What to Know About 6 Week Ultrasound

At six weeks pregnant the whole situation can seem a little surreal still. Everything about becoming a mom is new and exciting, and of course a bit scary too. Many moms cannot wait to go in for their 6 week ultrasound because it offers them some peace of mind. This is typically the very earliest that you will have an ultrasound because there is not much to see via the sonogram before this point. In fact, most doctors will not do an ultrasound until around 12 weeks.

6 week ultrasound

What To Know About 6 Week Ultrasounds

Everything to Know about Ultrasounds

Okay, so you probably get that an ultrasound involves seeing your baby on a screen and some goop being rubbed on your tummy, but beyond that, you might not really know what all is involved in an ultrasound appointment. First things first, many doctors won’t even have you come in until you are 8 or 9 weeks pregnant. While it is hard to be patient and wait this long, you will be able to see much more by this point. Whether your first ultrasound is at week 6 or week 9, we’ve pulled together some tidbits to prepare you.

6 week ultrasound

An ultrasound is the procedure happening and the sonogram is the photograph that is produced. An ultrasound is a scan of your abdomen and pelvic area. Vaginal ultrasounds are very common at six weeks. Don’t be surprised, if this is what your doctor suggests. It is important to understand that ultrasounds are not x-rays, and are completely safe. It is non-invasive and typically will only last 15-30 min. The exciting part of getting an ultrasound is definitely seeing your baby and eventually finding out if you are having a boy or girl, but what makes ultrasounds so important is that they allow your doctor to get a close look at how your little one is developing. They are used to check the heartbeat, determine a due date, and monitor a wide variety of medical milestones for your baby.

What to Know About the 6 Week Ultrasound

All About the Appointment

  • While your doctor may not require it, it’s a good idea to go into the ultrasound appointment with a full bladder. They say it allows the technician to get a clearer view of both your baby and the reproductive organs. Drink 2-4 cups of water about an hour before your appointment. As hard as it may be, try not to relieve your bladder until the appointment has concluded.
  • You will lay on the exam room bed and the technician will rub a water-based gel to your abdomen. So, while you should wear something comfy and easy to pull up you don’t need to worry about the gel ruining your clothes in any way. Any of these comfy leggings paired with an oversized tee will do! 
  • Last but not least, there are never too many questions. At this early stage, you probably have a bunch and a good OBGYN will be happy to answer any and all of your questions. 

What You Might See

  • Don’t be disappointed if you don’t see much or the sonogram doesn’t produce clear images. A 6 week ultrasound is very early and there will be later on to check in on your little bean! You also should not panic if the doctor cannot seem to find what they are looking for. Often times at this point, how far along you think you are is not accurate and it may be earlier in your pregnancy than predicted.
  • Typically at a 6 week ultrasound, your doctor will find the fetal pole or the fetal heartbeat. This is really exciting and definitely something to look forward to!
  • Okay, so what even is a fetal pole? It is the shape of the embryo, which the doctor will measure to check development. They will be able to discern what side is the head and what side is the butt. Make sure to ask them to point out which is which to you. They may also be able to point out little buds that will eventually turn into their arms and legs.

6 week ultrasound

  • The doctor will also check the embryo’s location in the uterus to make sure it has attached correctly.
  • Fun fact; if you are pregnant with multiples the doctor and you will be able to see on this early ultrasound. You can see their separate gestational sacs.

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Everything you Need to Know about Posterior Baby Position

When it comes to pregnancy, there’s a surprise around every corner. And, if you’re like most expectant moms, there’s something new to worry about at each new stage. For many moms, baby positioning can be both a surprise and a concern. While neither of these is a reason to panic we’re here to tell you all about the posterior baby position and Right Occiput Transverse. 

