Monday, July 27, 2009

My Mommy Entry # 6

Week 29: To pee or not to pee...

Fetal development in pregnancy week 29: If you’ve been feeling butterflies moving around in your belly, it’s not just your run-of-the-mill pre-birth performance anxiety. No, it’s your amazing baby with a case of the hiccups: a fairly common occurrence at this point resulting from practicing breathing for their big birthday. In addition, to getting a round of butterfly-like hiccups, your little swimmer has arduously managed to accumulate enough baby fat to account for nearly 3.5% of their overall body weight. Yeah, compared to we adults, it’s not a lot, but when they’re little like that—it’s certainly a healthy (and warming) accomplishment in its way. Another fantastic accomplishment: your baby's spleen is now in charge of hematopoiesis—the 10 dollar name for the process involved in building up certain important blood components. Another fantastic-accomplishment: your little monkey has been peeing into their amniotic sac for a little while now (this is why potty training takes a while) and if you didn’t know, actually swallows it along with the rest of the amniotic fluid. Although the concept is nasty, their urine is sterile and as part of the amniotic fluid base, is replaced several times throughout the day. So if you didn’t know before, now you can tell people, that yes, you drank your own urine—you were still in the womb, but nonetheless, you’ve been there.


And how's mom doing? Here’s another new-parenting-issue that you probably don’t have the time or energy to handle: the decision whether or not to breastfeed. If you thought this was one of the obvious ones (stick out breast, attach child, feeding commences!), think again. Right off the bat, there are women that simply the vain reason to breastfeed: all that charming excess body fat you’ve gained is used for milk production, thus making it MUCH easier for you to return to you pre-pregnancy weight cannot breastfeed for medical reasons—and have no choice in the matter but to opt for formula-feeding. Then there are the women who attempt to breast-feed and run out of milk, or the baby won’t latch on (they even have breast-feeding classes because despite the apparent animal-easiness of the behavior, some babies just don’t take to breastfeeding).

Now, if you are planning or deciding whether or not to breastfeed, here are some of the big reasons why it’s a great thing for you and your little “sucker”: breastfeeding actually releases a hormone that will help you relax (and if you don’t nurse milk production will actually cease: i.e. use it or lose it!). If you choose to breastfeed, your body will produce oxytocin—(no, not Oxycotin, Rush Limbaugh already took care of that), which actually increases uterine contractions to decrease post-birth vaginal bleeding.

And the vain reason to breastfeed: all that charming excess body fat you’ve gained is used for milk production, thus making it MUCH easier for you to return to you pre-pregnancy weight. Also, nursing mothers’ bones re-mineralize faster than those who don’t and are less likely to contract ovarian or uterine cancer before and after menopause. Not to mention the fact that breastfeeding means you’re directly bolstering your baby’s immune system. For even more reasons why your child will benefit from breastfeeding, visit womenshealth.gov.

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