breastfeeding

Wait, is it Normal if My Breastfed Newborn Goes a Few Days Without Pooping?

YES, it is completely normal! Newborn poop can be a mystery as it changes. It is hard to wrap your mind around your baby not pooping anywhere from 4-8 times a day, especially when you feel like all you do is change diapers in those first few days and weeks.  Some newborns poop with every feed, while others only go a couple times a day.  Every baby is different.  Again, it is completely normal for your baby, who has been pooping several times a day to move to only go a few times a week.

WHY does that happen and WHERE does that poop go?

Great questions. “Newborn babies often poop after every feeding, about 6 times per day.  In the first few weeks after delivery your baby’s intestines are maturing and becoming more efficient at extracting nutrition from breast milk or formula.  As their intestines get better at digesting food, the time between bowel movements gets longer and longer.  Before you know it you have a two-month-old that is going several days without dirtying their diaper. If your baby has blood in his or her stool, persistent crying, fever, or isn’t feeding normally, you need to seek medical care. ” https://childrensmd.org/browse-by-age-group/newborn-infants/long-can-baby-go-without-pooping/#:~:text=Breastfed%20babies%2C%20especially%20if%20they,babies%20are%20almost%20never%20constipated.

Diaper output is one way to help parents feel assured that your baby is having his or her needs met since we can’t measure how much breast milk they are getting from your breasts. Your newborns first poop is called meconium, the dark green or black tar like substance for the first few days after delivery.  This slowly transitions as your milk comes in and turns into a mustard seed like runny consistence but can vary from brown to yellow green, this too is NORMAL.

Charts and Visual




Days 1-3
First 6 weeks                       
BreastfedNewborn will pass meconium by 24-48 hours after birth. It will change to a green-yellow color by day 4.Runny, yellow stool. Expect at least 3 bowel movements per day, but may be up to 4-12 for some babies. After this, baby may only poop every few days. 
Formula-fedNewborn will pass meconium by 24-48 hours after birth. It will change to a green-yellow color by day 4.Light brown or greenish stool. Expect at least 1-4 bowel movements per day. After the first month, baby may only pass stool every other day. 
https://www.healthline.com/health/parenting/how-often-should-a-newborn-poop#by-age

Always chat with your pediatrician or health care provider if you have concerns or something seems out of the ordinary with your newborns bowel movements.  If your baby is pooping only once a day in the first few weeks, this can be a sign that they are not getting enough to eat. Unless your health care provider suggests, do NOT give your baby water or juice if you think they are constipated.

There can be a variety of changes in your babies poop based on what you, as their parent are eating, if you are introducing formula, solids or if they are having a sensitivity or allergy to any of the above.  Rest assured, know that your breast milk provides everything your baby needs, so nothing goes to waste! If you would like even more helpful hints to read about, check out my blog page at http://www.yourfamilysjourney.com/doula-blog/

Being a grandparent in 2017

Grandparents:how times have changed

Last Sunday was National Grandparents Day and I read a statistic that was shocking to me: “Grandparents lead 37% of all U.S. households in this country — that’s 44 million households nationwide.”  Grandparents play a vital role in families and should have a day to be celebrated by those who love them.  Grandparents

A little history about Grandparents Day.  A woman named Marian Lucille Herndon McQuade of West Virginia started pursuing her goal to honor the importance of Grandparents in 1970 but it did not become a holiday until President Jimmy Carter proclaimed the first Sunday after Labor Day as National Grandparents Day in 1979. Her three main purposes for creating National Grandparents Day were to:

  1. Honor grandparents.
  2. Give grandparents an opportunity to show love for their children’s children.
  3. Help children become aware of the strength, information and guidance older people can offer.

Parenting Practices

Parenting practices have changed tremendously over the past 20 to 50 years as guidelines and recommendations have further developed.  As a result, these changes have contributed to many communication issues between parents and grandparents. Sometimes, feelings get hurt and misinformation is handed out leading to frustrated and overwhelmed parents. What can we do to help smooth this out for all generations? Educate Educate Educate.

I love including grandparents in family and newborn care. By learning how grandparents parented their own children and dispelling myths with evidence based research, it is easier to help them see how times have changed and how they can best support their grandchildren. My goal is to bring families closer together and allow everyone to peacefully celebrate the newest family member.  The three biggest topics I discuss with grandparents are: sleeping, breastfeeding and spoiling, however I am knowledgeable about plenty of other topics.

Sleeping

Prior to 1992 when the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) introduced placing babies on their sides or backs to sleep, most babies slept on their tummies.  In 1994, the Back to Sleep education campaign was introduced to share research stating that it is best for babies to sleep on their backs to reduce the risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). 1996 brought the AAP revision of their recommendations again to add that babies be placed to sleep on their backs on a firm surface with no soft bedding. In 2000, the Back to Sleep campaign revised its message again to include that bed sharing may be “considered hazardous under certain situations.”  Yes, there have been several revisions since 2000 but the current recommendation is still BACK TO SLEEP and sleeping in their parent’s room, not same bed, for at least the first 4-6 months!

Breastfeeding

Did you know that the infants grandmother has the most influential impact on whether the mom exclusively breastfeeds? Yes, this is true! Grandma’s, it is ok if you did not nurse, you can still support your daughter or daughter in law.  Take advantage of this amazing opportunity to boost the new mother’s breastfeeding confidence. Moms with newborns want and need your support! Do not let lack of breastfeeding knowledge and/or experience influence how you provide support.

