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Babies

Milestones Your Little One Reaches in the first 6 Months

Here is your go to guide to help you navigate the first six months of parenthood. Milestones and everything you need to know about your baby's growth from birth till 6 months.

The wait of nine long months is finally over! Your little one is in your arms and you can’t stop gushing over how cute they are. While you can’t get enough of your baby, it can be overwhelming too, especially when they are your first born. You might be wondering about a hundred different things about their growth and whether you are doing it right. Well, the following article should put your mind at peace.

 

Here is your go-to guide to help you navigate the first six months of parenthood.

 

Month 1

An average newborn weighs approximately 2.8 kilograms and measures about 50 cms but don’t worry if your baby loses some of the weight in the first few days after birth. Babies can lose about 7-10% of their birth weight in the first 10 days of their lives and should regain it within the first 2 weeks as your feeding becomes steady. Once your little one starts gaining weight, they gain approximately 20-30 grams a day for the first few months. Feeding your baby is usually ‘on demand’ initially, which means that your little one will need to be fed as and when they show signs of hunger. Some babies tend to feed more at night for the first few weeks and then fall into a routine of feeding at every 2-3 hours. 

 

Babies should always sleep on their backs for the first 6 months with no loose covers in order to prevent any risk of suffocation. Tummy time is something you can start around the 2nd week. Tummy time is only when the child is awake and comfortable and should not be practiced when the child is asleep. This will allow them to push themselves up which will develop their arm and shoulder strength. 

 

Your little sweetheart loves your voice and hence, it is important to speak to them, even if you don’t always get a response. It helps them calm down.

 

A few common problems you might face during the first month include colic, nasal congestion and jaundice (yellowing of the skin). These will be monitored by your Paediatrician in the newborn visits.

 

 

Month 2

As days progress, your baby becomes more interactive and responsive. In response to loud noises, you may notice them to remain silent and occasionally turn towards the direction of the loud noise. Most babies start smiling when they see you or their daddy or sibling. This is called a social smile

 

They generally start putting their fingers in their mouth and have a strong suck reflex. Although they still cannot hold objects, a bright colored object hanging above them might catch their eye and they may try to bat at it. Their hearing and eyesight steadily develops during this month.

 

Some babies are good at establishing a feeding routine and may sleep longer at night. Their heads become more steady and when placed on their bellies they are able to lift their heads and sometimes their shoulders.

 

It's time for their 6 week vaccination too!

 

Month 3

Three months already? Well now begins what most parents would refer to as the ‘enchanted period’ as this is the phase with a lot of smiling, sleeping well and being social. Their routine is generally established and they sometimes sleep through the night! 

 

Head control is good and they tend to hold up their head without much wobbling. Their back strength also increases, they have better hand-eye coordination and may get hold of a rattle that they may put straight into their mouths. At this age, they laugh and squeal and coo, follow you as you move away and respond to the funny faces you make. Hugging your baby helps in their cognitive development around this time. Their verbal repertoire extends to the occasional vowels and consonant sounds like ‘ah-goo’. You would be quite proud of your cute one’s control over movements and coordination.

 

At week 10th, be ready for another vaccination.

 

Month 4

It is the playtime month for your baby. Their life now is all about showing off their newfound athletic abilities such as trying to get up or rolling, trying to eat any object available with their tiny mouth and perfecting their already achieved milestones. There may be signs of teeth as well and your baby will show quicker reflexes. This is also when their vision improves significantly; they will want to imitate you and hence, it is important that you talk to them for encouragement.

 

It’s vaccination time again.

 

Month 5

Your little one will be able to sit up for longer periods of time and will still need some help being propped up with pillows. They may start sitting unsupported for a few seconds too. Their rolling over skills improve by leaps and bounds and you may notice that when your little one is on their belly they move their arms and legs as if ready to crawl. It's best to start baby proofing your house for the impending explorer! Their senses also improve, and they can spot and try to grab a toy out of reach or turn their heads towards the direction of a sound. Their motor skills improve to ‘army crawl’ which is mostly slithering, and you can guess that crawling is just over the horizon.

 

Month 6

It’s your baby’s half year birthday! The teething phase must have started and tooth eruption is due anytime after the 6th month. Their feeding and sleep pattern is well established. They manage to sit independently for longer periods and some babies may be able to get into the crawling position too.

