It’s been a while since I’ve posted on this blog, so I wanted to give my readers a bit of an update on what I’ve been up to these past couple of months. Mostly I’ve been away because of some good news: I’m expecting our third child, a girl, coming sometime in October! I’ll be honest,… Read More What I’ve Been Doing the Last Few Weeks
Last week, I wrote a post about sleep training and stress, in which I argued that everything we know about stress suggests that sleep training is not harmful. In response, many people objected that sleep trained babies continue to experience elevated cortisol and significant distress, even after they have stopped crying. In their view, sleep training teaches babies that crying does not help.… Read More The Middlemiss Study Tells Us Nothing About Sleep Training, Cry-It-Out, or Infant Stress
Because whether or not to sleep train can be such a fraught decision for new parents, I wanted to share my sleep training story, and to explain why, given everything we know about stress, the argument that sleep training causes long-term harm doesn’t hold water. Sleep Training My Son When my son was 4.5 months old, I… Read More Critics of Cry-It-Out Fundamentally Misunderstand How Stress Affects the Brain
For most women, the first trimester is undeniably rough. After briefly reveling in being newly pregnant (two lines!), you start to feel sick as a dog, all day long. About 70-80% of pregnant women experience nausea during their first trimester, and about 50% also experience vomiting. Not that it will make you feel any better, morning sickness comes with one one big silver lining:… Read More Morning Sickness & Miscarriage: How Much Does Nausea Lower Your Risk?
Last week, the CDC ignited a firestorm of criticism by stating that women should “stop drinking alcohol if they are trying to get pregnant or could get pregnant”, and–because an estimated 50% of pregnancies in the U.S. are unplanned–any woman who drinks alcohol should use birth control. “Its [the CDC’s] underlying message was unmistakable: Women… Read More Light Drinking During Pregnancy: 7 Things You Need to Know
Children born by C-sections have about 20% higher odds of obesity, asthma, allergies, and Type 1 Diabetes, according several large research reviews. But are children born by scheduled C-sections especially at risk for health problems, as a recent New York Times piece claims? “the data showed more health problems among babies born by planned C-section than among those delivered by… Read More No, C-sections Are Not “Best With a Little Labor”
Three years ago, sitting with my 15-month-old son and my husband during a long layover, on our way back home from Norway, I felt a sudden gush of warm blood. So much for my miracle pregnancy, I thought. I was only six weeks along and certain I was miscarrying. Our return trip was already off to a poor start.… Read More A Threatened Miscarriage, a Subchorionic Hematoma, and How United Airlines (Nearly) Ate My Baby
We all know that taking folic acid before and during early pregnancy helps prevent neural tube defects like spina bifida and anencephaly. But I for one was surprised to learn that taking folic acid may also help prevent autism.
Stand at our neighborhood playground for a few minutes and you are almost sure to hear remarks like these: “My child started walking at 8 months.” “My two-year-old is speaking in full sentences.” “My son was potty trained at 18 months.” Some of these remarks have been made to me. And some, I am ashamed… Read More No More Milestone Talk For Me
Pregnancy can be cruel. When you’re at your most swollen, bloated, and exhausted, sleep proves frustratingly elusive. Every night, you toss and turn, trying to find a comfortable position, your back aching, and your belly pressing down on your bladder. Just as you finally start to drift off, you realize you need to pee. And then, to add insult to… Read More Back Sleeping During Pregnancy and the Sydney Stillbirth Study