Hospital Birth—9 Weeks Postpartum Bleeding

Brooke gave birth to baby Shiloh Lane on March 30th, 2018 at 4:12am. Her pregnancy was fairly textbook with the normal aches and pains towards the end. At 40 weeks Brooke and her Husband, Zack decided to allow the doctor to strip her membranes in hopes that that would give the extra bump she needed to get the birth going. Sure enough, 24 hours later labor started at 3:00pm. By 11pm things had really picked up, Zack called the doulas and they agreed that they should head to the hospital. Zack and Brooke arrived at the hospital at midnight where Brooke was checked and was 4cm with contractions 3 minutes apart. At 2:30am Brooke began to feel the urge to push but did not want to inform the nurses because she knew it could be a while of pushing and she wanted to stand as long as possible. At 3:15am the nurses heard she had been pushing and immediately checked her and made it very clear she was NOT to push until she was fully dilated to a 10 (she was only 7cm at this time). Lots of prayers were said during this time and 5 minutes after only being 7cm she was checked again and had fully dilated to 10cm. There was about 20 mins of active pushing and Shiloh was born. She was 9lbs 1oz and mama was left with a pretty significant 3rd degree tear.

postpartum bleeding 9 weeks

Postpartum was a wild ride for Brooke who was not expecting the emotions and physically recovery that was needing to happen. Breastfeeding went well, with the occasional latch issue and fear that baby wasn’t getting enough but going to a lactation consultant set all of their fears aside. Brooke’s biggest hurdle was that she had postpartum bleeding for 9 weeks PP which everyone told her was “not normal” after many OB appointments and an extra ultrasound to make sure nothing was retained inside Brooke finally stopped bleeding and soon learned about the importance of seeing a Pelvic floor therapist postpartum.

Brooke Borough Bio

Brooke is a 29 year old Wedding photographer living in Ventura, California. She is happily married to her amazing husband Zack of 5 years, has a daughter named Shiloh who is now 1 years old and another baby on the way, due in October. In her spare time you can often find her at the beach with friends, advocating for better beauty regulations, and editing the many wedding + family photos that she has the honor of photographing. You can connect with her on Instagram @dayswithbrooke or her business page @brooke_borough

Resources

The Birth hour + private FB group
Natural birth class (ours was by Tracy Franklin Schmidt — Birth Matters, located in Santa Barbara CA)
Young living oils for during pregnancy + birth (along with Gentle babies book)
Kelly Mom website (troubleshooting w/ Breastfeeding)
Earth mama Birth plan Generator

Babylist

The people at Babylist believe that you should be able to get exactly what you need for your unique and growing family. That’s why their baby registry lets you add any item from any store. Even add cool services and favors like prenatal yoga, doula support, home-cooked meals or dog walking. Start your registry today to be eligible for a free Hello Baby Box of goodies for baby worth up to $190 while boxes last.

Back Labor, Breastfeeding Issues & PPA Followed by Fast 2nd Birth & Postpartum Bliss

Back Labor and Postpartum Anxiety

Morgan’s first baby was born during her 3rd year of medical school. She and her husband (then-fiance) planned a home birth with local midwives and took Hypnobirthing classes at the birth education center in San Diego. Contractions started the evening of her son’s due date and he was born two days later, at home, after an exhausting 36-hr back labor with a 9lb 3 oz posterior baby. Morgan’s postpartum was marked by multiple layers of breastfeeding complications that lead to recurrent mastitis and the development of postpartum anxiety that stuck around for the first 10 months of her son’s life. This was a Dark Night of the Soul learning experience for her, and it has shaped her life and practice with women in her practice.

postpartum anxiety

Fast Intense Birth and Postpartum Bliss

Morgan’s second baby was born three years and two days later – they had the same due date! The birth of her daughter was a wildly different experience. She had more than 24 hours of light early labor that then quickly turned into a 1.5hr active labor that totally shocked her in its intensity and speed. She felt like dancing right after birth, even though her daughter was exactly the same weight as her son, and had a nuchal hand like him! Her postpartum was characterized by pure baby bliss and she was equipped with the skills and knowledge to navigate the breastfeeding struggles that inevitably came from having another tongue tied baby.