 

You can introduce them to solid food like fruits, vegetables and whole grain cereals. They should weigh somewhere within 6-7 kg and the average height should be somewhere around 25-26 inches.

 

 

Now that you know what you can expect in these six months, you can plan ahead to avoid a surprise. However, it is important to note that every baby is different and thus, it is okay if your little one takes more time than the others or is getting there faster. Remember to keep your pediatrician in the loop and of course, spend as much time as possible with your bundle of joy!

December 21, 2020 |  read

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Pregnancy

Natural Ways to Fade Away Stretch Marks

Pregnancy stretch marks are a sign of strength while creating a miracle. There are natural ways to fade stretchmarks, if you prefer.

Stretch marks. Yes! This is one of the most common problems that at least 90 percent of pregnant women face today. So, you’re not alone in this problem.

 

To be honest, stretch marks occur to both men and women. Are you surprised? It does indeed happen to everybody. For women, it occurs around the belly, breasts and hip area. Medically termed as striae, they occur when the skin changes shape due to rapid weight gain or loss. Some people can see the appearance of stretch marks from the age of puberty.

 

(Anyone can develop stretch marks, but they are more common in women than men. In women, they occur around the belly, thighs, breasts, upper arms, and hip area. Medically termed as striae, they occur when the skin is overstretched due to rapid weight gain or loss. In many people, they appear first around the puberty age as a result of a growth spurt.)

 

Pregnancy and puberty are the two common life events that give rise to these stretch marks. During the third trimester, your belly is bigger and stretches begin to appear in thin shades of red or purple due to changes in the connective tissues and collagen fibers within the skin. If you are seeing them for the first time during your pregnancy, lucky you, but nothing to worry about. They look different from the texture of the skin around it. Over time it will fade and take a lighter shade compared to your skin. These marks are normal and generally do not cause any harm or pain. Although some may have a concern from an aesthetic point of view

 

How can we prevent the effect of stretch marks during pregnancy?

Here are a few tips that could help you get a heads-up to start on healing these stretch marks. Consult your doctors before you take any kind of medication for this or trying anything new. But otherwise, there are a lot of simple, safe home remedies that you can do to treat your stretch marks.

 

Ensure you maintain a healthy diet. Food and pregnancy go hand-in-hand. Consult with your doctors and change a few things around on your plate. Add food that will help improve your skin elasticity. Food rich in nutrients, and  especially those that contain antioxidants, Vitamin A & E and omega 3 can reduce stretch marks. Too much or too little can both be harmful, so make sure to talk to your doctor to know the exact amount of these nutrients to be included in your diet. Along with food, drink plenty of water. Just like every other teenage-pimple cure guru says, stay hydrated. Drink about 8 glasses of liquid. If you feel that water can be boring sometimes, you can switch to cucumber or watermelon juice. Still counts in those “8 glasses”.

 

Move that blown belly a bit. Stretch those stretch marks away. Some mothers turn to low impact exercises like pregnancy or prenatal yoga, Kegel exercises or simple floor stretches. Get help from your personal trainer or experienced support to learn a few moves. These not only result in avoiding stretch marks but will also relax your body and mind during this pregnancy period. If you are still worried about these sessions, you can always speak to your doctor who can help you with a safe routine. 

 

We have collected a few home remedies/ayurvedic methods that you can do yourself and in the comfort of your home.

 

Sugarsugar varieties - sugar stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images

Sugar acts as an exfoliating agent on your skin. Mix one cup of sugar with ¼ cup softening agent like any oil of your choice. You can also consider adding some lemon juice to this mixture as well. Scrub the mixture on your skin where the stretch marks are for 8-10 minutes. Repeat this several times in a week before you take a shower.

 

Yellow-orange magician- Turmericspices: turmeric roots and powder shot from above - turmeric stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images

Ever since the first pimple, every Indian woman's go-to remedy is the magical turmeric powder. Effective across all ages, a smooth turmeric powder paste can also help heal stretch marks. Use this paste 2-3 times a week.

 

Jelly Aloe vera

aloe vera on wooden background - aloe vera gel stock pictures, royalty-free photos & imagesThe healer of (almost) all, aloe vera, is an excellent skin softener and moisturizer. After a shower, apply a good amount of aloe vera, from a plant, on your skin, daily.

