Overcome Your Fear of Childbirth Barcelona

Overcome Your Fear of Childbirth

Would you like to have a fearless birth? A birth you can look forward to?And would you like to know exactly how you can prepare for it?

Unfortunately a lot of women believe that giving birth is one of the worst experiences in a woman’s life and some women even choose not to have children because they are so scared of it. However, there are a lot of things we can do and here they are:

Number 1 – Trust Your Body: Women all over the world have given birth for thousands and thousands and thousands of years and in fact our amazing bodies are designed to give birth, right? Looking at it from an evolutionary standpoint, that’s really all we’re here for. Seeing other mammals give birth, they usually do this all by themselves and most of the time at night when it’s dark and quiet, shhhh and they are undisturbed. I do want you to take away from this is that your body knows what it’s doing. And even more so when you’re treating yourself well during your pregnancy! So trust your body!

Number 2 – Choose Your Birthing Team Wisely: Ideally you want to have a team including your birth partner, and that can be your intimate partner, your mum, a good friend, or your sister; a doula who will help both you and your partner with all sorts of things during labour and birth, a midwife and then depending on your personal preferences and financial situation, you might even consider hiring a photographer who can capture your memories. Of course you only want to work with people you trust.

Number 3 – Keep Positive: If you’re scared of giving birth, which is probably why you’re here. I’m sure you’ve been inundated with horror stories, be it by your mum, friends and other family members, or movies, tv shows, pictures… Keep all of those stories out of your life from now on and if someone (and there always seems to be someone while you’re pregnant) wants to tell your about their negative experience, ask them to wait until after your birth. You can say something along the lines of: “Hey, I’d love to hear your birth story, but I’d really prefer to talk about it after I’ve given birth.”Is is important to take antenatal classes that will help you to understand the process and to be prepare for birth.

Number 4 – Relax: Now, THIS is super important and something I go into in a lot more detail as to how to actually do this, in my classes, but to give you the quick version: You want to relax your mind completely, because a relaxed mind means your whole body and especially your pelvic muscles will be relaxed as well, which is exactly what we want to help your baby make its way out more easily and stress free. And ONE amazing way to do this is by imagining yourself outside at the beach, up on a mountain or even in your own garden, whatever calms your mind and your body.

Number 5 – Breathe: When you’re relaxed, you will naturally breathe deeper into your belly, which is so important for labour and birth.

Number 6 – Hum Your Baby Down: Breathe or hum your baby down and that’s something you want to be doing at the end instead of pushing. Most of us believe that we have to push the baby out and yes, most women actually feel the natural urge to push at the very end, and so did I. However, if you’re pushing too soon with too much force, you’re causing the sphincters of your vagina to close right in front of your baby’s head, which can slow down the process a lot. So hum your baby down.

Number 7 – Connect with Your Baby: You want to be doing this throughout your pregnancy and especially during labour and birth. And what I mean by this is to check in with your body and your baby throughout the day, get quiet and relaxed and just feel how your belly feels. Can you feel your baby moving? even if it’s just tiny movements? So often we only really feel them once we go to bed after a hectic day, when we lie down and finally calm down. Communicate and bond with your baby as much as you can. And then of course during labour realise that your baby getting closer to you, closer and closer with every single surge.

 

igns that will let you know that your baby is coming

6 signs that will let you know that your baby is coming

Every woman’s experience of labour is different. You may only be able to work out when labour truly started after you’ve been through it! However, changes that take place in pre-labour and early labour may cause tell-tale signs and symptoms that labour is imminent

1. Nesting: If so, labor is on the way. First, have you heard of “nesting?” It’s when you get this surge of energy that makes you want to cook, clean, and reorganize your home. For some women, it’s a clue that baby day could be coming up soon.

2. Lightening: “Lightening” is the feeling that your baby has dropped lower into your pelvis. It means labor isn’t far off!

3. Persistent lower back pain or abdominal pain, with a pre-menstrual feeling and cramps.

4. Bloody or transparent Discharge: If you notice brownish or red-colored mucus called discharge coming out of your vagina, it could mean your cervix is opening up.

5. Water Breaks: Your water could break before or during labor. It could feel like a big gush or a steady trickle. Sometimes it’s hard to tell whether it’s the real deal or just pee, so let your doctor know ASAP if you’re not sure. She may want to know what color the water was and what it smelled like.

6. Contractions: When you have contractions that gradually get stronger and closer together, that means the countdown to a baby is on! They’ll be so powerful that you won’t be able to walk or talk while you’re having them. And they won’t go away if you move around or change positions, either.

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How do we cope with baby colic?

