7 Must Haves for Breastfeeding Mums

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Breastfeeding is really hard in the early days, so anything that makes that journey a little bit easier is very welcome in my book. These are 7 of the most useful things I've come across, so whether you're a breastfeeding mum, or intending to breastfeed, I hope they'll be useful for you.   Lansinoh HPA Lanolin In the early days breastfeeding is so difficult and so often painful. It's difficult to get the latch right, and just one bad latch can cause a lot of damage to your sensitive nipples. Add in something like tongue tie, and you can be experiencing an awful lot of soreness. Lansinoh HPA Lanolin is what I credit with getting me through breastfeeding the first time around, and ...

A Tale of Two Births – Mumsnet Campaign for #BetterPostnatalCare

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When you come out of hospital with your brand new baby it's an overwhelming time. Birth announcements, introducing your newest family member to the rest of your family, on top of getting to grips with life as a new parent. It's no wonder that in the midst of all of that that what you don't hear people talking about is their experience of postnatal care - whether you had a good or bad experience, there are far more pressing things to be getting on with, like feeding your new arrival. But your experience after the birth itself can stay with you a long time and have a huge impact on those early days as a parent. When it comes to ...

My second birth story – quick, dramatic, and amazing!

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It was two days before my due date and it felt like I had been pregnant forever. The past few weeks had been so uncomfortable, and the last week I'd been having on/off contractions which had me thinking "this is it!" every time. But they'd never build up to anything and I was starting to be convinced that I'd be going way past my due date. It was a Saturday morning, and I was so pleased to have John home with us. He works in London, and is at least an hour and a half away, so I'd been really concerned that if things kicked off quickly then he might not make it. And those last few weeks of pregnancy with ...

The Pregnancy Diaries: Week 38

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38 weeks pregnant and I think it's fair to say I'm so ready for this baby to arrive now! What's going on with the baby He's pretty much fully formed at this point and is just putting on weight now ready to make his arrival. All his organs are working, and his lungs will just be making their final developments ready for birth. His eye colour at birth will be decided now, although blue eyed babies can still often change to brown within their first year. It's strange, but it's one of the things that I'm most curious about with this baby - Max is such a blond, blue eyed boy, while me and his Dad are dark, so I wonder what his ...

The Pregnancy Diaries: Week 37

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37 weeks and full term! Any time you'd like to make your appearance would be absolutely fine with us now :) What's going on with the baby He's pretty much fully formed at this point and is just putting on weight now ready to make his arrival. He'll be shedding the downy hair that's covered him, as well as the vernix caseosa - the wax that will have covered him as protection. What's going on with me   This week started with my 36 week midwife appointment, which I had to take Max with me to for the first time. He's always a bit wary of 'doctor' situations, so I've always tried to make sure I have childcare arranged, but we talked about it in ...

My hopes for motherhood second time around

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With just 4 weeks to go now until my due date, I'm very conscious that our new arrival will finally be arriving very soon! And that's got me thinking a lot about what I want to do differently this time around. I found the adjustment to being a mum very difficult to deal with. No-one can prepare you for that rush of love that just overwhelms you, but also the intense worry, guilt, and anxiety that accompanies it. As a first time mum, you are so concerned with 'getting it right', and it takes some time for the realisation to sink in that there is no 'right', just what's right for you and your baby. Although I don't think there are many ...

The Pregnancy Diaries: Week 36

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Today marks the end of week 36 and I've reached full term! And let me tell you, I feel every inch of it. But the end is in sight!   What's going on with the baby At 36 weeks pregnant, he's pretty much fully formed at this point and is just putting on weight now ready to make his arrival. He'll be shedding the downy hair that's covered him, as well as the vernix caseosa - the wax that will have covered him as protection.   What's going on with me   Despite all the general aches and pains of pregnancy, it's actually been a much better week than last week! Max and I managed to get out for a trip to Greys Court, which was a ...

Testing for Group B Strep in pregnancy with Strepelle

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Have you heard of Group B Strep? It wasn't something that I'd heard of at all during my first pregnancy, but about a year ago now I read Fiona Paddon's story and campaign to raise awareness of Group B Strep and the importance of testing during pregnancy. Fiona sadly lost her son, Edward Gili just 9 days after his birth as a result of contracting the Group B Strep infection. I signed her petition and tracked it's progress through parliament, and was very disappointed when it was decided that the NHS would not be making these tests a regular part of pregnancy testing.   What is Group B Strep? Group B Strep is a common, natural bacteria carried by around 1 in 4 ...

The Pregnancy Diaries: Week 35

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Well week 35 was definitely a tough one for me! A mix of the mundane to start with, and then lots of unexpected drama to round off the week.   What's going on with the baby The baby is now about the size of a honeydew melon and should be getting in position ready for birth. He's pretty much fully formed at this point and is just putting on weight now ready to make his arrival.   What's going on with me I am so so sore in almost every part of my body! Getting up is a struggle, sitting down is a struggle, lying down is no better - the only comfortable place right now is sitting on my birthing ball! I had my 34 week ...

Introducing British Baby Box & Baby Annabell

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I'm sure you've heard of the Finnish tradition where new mothers are gifted a Baby Box by the government, filled with all kinds of goodies that their baby will need in the first few months, bed which will serve as the baby's first bed. Not just a lovely idea, but a very practical and safety focused one; Finland now has the 5th lowest infant mortality rate in the world, and the Baby Box programme is believed to have played a significant role in that. Apparently Finland even sent one to Prince George when he was born as a gift - if it's good enough for Prince George...! The idea has become very popular with Nicola Sturgeon championing the scheme in Scotland, and following ...