Morgan MacDermott Bio

Dr. Morgan MacDermott is a rising leader in women’s reproductive health dedicated to transforming the struggles of the modern mother. As a licensed Naturopathic Doctor and mother of two young children, she blends medical expertise and gathered communal wisdom to help women in-person and online to navigate wellness throughout this revered metamorphosis. Although she felt very prepared for motherhood the first go-around, she felt gut punched by the universe with her postpartum issues of recurrent mastitis and postpartum anxiety. These experiences helped her immensely – not only in how she would go on to create an entirely different postpartum for her second child, but also with the women she works with as patients in her private practice. She currently lives in Encinitas, California with her husband and their 3 year old son and 4 month old daughter, as well as a good friend who has shown them the power of living communally. Morgan believes that the best way to advance the health of future generations is by revolutionizing the health and wellbeing of our current mothers, and she is a powerful voice for natural medicine in the fields of preconception, fertility, pregnancy, and postpartum. Connect with Morgan on IG: morganmacdermott or at milkmedicine.com

homebirth nuchal hand

Resources

Jack Newman breastfeeding videos
Kellymom.com
The Farm with Ina May Gaskin
The Beginning of Life series
The Continuum Concept by Jean Liedloff
Magical Beginnings, Enchanted Lives by Deepak Chopra
Taking Charge of your Fertility by Toni Weschler
The Nourishing Traditions Book of Baby & Childcare by Sally Fallon Morell
Unassisted Birth by Laura Shanley
The Motherly Art of Breastfeeding by Diane Wiessinger
My Mastitis E-book, coming soon!
Podcasts besides The Birth Hour: Health Births Happy BabiesNourishing the Mother; Freebirth Podcast; and, Birthful podcast

Aeroflow Breastpumps

Aeroflow Breastpumps has helped thousands of new and expecting moms find the perfect pump for her lifestyle. They offer all major pump brands including Medela, Spectra, Motif, Lansinoh and more. And the best part, they take care of everything – including getting all required paperwork, dealing with your insurance company and explaining your options in order to get your free pump shipped straight to your door. All you have to go to the Aeroflow Breastpumps website and fill out their free and easy Qualify Through Insurance form. Be sure to go to aeroflowbreastpumps.com/birthhour so they will know I sent you!

Planned Cesarean Birth

Birth Summary

On today’s episode, Allyson shares about her experience with a planned c section birth as a first time mom. She talks frankly about how it felt meeting her son for the first time and how her introduction to motherhood did not go as planned.

Allyson High Bio

Allyson is a social worker and photography lover. She lives in the Twin Cities with her husband, lab/pit Amos, and 1 year old son. Connect with her on IG @allysonwonder.

Resources

Ina May Gaskin’s Guide to Childbirth
How Not To Hate Your Husband After Kids by Jancee Dunn
Know Your Options Childbirth Course from The Birth Hour
C Section scar massage

first meeting baby

Sakura Bloom

This episode is sponsored by Sakura Bloom. Baby carriers crafted in California with the softest hand-dyed linens, hand-loomed silks, coziest bamboo & cashmere. Sakura Bloom covers you from the newborn days through toddlerhood with three unique carrier styles – The Ring Sling, The Onbuhimo and The Scout. Sakura Bloom believes in keeping waste to a minimum and attention to detail high, which means crafting in small batches in their coastal San Diego workshop. Learn more via their customer Facebook Group or on Instagram.

Comprehensive & Evidence-Based Childbirth Course from The Birth Hour

I’m so excited to announce the Mother’s Day launch of THE most comprehensive online childbirth course in existence! We will take you from the final weeks of pregnancy through postpartum and newborn care covering all of the evidence-based information for all types of birth, no matter what you are planning!

