Browsing Tag

Prenatal

Pregnancy

Q&A: Should I get a Midwife or a Doula?

Q. I’m pregnant with my first baby and a friend of mine suggested I hire a doula for labour and delivery. What exactly is the difference between a midwife and a doula?

A.  Although a midwife and a doula may seem very similar in their approach toward childbirth, their roles differ quite significantly.

In Canada, midwives are trained and licensed medical professionals providing care to women during pregnancy, labour and delivery.

Doulas are not health care providers, but instead offer guidance as well as physical and emotional support to the mother and her partner during the pre and post-natal periods as well as during childbirth. She provides physical support to the labouring mother including gentle massage, guided breathing and positional support. A doula often provides education and information to the couple so that they can make informed choices in their birthing experience.

Here are few things your midwife will do:

  • Run prenatal tests and monitor your health and the baby’s health during pregnancy, birth and post-partum period
  • Prescribe maternal health related supplements or medications
  • Perform physical examinations
  • Consult with an obstetrician (OB) if a medical complication comes up which is out of the midwifery scope
  • Do their best to help you experience a comfortable birth

Here are a few things your doula will do:

  • Give you information about medical examinations and procedures (but cannot perform these procedures)
  • Establish a pre-natal relationship with you and help you figure out your “birth plan”
  • Help keep you and your partner feeling calm and supported during labour
  • Use a variety of tools and techniques to help you manage the intense physical sensations of labour and birth
  • Ensure you feel comfortable and confident communicating your needs to your health care provider
  • Provide any post-partum help and support

Although doulas do not provide medical care, research has shown that having a doula present throughout birth decreases the likelihood of using medical interventions such as instrument-assisted births (forceps, vacuum extraction) and c-section births. Furthermore, women who use doulas report having more positive feelings about their childbirth experience.

Research shows that having a doula present throughout birth decreases the likelihood of using medical interventions.

Many women often choose to have a midwife and a doula supporting them through labour and childbirth providing a perfect complement of knowledge, care and comfort for the mama-to-be.

Recently I became a Doula after taking the DONA International Doula Course at The Toronto Yoga Mamas.  A few weeks ago, I attended my first birth and it was one of the most amazing experiences of my life!  If you have any questions about doulas or my role as a doula, please feel free to send me a message at hello@draliya.ca.

Find my Q&A expert column and other great mama and baby advice & resources at babypost.com.

(Original post at babypost.com)

(Photo by babypost.com)

 

 

Pregnancy

3 Awesome Exercises for Pregnancy!

A few weeks ago, I had the absolute pleasure of visiting the lovely Joy McCarthy of Joyous Health at her office in Toronto.   Joy is a holistic nutritionist and author of Joyous Health: Eat & Live Well without Dieting {her book is amazing}!  She’s also a glowing mama-to-be and an awesome patient of mine.

We put together a video for her blog of three amazing pregnancy exercises mamas can do at home. Performing these exercises daily will help maintain mobility and strength in your spine and pelvis during pregnancy and help prepare your body for labour and delivery {in addition to seeing a chiropractor, of course!}.

So grab a fitness ball and watch our video here!  Also check out Joy’s website at joyoushealth.com for loads of other amazing recipes and neat health and wellness tips!

 

{image by joyoushealth.com}

 

 

 

 

 

 

Babies + Kids, Pregnancy

Chiropractic care now at Toronto Yoga Mamas

Great news Mamas and Mamas-to-be!  There’s now one more place to find me in Leslieville!

In addition to my regular hours at Restore Integrative Health, I will now be offering chiropractic care to all of the lovely and wonderful mamas at Toronto Yoga Mamas studio in Leslieville.  I am so thrilled to be a part of this amazing team and community.

The Toronto Yoga Mamas (TYM) was founded by the amazing Jamie Kalynuik, yoga instructor and doula extraordinaire!  She has created a studio full of warmth and love where mothers and soon-to-be mothers can connect with their babies and with each other.  Not only do they offer a huge variety of classes (prenatal and baby yoga to pilates) but the studio also serves as a meeting place for women to share stories and experiences in their weekly Mama Group (every Tuesday).  Workshops, such as Baby Massage and Reflexology, Infant CPR and Baby Sleep are also offered and are super popular.

Recently, Jamie has added Wellness Services to her growing studio and I am thrilled and excited to be a part of their team.  Offering Massage Therapy and Acupuncture, Chiropractic Care fits nicely within the studio’s Wellness Centre and their new space is beautiful!  Come find me at the Toronto Yoga Mamas studio in Leslieville on Wednesday mornings!

xo

 

 

 

Pregnancy

Prenatal Chiropractic Care: The FAQs

I’m often asked by mamas in Toronto if chiropractic work can help during pregnancy and if so, how. The simple answer is YES! Find out how below.

Q. How can chiropractic help during pregnancy?

Pre-existing but often unnoticed imbalances in the spine become stressed during pregnancy.  In addition, the weight of a growing uterus has a tendency to change a woman’s biomechanics, shifting the center of gravity and putting pressure on joints of the hips, pelvis and lower back.

Chiropractic care throughout pregnancy can relieve and even prevent the common discomforts experienced in pregnancy.  Specific adjustments (such as the Webster technique) eliminate the causes of stress in the spine.

Q. Is chiropractic safe during any stage of pregnancy? 

Chiropractic care is absolutely safe through all trimesters of pregnancy as early as the first month and does not harm the growing fetus in any way.

Using the Webster Technique of specific gentle chiropractic analysis and adjustments, we can help rebalance the pelvis reducing any nerve irritation to the spine and generally help the body feel more at ease overall.

Chiropractic care has been proven to reduce labor times and has been shown to reduce the need for pain medication and medical intervention during childbirth.

Q. What exactly is the Webster Technique?

The Webster Technique is a specific chiropractic adjustment designed to help ease the symptoms of an unbalanced pelvis and misaligned spine.  The goal of the adjustment is to reduce the effects of sacral subluxation and SI Joint dysfunction.  In so doing, the biomechanical function of the pelvis is improved.

Q. Can chiropractic help baby positioning?  (eg. Breech presentation)

As a baby develops, a woman’s uterus enlarges to accommodate the rapid growth.  When the pelvis is in a balanced state, the ligaments connected to the uterus (specifically the round ligaments) maintain an equalized, supportive suspension for the uterus.

If the pelvis is out of balance or misaligned, these ligaments become twisted, causing a condition called “intrauterine constraint”.  This constraint limits the space available for the developing baby to move.

If there is intrauterine constraint as birth approaches, the baby is prevented from getting into the best possible position for birth.  Even if the baby is in the desirable head down position, often intrauterine constraint prevents the baby’s head from moving into the ideal presentation for delivery.  This may slow labor and add distress and pain to both mother and baby.

Using the Webster Technique, a chiropractor gently opens up the pelvis, allowing baby space or room to move into proper positioning. If the baby is in correct position, the technique also helps to maintain that ideal positioning leading up to delivery.

Reference

The Webster technique has been found to have an 82% success rate in clinical studies for breech babies. (JMPT July-Aug 2002)

In my practice….
More and more mamas are realizing the health benefits of chiropractic care during pregnancy. Mothers that receive care during pregnancy report improvements in overall health and general wellness throughout and even after their pregnancies. Many second or third time mamas that had not received care for their first delivery report an easier and faster birth under chiropractic care.