Ways to help breastfeeding moms: offer to go to a breastfeeding class with them. Read about the numerous benefits of breastfeeding. Bring pillows for support, food for nourishment and water for hydration. Research evidence based websites together if they are struggling (kellymom.com).  Keep moms company when they sit down to nurse. Offer to burp baby in between breasts. Snuggle babies between feeds so mom gets a little break, but encourage her to feed on demand, not on a schedule.  Reassure her that she has enough milk for her baby and she does not need to supplement (unless the lactation consultant/pediatrician is concerned).  Build up moms confidence and help her trust her instincts, ask for help when needed and together you can get through the initial challenges of breastfeeding.

Spoiling

Last but certainly not least is that holding your baby all the time will spoil them.  This is not the case! Study after study show how crucial touch is for your baby’s growing development. Babies are completely incapable of being manipulative, therefore unable to “be spoiled” by being held all the time. Meeting your babies’ needs by quickly responding, snuggling, singing and talking to them immediately builds trust, safety and security for your infant.

Research shows that holding your babies results in less crying and more contented babies. Who doesn’t want that?  Therefore grandparents, encourage your family to hand the baby over to you for cuddle time. Share with the newest member how their parents were as babies.  If you are comfortable, ask to wear the baby. Keep the baby close. Holding and responding to your grand baby’s cry’s is meeting their basic needs.  You will have plenty of time to SPOIL them later in life.

Some things haven’t changed much

Disposable diapers are pretty much the same but definitely more absorbent. Most have newborn cutouts for the umbilical cord and lines that change color when baby is wet.  Cloth diapers are making a comeback and are much easier to use these days with buttons instead of diaper pins.  Swaddling blankets are made bigger and therefore easier to swaddle.  Sleep sacks are pretty common and have made swaddling a breeze for parents and grandparents alike.

It is hard to keep up with the constant changes in the world of moms, babies and families. As a grandparent-to-be or a veteran grandparent, ASK first how you can help and then support the parent’s decisions.   One of my many roles as a professional RN/Doula/Lactation Educator is to inform and educate.  I discuss the current recommendations and guidelines as to the WHY. Then it becomes the parents job to think about and apply what they believe will be the best decision for their family.

“I do not hold grandparents to be glorified babysitters but rather as parents’ surrogates who bring love, a continuance of generational values, and a sense of the child’s worth to the integrity of the family…”                  Marian McQuade

How do I get my baby to burp?

How do I get my baby to burp?

Welcome to parenting, the best and most exhausting job ever.  The first few weeks are filled with sleepless nights, feeding, changing diapers, crying, feeding, changing diapers, crying, feeding………..oh and don’t forget about burping in between and after each feed.

A common statement I hear a lot working with families is, “Colleen, I can’t get my baby to burp, what can I do?”  My response is simple, some babies do not always need to burp and some burp automatically without having to burp them. Every baby is different but it is always best to try it and try a few different positions.  It is very common for babies to swallow air when they begin to feed and even more so if they are crying before or during a feed. [Read more…] about How do I get my baby to burp?

Childbirth Education Classes: so many options

 

Childbirth Education Classes
Childbirth Education Classes

Childbirth education classes were created to help inform, educate and empower parents so they feel confident and knowledgeable about their birth and early parenthood experiences.  Anecdotes and studies alike will agree: it is an extremely good idea to start learning the ropes and making major decisions before you are in the throes of labor, breastfeeding and the early days of parenting.  Prepare ahead of time.  Dr. Google—while we all love to rely on him from time to time—is NOT where you want to turn at a time like this.  Plus, the internet is widely known for providing a plethora of misinformation, and it’s sometimes difficult to discern current, research-based best practices from all the rest.

Whether you are planning for a medication-free birth, an epidural, a scheduled c-section, or have no time in your busy schedule…make childbirth education classes a priority.  The investment of time and money are well worth the decreased anxiety and increased probability for healthier outcomes (outcomes, I might add, that will last you and your child a lifetime). [Read more…] about Childbirth Education Classes: so many options

Introducing…Tucson Bump2Baby…Welcome to your VILLAGE

Tucson Bump2Baby

Are you pregnant?

Want to be living a healthier lifestyle?

Curious about labor and delivery and want to be better informed?

Interested in having some additional support during labor and delivery?

Concerned you don’t know enough about taking care of a newborn?

Recently had a baby?

Struggling with breastfeeding?

Want more sleep?

Worried about postpartum depression or anxiety?

Have to go back to work?

Nervous that your home isn’t baby-proofed?

If you answered YES to any of these questions, we can help! You are not alone. Pregnancy and parenting bring on a WHOLE LIST of new questions and concerns, joy and happiness, as well as fears and anxieties about doing everything right. Whether this is your first, second, fifth, or your SURPRISE baby, we have you covered. [Read more…] about Introducing…Tucson Bump2Baby…Welcome to your VILLAGE

WAIT…BREASTFEEDING CAN HELP REDUCE RISK OF BREAST CANCER?

Breast cancer walk
Breast cancer walk

 

In case you didn’t know why the NFL is proudly incorporating pink into everything or you are seeing a “sea of pink” everywhere – October is breast cancer awareness month. This is an important month to all of us who have family or friends that have been affected by this disease. According to the American Cancer Society 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. In 2015 alone, there will be an estimated 231,840 new cases of invasive breast cancer and 40,290 breast cancer deaths. [Read more…] about WAIT…BREASTFEEDING CAN HELP REDUCE RISK OF BREAST CANCER?

Due to COVID 19, Colleen will only be providing virtual in home support.

Feel free to call, text or email her for virtual support in the comfort, safety & security of your home. You are not alone!