Everyone knows that newborns cry. A lot. Usually, feeding, changing, or rocking the baby helps to calm the fussing. But if a baby has colic, it’s not that simple. “Colic is when a baby cries intensely for three or more hours at a time, usually during the evening hours, on at least three days of the week, for longer than three weeks in a row — for no apparent reason,” says Mary Ann LoFrumento, M.D., author of Simply Parenting: Understanding Your Newborn & Infant.

Colic usually begins around week 2 or 3 of the baby’s life and peaks at around 6 to 8 weeks. Unlike with regular infant crying, attempts to stop colic-induced sob sessions by feeding, burping, rocking, or changing the diaper aren’t successful. If you think your baby has colic, check with her pediatrician to make sure there isn’t something else going on, such as reflux, a string of hair wrapped around Baby’s finger, or an illness. The good news: If it is colic, it’s short-lived, and your pediatrician can also help find ways to help the colic. Colic usually goes away by 2 or 3 months. Until then, these tips can help you maintain your sanity.
So, when your baby is having a bout of crying, just take a deep breath and carry on with the basics. Feed her on demand, wind her and change his/her nappy when she/he needs it. Try the soothing techniques that usually work well for her, whether that be singing to her or taking her for a walk in the pushchair.

Bear in mind that your tried-and-trusted techniques may not work every time. Colic means that, even though your baby is healthy, she/he may just cry for no obvious reason. While this can be stressful, remind yourself that you haven’t done anything wrong, and that this phase will pass.
Dealing with colic can be tough, and some parents feel depressed, helpless and even angry when faced with their persistently crying baby.

If your partner is at home, you could take it in turns to give each other a break. But if you’re alone with your baby, you could:

  • take your baby for a walk so both of you can get some fresh air
  • ask a neighbour or friend to babysit while you have a bath or lie down in a quiet room
  • phone a close relative or friend to talk about what you’re going through
  • cuddle and rock your baby, but put on headphones and listen to happy music, so that the only sound you hear isn’t your baby’s crying
  • If you can’t get out of the house, do some exercise or dance to a games console or DVD

If the tension mounts to the point where your stress turns to anger, put your baby down in her cot for five minutes and go into a different room to calm yourself. The last thing you want to do is to direct that anger towards your baby. If you need to, set a timer so you know how long it’s been.

When your baby is calmer:

  • Have a rest, or some “me time”, while your baby is sleeping.
  • Listen to a relaxation podcast.
  • Enjoy your baby by making a note of the good times you have together.
  • Talk to your partner about how you’re both coping and what you can do.
  • Chat with other mums who have babies with colic

If you’re struggling, it’s important to seek help before you become overwhelmed. If you become anxious, your baby may pick up on this, making her more difficult to soothe. Don’t be afraid to contact a doula if your need help!

My contact: +34 687 98 69 13
info@doulabarcelona.com

toxoplasmosis and pregnancy

Toxoplasmosis and pregnancy

What is toxoplasmosis?

Toxoplasmosis is an infection caused by a tiny parasite called Toxoplasma gondii. It’s usually a mild disease, which often has no symptoms at all, but if you catch it for the first time in early pregnancy it can cause serious health problems for your baby. You can be infected with toxoplasmosis from eating meat that is either raw, cured, or undercooked.

The toxoplasmosis parasite is also found in:

  • unpasteurised goat’s milk or cheese
  • unwashed fruit or vegetables
  • cat poo (most animals can be infected with toxoplasmosis but cats are the only ones to pass it on through their poo)

You can only catch toxoplasmosis once, after that you’re immune to it. So if you’ve had it in the past there’s no risk to your pregnancy. The problem is, the symptoms are so mild you probably won’t know if you’ve had it or not. So it’s wise for everyone to take steps to avoid being infected. Fortunately there’s lots you can do.

Will toxoplasmosis harm my unborn baby?

It can do. The toxoplasmosis parasite can infect your placenta and your baby and cause a condition called congenital toxoplasmosis, but it’s very rare for this to happen. Of all babies born, between one in 10,000 and one in 30,000 are born with congenital toxoplasmosis.

The risk to your baby depends on when you were infected with toxoplasmosis. It’s more likely to spread to your baby in later pregnancy, although if you catch it in early pregnancy the effects on your baby are likely to be more severe. Sadly, congenital toxoplasmosis in early pregnancy can lead to misscarriage.

