have a yeast infection it is not harmful to your baby while it is in the womb. That means that as long as you treat the infection the baby will be fine. If you have a yeast infection when you deliver and you have a natural birth, it is possible for the baby to contract the infection during childbirth. For this reason, it is generally best to consult a medical specialist if you develop an infection when you are close to your delivery date. Your doctor may prescribe a suitable medication in order to ensure that the infection clears up before the delivery.
During the first trimester of a pregnancy, it is advisable that you do not take any form of over the counter or prescription medication to treat a yeast infection. While it is always advisable to consult an expert before taking any medication during the pregnancy, your baby is especially vulnerable at that time. The best option if you have a yeast infection during pregnancy is therefore to look at natural treatments and preventative measures.
There are a number of options for treating a yeast infection during pregnancy, which can help to provide relief from the symptoms as well as clear the condition and prevent any recurrence.
Among the treatment options during pregnancy are the following:
o Take a natural probiotic to restore the balance of 'good bacteria' in the intestinal tract, thereby preventing an outbreak of the Candida organism.


o Use diluted Tea Tree Oil with its' anti-fungal properties and help your body to stop the growth of the Candida fungus.

o Relieve symptoms such as itching and inflammation around the infected area by placing a cloth soaked in diluted Witches Hazel on the area.

o Apply natural yogurt, which contains 'good bacteria' around the infected area.

o Avoid using strong soaps or scented body washes which can encourage the growth of the organism.

o Wear lose fitting clothing that allows the skin to breath and doesn't promote ideal conditions for the Candida organism to grow in.
By taking steps to make sure that you avoid developing a yeast infection during pregnancy and by using natural preventative measures to help reduce the symptoms if you do, you'll be on track to have a healthy, problem free pregnancy. If any issues should arise that you are unable to manage with these natural treatments, always seek advice from a medical expert.
Lisa Armstrong is a fellow yeast infection sufferer. She spends her time helping others to understand and find the solution to their yeast issues. For more great information on yeast infections during pregnancy visit
Article Source:


Sunday, November 23, 2014


I suffered through morning sickness with all of my pregnancies and when I had my successful pregnancy with my daughter, I had three long months of nausea, vomiting and a general flu like feeling with aches and pains.  I kept taking my temperature because I felt so feverish (but it was always normal).  Morning sickness can vary between women and it can vary between pregnancies in the same woman.

If you are like me and suffered through many years of infertility and miscarriage, you don't dare complain about feeling sick when you are pregnant with what appears to be a healthy pregnancy.  Not only do you think this will jinx it, but you know there are plenty of women going through infertility who would gladly change places with you.

One thing that did seem to help me through the constant nausea was sucking on starlight mints (the little red and white peppermints that you get at restaurants).  I ate so many of those I was worried about tooth decay!  Although they did not take away the nausea, the peppermints smoothed over my gag reflex so I wasn't always gagging to the point of vomiting.

There is another product on the market which I'm not sure was around when I was pregnant, but I would have given it a try if it was.  It is called "Preggie Pops".  These colorful lollipops have a number of safe ingredients which can help with morning sickness.  From the manufacturer:

Preggie Pops work by a combination of:
  • Specific essential oils flavors known to help stomach problems
  • Aromatherapy
  • Mode of delivery
  • Sugars to combat hypoglycemic queasy stomach
  • And, they are safe because they are all natural

Wednesday, November 19, 2014


Can Prenatal Music Benefit Your Baby?

There does seem to be conflicting information out there, but the sources that believe that prenatal music can be beneficial claim the following:
  • Babies who heard particular music while in the womb seem to remember it after birth
  • Music played before birth creates some type of consistency between being in the womb and coming into the outside world
  • Music can relax the mother and this state of relaxation can benefit the unborn baby
  • An unborn baby's sense of sound and hearing begins at about the 22nd day of gestation and the ear matures around month 5
  • The unborn baby's response to music has been recorded through a change in heartbeat showing a state of attentiveness.
  • Listening stimulates the nervous system
  • There is certainly no harm in listening to prenatal music. The volume should be around 50-60 decibels which is about the volume you would listen in your home.

Monday, November 17, 2014



I had never heard of the term "lightening" until I read this article. Further along in a pregnancy, when labor is near, the baby may move down and bit which lessens the pressure on the mother's rib cage and surrounding structures. Read more:


Lightening during pregnancy actually refers to the term used to describe the baby engaging in the pelvis before vaginal birth. It is thus named because as the baby moved down from under the rib cage, the mother may feel a sense of relief in that her rib cage expands more easily allowing her to draw deeper breaths and eat without feeling full so quickly.

Although lightening may eliminate some uncomfortable symptoms, it may increase others. Some women feel more pressure on their bladders which causes them to urinate more frequently while others have a perpetual feeling that the baby is about to fall out. These feelings result from the added pressure that the baby's head is placing on the rectum and pelvic floor.

Saturday, November 15, 2014


Women Who Have a Baby Over 40 Want To Be Around To See Their Children Grow Up

 Most women who have children a little later in life worry about whether or not they'll be around to see their kids grow up.

 Breast cancer is something many women worry quite a bit about (even though heart disease claims more lives). Here is an article about how certain foods considered to be phytoestrogens may reduce your risk.  I think you'll find that the foods that are great for overall health are also great for fertility and pregnancy:

In one study of nearly 60,000 postmenopausal women in France, for example, the one-quarter of women with the highest lignan intake were 17 percent less likely to develop breast cancer during the study period compared with the one-quarter with the lowest intake -- estimated based on dietary questionnaires the women completed at the outset.


Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women worldwide, accounting for around 16 percent of all female cancers. It kills around 519,000 people globally each year....

Lignans are one of the three main types of phytoestrogen. The new study focused on lignans, in part because they are the main phytoestrogen in the typical Western diet.
Flaxseed and sesame are particularly high in lignans, and the compounds are also found in whole grains, berries and some other fruits, a number of vegetables such as broccoli and kale, and green tea...
The researchers on the French study accounted for a number of other factors in breast cancer risk -- including the women's age, family history of breast cancer, weight and history of estrogen exposure from birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy. The relationship between lignan intake and breast cancer risk remained.


Tuesday, November 11, 2014


Even though I was elated to be pregnant, I'll have to admit, it was a really uncomfortable time, especially when trying to sleep. I had an old fashioned water bed at the time (which I unplugged when I was in it) and that did help since it would conform to my shape. Oddly, my back never hurt in pregnancy, even though I had fairly severe back pain before I was pregnant (a doctor told me that back pain can be cyclical with your periods due to "referred pain" from the uterus during your menstrual cycle.
Very few people have waterbeds anymore (especially the old fashioned kind, and pregnant women may want other options. A maternity mattress may help.

Friday, November 07, 2014


Pregnancy Over 40, Prematurity and Autism

It seems that autism has taken center stage lately with a number of celebrities going public with their children's condition.
 This article from CNN talks about how extreme prematurity is another risk factor.  However, having said that, I know a number of women who had multiples and delivered as early as 26 weeks.  Their children are now over the age of 10 and they are as normal as can be. Read more:

Children who are born more than three months premature have double the expected rate of autism at age two as full-term children, according to a study published Wednesday in the Journal of Pediatrics.


Twenty-six percent of babies born extremely premature had cognitive impairment, according to the study.

Overall, about one in 10 of the extremely premature infants who did not have other health problems (including cerebral palsy, mental impairment, or vision or hearing problems) tested positive for autism at age two.

The study assessed the children via a survey of behavior known as the Modified Checklist for Autism in Toddlers (M-CHAT). But not all children who test positive definitely have the brain development disorder. Autism spectrum disorders (which include a range of diagnoses, from mild to more severe autism) aren't typically diagnosed until age three or older, and M-CHAT is not considered a definitive test.

However, the finding is not surprising, according to Dr. Antonio Hardan, director of the Autism and Developmental Disabilities Clinic at the Lucile Packard Children's Hospital at Stanford University, who was not involved in the study.

"We have to be in the womb for nine months for a good reason," says Dr. Hardan. "There are a lot of steps of brain development that should occur in the right environment, and the ideal environment is in the womb." Depression during pregnancy doubles risk of preterm birth

In the new study, which was conducted by a team led by Karl Kuban of the Boston University Medical Center and Boston Medical Center, 26 percent of children who were born extremely premature (27 weeks gestation or less, as opposed to a full-term of 37 weeks or more) had cognitive impairment, 11 percent had cerebral palsy, 3 percent had problems with vision, and 2 percent had hearing impairment.

  excerpted from:


Thursday, October 30, 2014


 The Dangers of Licorice

With Halloween upon us and the abundance of candy everywhere for the holidays, this may be an article you should read if you're pregnant or think you might become pregnant.
 Licorice is used in many holiday recipes as decoration, but it may negatively affect fetal brain development. Read more:


It is thought that a component in licorice called glycyrrhizin may impair the placenta, allowing stress hormones to cross from the mother to the baby.

High levels of such hormones, known as glucocorticoids, are thought to affect fetal brain development and have been linked to behavioral disorders in children.

The results of the study are published in the American Journal of Epidemiology. Eight-year-olds whose mothers had been monitored for licorice consumption during pregnancy were tested on a range of cognitive functions including vocabulary, memory and spatial awareness.


Tuesday, October 28, 2014


Your privacy online and how to protect it

If you are pregnant or trying to conceive, no doubt you've done quite a few internet searches on the subject.  Let's face it, getting pregnant or being pregnant can involve some of the most private bodily functions.  You may not know it, but there's quite a bit of "data mining" software that can build a pretty accurate profile of you and your medical conditions.  So how can you protect yourself and your privacy?  Most search engines have a "private mode" or "incognito" mode, but that may be giving users a false sense of security.  There are alternatives that make you untrackable online.


Sunday, October 26, 2014


Don't let all the negative and discouraging information get you if you are pregnant over 40 or trying to conceive over 40

Are you pregnant over the age of 40? Are you trying to conceive over the age of 40?  Not only did I run into a lot of negative information when I was trying to conceive, but I also had to endure a lot of negative "warnings" after I became pregnant with my daughter.  After years of infertility, failed fertility treatments, and finally the natural conception of my daughter, I had to nagivate the attitude of "she's old, she must be high risk" of the OB/GYN community.  Now granted, I was 44, and had a multitude of surgeries and fertility problems behind me, but a number of my problems were caused by the fertility treatments themselves.  I had a completely normal pregnancy and a normal delivery, but the well-meaning medical personnel just couldn't accept that I was a normal pregnant women who just happened to be 44.  As a result, I had every test in the book, multiple ultrasounds, consultations with perinatologists and on and on.  As hard as they tried, they just couldn't find anything wrong!