Bigger-than-a-Bonus

pumped milk
Then, we’ve got you covered when you’re going back to work with an additional six module Back-2-Work Breastfeeding Course that you will get completely free as part of enrollment in the Know Your Options Childbirth Course!

Lifetime Access + MORE Bonuses!

Oh, and you get lifetime access to everything! I’ve actually already had a few mamas who are still in the trying to conceive phase sign up because they wanted to be sure to get in on the course while they can! The cart will only be open through Mother’s Day! The first 25 students to sign up will get a special gift in the mail from Earth Mama Organics! Hurry!

Go Here For All The Details!!

Epidural Lumbar Puncture, Amnioinfusion & Postpartum Spinal Headache

Preparing for an Unmedicated Birth and Confronting Interventions

Hannah is a first time mom who discovered the birth community during the middle of her pregnancy, and fully embraced it. After lots of research, planning, and self-discovery, she planned for an unmedicated hospital birth with little to no interventions. Hannah had a complication-free pregnancy, and went into labor at 40w3d. Although her contractions were intense and close together, she did not progress dilating and was very discouraged. With the help of her birth team, she then decided to opt for interventions to assist in moving her labor along. She labored in the tub and her water had broken. At this time, she opted to get an epidural. The anesthesiologist had difficulty placing the epidural, and subsequently, had caused a lumbar puncture that affected not only the way the rest of Hannah’s labor would go, but also postpartum.

Hannah’s birth team began to notice baby having late deceleration. Her doctor’s informed her that if baby continued having issues with deceleration they were going to bring her in for a c-section, and began preparing for this possibility. As a last effort they decided to try an amnio-infusion to try to change baby’s position, although this did not normally work for the type of deceleration they were seeing her baby have. Thankfully, it worked, allowing Hannah to avoid the need for a cesarean. Although the epidural did allow Hannah to have a break and rest, it completely stopped working at around 7cm. From there, Hannah and her doula did a lot of breathing work and vocalizing to bring baby down and continue dilating. After pushing for 15 minutes, her baby was born and responded beautifully.

Hannah, however, began to notice an intense headache develop almost immediately after birth. The incorrectly placed epidural caused a spinal headache that lasted over two weeks postpartum, and the only way she was not in pain was when she was laying down. In order to avoid the surgical procedure of an epidural blood patch, Hannah opted to wait it out until her body was able to heal itself. Despite her labor and postpartum time going much differently than expected, Hannah feels confident and empowered by her birth story, and credits that to education, preparation, and an incredible birth team.

Hannah Moody Bio

Hannah is 27 years old and lives in Columbia, South Carolina, with her husband, Brandon, and their three month old daughter, Millicent. She is a an immigration paralegal at a large law firm, a job she switched to during her second trimester. Connect with her on Instagram: @goosebear

Resources

Doula: babybirddoula@gmail.com
EBB website

TTC as a Queer Couple & Homebirth Birth Story

Trying to Conceive as a Queer Couple

Caitlin and her wife had a difficult time navigating the barriers faced by queer couples trying to conceive. After two years and many failed IUIs, they decided to take a different route and try at home inseminations with a known donor. She hoped that removing the stress of the fertility clinic would help her body welcome pregnancy. She was right! And shortly thereafter Caitlin finally got the positive pregnancy test she had been longing for.

Homebirth Birth Story

Caitlin never felt more at home in her body than when she was pregnant. When Caitlin’s water broke in the middle of the night at 37 and a half weeks she instantly forgot everything she spent months learning about labour and birth. Luckily her ever practical wife came to the rescue and encouraged her to go back to bed. Caitlin then spent the next 45 minutes googling “how to tell if your water really broke”. Contractions began shortly after that and by 6:30 a.m. Caitlin and Shona stopped pretending to sleep and got up for the day. After a short early labour things picked up quickly. In her own bed, being held by her wife (the most amazing labour partner), Florence came flying into the world. The trio has been flying high on the most amazing love ever since.