Most babies with congenital toxoplasmosis have no obvious problems at birth. However these babies may develop symptoms during the next few months or years. These may include:

  • damage to the eyes
  • hearing problems
  • learning difficulties as a result of brain damage

About one in 10 babies with congenital toxoplasmosis will have a severe infection with problems that affect them as soon as they are born. Signs of a serious infection include:

  • an eye infection
  • an enlarged liver and spleen
  • jaundice (yellowing of the eyes and skin)
  • pneumonia

Sadly, congenital toxoplasmosis can also cause a baby to be stillborn.

How can I prevent toxoplasmosis?

There are simple steps you can take to protect yourself from catching toxoplasmosis.

When it comes to food:

  • Thoroughly cook all meat and chilled or frozen ready meals before you eat them.
  • Avoid eating cured meat, such as jamón, parma ham and salami.
  • Follow good hygiene when handling or preparing meat. Keep kitchen utensils that you’ve used on raw meat away from food that you’re going to eat without cooking and wash the utensils thoroughly before you use them again.
  • Wash your hands before touching your food. After you’ve finished cooking, wash your hands and all cooking utensils and surfaces thoroughly.
  • Wash fruit and vegetables, particularly if you are eating them raw.
  • Don’t drink unpasteurised milk, cheese, or cream made from unpasteurised goat’s milk.

When you’re gardening or handling soil or sand, wear gloves. Then wash your hands afterwards in case you have come into contact with cat poo in the soil. If your child has an outdoor sand box, cover it up to prevent cats using it as a litter tray.

Some farm animals can also carry toxoplasmosis. If you’ve been in contact with sheep at farmsor been visiting outdoor play centres where there are animals, wash your hands thoroughly afterwards.

If you have a cat, it’s best if someone else can deal with the litter tray while you’re pregnant. If you have to clear the litter tray yourself use gloves and wash your hands afterwards. Also, make sure the litter tray is emptied daily and cleaned with hot, soapy water, as the toxoplasmosis parasite in cat poo becomes infectious after 24 hours.

stage of labour barcelona

Giving Birth: Stages (Part 2)

What happens in the second stage of labour?

This is the stage when your baby is born. During the second stage of labour, your baby will descend into your vagina (the birth canal) and you’ll push your baby down and out to meet you for the first time.

You’ll feel the pressure of your baby’s head low down in your pelvis, and with each contraction, you may feel strong urges to bear down. Listen to your body, and push in response to the urges. Take a few breaths between pushes if that’s what feels right.
With every push, your baby will move further through your pelvis, but at the end of the contraction, he’ll probably slip back a little again. This is normal and gives the muscles of your pelvic floor time to stretch gradually. As long as your baby keeps gradually moving down, you’re doing fine.

When your baby’s head is visible at the entrance to your vagina and stays there when the contraction has ended, it’s called crowning.

Your midwife will tell you when she can see your baby’s head, and may ask you to stop pushing and blow or sigh out your breaths. This helps you to resist the urge to bear down for two contractions or three contractions, so that your baby is born gently and slowly.

Taking this approach may help to protect your perineum (the area between your vulva and your anus). You’ll probably feel a hot, stinging sensation, as the opening of your vagina starts to stretch around your baby’s head. Your midwife may use warm compresses to support your perineum as it stretches to help to prevent a tear.

Once your baby is born, he’ll be dried off with a clean towel and then placed onto your tummy or chest for skin to skin

What happens in the third stage of labour?

The third stage of labour begins once your baby is born, and ends when you deliver the placenta and the empty bag of waters that are attached to the placenta (membranes). These come away as your womb contracts down after the birth.

Your contractions will be noticeable but weaker when they begin again. The placenta will peel away from the wall of your womb and move down the birth canal into your vagina. You may get the urge to push as this happens.

It’s routine to be offered an injection for the third stage that helps your womb to contract down and the placenta to come away. This may cause side-effects such as nausea and vomiting, because of the drugs used. You won’t have to do any pushing, as once it’s detached, your midwife will gently pull out the placenta and membranes.

If all went well in your pregnancy and labour, you can choose to have a natural (physiological) third stage. This is when you deliver the placenta without an injection. Upright positions, skin to skin contact with your baby, and starting to breastfeed your baby may all help to stimulate contractions to help you deliver the placenta.

Whether you have a natural or a managed third stage, it’s recommended to wait at least a few minutes before clamping the cord, which will benefit your baby. While all this is going on, you’re likely to be cuddling and getting to know your newborn better.

 

 

giving birth barcelona

Giving Birth: Stages (Part I)

Every woman’s experience of labour is different. Nobody can predict what your labour will be like, or how long it will last. But there are plenty of things you can do to prepare yourself. What are the stages of labour?