 

Oily- business

Most south-Indians will swear by coconut oil treatments for stretch marks. This super-soothing and vitamin E rich oil gets easily absorbed into the skin. It promotes healing of the scars and helps in speedy recovery of the stretch marks. Other oils like olive, almond and castor oils also have healing elements.aroma therapy oils placed next to a white towel and flower - oil stock pictures, royalty-free photos & images It has been proven that these oils, massaged over the affected area, play a vital role to reduce stretch marks. Consult with your doctor to be aware of any kinds of allergies that you might be facing with the use of these oils.   

 

 

Some women try very hard to rub the stretch marks away. Others carry them as a souvenir of the beautiful journey towards motherhood. Our message to pregnant mommies - with or without these stretch marks we are proud of this journey that you are going through. You will always be beautiful. So never be ashamed of these stretch marks. Embrace these beauty marks with pride and do exactly what makes you happy!

 

December 24, 2020 |  read

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Single Parents

Taking Care of Your Newborn as a Single Mother

New to single motherhood and don’t know what to do? Here is your checklist of how to take care of your newborn as a single mother. Keep a few points in mind and you will be an incredible parent!

Parenthood is bliss but only if we had a rulebook, giving us the exact amount of chaotic fun, it brings, it would probably be much easier. Having a partner, may help when it comes to bringing up a child but if you are a single mother, we’re right here with you. It is especially difficult in the first few weeks after your baby is born. Taking care of your newborn as a single mother can be challenging but hey, we are here to make your life easier. Here are a few tips that we compiled for you to get you through everything as smoothly as possible.

 

Keeping a Track of Your Finances and Stocking Up Supplies

First things first, let’s make a list of income and expenses. Take it easy in the first month because that’s when it would be the most overwhelming. The first few weeks of postpartum is meant to be taken on easy. Hence, make sure that you have everything that you would need. Make a budget and keep updating it. You can go old school by using a pen and pad and making tiny, colourful sticky notes or you can switch to an excel sheet. But keeping track of where your money comes from and goes to, is quite important to plan ahead and save.

 

You can use the nine months of pregnancy to stock up supplies like hair products, skincare and maternity care. Make sure that you have enough supply for at least the next 2-3 months after your little one is born. That would help you to avoid running errands every now and then.

 

You may even opt for home delivery, given that it is now more convenient than ever. Check out our Product Wiz for the best deals on everything you would need!

 

Keep Your People Close

Sometimes, it can get too exhausting or overwhelming. You’d need a break and that’s when you would need your close friends and family to help you. Your close ones could babysit, while you take time to delve into that peaceful slumber you have been craving for more than a week. Or you could simply call them up for a movie night with lots of your favourite food.

 

You’ll know that at times, all you need is just a bucket of your favourite ice-cream and your favourite person (other than your little one) to tell you how well you have been doing and  just to chat!

 

The most important thing to remember is to ask for help when you need it. Be vocal about your needs. You are already doing great but don’t push yourself. You’ll find that many would go out of their way to help you. All you need to do is ask.

 

Find Other Single Moms Clubs or Groups

Many single moms suggest that joining a club or a group meant for single moms was one of the best help they have got. They would know exactly what you are going through and not only will you find that they are giving out the best advice for new moms, but you may also end up finding a best friend for yourself as well as your baby.

 

Prioritize The Needful

Moms are inherently superwomen. But remember that you need not prove that to anyone. You are already doing great, understand that it is okay to leave a few things be. Being a single mom, you probably try to do everything all together like cooking, cleaning, managing a full-time job and taking care of your newborn.

 

However, it need not always be so. You can clean the house alternately or have a specific schedule. Additionally, you could create a routine of cleaning one room per day. This would reduce your workload and make time for other things.

 

Avoid a Guilt Trip

Whether being a single mother was your choice or a result of circumstance, you must have questioned yourself on if you are doing things right, if you are giving your little one enough time, if you will be able to provide enough and the list goes on. Finding reasons to feel guilty can be easy but that’s not healthy. Focus on the good, the blessing that your baby is, the dreams you have, if your little sunshine is healthy and loved, and the home of love and laughter that you both share.