lesbian moms birth story

Caitlin Thompson Bio

Caitlin lives in Canada in a lovely small town called Uxbridge. She works for a large bank in Leadership Development but her new job as a parent has taken much higher priority. She is married to the love of her life and best friend Shona. Together they are explorers and adventurers! They enjoy visiting craft breweries, going to music festivals, hiking with their two rescue dogs, playing hockey, and binge watching Ru Paul’s Drag Race. Most recently, Caitlin and Shona became mamas to their amazing daughter, Florence. Caitlin didn’t know just how magical, raw, challenging and beautiful bringing a child into the world could be. She cares deeply about social justice and is an unapologetic feminist. It is her hope that she can play a part in creating a more caring and compassionate world. Connect with her on IG @cait.rainford

Resources

Ina May Gaskin’s Guide to Childbirth
Mama Natural: Week to Week Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth, Genevieve Howland
The Birth Hour

Expectful

Expectful is the #1 guided meditation app for your fertility, pregnancy, and motherhood journey. Just like you probably take a prenatal vitamin for your body, Expectful’s meditations are like a prenatal vitamin for your mind that can help you conceive and have a happier, healthier pregnancy and baby. Their guided tracks – which were made specifically for hopeful, pregnant, and new moms – help you reduce stress, improve sleep, and connect with your little one. You can go to expectful.com/birthhour to get a special offer: an extended 14-day free trial of Expectful.

Accinclitic Baby, Postpartum Hemorrhage & Struggling with Low Milk Supply

Accinclitic Baby, Postpartum Hemorrhage & Low Milk Supply

Elisabeth gave birth to her first child, Owen, on April 5th, 2019. The pregnancy itself was mostly uneventful minus persistent nausea at 20 weeks that caused to switch from OBs to a midwife. Then a follow up ultrasound brought up concerns that Owen had a potential heart issue. This added some worry to the end of the pregnancy and required sticking with OBs. So, then Elisabeth’s plan was to have an unmedicated childbirth in the hospital. Her due date came and went and as her induction date loomed closer.

Luckily, after two acupuncture sessions, labor started on the day of her induction but she developed a high leak in her amniotic fluid. Instead of using any medications, her OB broke her water completely. She went from 1cm to 3 cms in 2 hours, then felt the urge to push 3.5 hours later. After almost 3 hours of pushing, Owen entered to world accinclitic and at 9lbs 1 oz! Elisabeth had an immediate severe postpartum hemorrhage that only got under control after administering multiple rounds of pitocin, misoprostol and methergine. About 2 hours later, she had another bleed that required more medications and eventually two blood transfusions. This may have contributed to her current struggles with low milk supply.

birth story

Elisabeth Marnik Bio

Elisabeth is 30-year-old research scientist living in Franklin, ME. Her research is focused on genetics and stem cells. She is married to Isaac, who she met after multiple failed online dates. Owen is their first child. In her spare time she is an avid hiker, marathon runner and reader. Find Elisabeth at:Instagram: @Lizmarnik; Facebook: Elisabeth Marnik

Resources

The Birth Hour
The Birthful Podcast
The Birth Kweens Podcast
Evidence Based Birth
The Expectant Father by Armin Brott
The New Father by Armin Brott

Baby Booster

Today’s episode is sponsored by Baby Booster. Great prenatal nutrition starts with Baby Booster, a prenatal protein powder designed and recommended by an OBGYN. Baby Booster fills the gaps and serves as a great supplement to prenatal vitamins by offering 20 grams of protein per serving and a safe, vegetarian based DHA which is critical for your baby’s brain and eye development. Baby Booster also packs in vitamin B6 which has been known to ease bouts with morning sickness. Join the thousands of other Baby Booster mommas and give your baby the best nutritional start with Baby Booster. Visit www.TheBabyBooster.com and use promo code BIRTHHOUR15 for 15% your entire order!