Monday, October 20, 2014


Nursing and Obesity

Here's another reason to maintain a healthy weight before you get pregnant.
 This article talks about how obese women have a harder time with breastfeeding. Read more:

"We found that overweight and obese women have a lower prolactin response to suckling," says Kathleen Rasmussen, professor of nutritional sciences at Cornell and the lead researcher of the study, which is published in the journal Pediatrics (Vol. 113, No. 5, May 2004). Prolactin is a hormone produced by the pituitary gland that stimulates the mammary glands to produce milk soon after birth.


"This lower prolactin response to suckling would be expected to compromise the ability of overweight and obese women to produce milk and, over time, lead to a significantly shorter period of breast-feeding," she adds.

Thursday, October 16, 2014


How EFT Can Help Conception and Delivery

EFT or Emotional Freedom Technique is also called tapping.  It is based on the principles of kinesiology, acupuncture and acupressure and it is known to help people overcome a number of emotional stumbling blocks that may be preventing them from attracting what they want into their life.
If you are trying to conceive, EFT can help you overcome infertility by working on the mind-body connection.  If you are already pregnant (especially after trying for a while), EFT can help you overcome your fears of pregnancy and delivery.


Tuesday, October 14, 2014


How Do Infections Affect Pregnancy and Fertility?

There are a number of infections that can affect pregnancy and your ability to get pregnant.  Many women and couples have infections and don't even know it.  Not all infections in your reproductive system are sexually transmitted.  Yeast infections are very common in pregnancy and can be treated with over-the-counter preparations (I had a yeast infection when I was pregnant and didn't even know it).  If a yeast infections is left untreated, it could cause "thrush" in the baby.
There are a number of other infections in the reproductive system that can cause infertility.  Read more about infections that can harm your ability to get pregnant:


Sunday, October 12, 2014


Sleeping Too Much Or Too Little In Pregnancy  Affects Blood Pressure

 The one time in my life when I was able to sleep quite soundly was when I was pregnant.
 I found it interesting that not sleeping enough or sleeping too much could lead to structural changes in the cardiovascular system.   Differing sleep patterns can change the hormones that regulate blood pressure. Read more:


The study involved 1,272 healthy, pregnant women who completed a structured interview at 14 weeks gestation, on average. Sleep duration in early pregnancy was evaluated by the question, "Since becoming pregnant, how many hours per night do you sleep?"

Only about 20.5 percent of women reported a sleep duration of nine hours per night, which was used as the "normal" reference category because prior research indicates that pregnant women tend to have longer sleep duration patterns.

About 55.2 percent of women reported sleeping seven to eight hours per night, 13.7 percent slept six hours or less and about 10.6 percent slept 10 hours or more.

According to the authors, a number of mechanisms by which habitual short sleep duration may lead to increased blood pressure have been proposed. Because blood pressure is known to dip by an average of 10 to 20 percent during sleep, short sleep durations may raise the average 24-hour blood pressure and heart rate.

This may lead to structural changes that gradually raise the pressure equilibrium of the entire cardiovascular system. Sleep restriction also may produce abnormalities in the levels of hormones such as endothelin and vasopressin, which play an important role in the cardiovascular system.


Friday, October 10, 2014


Pregnancy Over 40, Calcium Supplements

Calcium is important in pregnancy, not only for bones but it may also help with hypertension.  I did take a calcium supplement when I was pregnant.  Calcium isn't just important for pregnant women, but for all women and even children.
I had heard that much of a mother's calcium will go to the baby and it may rob the mother's bones to get it.  Women who have had a number of pregnancies without adquate calcium intake may be at risk for osteoporosis when they're older.

Calcium is needed in Pregnancy For Both Mother and Baby 

So calcium is necessary for both the mother and baby.  Even when they're not pregnant, 70% of women don't get enough calcium in their diet.  As the article below mentions, green leafy vegetables, dairy and beans and peas are good sources in your diet.

 Here is an article about the need for calcium in pregnancy:


Calcium is the nutrient that is needed to build your baby's bones and teeth during pregnancy. Throughout your pregnancy, if you do not consume enough calcium, it will be leeched from your bones. It is also important to feed your body calcium to keep your bones and teeth strong, and your body is also storing calcium to use in milk production later. Calcium is also involved in muscle contractions, the clotting of blood, nerve function and the regulation of heart rhythm. These are all very important functions during pregnancy. Therefore, the calcium recommendation for pregnant women is 1,000 milligrams each day.

This can be achieved by consuming 3 to 4 servings of dairy products a day. Do not assume you are meeting your calcium needs by taking your prenatal supplement. Most prenatal supplements only have 170-300 milligrams. (Breastfeeding moms need 1,200 milligrams, while bottlefeeding moms need 1,000.) If you are wondering how to give your bones a boost, check out these food sources high in calcium. Food sources Milligrams