 

A Baby Swing

You’ll discover that a baby swing is your best friend now, if you haven’t already. Getting a good swing which rocks back and forth gently would keep your little one calm and allow you to get most of your work done, like laundry or taking a shower easily.

 

Sleep When Your Baby Does

The best time to sleep would be when your baby does so. As a single mom, your sleeping schedule would have to depend on your little one as that would be the best time to get the nap you have been wanting. Don’t worry about household chores or getting work done, then. Take that opportunity to rest and give yourself a break. You have most definitely earned it.

 

 

Taking care of your newborn as a single mother is no less than the work of a superwoman, which you are! But in the meantime, do not forget to focus on yourself. Do the things you love once in a while and do not forget to make yourself a priority too.

 

December 24, 2020 |  read

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Babies

The Fourth Trimester - Advice and Tips for You

The fourth trimester can be overwhelming for both parents. Here's some advice and some tips on how to manage this period better.

Fourth trimester, (yes, you read that right!) is the duration between the birth of your child and the first 12 weeks. As much as it is magical to have your beautiful angel in your arms, it is also a time when both the parents go through countless emotional fluctuations, are overwhelmed and exhausted.

 

Here are a few tips and tricks you can keep in mind to get you through all of it:

 

Schedule your postpartum visit regularly 

Although the first visit is usually scheduled after the sixth week, women have already gone through the pain of vaginal birth or surgical incision after a cesarean in the first few weeks. There are other common complications like nipple blisters or difficulty in breastfeeding. Therefore, do not wait until the sixth week and make an appointment according to your convenience.

 

Create a postpartum plan

Being prepared helps you to avoid unwanted surprises. The birth of a child is one of the biggest milestones in the life of any parent, but it also is accompanied with substantial social, physiological and emotional challenges. Creating a plan will help you and your family to anticipate any hurdles along the way. Familiarize yourself with the mood disorders and set realistic expectations. It is okay to feel that you have no idea of what you are doing. Don’t let it get to you. Communicate with your partner and your family.

 

Stock up on supplies

While you are worried about your little darling, you should not forget to take care of your own needs. Hence, along with buying diapers for your little one, be sure to get adult diapers for yourself, witch hazel pads, numbing spray and sitz bath. Do not forget to stock up your favourite snacks and meals, food you crave which are also nourishing, transition clothes like sports bra and yoga pants, kimonos and cardigans etc.

 

Take time to heal

You have been through quite a journey and you are doing great. Taking care of a newborn is not easy but you need to take care of yourself too. Remind yourself to get enough sleep whenever you can and seek help from your partner with your baby. Make yourself a nice bubble bath or a nice warm shower, have calming tea, put on your favourite track or podcast, or take your favourite book out and relax. At times, journaling or just taking a walk around the neighborhood helps. Try to create a balance between your mind and body. Entertain yourself once in a while. You will get through it, slowly but steadily, one day at a time.

 

Consult a physical therapist

Along with your mind, your body needs to heal too. Your body has supported a human and now, it is time to be back to normal. It is easier said than done. Thus, it is recommended to hire a pelvic floor specialist especially for women who experience back pain, incontinence or instability.

 

Keep your visitors limited

It is common for people to come visit you after the birth of your child. But that can just add to your exhaustion. Moreover, passing around the baby interferes with their breastfeeding routine as your body does not get the cue to make milk. There are added chances of your little one catching the flu or you being uncomfortable altogether. You can come up with a secret word or sign with your partner which means that you would like the guests to leave now.

 

Breastfeeding Support

Sometimes, it may not be very easy to cope up with the baby blues, especially the challenges around breastfeeding. In case you are in pain, even after two-three days of breastfeeding and the baby doesn’t gain weight, speak with a lactation consultant.

 

Drop your stress

It is usual to be stressed during this time. Practice inhaling through your nose and exhaling through your mouth, drop your shoulder and straighten your spine. Repeat this process whenever you can, in order to regain your focus and have an upper hand on your emotions.

 

The fourth trimester is metamorphic for the dad, too. While a mother has inherent maternal instinct, a father is easily perplexed trying to figure out when to step in and how to do so. His relationship dynamics with the mother changes too and now, he has to be more patient to support both the baby and his partner.