Cesarean Birth, Failed VBAC, No Regrets

Induction Turned Cesarean Birth Stories

After having a fairly easy and healthy pregnancy, Vidita was excited to meet her daughter soon as her due date approached. Unfortunately, she never went into labor and at 41.5 weeks hesitantly agreed to go in for an induction, as recommended by her doctor. Not knowing the strong correlation between inductions and C-sections, Vidita was completely blindsided when her induction stalled and led to a non-emergency C-section due to “failure to progress”.

In the months after her daughter was born, Vidita spent endless hours nursing her round the clock while simultaneously thinking about all the things she would do differently when she became pregnant again. She was convinced that the choices she had made had led to her first C section and she was determined that her birth outcome would be different the second time around. She felt like somehow she had failed by not achieving a vaginal birth. She read all about VBACs and researched everything that could possibly increase her chances of success.

failed vbac birth story

When the time came, Vidita did everything to achieve that VBAC – she hired a doula, found a VBAC supportive provider, gained the minimum recommended weight, worked out – and as her due date approached, she tried everything that could possibly induce labor, from eating dates to acupuncture. This time she had made sure her doctor would let her wait until 42 weeks hoping that was enough time to let her body go into labor naturally. Unfortunately, it didn’t and she was back in the same boat and scheduled for an induction at 42 weeks.

Even though her induction went much better this time around and was so close to being a VBAC, she stalled again around 8cm and they called it given the circumstances. During surgery, the doctor found her son was sunny side up and it would have been a very difficult vaginal delivery, if successful. Vidita had an amazing gentle caesarean experience, and got to do skin-to-skin with her son in the OR right away. She had an incredibly easy recovery and was able to go home after 2 nights. She is thankful there were no emergencies in either of her births and her babies always came out healthy and strong. She has no regrets!

Vidita Chopra Bio

Vidita has a Masters in Public Health from UC Berkeley, with a focus in Maternal and Child Health. She lives in the Bay Area with her husband Matt, 3.5-year-old daughter Ellora, and 2-month-old son Helix. Vidita currently works at the Palo Alto Medical Foundation Research Institute as a Project Coordinator managing health services research. Instagram handle: vidcho Email: vidita.chopra@gmail.com

Resources

https://www.acog.org/Patients/FAQs/Vaginal-Birth-After-Cesarean-Delivery

VBAC Facts

Spinning Babies: Comfort in pregnancy and birth

 

Essential Oils For Pregnancy: What Oils to Use and Avoid

Pregnancy is one of those times in life when you are experiencing a lot of new symptoms and yet you are very limited in what you can do to help. Using essential oils is a great option because they are natural, plant-based and non-toxic but there are a few things you should know about using essential oils during pregnancy before you get started.

What are essential oils?

Essential oils are aromatic, volatile liquids distilled from plant roots, seeds, flowers, leaves, trees or entire shrubs. Essential oils allow you to experience many daily benefits and be self-empowered in taking responsibility for your own health during pregnancy and beyond. Of course, essential oils are not a replacement for medical care and should be used as a complement to the care you receive from your doctor or midwife.

essential oils while pregnant

10 essential oils that are safe for you to use during pregnancy

I discovered essential oils during my most recent pregnancy and used them for everything including sleep support, skin support, immune support and the biggest, for me, emotional support.

Here are 10 essential oils that are safe for you to use during pregnancy:

1. Frankincense

Frankincense is a go-to oil for skin support during pregnancy. Skin can sometimes break out during pregnancy and breastfeeding, but just using one drop of frankincense in the palm of your hand mixed with moisturizer every morning and night can be extremely supportive. Frankincense is also great for emotional support and can help ease worries around pregnancy and birth.

frankincense pregnancy

2. Lavender

Lavender is the jack of all trades when it comes to essential oils and can be used for SO many things during pregnancy. It’s super relaxing and calming and great for sleep support. Simply diffuse it with Frankincense at night or roll on your wrists before bed. It’s also great for skin support and a great option in the summer months when the bugs are biting and you don’t want to use other chemicals on your skin. You will also find many great uses for Lavender once baby arrives. Many new Moms use lavender to create a homemade diaper balm and diffuse it along with a blend called Gentle Baby. If you’ve never smelled the Lavender from Young Living you are missing out! It is so much more potent than any other brands.