Fruit yogurt, 8 ounces 345
Canned sardines with bones, 3 ounces 325
Milk, 1 cup 300
Calcium fortified juice, 1 cup 300
Cheese pizza, 1/4 of a 12 inch 220
Black-eyed peas 1 cup, cooked 211
Cheese, 1 ounce 200
Canned salmon with bones, 3 ounces 180
Blackstrap molasses 1 T 172
Baked beans, 1 cup 154
Pudding, 1/2 cup 150
Tofu, calcium set, 1 cup 130
Taco with cheese, 1 small 109
Frozen yogurt, 1/2 cup 106
Kale, 1 cup 94
Collard greens, cooked, 1/2 cup 90
Ice cream, 1/2 cup 88
Cottage cheese, 1/2 cup 77
Chinese cabbage 1 cup 74
Pancakes made with milk, 2 - 4 inch round 72
Almonds 1 ounce 70
Orange, 1 medium 52
Broccoli, cooked, 1/2 cup 47 

 from: (

Wednesday, October 08, 2014


Oh it's already begun...our first encounter with a "mean girl". I had no idea all this girl stuff started in toddlerhood. Here's what happened when my daughter was younger:

I took my daughter to a bouncy castle place (a big place with five giant bouncy castles). My daughter found a couple of girls her age to play with and was absolutely jumping for joy with excitement (literally). But later I observed one of the little girls, "Emma" (maybe about 6 months older) started pushing my daughter and telling her she was a "baby"). My daughter adamantly hollered back "I'm not a baby!!" Emma then told my daughter to "go sit over there" and my daughter, feeling somewhat overpowered followed her instructions. I had to intervene a few times because Emma started getting a little too physical. Emma's mother was too busy taking care of a newborn and another little girl to notice what was happening.


I guess my daughter is a little to young to process all of this because she kept running back to play with these little girls (the other little girl "Kayla" seemed to be a little nicer).

Wow, I was surprised at my reaction to all of this. I wanted to pull Emma aside and give her a time-out and a lecture on playground etiquette since her mother was unavailable to do so - but of course I just smiled and made sure things stayed amicable. I kept wondering if I was expecting too much of kids this age, but then again, if that were my kid I would have put a stop to that behavior immediately. The longer it's allowed to go on, the longer it will go on. When we finally left to go home, I asked my daughter if she had fun. She said "yes, but those girls didn't like me". I explained to her that sometimes other kids aren't very nice, but I always wanted her to be nice to others.

I'm sure we'll never see these girls again because this bouncy castle place is quite a distance from our home, but I have these visions of Emma growing up to be the primadonna prom queen who leaves destruction in her wake. I guess kids learn to work all this stuff out on their own. I recall being totally unimpressed by those "mean girls" throughout my school years. I hope Emma's mom can find the time to give her daughter some direction. I'm sure Emma will have a happier life (and those in her midst will too) if she can be taught how to play with everyone. All of this just reinforced in my own mind how kids need to be nutured and directed at a very early age to do the right thing.

Saturday, October 04, 2014


Cleaning Agents - Cause of Infertility, Miscarriage, and Birth Defects

Guest Post By Judy Ford

A modern home is likely to retain a range of highly toxic chemicals for cleaning. They often come with tantalising labels that offer protection from infections and illness. In addition there are often toxic air fresheners, room deodorizers and toilet sanitizers, all of which claim to remove noxious smells and contaminants from the indoor environment. In reality these sophisticated cleaning agents are usually far more dangerous to health than the infectious agents they purport to remove. They frequently contain several toxic chemicals Many affect reproduction as well as seriously compromising general health.
I was alerted to the dangers of bathroom cleaners to reproduction after giving talks about my research results on lifestyle and reproduction. One woman told me that every time she cleaned her shower she would become dizzy and nauseous. Apparently her technique was to get into the shower, spray her cleaner on the tiles and then wash it off with very hot water. The heat plus the fumes were a dangerous combination. She was not alone. I soon discovered that many women regularly had reactions to their zealous cleaning. Many of these women had been told they had unexplained infertility. Others, who worked as cleaners, spoke about the disturbances in their menstrual cycles that occurred soon after taking up cleaning work.


The medical literature has many studies on the health risks of working with cleaning agents. These risks commonly include high rates of asthma and general high disability rates. Studies from Mexican American and Dutch women show increased rates of neural tube defects (spina bifida and anencephaly) in the children of female cleaners. Even fathers who are exposed to moderate to high levels of cleaning agents have increased numbers of children with neural tube defects.
The chemical p-dichlorobenzene is an example of a chemical frequently found in sanitisers, especially toilet bowl deodorisers and mothballs. This is an extremely dangerous chemical. A group of animals repeatedly exposed to 798 ppm of p-dichlorobenzene developed eye irritation, marked tremors, weakness, and loss of weight. Some died. In five cases of human exposure to p-dichlorobenzene in mothballs, one person with only moderate exposure complained of severe headache, swelling of tissues around the eyes and profuse rhinitis. These symptoms subsided 24 hours after cessation of exposure. However, the other four persons who had more prolonged exposure developed anorexia, nausea, vomiting, weight loss, and liver involvement with jaundice. Two of these people died. A third developed cirrhosis of the liver.
From a reproductive perspective, the most dangerous chemicals found in cleaning agents are formaldehyde, toluene and ethylene glycol butyl ether. Formaldehyde is commonly used to suppress the central nervous system smell receptors so that we cannot smell bad smells. It is used in most air fresheners. As well as causing cancer, it disrupts the menstrual cycle hence causing infertility, miscarriage and birth defects. Toluene is a solvent used in many different types of cleaning agents. It is also a reproductive toxin. Ethylene glycol butyl ether (2-butoxyethanol) is a solvent in carpet and specialist cleaners. It causes reproductive problems as well as blood disorders, liver and kidney problems. Ammonia may also cause problems. It is a natural fertility inhibitor and is also a respiratory irritant.
Books on safe cleaning methods advocate using bicarbonate of soda on a cloth for lightly soiled surfaces and bicarbonate and a brush for more difficult stains. Vinegar or lemon juice or vinegar with bicarbonate will remove most stains including baked on grease. In my experience you can really achieve a great deal with any one of these alone or with mixtures of them. Lemon juice is particularly good in shower recesses. Vinegar and bicarbonate will have your toilet shining. Eucalyptus Oil or Vanilla will give it a pleasant smell. These natural products are safe, effective and cheap and won't compromise fertility.
It amazes me that clever marketing convinces us to fill our homes with toxic chemicals when simple, old-fashioned techniques are as, if not more effective. Many women needlessly suffer reproductive problems all in the mistaken belief that they are improving their own and their family's health.
Dr Judy Ford is an internationally respected geneticist who has undertaken considerable research into the causes of miscarriage [], causes of infertility and birth defects []. She believes that most problems are preventable through changes to healthy lifestyles and healthy habits. More information can be found on her website
You are welcome to copy or post this article provided you do not remove this attachment and attribute authorship to Dr Judy Ford.
Article Source:,-Miscarriage,-and-Birth-Defects&id=64723