The Challenges of Posterior Baby Position and Right Occiput Transverse – and What You Can Do About It

posterior baby position

The Skinny on Fetal Positioning

As you near the end of your pregnancy, your doctor will begin paying more attention to the baby’s positioning. Ideally, your baby will remain in Vertex Position which is the best position for a vaginal birth. This is an Anterior Position with baby’s head down and facing your spine. However, if your little one is being less than cooperative, you may find yourself with a baby in Posterior Position. Posterior babies are those with their head down but facing forward, rather than toward mom’s spine. You may have heard this referred to as “sunny side up” in layman’s terms. Babies can be safely delivered in this face-up position, too.

What many moms worry about with a Posterior Position baby is whether this position will present additional challenges. In some ways, it may.

  • Vacuum Intervention may be needed to help your baby through the birth canal 
  • C-Section may be necessary 
  • Long Back Labor is common 
  • Perineum Tears are more likely as your baby is not taking the ideal path out 

Despite all these things, there is no reason to panic. Babies are born this way every single day, and your doctors will take the necessary steps to keep everyone safe and healthy.  

What To Do Before Labor 

  • Stretch Oil- I recommend using this no matter what fetal position your baby is in, but it is especially helpful if you know you have a Posterior Positioned baby. Massaging your perineum will help you prepare for labor and avoid any tears. This BabyIt Comfort Gel is perfect to use for this and can also be used after childbirth. 
  • Clean Your Floors- Okay, you do not actually need to clean but crawling around on all fours might help your baby to flip. 
  • Invest in a Birthing Ball– These are great to use before labor, but also lifesavers during labor. The ball we’ve linked here also comes with an exercise instruction guide!
  • Book a Chiropractor Appointment- Chiropractors can be helpful to expecting mothers in many ways. They will help align you and keep you stretched out. This is helpful if your baby is sunny side up and causing lower back pain. 
  • Buy a Pregnancy Pillow- Being pregnant is tiring and when you aren’t sleeping well it is just downright miserable. A pregnancy pillow can provide some much-needed comfort. Check out all our favorites here.

What Having A Posterior Positioned Baby Means

Like we said above, Posterior Position means your baby’s head is down but facing forward. It is different than breech where instead their feet would be down and head up. The OP (Occiput Posterior) position is the most common. This is when the baby’s head is against its mother’s back. 

Challenges of a Posterior Position Baby

Oftentimes, labor can be prolonged when the baby is in the Posterior Position. This is because the hardest part of the baby’s skull is trying to exit the birth canal first, rather than the more malleable top of the head. This position also means that the hardest part of the baby’s skull is closest to mom’s lower back, rather than her abdomen, which is why women with Posterior Position babies will often experience painful back labor.

The good news is, the majority of babies – 90 percent, in fact – will turn into the Vertex Position on their own during labor. If the baby doesn’t turn, labor can still progress in a safe and healthy way, though moms delivering face-up babies are more likely to experience perineal tears.

Can I Turn Baby Myself?

You may know your baby is in the Posterior Position either because of your recent ultrasound or because you’re feeling strong kicks at the top and front of your belly. If this is the case, you can take assist your little one in turning into Vertex Position before labor begins.

Spinning Babies is a robust and popular resource for moms hoping to turn a Posterior Position baby. Since most babies assume their final birth position between 33 and 36 weeks of gestation, you still have time to try these techniques even if you’re nearing your delivery date. Of course, you should discuss your plans with your doctor before attempting to turn a Posterior Position baby on your own. Also, talk to your doula or get a doula. She has probably been through this many times and will get you prepared for labor. 

What About Fetal Head Positioning?

As your pregnancy progresses, you may also learn that your baby’s head is in an Occiput Transverse Position. This is different than a Transverse Lie, which means the baby is horizontal in the womb, rather than vertical. The term “occiput” refers to the back of the baby’s skull, where the occipital bone cradles the brain. This means an Occiput Transverse Position is halfway between Posterior Position and Anterior Position.

