Thursday, February 7th, 2013
Thinking about getting pregnant? Already pregnant? If so, here is a new book you’ll want to know about. Healthy Mom, Healthy Baby: The Ultimate Pregnancy Guide is a brand new manual that covers everything you need to know from exercising to bleeding (don’t freak if this happens to you like it did to me–it’s often nothing serious) to vaccinating to breast-and-formula feeding.
There are three reasons I like this book.
1. It’s all facts minus the drama and nonsense. That other book, you know the one, can be a big emotional garbage disposal. Healthy Mom, Healthy Baby gives you bullet points and solid info minus the silliness and 1970s cover.
2. Healthy Mom, Healthy Baby is backed by The March of Dimes which will be celebrating its 75th anniversary this year. They are the leading non-profit organization for pregnancy and baby health. Read: You can trust what’s in this book.
3. The authors are smart and on point. Siobhan Dolan, M.D., the mother of three teens, is an professor in the OBGYN department at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and practices at Montefiore Medical Center in New York City. Alice Lesch Kelly is a longtime science writer from Boston.
I asked Dr. Dolan to tell me more:
KK: What is special and unique about your wonderful pregnancy guide?
SD: This book is written by two professional moms–one doctor mom (me!) and one science writer mom (Alice Lesch Kelly)–in collaboration with March of Dimes, the most trusted source of pregnancy information. So in our book we offer the full range of scientific and medical expertise about pregnancy but we do it in a warm and caring fashion. We have both been there, and we don’t want to scare women. We want to help women. We also straighten out some lingering myths. As an example, we are clear that there is no safe level of alcohol during pregnancy but that caffeine in moderation (one serving a day) is okay. Also, we stress the importance of getting vaccinated against influenza and pertussis as the data are clear that contracting either of these conditions while pregnant is very dangerous for both mom and baby. The vaccines themselves are safe and effective during pregnancy.
KK: What are the three most important things a pregnant mom should do for her baby’s health?
SD: 1. Take a prenatal vitamin containing folic acid starting before you become pregnant and continuing throughout pregnancy.
2. See your doctor before you become pregnant and make sure any medical conditions (such as diabetes) are well controlled, your vaccinations are up to date, and any medications you are taking are safe during pregnancy. Once pregnant, make sure to see your obstetrician provider starting in the first trimester and throughout pregnancy.
3. Avoid alcohol, smoking and drug use during pregnancy.”
KK: This is a comprehensive book. Why do you think books like these are so near-and-dear to moms-to-be?
SD: “I often hear pregnant women and their partners say they are nervous about being pregnant. I feel badly when I hear this because it seems that there are so many messages about all the things that can go wrong during pregnancy that new parents-to-be often lose sight of the amazing exciting wonderful experience that being pregnant and having a baby is. We want couples to be excited and optimistic about being pregnant–most pregnancies are healthy. I think women and their partners are reassured by an advice book like Healthy Mom, Healthy Baby because it empowers them and helps them understand how to take good care of themselves. There is definitely one thing all parents have in common: Every mom wants a healthy baby, and our book helps them start where they are and empowers them to get there!