Wednesday, October 01, 2014


Pregnancy After 40, Try This Exercise

I was too afraid to exercise in pregnancy, but I probably should have tried this new combination called "gyrotonics". 
 This form of exercise is supposed to help circulation and assist with a number of the discomforts of pregnancy.  It can also help after delivery to get back into shape.


 Read more:


TV presenter and beauty expert Julia Carling has followed an unusual form of exercise called 'gyrotonics' which has left her feeling slimmed down and toned.

What is it? An exercise system similar to Pilates developed by a Hungarian called Julio Horvath. Unlike Pilates, it is based on the principles of yoga, Tai Chi and dance. The technique benefits pregnant woman before and after labour because it encourages flexibility, abdominal strength and deep breathing to aid relaxation during labour.

What's involved?
Gyrotonics is designed to lengthen and strengthen the abdominal muscles which are used to support the uterus. This is done through breathing and simple exercises. The main difference between the two systems is that gyrotonics emphasises quality of movement - making it slightly more cardiovascular than Pilates.

This helps boosts blood circulation - important to avoid varicose veins and leg cramps associated with pregnancy. It also supports the pelvis which stops the spine from becoming curved due to the load of the baby - and encourages flexibility for childbirth.

Some gyrotonic exercises are performed using a special piece of equipment called a 'tower' - a bench-like table with weights connected to a pulley system. Others are performed standing, sitting or kneeling on all fours. The exercises help to strengthen the spine to support the weight of the baby, prevent the pelvis from tilting back too far, thus straining the lower back and prevents the abdominal muscles from separating too much.


Monday, September 29, 2014


SIDS and Serotonin

We've heard many theories about why SIDS occurs. This article seems like they're on to something measurable and possibly treatable. SIDS could be related to actual brain chemistry. Read more:
Rose Quartz, Amethyst, Moonstone Elephant bracelet click here
They said abnormal levels of serotonin may hamper an infant's breathing, especially in challenging situations, such as breathing in too much exhaled carbon dioxide while sleeping face down.

SEE ALSO: PREGNANCY OVER 40 (getpregnantover40com)

"We have known for many years that placing infants to sleep on their backs is the single most effective way to reduce the risk of SIDS," Dr. Alan Guttmacher, director of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, which funded the study.

"The current findings provide important clues to the biological basis of SIDS and may ultimately lead to ways to identify infants most at risk as well as additional strategies..."

from Reuters

Friday, September 26, 2014


Overweight in pregnancy and ADHD

I'm always amazed at the number of conditions that could be prevented by maintaining a normal weight. I've written numerous articles about obesity and how it can lead to not only pregnancy complications, but a number of problems with the baby as well. The article below discusses how being overweight in pregnancy could lead to hyperactive children. Read more:


Women who are overweight when they become pregnant run a much greater risk that their children will exhibit ADHD-like symptoms when they reach school age, reports a study by researchers from Uppsala University. The findings, based on more than 12,500 children in Sweden, Finland, and Denmark, show for the first time that there is a correlation between the mother's body mass index (BMI) at the time she becomes pregnant and symptoms like hyperactivity and concentration problems in the child.

"Many children are being diagnosed with ADHD and at the same time there is an epidemic of obesity in the world, with more and more women already overweight at the time they become pregnant. If it turns out that the mother's weight is of significance and, together with other factors, can influence ADHD-like symptoms in the child, we have not only found a contributory cause but also a potential avenue for preventive work that can enhance the well-being of both mother and child," says Uppsala's Alina Rodriguez.