3. Digize

Digestion issues are pretty common during pregnancy and Digize is a great remedy for this. Create a roller with Digize and use it during your first trimester on your tummy when you’re experiencing morning sickness. Other women also use it during the third trimester to soothe the acidity experienced in their esophagus. Simply roll is on the area bothering you, such as your throat and chest. It’s not one of the most favorable smelling essential oils, but it can get the job done.

4. Tea Tree (Melaleuca Alternifolia)

Tea Tree is a great oil for skin support especially specific spots like blemishes and irritations. You can use Tea Tree (after your Frankincense moisturizer routine) on any spots that needed extra support.

5. Lemon

Lemon essential oil, like all citrus oils, is very uplifting and great to add to diffuser blends when you need that extra boost. Try using Lemon (and Citrus Fresh) in your water. Young Living’s vitality oils are safe to ingest and just one drop in your water can help increase your daily water intake which is super important during pregnancy and while breastfeeding.

6. Cedarwood

Cedarwood essential oil is great for sleep support and calming nervous tension (aka when you can’t fall asleep at night because you’re thinking about all of the things!). Roll it on the bottoms of your feet right before bed. You can roll it on without diluting or you can make a roller ball with 25 drops Cedarwood and then fill with a carrier oil like coconut oil or jojoba oil.

7. Thieves

Thieves Oil is a popular blend for immune support and sometimes you really need an extra boost for your immune system during pregnancy. Thieves contains Clove, Lemon, Cinnamon Bark, Eucalyptus Radiata, and Rosemary. Several of those oils are recommended to use with care and caution during pregnancy. Also ensure you dilute Thieves and use it in moderation, rather than daily. Thieves is also a great immune support. Try making a 10ml roller with just 10 drops of Thieves essential oil and coconut oil and apply it to the bottoms of your feet and spine when you feel the need for an immune boost.

8. Peppermint

Peppermint essential oil has so many great uses during pregnancy including helping with smell sensitivities. You can simply open the bottle and sniff it or diffuse it along with a citrus like lemon or orange. Try using it in the summer to cool you down. If you’ve ever been pregnant in the summer, you know how hard it can be to cool down sometimes and a drop of peppermint and lavender behind your ears can be extremely cooling. Peppermint is also great for head tension and a roller with 10 drops peppermint, 10 drops Lavender and 10 drops Frankincense is often called the “Hangover Roller”—obviously in pregnancy it serves a different purpose.

Note: Some people choose to avoid peppermint in late pregnancy because it can be used to reduce milk supply but I personally used it up until the end and had an abundant milk supply. Use your best judgment and consult your care provider.

9. Chamomile

There are two different versions of chamomile that are both wonderful and used for different purposes. Roman chamomile is extremely relaxing aromatically and great for sleep support and German Chamomile is fantastic for using on stretched skin after birth. Many women use German Chamomile on their perineum leading up to and after giving birth. It’s also in my favorite homemade diaper balm recipe.

10. Ylang Ylang

Ylang Ylang is a very special essential oil and exceptionally fragrant and refreshing. It’s extremely relaxing and a great oil for emotional support during and after pregnancy. It’s also found in the blend called Gentle Baby which is one of my favorite essential oil blends for pregnancy and baby.

7 essential oils that you should avoid during pregnancy

Historically, there are instances of non-therapeutic-grade (meaning synthetic, adulterated and/or of impure quality) essential oils having possibly caused problems during pregnancy. I only use Young Living oils and because of their Seed to Seal commitment. I have a few reference books that I trust as well and especially love Gentle Babies: Essential Oils and Natural Remedies for Pregnancy, Childbirth, Infants and Young Children.

That being said, here is a list of a few oils that you should avoid or use with caution during pregnancy. There are certain blends that may contain small amounts of these oils that many women use (myself included) without issue. If you are concerned, always consult with your care provider and dilute, dilute, dilute. I’d also limit the oils that you ingest during pregnancy and definitely avoid ingesting any on this list.

