How to cope with interrupted and lack of sleep

So you’re having a baby. “Forget about getting any sleep in the next 18 years”, they say. But is it really that bad? Probably not. We are pretty sure that you will most definitely get some sleep, but it’ll probably be interrupted sleep. If you’re not used to it, sleeping for short bouts and being woken up a few times in the night can really affect you at first. It can affect your mood, how easy/hard you find your days, and your general wellbeing. But not all is lost, as there are ways to cope with interrupted or lack of sleep when you’ve just welcomed a new baby into your family.how to cope with interrupted sleep BabyNatal

Will my baby wake up often in the night?

At first, your young baby will wake up for a feed every few hours. This will happen both during the day and during the night. When they’re still very little, your baby may go to sleep for the night anything between 9pm and 11pm (or even later), wake up around 2-3am for a feed, and then maybe again at 5-6am. But remember, your baby is an individual with their own personality, and all babies are different! Your baby could be following a pattern similar to this, or one of their own, and that’s all to be expected. Although this may seem like a lot of waking, there a few things that you could try to work around that. Continue reading

Tummy time – everything you need to know

If you’re a new parent, you’ll have probably been advised by your midwife or Health Visitor to give your baby plenty of ‘tummy time’. But what IS tummy time, exactly? How do you do it, and why is it so important?tummy time everything you need to know

What is tummy time?

Tummy time refers to the practice of allowing your baby to spend some time on their tummy whilst awake and under your (or another adult’s) supervision. We emphasise the fact that your baby needs to be awake, as, for safety reasons, your baby always needs to be placed on their back when sleeping or about to go to sleep. Continue reading

5 fascinating facts you didn’t know about breastfeeding

In celebration of World Breastfeeding Week this August, we put together a few fascinating facts about breastfeeding that we hope you will enjoy!fascinating facts about breastfeeding BabyNatal

  1. Colostrum is ‘liquid gold’

During pregnancy your breasts start producing a small amount of milk, ready for the birth of the baby. This early milk is called colostrum, and you may or may not notice little drops of it leaking from your breasts towards the end of your pregnancy. If you’re not, don’t worry, as your body is producing it, even if you can’t see it!

Colostrum is the milk that your baby will have for the first 3 or 4 days before your ‘full milk’ comes in. Not a lot of it is produced, so if you express it into a bottle, don’t worry if you can only see a little of it – this is all your baby needs. Remember that their stomachs are tiny! Colostrum is thick and sticky, it may appear buttery yellow in colour, and it’s full of antibodies. That’s why it’s also nicknamed ‘liquid gold’. The antibodies that colostrum contains provide your baby with protection against infections that mum has built up an immunity to. Continue reading

What is International Father’s Mental Health Day?

On 19th June 2017 The Natal Family will join in the celebrations and social media hype for the second International Father’s Mental Health Day. Watch out for #IFMHD on social media from the 19th June for a week – lots and lots of great content that focuses on key aspects of fathers’ mental health will be shared online.

Why do we need an awareness day for father’s mental health?

Because 10% of dads are reported to experience perinatal postpartum depression. And while there is still a lot of stigma attached to mental health for both men and women, it looks like, as a society, we have a long way to go when it comes to recognising the signs and symptoms of postnatal depression, especially in men. Continue reading

9 things you need to know about vitamin K for babies

In our BabyNatal classes we go through the choices that new parents can make straight after the birth of their babies. One of the very early decisions that parents are asked to make is whether they would like their baby to have a supplement of vitamin K.

So we put together this blog post to answer some of the key questions you might have about this.

  1. Why is my baby offered vitamin K soon after birth?

When babies are born, they have low levels of vitamin K because only small amounts of vitamin K in mum’s body pass through the placenta. In the vast majority of healthy newborn babies, the amount of vitamin K they have in their body is enough to prevent any problems. However, some babies are born with an insufficient amount of vitamin K. Because it’s impossible to accurately predict which babies will be born with a vitamin K deficiency, a vitamin K supplement is currently offered to all babies born in the UK. Continue reading

Five ways to keep your baby safe in their sleep

Sleep safety is obviously one of the topics close to the hearts of all new parents. We cover the basics of safe sleep for newborn and young babies in our BabyNatal Practical Baby Care classes, and for parents who want to have a better understanding of how babies sleep and why, some of our amazing teachers also offer a one-off Baby Sleep workshop.

If you’ve ever been to one of our classes before, you’ll know that we’re never ‘prescriptive’ – we don’t tell you what to do or what’s right or wrong when caring for your baby. But for something as important as sleep safety, we do make sure that we give you all the facts, so you’re equipped and empowered with the right tools to keep your baby safe when they sleep. Continue reading

Did you know that newborn babies lose weight after birth?

A baby’s weight is one of the first things people ask about your newborn (after you’ve told them whether you had a boy or a girl, of course!) Weight tends to be an indication of how ‘healthy’ a baby is, when in reality the weight of a baby at birth depends on many factors, including mum’s own weight and diet, mum’s ethnicity and whether the baby is her first or a subsequent baby (first babies tend to be smaller than their siblings). Continue reading

What’s really hiding inside your baby’s wet wipes?

20161010_145107In our BabyNatal Practical Baby Care classes we discuss nappy changing, washing baby clothes, and bathing amongst other things, and one aspect that invariably always comes up is around the usage of ‘baby products’, be it soaps and shampoos, wet wipes, detergents etc. You’ll never hear us recommend one product over another one, but you’ll hear us say is that we encourage all parents and parents-to-be to make informed choices, which are right for their families, their babies and their own unique circumstances. Continue reading

Should dads always cut the umbilical cord? Shouldn’t more mums do it?

As with many other aspects of pregnancy, labour, birth and parenting, the choice around cutting the umbilical cord_quote from blog_1who should cut the umbilical cord is exactly that – a choice. Lately, however, an increasing number of expectant dads that we meet in our BabyNatal classes are telling us that they feel that they are expected to cut their baby’s umbilical cord. Continue reading

Six things you should know about your baby’s umbilical cord

In our BabyNatal Practical Baby Care classes we cover newborn appearance, and a key part of your baby’s appearance after birth (besides the fact that they are so cute, cuddly, beautiful and absolutely perfect) is that they will have some umbilical cord still attached to their tummy. Umbilical cords are not the typical thing that’s shown on TV, where babies who are meant to be newborn are in reality a few months old, so unless you’ve had a baby already or had the pleasure to be the birth partner for someone else, chances are that most of us haven’t seen one before and don’t know much about it. Continue reading