Posts Tagged ‘ Umbilical Cord ’

Nine-Year-Old Girl Helps Mom Deliver Baby Sister

Monday, January 6th, 2014

Can you imagine going into labor, and it being painfully obvious that you were going to have the baby before you got to the hospital? Scary, right? Even scarier if the only other person at home with you was your 9-year-old daughter.

Well, it actually wasn’t frightening for Monique Meza from Chicago. When Monique felt her baby crowning, her 9-year-old daughter, Alyssa, bravely jumped into action.

“She said she felt the baby coming out, and I told her to push the baby out and I’d catch the baby,” Alyssa told her local ABC news in Chicago of helping her mother through labor. “She got scared, and I caught the baby, grabbed the towel and wrapped her.”

The umbilical cord was wrapped around the baby’s neck twice—something that would freak out even most adults. But not Alyssa—she knew exactly what to do. The elementary-schooler had seen a medical TV show, where the baby was born with the umbilical cord around its neck, so she didn’t hesitate. “I had to unwrap it,” said Alyssa, “and I ran next door to grab my neighbor because the baby was a little purple,” she continued. The neighbor promptly called 911, and both mom and baby sister Aaliyah are fine, largely thanks to Alyssa, who now wants to be a paramedic when she grows up.

Alyssa showed such strength and bravery that her mom wasn’t just grateful for what her daughter had done, but she was also “very, very proud of her,” said Monique. “I expected it from her, but not as much maturity that she has shown me, at her age. I know she has a bright future ahead of her.” I couldn’t agree more!

TELL US: Did your labor not go as planned either? Share your crazy labor stories with us! Or your biggest labor fears!

Image of mom and baby courtesy of Shutterstock.

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Giving Birth: What To Bring to the Hospital
Giving Birth: What To Bring to the Hospital
Giving Birth: What To Bring to the Hospital

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Lotus Birth: Crazy Fad or the Most Natural of Births?

Wednesday, October 30th, 2013

WARNING: You might not want to read this if you just ate! I was fascinated in an I- can’t-look-away-from-the-horrific-traffic-accident sort of way by a piece on xoJane written by a woman who had a lotus birth.

What the heck is a lotus birth, you ask (as did I)? It’s when the umbilical cord isn’t cut after childbirth so that the baby is left attached to his or her placenta until the cord naturally falls off—which could take up to a week.

To put this in perspective, most umbilical cords are usually clamped and cut within the first few minutes of a baby’s life as a preventative measure to reduce the risk of maternal hemorrhaging. Recent studies have shown that delaying clamping for at least a minute significantly improves iron and hemoglobin levels in newborns and does not increase the risks to mothers. The World Health Organization believes you can wait even longer, and recommends clamping and cutting the umbilical cord between one and three minutes after birth because of the iron benefits passed onto the baby (but beware that delaying clamping can sometimes cause the baby to develop jaundice, caused by either liver trouble or an excessive loss of blood cells).

There are no findings that the lotus birth improves the health of a baby since the placenta stops pumping oxygen, iron and stem cells to the infant after approximately five minutes. In fact, many physicians believe a lotus birth could cause infections if the umbilical cord isn’t properly cared for and watched closely since it’s basically dead tissue full of blood—a breeding ground for bacteria. Despite that, lotus births are becoming more and more popular.

According to moms who are doing this, there are two main perks. 1) The placenta is said to be a comfort to the newborn, since it has been in the womb with the baby throughout the pregnancy. 2) It helps the immediate bond formed between mother and child since the child needs to be kept close because the umbilical cord and placenta are still attached.

Depending on your point of view, this may be the most insane thing you’ll ever read, or you might think it’s the most natural, beautiful way to look at childbirth. I tend to lean towards this being a teensy bit nuts! Not to mention really unsterile (even though the mom says she went through painstaking measures to “wash and wrap the placenta everyday to keep it clean,” even placing it in a waterproof pouch.

Often lotus births go hand-in-hand with unassisted births, where the moms choose not to have a midwife or doctor present during the child’s birth—just her partner. Though I find that to be a romantic idea, just you and the one you love bringing this baby you two created into this world all by yourselves, I would be too paranoid something would go terribly wrong that I’d never even consider that as an option.

One might say I’m being too squeamish about childbirth (maybe!), and that a woman’s body knows what it’s doing—it’s like turning on cruise control in a car! But I don’t see any lotus births in my future. Ever!

TELL US: Would you give unassisted lotus birth a try? 

Image of mom and baby courtesy of Shutterstock.

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