There are way to many great topics to cover when it comes to the letter “B.” It was so difficult for me to choose just one! So I didn’t. Here’s my “quick tips” for mothers to cover a few of my favorite “B” topics:
Bedsharing: It can be a great way for a breastfeeding mother to get more sleep. Some moms find that it works best with baby in a cradle/crib beside the bed so they can easily grab the baby when needed. Others find that they can get a bed rail or push their bed against a wall to eliminate the falling hazard. Still others (my family included) take a side of the crib and “side-car” the crib to the bed.
Bedsharing has way to many benefits to list (trust me, people have written whole entire books full of the mental, emotional, and physical benefits to the mother, baby, and the entire rest of the family!) but the two typical ones that are focused on are to enhance the breastfeeding relationship and allow the mother more sleep. (Whether you’re bed-sharing or not, here are some great tips on how to survive on interrupted sleep.)
Sleeping near/with baby means you will produce more milk due to the physical closeness and the frequency of relaxed nursing. It also means that your sleep cycles will sync. In other words, you will both enter that light stage of sleep at the same time and you’ll find that you wake up seconds before your child does. You’ll wake up at a natural part of your sleep cycle so, even if you’re waking several times in the night, you will be more refreshed in the morning than if you had to be interrupted our of a deep sleep to walk to another room to tend to your child. Here’s a post I read a while back about one mom’s journey with the family bed.
Breastfeeding: One of the most important tips to having a successful breastfeeding relationship is to get good support. Husbands are often the number one determining factor of the success and duration of a mother/child breastfeeding relationship. Another great place to get support for your breastfeeding relationship is through La Leche League. The leaders are not only trained to give information and support for breastfeeding, they are also mothers who have been there and done that. They are able to draw off of their personal experience as well as the experiences of many other mothers. Besides all the health benefits of breastfeeding, it has a myriad of emotional benefits to mom and baby too. These benefits apply no matter the age of your nursling. (Great breastfeeding sites are La Leche League International and Kelly Mom)
Babywearing: You can never carry your baby too much. There are a variety of carriers to choose from so find something that works for your body and carrying style. My favorite is the ring sling. I love it because it’s simple to use (both my mom and my mother-in-law figured it out on their own!), portable (takes up very little space in my diaper bag), easy on and off (great for when toddlers want up and down), cooler in the summer, (less fabric than other carriers), simple to nurse in (just loosen a bit and scootch baby into position), and easy to take off when baby is still in it (so as not to disturb them when you want to lay them down while sleeping).
Interesting fact: carried time counts as tummy time. Babywearing enhances breastfeeding and milk production, encourages bonding, reduces post partum depression, increases baby’s balance and core strength, and results in a more content baby. (Here is an article that goes into benefits in more depth)
Birth: I can’t cover baby B’s without adding a quick tip for birth to the list. Quick tip: Get a midwife if you can and hire a doula. A doula’s support can be invaluable during labour (to both you and your husband) and can make the difference between having a positive birth experience and a negative one. Also, learn about birth from positive sources that believe in a woman’s ability to grow and birth her baby. Here is part one to a post that I wrote recently on the True Journey of Natural Labour and Birth. And here is part two. Birth is an amazing and beautiful journey for a woman to go through.
If you’re interested in some more great reading on these topics, check out some of the links on my Pinterest Board: Birth, Breastfeeding, and Infant Sleep or my Positive and Attachment Parenting Board. (Just a note: you do not need a Pinterest account to view the boards.)
What are your favorite quick tips and facts about the Baby “B”s?
Make sure you don’t miss any posts in this series by subscribing to my weekly blog newsletter!