No two pregnancies are the same just as no two deliveries are the same. At least that was my experience. As my husband and I prepared to welcome our third child in 2015, we followed a carefully thought-out plan to give us the best chance for a full-term pregnancy and healthy delivery. With a history of preterm labor and delivery, I was considered high risk and therefore began a proactive approach to monitor for any signs of preterm labor very early in my pregnancy. The journey that began more than a year before a positive pregnancy test led to my longest pregnancy and first experience with... Read More »

If you plan to deliver at the Peggy V. Helmerich Women’s Center at Hillcrest Medical Center, it is valuable to know that every labor and delivery nurse has received doula training from a certified doula. A doula is a professional who has been trained in birthing techniques and provides emotional, physical and educational support to a mother during labor. With this training, labor and delivery nurses are able to meet the needs of each laboring mother and help them experience successful deliveries that follow a family’s desired birth plan.  

When nurses go through doula training, they... Read More »

For expectant mothers who have high risk babies, several have to stay in the hospital for weeks or even months prior to their baby’s due date. When AuraBelle “Belle” Laskey was told by her doctor she had a 50 percent chance of losing her twin babies after 24 weeks, she knew there was no choice but to stay in the hospital for the next two months. “There was no thought to it,” says Belle. “I’m having identical twin girls and they have monoamniotic, which means they share one sack. It is rare. Only 1% of identical twins share a sack.” This condition poses the risk of her babies cords becoming... Read More »

Pregnancy is a time of tremendous change for any expectant mother. With the anticipation of a new member of the family arriving come prenatal appointments, sharing the big news and pregnancy cravings, for many mothers. However, it is not always a good thing to indulge in those cravings, health care providers recommend, especially early in the pregnancy. Too much weight gain in the first trimester of pregnancy (before 13 weeks) can increase the risk for developing gestational diabetes by 50 percent. In general, expectant mothers should gain about two to four pounds in the first three months... Read More »

New research published this month in the journal Pediatrics finds that, in addition to a safe sleep environment, other factors including exposure to smoking, lack of prenatal care and limited breastfeeding affect a baby’s risk of SIDS. While researchers are learning more about the “underlying biology” of SIDS, they do believe a perfect storm could be created when infants who have an underlying risk are introduced to one of these identified external factors during a critical period of development. They are hopeful, however, that as more information is presented, changes will occur to... Read More »

According to new research, hospitals throughout the U.S., including Hillcrest Medical Center, have worked to improve breastfeeding programs available for new mothers. In fact, the number of hospitals that have adopted the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding initiative nearly doubled from 29 percent in 2007 to 54 percent in 2013. “Hillcrest Medical Center is proud to be one of the 1,046 hospitals across the country that is working to implement the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding and become a baby-friendly designated facility,” shares certified lactation consultant Cheryl Coleman, RN... Read More »

When preparing to take your baby home from the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), an important topic to discuss with the NICU staff is your goal of breastfeeding at home. Your baby may have already tried latching on or full feedings while in the NICU, but breastfeeding a premature infant at home presents new challenges. Here are some things you can do to make this transition easier for you and baby.

Preparing for your baby’s discharge

For a few days, pump more milk than needed. This helps stimulate your body to make as much milk as possible. The more milk you’re producing,... Read More »

Many people may not be aware that asthma is one of our country’s most common diseases and it does not just affect children. In fact, every day 27,000 adults miss work due to asthma, with 4,700 heading to the Emergency Department due to an attack. For women who are pregnant and also dealing with the management of asthma, it can present its own challenges. However, it is important to remember that having asthma does not necessarily mean having a complicated pregnancy. With proper management of asthma and appropriate medical care during the pregnancy, most women who have asthma can experience... Read More »