Pregnancy & Birth Articles

The Biology of Ultrasound

Ultrasound is exactly that: an auditory waveform ( sound ) that occurs above the upper limit for human hearing ( ultra ). Like all sounds, this flow of sound pressure occurs in waves, broken into half-cycles of compression and expansion. What...

Antibiotics Given to Laboring Mothers

Obstetricians are aware that when a bacterium known as group B strep (GBS) is colonizing a mother’s vagina during pregnancy, her baby is more likely to develop an early infection with this bacterium after birth. Around 20 to 30 percent of mothers i...

The Bittersweet Reality of Birth Intervention

Every decision we make has a direct impact on our lives or the life of another, whether we foresee that impact or not.In our daily haste sometimes we don’t contemplate how these decisions impact our physical, mental and emotional well-being....

You’re Not Allowed to Not Allow Me

Reclaiming the Rights of Mothers During BirthFor most women, pregnancy and childbirth are one of the few times we let other adults tell us what we are “allowed” and “not allowed” to do with our own bodies. It’s time to change our language...

Trial of Labor

Up until the early 1900s, there was no good option for delivering high-risk births that would be safe for both the mother and baby. Joseph Lister’s use of carbolic acid as an antiseptic during surgery paved the way for surgical deliveries in which...

Fathers Present at Birth

In 1952, British author, anthropologist and humanitarian Ashley Montagu wrote: “Women are the mothers of humanity; do not let us ever forget that or underemphasize its importance. What mothers are to their children, and to others, so will men be to...

The Vital First Adjustment

The baby was born without respiration or a heartbeat. There are moments in one’s life where time seems to slow down and you truly do experience an out-of-body sensation. There were so many things going on around me, but all I could do was stare at t...

Wolf in Sheep's Clothing: The Potential Dangers of Epidural Anesthesia

The modern woman is task-oriented. We live in a world that places demands on our competence, attention and efficiency. We use technology, tap into our communities and plumb the depths of our reserves to navigate an often hyper-masculinized world...

Natural Birth Isn't Beneficial

Hey, what’s up with that headline? Is that a typo? Aren’t you a proponent of natural birth? Why, yes. Yes, I am. What I want to share with you is an idea that has been spreading in the breastfeeding world for some time now, and I thi...

Also labeled: Author Amy Hoyt, Issue #45

Enhancing Our Babies' Innate Expression

When my husband and I became parents, we had a strong recognition that children were intelligent, conscious beings responsive to their surrounding experiences. The world around us was waking up with what was termed the “Human Potential Movement.” Fro...

Babies Remember Birth

What do you see when you look at a newborn baby, bright-eyed, gazing straight at you? Is there really a person there? Silently frowning or beet-red with rage, can this baby think and feel? For its small size, a newborn makes a powerful, compelling...

10 Things I Wish All Women Knew About Giving Birth

When I was pregnant, I seemed to be a magnet for birth war stories—cords around the neck, emergency cesareans, and more. It took a lot of inner conviction to believe in birth as a natural, beautiful event that my body was capable of, rather than a...

Birth Is the Key

A natural birth unlocks breastfeeding potential and so much more."Breastfeeding is complicated, and most mothers can’t do it.” That’s what this culture has thought for decades. But the more we learn, the more we realize that human newborns are...

New Blood

Infants have a right to all the blood they’re born with. Why are doctors keeping it from them?Are we allowing our health providers to rob our babies of their full potential of health, intelligence, immunity and longevity? At the time of b...

The Controversy Reignites

Vitamin K shots are routine for most newborns... but the practice has its dark side.The controversy surrounding administering vitamin K shots to newborns recently surfaced when physicians at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at V...

The Twinkle in Your Parents' Eyes: Conscious Conception and Conscious Pregnancy

You know the expression, “When you were only a twinkle in your parents’ eyes.” The phrase conjures up the happiness of loving parents who truly want to conceive a child. It turns out it is also a phrase that sums up the latest genetic research...

Risks of Induced Labor

A new study linking labor induction to increased autism risk made the news last year. This latest study on the connection between induction and risk of autism comes out of Duke University, and was reported in the Journal of the American Medical...

Estimating the Estimated Due Date

“I’m due on May 27th!” I was told enthusiastically by a friend who just found out she was pregnant. It took more than a little effort to mask my cringe and share her joy. Little did she know that within hours of her positive pregnancy test, she had...

Letter to a Labor and Delivery Nurse

Dear Labor and Delivery Nurse, This letter could also be addressed to doctors and midwives, but it is you, nurse, whom most expectant mothers interact with throughout their labors. I understand that you were called to this profession for a...

A Touch to Heal: A Chiropractor Helps Direct an At-Risk Newborn Toward Wellness

The text came through at 10:41 p.m. on a Friday night. It was from our midwife, Michelle Ruebke, C.P.M.: “I just delivered a baby and think he needs to see one of you guys. He’s too fussy (not crying) and won’t nurse.” Instantly I turned to my wife,...