Wednesday, September 24, 2014


Persistent Pain After Childbirth

Ouch! Intercourse can be painful after childbirth, especially if there were lacerations or instrument assisted births. Even women who've had C-sections may experience problems. I found that I had to stop using tampons for quite a while after giving birth because of the irritation. Some tampons contain bleaches which can be very irritating if your skin has been broken as well. Read more:

See also: Pregnancy Detox (

Painful intercourse was reported by 19 percent of women who had had caesareans, 34 percent who had had a normal birth and 36 percent of women who had an instrument-assisted birth, such as forceps.
Sex-related health problems were highest among instrument-assisted births (77 percent) and lowest among caesarean births (51 percent), with 64 percent of women having normal births reporting at least one problem related to sex.
Forceps deliveries were also associated with higher levels of stress, urge, and continual incontinence

from ( 

Monday, September 22, 2014


Pregnancy Over 40, Good Diet Protects Your Child Too

After reading the article below, I'm so happy I ate a healthy diet before, during and after I conceived my daughter.
 Apparently, a healthy diet high in fruits and vegetables can protect your baby from future cancer. Read more:

There may be another reason for pregnant and nursing women to eat a nutritious diet that includes generous amounts of cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and cabbage - it could help protect their children from cancer, both as infants and later in life.


A new study by scientists from the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University, done with laboratory mice, found that supplements of a key phytochemical found in certain vegetables provided a very high level of protection against leukemia and lymphoma in young animals, and also significantly protected against lung cancer during the rodent's equivalent of middle age.

The research, published in the journal Carcinogenesis, is one of the first of its type to demonstrate that diet may play a protective role in a fight against cancer that may begin - and could be won or lost - well before a person is ever born. And some of the protective benefits may last into adulthood

Friday, September 19, 2014


Easing Pain of Childbirth

I recall learning about all of the different positions you could be in to deliver your baby. Unfortunately, by the time I got to that point, I was in so much pain, all I wanted was an epidural and my logical thinking skills went out the window. I was on my back in the position you always see in the movies and on TV. Here is an article about how your position during childbirth could help ease pain:


The study is based on a review of earlier research into how the mother’s position affects delivery. The researchers focused on three studies, two looking at women in labor and one looking at women late in pregnancy. In all, more than 2,700 women were involved in the studies.

The best position for a baby during delivery is head down, with the back of the head facing forward. When the back of the head is toward the mother’s side or back, the delivery may be longer or more painful.

The study found that the women who went onto their hands and knees during delivery felt better. “The use of this position during labor was associated with a significant reduction in persistent back pain,” the researchers wrote. “Women may therefore be encouraged to use this position for comfort in labor.”


Wednesday, September 17, 2014


Headaches During Pregnancy - What Is Normal?

Guest Post By Hannah Bajor

Headaches during pregnancy are very challenging as over the counter pain killers are not recommended.Within the first 12 weeks of pregnancy the surging hormones play a part in the development of pregnancy headaches. The 40% increase in blood volume that occurs during pregnancy increases pressure within the blood vessels and this itself can cause headaches during pregnancy.
Headaches and pregnancy are related and can be very dangerous especially if experienced during the last month of pregnancy, as it may also be caused by a condition called pre eclampsia. Pre eclampsia is a condition in pregnancy that has symptoms such as headaches unrelieved by over the counter medication, high blood pressure, swelling and protein in the urine.
Headaches during pregnancy may also be caused or made worst by any of the following:
Stress Lack of sleep Vomiting Low blood sugar Dehydration Caffeine withdrawal Nicotine withdrawal Poor posture Pregnancy related vision changes


What you can do to ease your pregnancy headaches:
Reduce stress. Get more sleep. Treat your early morning sickness. Eat regularly to avoid low blood sugar levels. Drink adequate amounts of high quality water. Get chiropractic adjustments and advice to correct your posture. Avoid over the counter medication especially during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. Consult a homeopath or an acupuncturist for treatments to relieve your pain. Pregnancy headaches are sometimes relieved with either hot or cold compress around your forehead and on the back of your neck. Have someone massage your shoulders and neck during acute pregnancy headaches. Rest in a dark room and practice deep relaxation breathing. Relaxing in a warm bath or shower sometimes reduces the stress and tension. The fruit mangosteen is well known to support every system in the body. It is all natural and can relieve and prevent pregnancy headaches.
You tried all the above and you still have headaches during pregnancy:
At this point it would be appropriate to call your doctor or midwife for advice. Have your eyesight checked as you may need glasses or a change in glasses.
If you experience any of these symptoms below with a headache call your physician or midwife immediately as these are signs of a severe pregnancy complication called pre-eclampsia:
Blurred vision Right sided abdomen pain Swollen hands and face Sudden weight gain Feeling very agitated or restless
Pregnancy headaches can be very painful and very frustrating, as it is not recommended that you use over the counter medication during pregnancy. When traditional is not allowed, then it is time to investigate what holistic methods of healing are available to you. Basic energy healing is extremely relaxing, it will reduce stress and alleviate some if not all of your headache.
Prevention of pregnancy headaches is the best place to start. Many pregnant clients that have a history of headaches will know their triggering factor to developing a headache. Staying away from these triggers is important.
Many headache clients experienced improvement of their headaches during pregnancy by taking mangosteen and mineral juice on a regular basis. Mangosteen is a very healing fruit and has a natural pain blocker and is pregnancy safe.
Pregnancy can be an extraordinary experience for a woman. It is far more than growing a baby and dealing with issues like fatigue. Pregnancy has a huge emotional, mental, spiritual, and energetic side to it. The more you understand these aspects, the easier and less symptomatic your pregnancy will be. Learning how to connect with the emotions of your unborn child will allow you to enhance your pregnancy experience and surrender to its normal physiological process of pregnancy headaches.
Midwife Hannah Bajor C.N.M., M.S.N. is founder, CEO and Visionary behind the Lumalove� brand of getting pregnant, pregnancy, infertility and miscarriage educational support products and services.
Hannah says "knowing my life's purpose gives one a hug advantage". Her 30 years midwifery experience along with her personal journey through ten years of infertility, having personally experienced a 16 week miscarriage and a near death experience delivering her second child has lit a fire in her soul that NO ONE can put out and that is to "change childbirth education as we know it".
Lumalove LLC helps couples globally access new and dynamic prenatal education and in doing so lays the foundational blueprints for a happier, healthier pregnancy outcome and gives their unborn child the opportunity of unlimited potential.
Take advantage of her FREE offer and experience her ability to help you connect deeper with your growing baby. To get your FREE pregnancy guided visualization mp3 then click on
Article Source:

Tuesday, September 09, 2014


Ringing In Ears In Pregnancy

Did you know that pregnant women may experience an annoying problem: ringing in ears.  This is also known as pregnancy tinnitus.  It may have a number of causes such as increased blood volume, hormonal shifts and so on.  I have experienced ear ringing on a number of occasions and it can range from annoying to the "I can't live with it" category.  There are things you can do for this condition.

Click Here To REad The Full Article on Ringing In Ears In Pregnancy

Sunday, September 07, 2014


Pregnancy Over 40, Watch Your Blood Sugar

Here's an interesting article/video which talks about the importance of the prenatal environment before birth, after birth, and into childhood.
 A mother's blood sugar level can lead to childhood obesity. Read more:

A study in the September issue of Diabetes Care has found the risk of childhood obesity increases in line with the pregnant mother's blood sugar levels. The research team of Kaiser Permanent Center for Health Research analyzed records of nearly 9,500 mother-child pairs who were members of the organizations health plan through the years of 1995 and 2000. The evidence found that diabetes in pregnant women resulted in an 89 percent higher risk of the child becoming overweight and an 82 percent higher risk of the child becoming obese between the ages of 5 and 7 years.


Researchers found that when pregnant women were treated for diabetes, the child obesity risk was reduced to the same level of children born from mothers who had normal blood sugar levels. Lead author, Dr. Teresa Hillier advises pregnant women to talk to their doctor about diabetes screening and, if necessary, should work with their doctor to receive treatment.
 from: (

Friday, September 05, 2014


Pregnancy Over 40, Use Vitamin E With Caution

Although I took vitamin E while I was trying to conceive, I only took one prenatal vitamin per day while I was pregnant.
 Here is an article that discusses a newly discovered danger to an unborn baby if the mother took vitamin E while pregnant. Read more:

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Women who've just become pregnant may want to watch how much vitamin E they take in. It seems that high levels of vitamin E early in pregnancy may increase the risk of the baby being born with a heart defect, according to a Dutch research team.

They studied 276 mothers of children born with heart defects and 324 "control" mothers whose babies were free of heart defects.


When their infants were 16 months old, the mothers completed food frequency questionnaires for the 4 weeks prior to the study. According to the researchers, dietary patterns during this time are similar to those before the women became pregnant.

The likelihood of having a baby with a heart defect was 70 percent higher for women with the highest vitamin E intake from diet alone, compared to those with the lowest intake, the investigators found.

Moreover, high dietary vitamin E intake plus the use of a supplement containing vitamin E increased the risk of congenital heart defects 5- to 9-fold, Dr. R. P. M. Steegers-Theunissen at University Medical Center, Rotterdam, and colleagues report in BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

The researchers point out that high levels of vitamin E "may imbalance the oxidant/antioxidant state" in embryonic tissues.


Wednesday, September 03, 2014


Pregnancy Over 40:  Bicornate Uterus

Some women are born with a defect in their uterus.
 There is something called a bicornate uterus where it looks somewhat like a heart shape. It is possible to have a successful pregnancy, however there can also be complications with a a uterus that isn't the normal pear shape. Read more:

Click here see a full article about uterine abnormalities including arcuate uterus (

From the article:

The reason that a pregnancy may not reach full-term in a bicornuate uterus often happens when the baby begins to grow in either of the protrusions at the top. The pregnancy will usually end in a miscarriage because there is not enough room for baby to grow there. As a normal uterus will expand with a growing baby, the septum area of the bicornuate uterus cannot expand enough to accommodate growth. According to research, there is a 55 -63% fetal survival rate associated with the condition.

If the baby happens to implant itself in the largest part of the uterus, it will have a chance of growing to full-term. However these babies often find themselves in an abnormal presentation, such as breech or transverse, since they may find it difficult to fit comfortably in a head-down position. The larger the baby grows the more likely this will be, thus there is a 15-25% rate of preterm delivery of these infants. Because of this and other factors, a pregnant woman with a bicornuate uterus will most likely be considered high-risk.

The condition may also cause fetal growth retardation, which is defined as having less than ten percent of fetal weight according to gestational age of the baby, but this is rare. More often, the baby will simply not survive or it will thrive normally but deliver prematurely. Sometimes various other birth defects of the baby can result


Friday, August 29, 2014


Baby Lotions contain phthalates

Every mom loves the smell of those baby shampoos and lotions. However, just because they smell good and look good, that doesn't mean they're healthy. Here is an article about how these lotions can contain hormone altering ingredients:

From the article:

In the study, doctors tested the urine of 163 children between the ages of 2 months and 28 months born in Los Angeles, Minneapolis and Columbia, Mo., between 2000 and 2005. All had detectable amounts of at least one type of phthalate, and more than 80% had seven or more types.


