Abby Block, CD(DONA), CBC

Doula & Breastfeeding Support ~ Serving Brooklyn & NYC


Midwife Thinking: Birth From the Baby's Perspective

Abby BlockComment

Such a fascinating article! Excerpt below, and definitely head over here to read the article from Midwife Thinking in its entirety, as well as watch the videos.

Here are the bullet points from the article on treating a newborn with respect:

"A humane approach to welcoming a baby to the world

Whilst in some cases it is not possible, I believe that we should aim for all babies to have the opportunity to:

  • Make their own way through their mother’s body and into the world (ie. no unnecessary pulling).
  • For their first touch to be from the hands of a person who loves them (mother, father, family member, friend).
  • To be held immediately by their mother skin-to-skin.
  • To be sustained by their placenta until the placenta stops functioning (ie. leaving the cord intact).
  • To be left in peace to find their mother’s nipple and latch on.
  • To be treated gently and with dignity and respect during any ‘checks’ that their mother chooses to have done."

Placenta: Essential Resuscitation Equipment

Abby BlockComment

When people hear "placenta" these days, they may tend towards thinking about placenta encapsulation. What about the placenta's role and potential as the baby is born? This is fascinating article on the placenta, delayed cord clamping, and newborn resuscitation. It's a little bit birth-nerdy, but if you are interested in cord clamping and your newborn's transition to breathing on her/his own, please have a read!

Read the full article here from Midwife Thinking.


A Better Article for the Public About Doulas

Abby BlockComment

Recently, on my Facebook feed, there have been a bunch of articles circulating about doulas. Most of them accurately describe the general benefits and the research that proves we are a positive influence on a woman's birth experience and outcome. But then the articles often take funny twists and spiral down an odd road, describing the downsides of a doula, or scenarios which completely misrepresent the doula industry. (Most commonly the bring up doulas who don't support epidurals. I know a lot of doulas in NYC, and every single one of them, including me, supports a mother's choice to use an epidural in labor.) What if all articles about OGYNs or midwives or dentists, or geez, babysitters did the same thing and focused on a misperception that is uncommon in their industry? In any case, here's an article, for once, that doesn't seem to do that. Hurray!

Read the lovely article here: Doulas, What They Do and Don't Do, by Amelia Pang. Excerpt below.

"A doula is a non-medical professional who is certified to give physical comfort and emotional support to a woman before, during, and after delivery. Doulas can provide essential information about birth, and are on call 24-hours a day.

Although studies show doulas can greatly improve birth outcomes, not many women in the United States hire doulas.

According to the Second National U.S. Survey of Women’s Childbearing Experiences taken in 2006, only 3 percent of women said they used a doula during childbirth.

This is partly because there are some misconceptions about what doulas are and what kinds of services they provide."

Eating during labor? YES, it's very important!!

Abby BlockComment

Newsflash, everyone: Eating during labor is safe, and might even be beneficial! (Insert some sarcasm and eye rolling.) Can you imagine running a marathon and not being able to have anything except water and ice chips? For women in labor, who are embarking on one of the most physically (and emotionally) intense experiences, eating and drinking to hunger and thirst is essential. Read more here.