1. Wintergreen

Wintergreen essential oil is high in methyl salicylate (the naturally occurring version of aspirin) and should be avoided during pregnancy and birth because of its blood thinning properties. Wintergreen is found in a few blends from Young Living like Panaway & Deep Relief and since it’s just one oil in a blend, many women choose to use it in moderation during pregnancy. Wintergreen should never be ingested.

2. Birch

Birch essential oil is also high in methyl salicylate and should be avoided in pregnancy and never ingested.

3. Hyssop

Hyssop essential oil is high in Pinocamphone which has the potential to stimulate contractions and should be avoided.

4. Clary Sage

clary sage pregnancy

Clary Sage is a great oil for increasing the intensity of contractions once labor has begun as well as inducing labor once a woman has reached her due date. In fact, my water broke within an hour of me diffusing Clary Sage next to my bed. For that reason, it should be avoided until you reach your due date. Other oils that have the same property that could assist contractions are Angelica, Juniper, Myrrh, and Fennel and they should be avoided during pregnancy.

5. Camphor

Camphor essential oil is an oil itself and it is also a constituent in other oils including Tansy, Spanish Lavender, Feverfew, Spanish Sage and Sage Lavender. Camphor oil is only recommended for use topically because it is toxic when ingested. There are no reports of Camphor oil causing harm when used topically in pregnancy but due to its toxicity internally, it is generally recommended to be avoided.

6. Cinnamon Bark

Cinnamon Bark essential oil, along with Clove and Cassia contains Eugenol which has blood thinning properties. While there are no actual accounts of these oils causing problems in pregnancy, if used in large amounts (as in drinking an entire bottle) they could cause harm. As always, use common sense and use oils in moderation.

7. Rosemary

Rosemary essential oil contains the constituent 1,8 cineol also known as Eucalyptol which is great for respiratory support but again, could cause problems in high doses. Rosemary oil should be used only as needed rather than in a daily diffuser blend of perfume.

Essential Oils and Pregnancy what to use and what to avoid

Take the following precautions when using essential oils during pregnancy

essential oils pregnancy

You’ve probably noticed a theme here and that is to use common sense, do your research and start small (aka dilute) when it comes to using essential oils.

Talk to Your Care Provider

During pregnancy, it’s always a good idea to run any concerns by your care provider. You can also seek the advice of an aromatherapist or a midwife or doula that have extensive experience using essential oils with pregnant women.

Dilute

If you’re new to essential oils, I recommend starting with diluting everything. You can dilute oils in a carrier oil like jojoba, avocado, grapeseed or coconut oil. A great starting point with dilution is a 1:8 ratio.

Avoid Ingesting Essential Oils

Ingesting essential oils is going to deliver the most intense effects of the oil to your body. So while certain oils are great for ingesting while not pregnant, a good general rule of thumb during pregnancy is to avoid ingesting. Also, many essential oils you find online or at the grocery store are NEVER indicated for taking internally. If you’re using Young Living, they denote their oils with the Vitality label if they are okay for ingesting.

Avoid Using Essential Oils Altogether if:

Your medical history indicates it

If you have a medical history that indicates you should avoid essential oils, please do not go against medical advice. This could include an allergy or history of certain reactions. Epilepsy is another indicator that is often referenced when it comes to avoiding essential oils.

Ready to start using Essential Oils?

essential oils in pregnancy

I had used several essential oils here and there before but I didn’t realize the difference in quality between many oils you find on the shelves or online versus Young Living oils. Did you know that the regulation around essential oils is pretty nonexistent so companies can claim to have a 100% pure essential oil when actually it’s packed with synthetics or diluted?

You can tell a difference right away when you smell Young Living essential oils and their Seed to Seal commitment was what really sold me on exclusively using their oils.

Once I started using Young Living essential oils during my most recent pregnancy, I was instantly hooked. I use oils every single day for emotional support, sleep support, immune support and skin support—to name a few!