"Phthalate exposure is widespread and variable in infants. We found that mothers' reported use of infant lotion, infant powder and shampoo was significantly associated with . . . urinary concentrations," the scientists wrote in the new study.

In the study, babies exposed to baby lotion, shampoo and powder had more than four times the level of phthalates in their urine than babies whose parents had not used the products. The highest levels were reported in babies under 8 months old, and those exposed to lotions.


Wednesday, August 27, 2014


Pregnancy Over 40, Possible Cause Of Birth Defects:  Antibiotics

Some antibiotics are necessary for pregnant women, however, there are certain categories which should be avoided to prevent birth defects.
Sulfonamides and nitrofurantoins could cause problems for your unborn baby.  Of course, talk with both your doctor and pharmacist before taking anything in pregnancy.

Read more:

Antibacterial use among all women increased during pregnancy, peaking during the third month. A total of 3,863 mothers of children with birth defects (29.4 percent) and 1,467 control mothers (29.7 percent) used antibacterials sometime between three months before pregnancy and the end of pregnancy.


"Reassuringly, penicillins, erythromycins and cephalosporins, although used commonly by pregnant women, were not associated with many birth defects," the authors write. Two defects were associated with erythromycins (used by 1.5 percent of the mothers whose children had birth defects and 1.6 percent of controls), one with penicillins (used by 5.5 percent of case mothers and 5.9 percent of controls), one with cephalosporins (used by 1 percent of both cases and controls) and one with quinolones (used by 0.3 percent of both cases and controls).

Two medications -- sulfonamides and nitrofurantoins (each used by 1.1 percent of cases and 0.9 percent of controls) -- were associated with several birth defects, suggesting that additional study is needed before they can be safely prescribed to pregnant women.


Monday, August 25, 2014


Down Syndrome - Three "Screening Tests" Are the First Step in Diagnosing Down Syndrome

Guest Post By Craig Kendall

Doctors can make a Down syndrome diagnosis for a baby while the mother is still pregnant. Down syndrome is caused by the presence of an extra 21st chromosome in the baby.
Babies that don't have Down syndrome have two 21st chromosomes and babies with Down syndrome normally have three 21st chromosomes. People usually have 46 chromosomes - or 26 pairs of chromosomes. Chromosomes are the material in our bodies that gives our bodies instructions as to how to grow, develop and work.
If you're spending some time reading about Down syndrome you may also see it called Trisomy 21.
Pregnant Mothers Over 35 Are Particularly At Risk
In the past, mothers were given the choice of having tests to determine if their baby might have Down syndrome. Mothers over 35 are particularly at risk to have a Down syndrome baby.
Today most mothers, especially mothers over 35, are strongly encouraged to have the first set of tests, called screening tests, to see if there is any risk of Down syndrome.
Today there are so many things that can be done to help a baby with Down syndrome. Some can be done while the baby is still in the mother's uterus and some right after birth so it's good to know as early as possible if your baby has Down syndrome. Some mothers, though, may choose not to have these tests because they don't want to know, before birth, if their baby has Down syndrome.
Down Syndrome "Screening Tests" are Available During Pregnancy
Three types of screening tests for diagnosing Down Syndrome are common. Screening tests cannot diagnosis Down Syndrome but they can tell your doctor if your baby has some characteristics that might indicate that your baby is at risk for Down Syndrome.
1. Ultrasound - a regular ultrasound or sonogram. Ultrasound allows your doctor to look at a picture of your baby while it's still in your womb. There are things that a doctor can see in an ultrasound that might make the doctor think that a baby could possibly have Down syndrome. These include:

  • A bone in the baby's legs, called a femur, that's shorter than usual
  • Some heart problems
  • Extra skin at the back of the baby's neck (called "nuchal translucency")
  • Defects in the baby's stomach or intestines
  • Cysts in the part of the baby's brain where spinal fluid is produced. These cysts are called "choroid plexus cysts."

2. Maternal Serum Tests - tests of the mother's blood. These tests work because a mom's circulation system is shared with her baby. A baby makes chemicals that can be detected in the mother's blood tests. There are several different kinds of maternal serum, or blood tests, that can be done and some are given in the first trimester (first three months) of pregnancy and some in the second trimester (second three months of pregnancy.)
3. Integrated Screening - is a combination of ultrasound and maternal serum testing. Your doctor will advise you about the best diagnostic testing for Down syndrome given your age, family history and your medical history.
What if the pregnancy tests come back with a possible Down Syndrome diagnosis?
If your doctor is concerned that your baby may have Down syndrome, he or she will probably recommend another series of tests. These tests are called diagnostic tests. To make a definite Down syndrome diagnosis a doctor needs to conduct one of several diagnostic tests that are accurate 98-99% of the time if they come back positive for Down syndrome.
Parents will want to think about whether or not they want to have diagnostic screen testing for their baby and discuss the tests carefully with their doctors. There are pros and cons to diagnostic testing and it's essential to discuss how important it is to you and to your doctor to know for sure, before the birth of your baby, if your baby will have a Down syndrome diagnosis.
And to help you prepare, download my free guide "12 Tips for New Moms of Down Syndrome Babies". And to find additional free resources an excellent site is Visit it today to help you and your Down syndrome loved one lead a self sufficient life together.
Article Source:

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