Birth coaching!

I get to be the birth coach of a first-time mom!!  Woo hoo!  It’s her goal to birth with no meds and no interventions, and I say she can do it!!!  Her mother, who — very sadly — died when she was very young, was a midwife, and her sister has had two children who were born naturally.  So, the genes are good.  😉  It turns out that she has the same OB that I had with Fiala, and he is very cooperative with natural birthing practices, though I can’t say he quite follows a midwifery model.  It’s pretty close, though.  I have been the beneficiary of his great patience — HOURS of patience during birth, way beyond what most docs have.  And, he gives midwifery-style attention to the perineum, and virtually never gives an episiotomy.  And, he’s very cooperative with non-lithotomy laboring positions.  Hard to ask much more from an OB.  🙂

My friend is 37 weeks along, and was just diagnosed with mild pre-eclampsia.  I gave her some suggestions to try to get her blood pressure down:

  • 2000 mg calcium citrate daily
  • a gallon or more of water a day
  • no trans-fats
  • lie on her left side
  • up her protein intake
  • eat tons of veggies
  • especially eat tons of lycopene-rich foods:  tomatoes (particularly canned products), watermelon, red bell peppers, goji juice, and pink grapefruit
  • no caffeine

(Anyone have any other suggestions??)

I told her that the interventions mentioned above don’t guarantee that her bp will lower, especially since time is short until she delivers, but there’s no harm in doing EVERYTHING she can, that may even possibly have a positive effect.  I’d hate to see her go to deliver her baby, and have her bp up so high that they’d require her to be monitored 100% of the time, and kept in bed.

So, please be praying for this sweet mom, that her birth will go smoothly, and that her bp will decrease, and quickly so.

And, if you’re thinking about it, please pray for the timing to be such that would allow me to attend the birth!  I have three people on tap, not including my hubby, whom I can call to watch my children, but there are still a few gaps, time-wise, during the day…


About Karen Joy

I'm a partially-homeschooling mother of six -- 3 boys ages 19, 17 and 15 years old, and three girls: 11, 8, and 3. I like birding, reading, writing, organic gardening, singing, playing guitar, hiking, the outdoors, and books. I very casually lead a very large group of homeschooling families in the Phoenix area. I have a dear hubby who designs homes for a local home builder and who is the worship pastor of our church. I live in the desert, which I used to hate, but now appreciate.

Posted on April 29, 2010, in Babies, Birth, Medical Stuff. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. as a mom who has had pre-e and pre-e scares 3 times here is my best advise –

    don’t just drink water, drink water AND eat sea salt. if you only drink water is actually makes the bloating/swelling worse (often a side effect of pre-e). It messes with your BP to flood your body with too much water.

    Dandelion root is your best friend. You can have it in tea or capsules. Tea is a great idea as it’s both hydration AND dandelion!

    Stay off of your feet as much as you can…. but make sure you move plenty. sitting around is not good for the mood or body. make sure to take a small walk around every hr or so just to keep circulation going. no deep woods hiking, however!

    stay away from nitrates, nitrates and artificial forms of sodium. they mess with BP and the kidneys.

    eat plenty of protein. more than you would normally.

    the more green veggies the better. try keep your liver working wll. Pre-e stems from the liver.

    this is a very important time to be listening to your body. don’t ignore it when it tells you to take it easy, or drink more, or sleep more. A pre-e body is working to correct itself, but if it’s stress it will end up in full blown eclapmsia, liver failure, seizures and so forth. LISTEN to your body and don’t ignore the signs: tiredness, extra thirst, headaches, upper abdomonal pains, intense backpains….

  2. p.s. I really liked “Smart water” when I was dealing with this. If i was out and about I always had a bottle. it’s great stuff!

  3. newbeginnings09

    I have to second the salt thing. My dr told me to drink my koolaid (she said the sugar would help) with a bag of chips. I thought she was insane because, I’m already fat! (LOL) but it did help.
    One thing that helped ME was a back rub. I was cautioned at 11 weeks to restrict my activities because my b/p was up, put into the hospital at 24 weeks for pre e, and finally all out bedrest at 34 weeks for it. I still made it until her birth with my husband’s help and I firmly believe his willingness to rub on me helped keep me calm and happier. That made my b/p go down, we could watch it. 🙂
    I’d also caution her not to take first word if she’s told it’s too high and baby has to come out NOW. I was told that at 36 weeks and it wasn’t my b/p, it was actually an urinary tract infection. Only my insistence that some other testing be done kept me from having a too small, premature baby for no reason.

    • Adrienne, thanks for the tips!!! And, yes, it just follows that if we feel LOVED and cared for, whether it’s from back rubs, or something else, our bp will drop. With that in mind, and with your last paragraph, I was recently reading something about how what gets diagnosed as “pregnancy-induced hypertension” is often simply a “white coat effect” — bp that rises just because we don’t like being handled by doctors, and put in situations that can increase our stress — specially things like, “We may have to induce you (or worse) because your bp is too high!” That just compounds the problem.

  4. Seems like you’ve already had advice about salt. That was my first advice. Do NOT cut out salt! Salt food to taste. Drinks lots of water and water dense foods–cucumbers, watermelon, etc. Exercise daily–if she can swim, all the better! Being in water–covered, daily is super, super good!

    And one more thing about calcium. Calcium and Magnesium must be in proportion in order for it to really work. And liquid Cal/Mag is much more absorbably that capsules or powders. I recommend Cal/Mag with a 2:1 ratio. Take this several times a day.

    Hope that helps!

    And PROTEIN! Every meal–high quality protein. Every snack–high quality protein. Meat, fish, milk, cottage cheese, nuts, seeds. She should be having 100 grams daily. So, track it for a few days. Most women with pre-eclampia are not getting anywhere near that.

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