 

  • First and foremost, as a dad, you need to be there for the mommy. Cheer her on, be patient with her, celebrate feeding milestones with her etc. You can offer to burp the baby, change or rock him/her after feeding. This will help to develop your bond with your little one.

  • If you are unsure about what you are doing, research. Read up the baby books with your partner and talk to her. Each pregnancy is unique and so is every baby. It would be easier to go through everything as a team rather than doing it alone.

  • Research suggests that prenatal mental health issues are common among fathers too, with 4-25% of new fathers being overwhelmed with sleep deprivation and mood disorders.  Remember that it is normal and you too, need to take care of yourself.

 

 

At the end of the day, remember that this will all be worth it when your little angel smiles at you and calls you ‘mama’ or ‘dada’ for the first time. Be there for each other and the journey will be enjoyable and so much easier.

 

December 24, 2020 |  read

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Covid-19

How to Protect Myself and My Baby from Coronavirus

Protecting your baby and yourself during the coronavirus pandemic is of utmost importance. Follow these steps to stay safe.

The situation of the pandemic has created a lot of panic amongst the people, especially expecting mothers. Being pregnant during these times creates a concern not just about one’s own safety from the virus but the child’s as well. This said, it is nothing to worry too much about. Let us look at some ways in which you can keep the virus away from you and your baby.

 

Methods of Safety

A lot of content gets circulated through social media about how to keep yourself safe from the virus. It is difficult to discern what is trustworthy advice and what is not. We have put together some measures from experts that we believe will help you navigate through this period in full health.

The first and foremost thing to do is to observe utmost hygiene. Keep yourself indoors and do not step out unless it is absolutely necessary, like a doctor’s appointment maybe. In the case that you do, wear a mask to protect your nose and mouth from exposure. Sanitize your hands regularly and remember not to touch your face, especially eyes, nose and mouth, when you are outside, in public places, maintain the prescribed social distancing of at least six feet from other people. 

Staying indoors calls for safety measures as well. Wash your hands during regularly using a soap and spending at least 20 seconds doing so. Boosting your immunity is also as important as observing strict hygiene to steer clear of the virus. Simple everyday habits like drinking a lot of water and eating plenty of fruits and vegetables can help you do so. Adequate amounts of rest should also be given to your body. 

 

How to Quarantine Yourself When You are Pregnant

Preparing for childbirth during a pandemic can be stressful. The most important thing to do in case you notice someone with symptoms of COVID-19 near you or when someone close to you gets tested COVID-19 positive, is to quarantine yourself immediately. 

Having proper medical guidance is necessary in the unfortunate instance that you realise someone you had come in contact with has been confirmed to have the coronavirus. However, it is extremely unadvisable to visit a doctor’s clinic. Quarantine yourself and consult with your doctor online to reduce the spread of the virus. In case you find yourself having symptoms, ask your doctor for further guidance on whether or not to take a COVID-19 test and how to go about it. 

Further, it is absolutely important that you keep yourself and your loved ones well-informed in addition to the other quarantine rules that you would be observing. Do your own research about the virus on relevant and authentic sources like WHO and UNICEF to know what is happening around you and how to take care of yourself. If you go under quarantine, it is important that your loved ones have all the details they need. This includes information about the medicines you take and other duties that you may have been performing until then like taking care of other children, if you have any. 

Remember to continue taking your nutritional supplements and doing light exercises to keep your body active and healthy, fully prepared for the delivery. 

 

How to Protect My Unborn Child from COVID-19

The first step towards protecting your unborn child, is to protect yourself. Follow all the safety measures mentioned above to make the chances of contracting the disease as low as possible. However, given the unfortunate event that you have tested positive for the virus, it can cause some confusion as to what steps to take next.

While the number of cases reported and studied of pregnant women with COVID-19 cases is low, the available data shows that the chances of the child contracting the disease, in spite of the mother being tested positive, are very less (Farid and Memon, 2020). The virus has not been found in the amniotic fluid, vaginal fluid, cord blood, placenta or the breast milk (Navigating Pregnancy during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19),2020). No child has been shown to have any fetal malformations or any other physical problems due to the mother’s infection (Farid and Memon, 2020). It is important that you continue to receive prenatal medical support; contact your doctor regarding how to go about this. 