The cool thing about Young Living is when you become a member you are joining a “team” and if you’re joining my team, you get access to so many amazing resources like private Facebook groups (we have one specifically for pregnancy, nursing, and babies!), ebooks, online courses and so much more!

If you want to join me, you can learn more about getting started here.

Babywearing with the Boppy ComfyFit Baby Carrier

This post was sponsored by Boppy and I received the Boppy ComfyFit Baby Carrier to review. As always, I only recommend products that I love and all thoughts and opinions are my own. #ad, #sponsored, #BoppyBabyCarrier, #NeverNotAMom

comfyfit carrier boppy

I’ve been a fan of babywearing ever since my daughter was born seven years ago but back then we just had one (kind of ugly) baby carrier. It got the job done but it wasn’t exactly exciting to wear. The babywearing industry has blown up in the last seven years and now there are so many options for all ages and stages of babyhood. I love babywearing our third baby, not only for the amazing snuggles but also because it frees up my hands to help my older two kiddos with whatever they need.

I recently got to try the Boppy ComfyFit Baby Carrier which was different that any baby carriers I’ve tried so far. The material is similar to yoga apparel with a little stretch but still really supportive. It’s kind of a hybrid between a structured carrier and a wrap which means it’s really pretty but also super easy to use. When we went as a family to a local outdoor restaurant, it was so nice to pop the baby into the Boppy ComfyFit when he started getting fussy on my husband’s lap.

babywearing

I love how easy it is to quickly put on, just one buckle in the back and then the straps are easy to grab, cross in the back and tie off with a double knot in the front. You can wear baby parent-facing or forward-facing but since Harvey is still under 6 months old, I’m keeping him facing me—soaking up all the baby cuddles while I can! It was so funny, I hadn’t had him in the carrier more than five minutes when a pregnant mama came up to me to ask how I liked the carrier because she had just ordered one for herself! You can find the Boppy carrier at BuyBuyBaby! I love how common babywearing is now and will really miss this stage when it’s over.

comfyfit carrier by boppy

boppy comfyfit carrier

kid friendly restaurant austin

Hospital and Birth Center Birth Stories

Hospital and Birth Center Stories

This episode features Denver mama, Alaina, who struggled to get pregnant and had two miscarriages before using Clomid for her 3rd pregnancy, and gave birth in a hospital setting. She found out she was pregnant again without any outside assistance just a year later and gave birth at a birth center, having an unexpected waterbirth.

waterbirth birth center

Alaina Isbouts Bio

Alaina and her husband Philip met while living abroad in Prague, and quickly bonded over their mutual love of travel and shared view of the world around them.  Though they got engaged very quickly, they enjoyed their time together traveling before they bought a house, settled down, and decided to try for a family. It unexpectedly took them a year and a half before they got pregnant with their first, a natural miscarriage at home. Eight months later, in a new home and new city, they found out they were once again pregnant. Once again, the pregnancy ended in a miscarriage.  Alaina and Philip went through fertility testing and were finally able to have a healthy pregnancy with the help of Clomid. Her first birth was a 20-hour natural birth in a hospital.

birth-center-waterbirth

Shortly after celebrating their baby’s first birthday, Alaina found out she was unexpectedly pregnant, though she was still nursing and not taking any fertility medications.  This time they decided to go with a birth center, and ended up with a beautiful and unplanned waterbirth. She currently calls Denver home, along with her husband of eight years and their two boys, Julian (3) and Finley (11 months).  Alaina is a freelance editor and writer, and you can find her online at alainaisbouts.com. She is on Instagram and Twitter @alainaisbouts.

Alaina recommends reading Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth and taking a birth preparation class.

BabyList

Listen to me chat with Whitney about BabyList at the end of today’s episode and check out my sample registry of some of my favorite items for pregnancy and postpartum!

 

*photos by Monet Nicole Birthing Stories. Monet has also shared her birth stories on The Birth Hour.