Where Would You Be Safest Giving Birth? Hint: Not the USA

every mother counts

Where would you rather give birth - in the USA or Albania?  Most of you would probably say the USA yet your chances of survival would then be lower.  Yes, you as a mother are more likely to die from childbirth-related problems in the USA than Albania.  Does that surprise you? New research looking at maternal mortality is out[1] and the findings are not good for those in the … [Read more...]

My Pet Peeves: Generalizing Data to the Wrong Group

lie stats

By Tracy Cassels There’s news about an article making the rounds regarding the risk of homebirth.  Notably, two individuals have written an article for the Journal of Medical Ethics[1] arguing that having a homebirth is as risky as letting your child ride in a car without a seatbelt.  The authors are an Australian OB and an ethics professor in the UK.  The article is really … [Read more...]

Placentophagia

placenta

By Tracy G. Cassels The act of eating one’s placenta after birth, placentophagia, seems to be becoming more popular than in previous years.  Though many women cite hormonal or emotional benefits to ingesting the placenta, very few are aware of the science looking at this practice.  Who does this?  Why?  And does science support the practice? Placentophagia in Other … [Read more...]

Five Worst Parenting Books

thumbs down

By Tracy G. Cassels Parents often find themselves looking for advice on how to raise their kids.  It’s not surprising in a society in which we spend so little time around children that we go into this parenting business with little to no experience.  However, we have to be careful where we seek advice for not all advice is equal.  While there is huge variability in the … [Read more...]

Guest Post: Six Natural Ways To Reduce Pregnancy Related Swelling & Discomfort Without The Use Of Medication

Six Natural Ways To Reduce Pregnancy Related Swelling

By Jenna Birchmier During pregnancy, a woman’s body undergoes many changes in preparation for the upcoming birth. While feeling your baby bump grow is likely to fill you with excitement, experiencing the discomfort of swelling legs and feet may be an unwelcome symptom of pregnancy. Fortunately, there are many things you can do to alleviate the pain and swelling that can … [Read more...]

Homebirth Risks in the News Again

homebirth

The US has a real problem with homebirth and I for one can’t really understand it at all.  It seems that many doctors and hospitals absolutely refuse to believe that homebirths should be happening at all.  That women should not have the choice to deliver their infant at home.  Recently there have been a couple higher-profile studies that have been used to discuss the relative … [Read more...]

Should You Induce Labour?

induction

The question of inductions can be a heated one at times, with proponents of natural birth shunning the idea of artificially inducing something that should happen naturally.  We hear comments like, “The baby knows when to come out” and therefore we are wrong to intervene. But this ignores that women have tried many methods over the years to bring on labour - from red raspberry … [Read more...]

Failure to Progress: A Discussion on Averages

The Normal Distribution

By Tracy G. Cassels "Failure to progress" - a term far too many women have heard during their birthing experience.  What does it mean?  It means your body isn't dilating or getting your baby out based on a predetermined schedule.  What is this schedule?  It's Friedman's Curve, and it looks like this: A depiction of Friedman’s curve, based on data from Friedman, E. A. … [Read more...]

Birth Story: Kristin from One Organic Mama

cover oneorganicmama

Warning. This post is about birth. Vaginal birth. I have given you fair warning. If you don't like that word, just don't read this. Have you closed the page? Go away. Good. So no one is reading. I am only writing this because on a few occasions people have asked about my VBAC and have mentioned that they don't know anyone who has ever had one. I … [Read more...]

Why “Delayed” Cord Clamping Should Be the Norm

CORD CLAMPING

By Tracy G. Cassels In today’s modern birthing picture, you finish birthing your baby and the doctor immediately clamps the cord and you wait to expel the placenta before cutting.  However, this isn’t actually the norm around the world (though notably there is variability worldwide in clamping practices currently).  Often, mothers engage in what is, in our culture, called … [Read more...]