 

Being pregnant during these times can be testing but it is not without hope. By taking a few safety measures and staying indoors as much as possible can reduce the risks of contracting the disease. It is also important to keep yourself quarantined in case of a chance exposure to a COVID-19 positive case. If you have tested positive for the disease, do not panic about your child being affected by it as the number of such instances reported are very low. It is important that you continue to take prenatal support from your doctor and take care of yourself by doing light exercises, building your immunity and nourishing your body generously.

January 21, 2021 |  read

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Babies

Learning to Communicate with the Little One

Communicating is the first step to bonding with your baby. Here are a few steps that will help you communicate better with your baby.

Hello again! You must now be thrilled by the arrival of your baby and spending most of your time observing his/her antics and loving every minute of it. As parents, you and your partner might have developed an instant connection with the baby, no doubt. But you also might be wondering how to communicate well with your baby. Read ahead to learn some methods and tips to communicate better with your baby.

 

You can start from day one

You might have already started your communication with the baby when he/she was still in your womb. The baby already knows your voice. When they are brought to the outside world, researches have shown that they can already recognise your voice. They will also start recognising your face soon enough. So, you can start your communication since their arrival into the world. You can make silly faces or stick your tongue out to help them recognise you better. Daddies! You can get in there too. Goof it up a little and make your new baby get comfortable with you.

 

It is very important to respond

In the beginning your baby would be all about crying, because that is the only way they know how to put out their needs. But as days go by, they start babbling or making face gestures. Even if they are simply cooing or crying, it is very important to respond to these sounds as this is how they will learn what communication is. You can imitate the sounds they make, throw in a few words there and can also ask them a question and wait for them to give you an answer, however they can. Not receiving an appropriate response might lead them to act out for attention.

 

Non verbal communication matters too

A few months down the lane, you might notice that your baby now gestures with his/her hands, points to something or waves at you. You can respond to these by holding their hand back or acknowledging their action. It is also good to always make eye contact with your baby, especially when they are trying to tell you something. Do not look away or have a conversation with someone else while your little one wants to talk. Your baby would also be able to identify different moods on your face. Smile more often, as that will encourage them to let out a cute giggle too.

 

Engage their sense organs

You can teach your baby about what they are sensing from an early age. You can describe to them what they are hearing or smelling. For instance, if a bird is chirping nearby, tell them it is a bird’s call. You can also teach them about movement and tell them when they sit down or stand up. The tiny human requires a lot of warmth. It is important to let them feel your touch as it helps them bond with you better. Cuddle them if you feel they are anxious, give them gentle massages and stroke or tickle them lightly when you both are in the mood for some fun. All these things can be done by the daddies too as it will help you bond better with the baby.

 

Reading and singing is fun!

You might have already shopped for some colourful story books and rhyme collections. Make use of them. Make sure the books have a lot of illustrations, shapes and colours and do not miss to tell your child about each of these things. You can pick something from the book and show it to your child in reality. If there is a white coloured flower in the book, next time you come across a white rose, you can remind the little one and help him/her make better associations. Also, sing to your baby, may it be a cute lullaby or rhymes, your baby would love to hear them.

 

Parentese can be helpful

No no, this isn’t a new language or anything. Parentese or motherese is when you speak with your baby in a high-pitched voice and over enunciate some words. Most of you must be very familiar with this as it has been used as a way of communicating with babies since generations. Babies are more attentive to high pitch voices and the enunciation can help them differentiate between different words. You can practice this till your baby is about 6 months of age and then gradually reduce your pitch.

 

What about bilingualism?

Parents are often confused if babies get confused when spoken to in two languages. Well, according to researchers, no, your baby won’t. Bilingualism exists in most of the households and when properly distinguished, your baby can pick up both the languages. Just make sure that you are not mixing one language with the other. Research also says that kids who speak two languages exceed well academically in the future! Added advantage, right?!

 

 

It cannot be stressed enough that every baby is different from the next one. Do not panic if your baby isn’t responding like the neighbour’s kid. Never force your baby to communicate, it will come naturally to them, just be a little patient. Your little ones will grow up before you know it and maybe, one day, know more words and languages than you! Happy parenting!

 

December 23, 2020 |  read

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Pregnancy

Period and Pregnancy : The Before and After

The A to Z guide on period and pregnancy. Here's what you need to know.