Labour moves forward in three clear stages:

  • First stage: when contractions gradually open up the cervix, which is the neck of your womb (uterus).It consists of early labour, active labour, and the transitional phase.
  • Second stage: when you push your baby out into the world.
  • Third stage: when you deliver the placenta.

There is also a phase called pre-labour, which happens before the first stage of labour.

What happens in pre-labour?

During pregnancy, your cervix is closed and plugged with mucus, to keep out infection. Your cervix is long and firm, giving a strong base to your womb. It’s also in a position that points slightly towards your back (posterior position).

Before labour can start properly, your cervix has to go through some changes. It has to move forward (anterior position), soften and shorten. The softening of your cervix is often called ripening.

What happens in the first stage of labour?

In the first stage of labour, your cervix has to open (dilate), so your baby can be born. The muscles of your womb tighten with each contraction and then release, gradually drawing your cervix up into the lower section of your womb.

In the early phase of first stage labour, your cervix may open very gradually so that it may seem as if no changes are happening at all. Early labour can be slow and your contractions may not last for long and have lengthy gaps between them. They may even stop for a while before starting again.

As you enter the active phase of first stage labour, the contractions usually last longer, and become more frequent and powerful. Towards the end of the first stage, your labour may become much more intense. This phase of labour is called transition. By the end of the first stage your cervix will be fully dilated, and open to about 10cm (3.9in) in diameter.

If this is your first baby, your cervix will first soften and shorten, and then begin to dilate. If you’ve had a baby before, this tends to happen simultaneously, meaning your labour may be shorter.

birth plan barcelona

Birth Plan Barcelona

Are you about to give birth? Have you already plan how would you like your birth? So probably you already know what a birth plan is, but just in case… We will explain you a bit more of what it is!

If you plan to give birth in Barcelona probably your doctor already talk about the birth plan, here you can find the template of La Maternitat (Birth Hospital in Barcelona). If you don’t have a template or still hesitate how to fill it I’m going to give you some questions you need to answer on your Birth Plan.

1. Birth Plan

  • Keep your birth plan as concise as possible—and make sure your partner and relevant family members, like your mom or sister, know your wishes too (hospital staff can be notorious for not reading birth plans thoroughly).
  • Make sure your doctor already have it before you go to give birth.

2. Who?

  • Who do you want or (sometimes more importantly) don’t you want in the delivery room? Any special instructions (everyone stays north of your belly button, for example)?

3. How?

  • Do you want anything special in the room, like a labor playlist on your iPod?
  • Would you like to move around during labor?
  • Want pain-relieving meds ASAP, or are you adamant about trying a drug-free birth? (Many preggo women have a strong stance on this matter. If that’s you, make sure your doctor’s well aware of it).
  • How do you feel about being induced?
  • At what point or under what circumstances would your doc perform a C-section? Are you likely to need one (because you’re carrying twins or have a health condition that increases your odds), and is there anything you can do to avoid having one?
  • How often and in what situations does your doc do episiotomies? If you feel strongly about avoiding one, ask how you can prevent tearing during labor.
  • Do you want Dad to cut the umbilical cord? Will you bank the cord blood?
  • How soon after the baby’s born will you and your hubby get to hold her/him?
  • When will baby’s first feeding occur?
Sleeping better during pregnancy

Sleeping better during pregnancy

Yes, sleeping and pregnancy can go together! It is true that during the lasts months of pregnancy going to sleep can be a hard because your body is changing rapidly, you have a lot of things on your mind, and it may get more difficult to find a comfortable sleep position. Sleeping better during pregnancy is possible if your know how!

 

Laugh!

Before you go to sleep, (about one hour before) find something that can make you laugh, real belly laughter can help release any tension left from the day. Watch a funny movie or YouTube video. Watch silly videos, read something that makes you smile. Stop worrying. I know — easier said than done. But it’s important not to worry about sleep.Don’t think about fulfilling a required number of hours; just assess how you feel. Don’t lie awake worrying that you’re not sleeping enough for your baby. Let your body do its natural work.

Move

A pregnancy aerobic workout, prenatal yoga, a walk, whatever it is you want to do — get up and move! Dance! Try to keep from exercising late in the day, because the increased adrenaline of an “exercise high” can linger and make it harder for you to fall asleep.

Careful with eating habits

Eat your meals, especially later ones, at a leisurely pace. Spend your dinnertime unwinding a bit. Avoid caffeine and alcohol — both are detrimental to the sleep cycle. If frequent trips to the bathroom keep you up at night, limit your fluid intake late in the day. Try hot milk and honey, or hot almond milk and honey, the combination is known to promote sleeping.

