Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Jennifer Block Rocks

Author and Activist Jennifer Block of the amazing book Pushed had her opinion printed in the LA Times today. Midwives deliver America needs better birth care, and midwives can deliver it.

In her article you learn that the number one reason people in the United States are admitted to the hospital is for childbirth.

You got it folks. Not heart attacks, cancer, car accidents. NOPE. Childbirth.

"Six of the 15 most frequent hospital procedures billed to private insurers and Medicaid are maternity-related."

Milbank Memorial Fund, the Reforming States Group and Childbirth Connection have published research findings that show that the medical establishment is NOT following evidence-based best practices.

In the short year and a half I've been a Labor Doula I've witnessed what Ms. Block states: "They are inducing and speeding up far too many labors ." I and my clients have been lucky enough to not have ended up in C-sections thus far. However 1/3rd of all laboring women do end up in a c-section. The World Health Organization states the acceptable level of c-section rates should hover around 10%.

Were you aware that the most common billable materinity procedure is the continous fetal heart monitor? And to this day there are absolutely ZERO studies proving medically that there is any benefit to this procedure yet I can tell you that in the North East it is all too common to require a laboring mother to be hooked up to this loud and scary sounding machine, with a bunch of excuses as to why she must comply. Tsk Tsk...MONEY!

Here's another fact that will knock you out of your seat. Most hospital births cost from $7K-$16K. However the cost of having your baby at a birthing center with a Midwife is around $1600.

And Ms. Block tells us that at those birthing centers, "Mother and baby are more likely to have a normal, vaginal birth; less likely to experience trauma, such as a bad vaginal tear or a surgical delivery; and more likely to breast feed."

Informing you one post at a time.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Mama Knows Breast...Virtual Nurse In On Facebook

Virtual Nurse In Planned on Facebook
December 12, 2008
Poking around Facebook yesterday, I discovered a little bit of lactivism at work. Apparently, Facebook won't let people post breastfeeding pictures. So some Facebooker's are planning a virtual nurse-in, Saturday, December 27, 2008. They are going to all post breastfeeding pictures at the same time.

To sign up, go to Facebook, and type M.I.L.C. into the search bar. Mothers International Lactation Campaign should pop up.

Here's text of the petition:

Facebook continues to classify breastfeeding photos as obscene content. They continue to arbitrarily remove these photos from member albums and profiles, accompanied by warnings of account termination. This is highly discriminatory and an affront to nursing mothers everywhere. In protest of this, Mothers International Lactation Campaign (M.I.L.C.) has planned a virtual day of protest.

Not only is human lactation responsible for the very survival of our species, it is in no way a sexually explicit, lewd or despicable act. It is also protected by law in most countries, including specifically the state where Facebook is headquartered in the USA.

In protest to the discriminatory and unjust policy of Facebook administration classifying breastfeeding images as obscene content, on December 27th, 2008 M.I.L.C. is asking all of you to change your profile picture for one day, to one which includes an image of a nursing mom.

This could be a picture of you or someone you know nursing a child, it could be a painting or image of a sculpture of a breastfeeding woman, it could also be a photo or image of any nursing mammal....We ask that you include the status line of "Hey Facebook, breastfeeding is not obscene!"

In addition to this 'virtual nurse-in', there will be other events planned around the globe. Please check this page often for regular updates and added information. We will also be including images that you can use for your profile picture on December 27th.

Babies everywhere thank you for your support!!!!!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Your Questions Answered

LadyBanana asked:
"I had not heard of a Doula before knowing you. Just wondering how long they have been around?

Also, as a doula are you ever left alone with a woman in labour?"

Great question! Labor Doulas have been used throughout history. Originally they were our neighbors and family. As we moved into the 20th Century the medical establishment dimished our roles slightly. In the last 20 years we are witnessing a resurgence of professional Labor Doulas.

Yes, we work with the moms often alone or with their partners for many hours. We begin working with our clients during the earlier stages of labor, helping them with comfort techniques for the pain, reminding them to nourish themselves, helping them walk and use natural techniques to encourage their labor to progress.

We usually do not see the doctor or Midwife until it's time for the mom to enter the pushing stages of labor.

Want to ask this doula a question? Leave your query in the comments section.