What exactly is occurring inside my body during my monthly fertility cycle? Why am I bleeding while I’m pregnant? These are two questions that you are likely to ask during two completely different stages of your pregnancy, amidst the before and after period confusion. Let us find answers to these.

It is quite incredible that in a 365-day calendar year, you can get pregnant maybe 12 of those days, if you have regular cycles. Imagine - An egg drops, maybe in the fallopian tube for 24 hours, gets fertilised; and the ovulation window is closed! That’s quite a lot of effort to get pregnant in such a small window-time. So, it is important that you become fertility aware, to know what the clues are, and save yourself from a lot of fertility faux pas that you might end up making.

 

 

Period Before Pregnancy : Understand your Power Window

Know that your fertility is not skin deep. There are no censors for your fertility. You have to chart out when you might be ovulating. Every woman would bleed after every ‘x’ number of days. A cycle may be a standard one with 28 days, a short one with 24 days, or a long one between 32-35 days. The entire duration of this cycle depends on the time between the period and ovulation. There are always 13-15 days between ovulation and the next period, irrespective of the duration of the cycle as a whole. So you could mark the expected date of your next period on a calendar, and go back 13-15 days, that are supposed to be the most fertile.

 

However, if you have an irregular menstrual cycle, do not conclude that you cannot get pregnant. It is all about ovulation again. On consulting your gynaecologist, you could get an ultrasound done to know your window, or you could regularise your cycle with medication and calculate your ovulating time, as explained above. 

 

 

Period After Pregnancy : Your Chum has come back again, to say Hi!

After a successful attempt at getting pregnant, while you think you are done bleeding for an average of 9 months, the first trimester can sometimes bring back your old acquaintance!

 

Spotting or bleeding in the first trimester of pregnancy is common. 2 or 3, out of 10 women bleed in early pregnancy, and there are reasons, problematic or not, as to why that happens. Spotting is a term used for light vaginal bleeding. This bleeding is lighter than a period, and may be brownish, pinkish, or red in colour. Usually around day 8-10, after ovulation, when the embryo is brewing into the lining of the womb, spotting or bleeding may take place. Sometimes, this leads a woman to think that this is her period and that she is not pregnant at all, if she is not experiencing any other symptoms. As alarming as bleeding can be, it is usually nothing to worry about. You may be offered an ultrasound just to ensure there is a gestational sac with an embryo, and if you are far enough along a little heartbeat, this is quite reassuring.

 

Women who conceive with the help of fertility treatment are more likely to experience spotting. If two or more embryos are placed into your uterus and one stops developing, this may trigger a small bleed due to the loss of an embryo. This loss is called ‘The Vanishing Twin,’ in which case, you must contact your place of treatment for advice. They may advise an early ultrasound. Multiple pregnancies are at a greater risk of miscarriage. Some women worry that having an ultrasound done will increase their bleeding, or indeed cause a miscarriage, but doctors assure that there is no danger of that happening due to a transvaginal ultrasound. Even if the bleeding is heavy, it does not mean the pregnancy is over. Investigation is worth it, for the peace of mind it offers.

 

 

The most common causes of spotting, irrespective of the stage of pregnancy are :

1.      Breakthrough Bleeding

Breakthrough bleeding happens when you normally expect to have your period. This can therefore happen at 4, 8, or 12 weeks. This bleeding is usually lighter than a menstrual period. It is possible to experience breakthrough bleeding more than once. In a small number of cases, repeat breakthrough bleeding leads women to believe they are not pregnant when in fact they are. 

 

2.      Implantation Bleeding

Pregnancy and the hormone, Progesterone stimulates the growth of rich blood vessels. They nourish the lining of the womb. When a fertilised egg embeds into the lining, it may cause some bleeding. This bleeding is called Implantation Bleeding. For some, it is a small amount of brown blood, for others it may mimic a period and be bright red. Implantation bleeding occurs during the first few weeks following conceptions and can be one of the first symptoms of early pregnancy.

 

 

December 24, 2020 |  read

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Babies

First 24 Hours of the Baby

Congratulations! Your baby is finally here! Let us unfold what the first 24 hours with your newborn baby will look like.