Make your bedroom a sleep sanctuary.

If you’re having bouts of insomnia, this may not be the best time to set up the home office in the bedroom. Surround yourself with pictures of happy babies, mothers breastfeeding their babies and any picture that will put a smile on your face. Be gentle with yourself, you have all the knowledge you need to bring this child into the world, it is written in your DNA. Let go, and let the Mother cuddle you in her arms for a full night of sleep.

birth doula barcelona

Birth Doula in Barcelona: what can i do for you?

Hiring a doula helps ensure that your birthing experience will be personal and intimate. When both you and your partner are supported by a doula, you both experience less stress and have more energy for emotional connection. But… What can a Doula can do for you during birth

Less Stress for your partner = more energy for emotional connection and intimacy

Birth is unpredictable, and often stressful. Your partner loves you more, and knows you better, than anyone else on your support team. They care for you and this new life you are about to bring into the world, and they may be nervous about the sounds and smells and uncertainties of birth. Simply entering the hospital can bring up a lot of negative feelings, as it is a place we generally associate with pain and sickness. And if they are your sole support person, they may be worried about how they will perform. All of this creates stress and tension for your partner, and decreases their ability to be emotionally present.

Your doula knows birth, and both you and your partner know your doula and trust her.

During your prenatal doula visits, you have both told her about your hopes for this birth, and shared with her your fears and worries. Your doula is also familiar with your birth setting, whether that may be a hospital, birth center, or your home. Having a doula means knowing that your partner doesn’t have to shoulder all the weight on their own. As we all know, when a person is well-supported, they are able to relax and enjoy the experience. Your partner can look to the doula for reassurance when they are worried. Having this support means that your partner will experience less stress and tension, and will therefore relax and be more emotionally present for you. This results in a more intimate birthing experience for you both. And more intimacy means more oxytocin, which means less pain and more progress in the birth process!

Your doula teaches your partner to help you with the pain so that you can work together throughout the birthing experience.

During prenatal visits, we will demonstrate and teach you and your partner many techniques for easing labor pains. We will practice these techniques so that your partner feels confident in their ability to help you. During the early stages of labor, your partner will be able to apply counter pressure to help ease the pain of your contractions. The longer you are feeling comfortable and staying on top of the pain, the less likely you will be to rush off to the hospital too early. This means that you may actually spend more time alone together during early labor. This increases your personal, emotional, intimate experience of laboring together…and once well established, it will be easier to continue once you are at the hospital.

Once at the hospital, your doula sets the scene for you to have a more personal experience.

Your doula knows the hospital and its staff. While the nurses are getting you admitted and adhering to hospital protocol, your doula will help you and your partner settle into the room. She may adjust lighting, set up aromatherapy, show you where to store your belongings, help you to change, acquire a birth ball for you, draw a bath…whatever is needed. By helping you and your partner to settle in more quickly and smoothly, your doula helps you to keep your labor moving smoothly. Limiting discomfort and creating an atmosphere where you are both relaxed and cared-for helps to keep you feeling good. When you feel good, your body produces oxytocin, and that keeps labor progressing. It also keeps you in an emotional and intimate frame of mind. While your doula is helping you both to settle in, your partner is able to focus all their attention on you. They are less distracted because they don’t have to worry about every little thing, and they trust that the doula will take care of you both.

Are you thinking to have a doula!? Contact me: info@doulabarcelona.com

antenatal classes

What do I explain in my antenatal classes in Barcelona?

Hello future mums!

How are you feeling?? How is your bump? Are you ready to live a conscious birth? Are you looking for help or antenatal classes in Barcelona? Well, you are welcome to join my antenatal classes in Barcelona!

How are my antenatal classes?

I speak English, French and catalan, so I can give the course in all this languages.

Normally I organize groups of 4-6 couples to share experiences, learning, tips, supporting each other… But if you want I can give you a private antenatal classes at your home.

The course has 2 parts, the theoretical and the practical part. 1 hour for each part during 4 sessions.

What will you and your partner learn?

My antenatal classes are based in Parto y Movimiento, it is an holistic method created to prepare and empower women for birth.

With Parto y Movimiento we want to give women the opportunity to have a conscious birth giving her the confidence to have a positive birth throught the movement of pelvis and breathing.

Where are my antenatal classes?

Carrer Sepúlveda 65, bajos 4º Metro Rocafort (L1) or Sant Antoni (L2)

How much doest it cost?

170 € for each couple.

How I get further information?

You can contact me at info@doulabarcelona.org // 687.98.69.13

If you want to see opinions for other mothers, you can check them here.