Post Partum Care

Mamas on Bedrest: “Easing” Into Intimacy Post Partum

May 30th, 2014

Hello Mamas,

image003After being on bed rest for several weeks, I imagine that most of you are looking forward to resuming “intimate times” with your partner. However, low estrogen levels following delivery and during breastfeeding results in uncomfortable vaginal dryness. “Ease” back into intimacy with SYLK.

Sylk is a natural, water-based personal lubricant. The “active” ingredient is bio-sustainable New Zealand Kiwi vine extract.  The product contains no chemicals, silicones or petroleum products. Because it is made from natural ingredients, it is safe to use with condoms. It will not degrade condoms, causing tears and/or an untimely pregnancy. The product is also safe for nursing mothers, is not absorbed through the skin, and in no way causes harm to the baby.

We asked one of our “Former” Mamas on Bedrest to try SYLK and share her thoughts. This is what she had to say:

“The lubricant did work well and was not sticky nor did it have an awkward smell like some lubricants have. However, because its water based, it was really messy and it did get all over the place.  That was really the only downfall. The lubricant definitely felt more natural than other lubricants I’ve used, especially store brand ones which become sticky after a couple moments of use.”

So according to our Former Mama on Bedrest, SYLK is recommended, with the kaveat of being prepared for a  bit of a mess with use. Sylk is available via the company website and retails for $17.99

Mamas on Bedrest: Self Care is not a Luxury!

May 12th, 2014

Greetings Mamas!

Today we finish up the series presented by Kathy Morelli, LPC on hormones and mood disorders. Once again I’d like to thank Kathy for such a well written and informative series. I am also very grateful that she allowed me to share the series with Mamas on Bedrest.

The final installment of the series is Post Partum: How Women’s Brain Biology, Hormones and Mood Relate! 

002_02“After giving birth, a woman’s hormone levels drastically plummet.  The literature says within one to five days after birth, estrogen levels drop to the level of a normal menstrual cycle. A woman’s body needs time to adapt to all of the physical changes.   Remember that estrogen precedes serotonin, the mood stabilizer, in the brain. And a steep drop in progesterone has a depressive effect as well. There’s a big chance for dysregulation in the brain-gland feedback loop (Sichel and Driscoll, 1999).”

“Other hormones that come into play postpartum and have an effect on the HPA and mood are prolactin and oxytocin. Prolactin is produced in the pituitary gland and is the milk-producing hormone. Prolactin levels rise during pregnancy and while breastfeeding. Some studies indicate prolactin is protective of postpartum depression, but others indicate prolactin causes vigilance, appropriate to a protective mother, but this feeling can morph into anxiety and irritability. The presence of prolactin varies whether or not a woman chooses to breastfeed (Donaldson-Myers, 2012).”

“Oxytocin is another neuro-hormone with a big effect on mood and happiness. Oxytocin is synthesized in the hypothalamus and released by the pituitary gland. Oxytocin is secreted during breastfeeding. Research has shown that oxytocin induces feelings of calm and bonding (Donaldson-Myers, 2012). And the presence of oxytocin varies whether or not a woman chooses to breastfeed (Donaldson-Myers, 2012).”

 Women’s hormonal levels go from such highs at the end of pregnancy and then plummet to such lows with labor and delivery it’s a wonder that not all women become depressed. Kathy shares that

“85% of women suffer from the baby blues and 20% suffer from a form of postpartum mood disorders”

so clearly these hormonal fluctuations are indeed significant. And let’s not forget that Mamas on Bedrest are at an even greater risk of perinatal mood disorders because of bed rest, so these numbers may not reflect the full scope of perinatal mood disorders. 

woman-drinking-water 01So much more research is being done on hormones, mood disorders and the lifestages of women. When considering the mental health of post partum women, we also have to take into account their support system, their ability to take time to rest and recover from pregnancy (and bed rest!) labor and delivery, the family situation and interpersonal relationships. All these factors-along with the “pre-wiring” in a woman’s genetic make up will determine how well a woman fares emotionally after pregnancy. Mamas, Take this information, think it over and use it as a catalyst to take exquisite care of yourselves! A woman’s body is designed to do extraordinary things-not the least of which is create new life-but that feat is not without its consequences. In order to be able to successfully reproduce, mamas must take exceptional care of themselves-eat nurtritious meals, drink plenty of water, rest, regular exercise, safe secure home and financial security. Mamas, self care is not a luxury-IT IS A MUST if you want good health for yourself, your baby and your family!

Mamas on Bedrest: “From Mamas to Mamas: The Essential Guide to Surviving Bedrest”

May 7th, 2014

Well Mamas,

We’ve done it! We have successfully produced our first book. From Mamas to Mamas: The Essential Guide to Surviving Bedrest is our guide to navigating, surviving and having bed rest success! This e-book is full of medical and scientific information about bed rest, tips and advice from mamas who have been on bed rest and information for dads on how to survive their partner’s bed rest. I really think that we hit a home run with this one! The book will be available via iTunes on Starting Mother’s Day, May 11, 2014 for $9.99. Thanks so much to all the mamas and dads who shared so willingly and authentically to make this book happen!

ebook cover