Birth of your child is an extremely joyous and emotional occasion. From the moment they are born, you’ll learn to bond with the little one and care for them. The first 24 hours of your baby are crucial and important, as doctors check for his/her health conditions, weight, the Apgar score and the ballad score. Taking care of a newborn is not easy - be it the mother or the father. Even though the medical procedures vary across hospitals, this timeline will give you a brief idea about how the first 24 hours of the baby will unfold.

 

First few seconds after birth

A couple of seconds after birth, you should hear your little one’s first cry. This is to ensure that there is no blockage in the respiratory tract. Following this, the nurses will clear the amniotic fluid and mucus from your baby’s mouth and nostrils to check if both the nostrils are fully functional.  Post this, your baby would start breathing on their own.

 

First 5 and 10 Minutes

5 Minutes

Typically, after your little starts to breathe on their own, the doctor cuts or lets your partner cut the umbilical cord. Post this, your doctor will evaluate the baby for the Apgar score. Apgar score is based on the baby’s heart rate, color, reflexes response, and breathing. This is determined at 1 minute and 5 minutes post-delivery. This test score ranges from a scale of 1 to 10, but anything above 7 is considered completely normal. If your baby’s apgar score is below 7, there is nothing to worry about. Babies with low apgar count will still grow up to be healthy and happy. 

 

First one hour with the little one

The first 24 hours of the baby begins with the baby being given antibiotic eye creams to avoid any infections and vitamin K shots in thighs to prevent any blood clot. Then the baby is wrapped, covered in sheets, and diapered. You can start breastfeeding if you are comfortable and up for it. This is an amazing time to start bonding for the three of you.

 

2-3 hours post-birth

Now that your baby is done with the initial round of testing, you and your little one could spend time in your hospital’s recovery room. You can also feed the baby if the little one is up and you are comfortable. Sometime now, the nurse examines your baby to make sure she’s adjusting to her life outside the womb. The nurse would also check the baby for pulse, abdomen, make sure her genitals are formed properly, and verify the baby has a full set of fingers and toes.

The nurse also records the ballad score, in which the baby’s head circumference, chest circumference, and length are measured to confirm her gestational age. If your baby is premature, she would be kept at the NICU.  Where they could monitor the heart rate, temperature, and respiratory rate could be monitored closely every 30 minutes.

 

Hours 4 to 22

In this period, you’ll experience many of your baby’s firsts like, first bath, diaper change after your baby’s first poo. You would also learn how to nurse your baby, hold and swaddle the baby. You’ll also learn how to care for umbilical-cord stumps. If you have opted for breastfeeding, you’d be feeding the munchkin every 2-3 hours in the first 24 hours of the baby. The baby might fall asleep halfway through nursing and be asleep for almost around 6 hours. The best way to rest is to get some sleep while the little one is asleep. Your nurse might ask you to keep feeding to avoid any pain in your breasts. Your baby will have a pediatrician’s visit to ensure the baby is doing alright and healthy.

During this time, you might have your friends and family visiting you and the little one. This is a joyous occasion for everybody. But make sure to ask them to wash their hands or use a sanitizer before holding the baby. Be sure to not wake the baby-up or cause any noise around the baby. 

 

23rd and 24th hour

During this period, your pediatrician will formally evaluate the baby. This could be your little one’s first physical examination, during this, the doctor will look for malformation, signs of infections, jaundice, monitor breathing and feeding. Your doctor would generally encourage you to feed as frequently as possible to check for the baby’s bowel movements. In addition to all the routine check-ups, your baby would be evaluated for various potential infections and disorders, including sickle cell anaemia. By this time, your baby would know that you’re the mother by your voice and heartbeat. Remember, the baby can hear your voice and recognize it from the womb.

If you have a vaginal delivery, you would be discharged from the hospital within 48 hours, if both of you are healthy and alright. If you have a c-section, you’d be staying in the hospital for about a week. Make sure to get essentials to the hospital beforehand to avoid unnecessary trips to home by your partner.

Post this, you would be getting doctors visiting you on rounds to monitor and make sure you and your little one is alright. Can you believe that your baby’s first day is officially over now? This day would be etched in your memory forever. The happiness of holding your baby for the first time surpasses everything you were worried about. You now have plenty of time to put all your plans into action.

 

February 09, 2021 |  read

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