Crunchy= natural, green, environmental, granola.
Cradle= birth, baby, breastfeeding, pregnancy.
Catholic= One, Holy, Universal, and Apostolic Church

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

BFUI-BreastFeeding Under the Influence?

I came across this link. A woman was arrested after a call about a domestic disturbance, she was intoxicated and breastfeeding and was charged with child abuse/neglect.


This brings up an interesting point, how much alcohol is too much if you are breastfeeding, or should you completely abstain?

The article does bring up the position of both LLL and AAP.

Here are some guidelines:

I welcome any comments....

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Natural Childbirth Class

New class series starting September 5th at 9am at Mountain Midwifery Center in Englewood, CO. See www.passion4birth.com for more details.

Vaginal Breech Birth?

Interesting link.....Canada's OB/GYN's are changing their recommendations for breech babies-a breech baby does not have to mean an automatic C-section!


Monday, August 17, 2009

Breastfeeding and Family Planning

As a follow up to my last two posts, I have one more before moving on to a new topic. I have encountered many women who have had trouble with breastfeeding their new baby due to their choice of birth control.

If you are breastfeeding you should not also be using artificial hormones to prevent another pregnancy. The hormones in birth control pills and IUDs can interfere with milk production as well as be passed through your milk and to your baby.

It also cannot be assumed that just because you are breastfeeding that you cannot also get pregnant. While breastfeeding can and does delay ovulation, there are conditions to lactational amenorrhea:
  • exclusive breastfeeding (no supplementing or pacifiers)
  • first 56 days post-partum
  • OR after the first 56 days if you have not had a period AND are also monitoring cervical mucus (this is because your body will often ovulate before you have your first period)
Women who are breastfeeding exclusively can have many months of infertility (and no periods) before their regular cycles return. What is often forgotten or misunderstood is that the body ovulates before it menstruates, so unless you are watching for the more subtle signs of ovulation you may miss them and become pregnant.

My solution to the above concerns is Fertility Awareness Method (FAM) or Natural Family Planning (NFP). This natural way of monitoring for fertility avoids hormones that can interfere with breastfeeding and can help the breastfeeding mother to know when her fertility is returning.

Please see earlier blog posts for more information.

Fertility Awareness to Avoid Pregnancy

In my last post, I discussed using Fertility awareness to achieve a pregnancy. The same techniques can be used to avoid pregnancy as well. "Fertility Awareness Method" (FAM) or "Natural Family Planning" (NFP) is a great way to monitor your fertility and to be aware of the way your body works.

If you want to use FAM to avoid a pregnancy then abstinence is required during the fertile period. This is much different from the old "rhythm" method, Cycle Beads, or other methods that rely only on counting days of your cycle. These methods presume that you have a regular 28 day cycle with ovulation on day 14. FAM monitors for signs of fertility on a daily basis, thus there are no presumptions or guessing.

On a personal note I have been using NFP for the past 5 years. I have been successful at both achieving pregnancy and avoiding it. I love that I'm not taking any artificial hormones (in the form of birth control pills, injections, or IUDs) into my body. I like knowing what is going on in my body. I feel a greater sense of "control" over my body functions as I know when I'm fertile and when I'm not. I know that my body is working properly and I'm not suppressing it with hormones and their side effects. While there are IUDs that do not have hormones, I would still rather not have the risks of infection, torn uterus, or ectopic pregnancy that go along with them.

I'm always surprised that with so many people these days that want to be environmentally friendly, eat organic or natural foods, and be "green" that more couples do not know about NFP or FAM. To me this seems like a great way to live naturally, to avoid taking chemicals into your body and to save money! FAM only requires paper and pencil. My husband and I have been very happy with this method of family planning and I love telling others about it too! It is healthy and natural.


free online calendar and charting for fertility

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Trying to get Pregnant?

Let's go back to the very beginning....getting pregnant! While we all know "the birds and the bees", many couples have trouble getting pregnant. There are many reasons for infertility which I won't address here. What I want to focus on is how to track your cycle and fertility to increase your chances of getting pregnant.

A woman's body cycles every 28 days (+ or - a few days). Her body gives signals as to where she is in her cycle. The menstrual flow is considered the beginning of the cycle, peak fertility occurs at ovulation (usually occurs in the middle of her cycle) and then the cycle wanes and the menstrual flow begins again. How do you know when you are ovulating? While there are tests (similar to pregnancy tests) that can tell you when your hormone levels are high, these can be expensive.

Your body gives another signal that it is preparing to ovulate and this is cervical mucus. You may have noticed a white vaginal discharge from time to time, this is your cervical mucus. Cervical mucus changes preceding ovulation to be more abundant, clear, stretchy, and lubricative. These changes in mucus can be observed and charted. While the egg that is ovulated only lives for 24 hours, sperm can live for up to 3-5 days inside a woman's body. The longer life of sperm gives a patch of fertility rather than just one 24 hour period.

The other sign that a woman has ovulated is basal body temperature. Daily temperatures are taken are recorded at the same time every morning. There is a temperature spike after ovulation occurs.

These two signs can be used together (or mucus alone) to help a woman determine the optimum time of ovulation and optimum fertility.

For more information:

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