Left Occiput Transverse, in which the baby’s head is turned toward the mother’s right side, is considered ideal to begin labor – babies in this position typically turn Anterior as labor progresses. In the Right Occiput Transverse position, the baby’s head is turned toward the mother’s left side.

We will talk about this position more below as well! This position may be a sign that a formerly posterior baby is in the process of turning. However, babies in Right Occiput Transverse usually rotate Posterior during labor. This can lead to even more complicated labor and delivery.

posterior baby position

Challenges of Right Occiput Transverse Position

Women with babies in Right Occiput Transverse position are often in for long labor – and many times a more painful one, too. It’s also likely that your doctor will take manual measures to turn the baby’s head and allow for a safe neck position during delivery.

Most often, forceps will be used, though vacuum extraction is also possible. If the doctor determines that the baby’s head cannot be adequately rotated for safe vaginal delivery, then labor can end in a Cesarean section.

What’s a Mom to Do?

If your baby is in Right Occiput Transverse when labor begins, your doctor will likely be able to tell through a physical examination. You may wish to try labor positions that encourage the baby to turn an Anterior into Vertex Position. This includes pelvic tilts, lunging and standing and swaying. Tell your doctor or doula you want to try these things and be adamant about it. Many moms have success with these techniques, though they don’t work for everyone.

Every baby is unique, regardless of positioning, and every labor will be an individual experience. While we hope you learned something here don’t forget to talk with your doctor, doula or other health professional about any concerns you may have.

Labor and delivery are challenging, but life-changing experiences. It’s normal to be anxious about positioning and more, but don’t hesitate to talk with trusted health professionals when concerns arise.

 

Have questions about fetal positioning? Please leave a question in the comments or ask questions in our Rookie Moms Facebook Group.

It’s a great way to connect with other moms, share tips and get advice.

Nipple Shield [Pros and Cons for New Moms!]

Breastfeeding can seem like a daunting challenge for a new mom. You’ve done the classes and web searches. Still, nothing truly prepares you for the first time you breastfeed your new baby. As with any new experience, it can take time for both you and baby to get into your flow. A nipple shield is a fantastic tool for easing both a mom and baby into a comfortable routine.

When I had my son, I was so excited at the idea of breastfeeding. Then, the nurse first handed me to him and showed me what I had to do, and frustration set in. He was having a hard time latching, and by the next morning after a night of breastfeeding every two hours, my nipples were super sore. Thankfully, a kind nurse gave me a nipple shield, which ended up being the tool I never knew I needed.

What the Heck is a Nipple Shield?

So, what is a nipple shield exactly? A nipple shield is made out of thin, flexible silicone, and resembles the nipple of a baby bottle. The nipple shield fits over your nipple and areola, providing a protective barrier for you, and an easier latching ability for baby. There’s a small hole at the point, similar to a bottle nipple that flows the milk into the baby’s mouth.

Nipple Shields Are Great For New Moms

best nipple shield

There are many reasons why breastfeeding mothers can benefit from using a nipple shield. For instance, many new moms experience discomfort with sore nipples in the first few days or weeks of breastfeeding. Sore, cracked nipples, and even bleeding nipples can discourage a new mom from breastfeeding. Although there are products meant to soothe before and after breastfeeding, the nipple shield provides relief and comfort during.

Using a nipple shield will help you get into the routine of breastfeeding.  There is an endless list of new things to learn and get used to, and breastfeeding is among them. A nipple shield is a wonderful way to ensure the transition is smooth and enjoyable.

Also Great for Babies

Clogged Milk Ducts - Breastfeeding. Mother Holding Newborn In Embrace And Breastfeed

Using a nipple shield also benefits newborns and infants. The breastfeeding experience is new to a baby, too! Using a shield can help a newborn latch quickly.

Whether a mom chooses to use a nipple shield to alleviate pain or discomfort or because her baby is having a difficult time latching, it’s best to always reach out to a pediatrician or lactation consultant to discuss any questions or concerns about breastfeeding and using the shield.

The Drawbacks of Using a Nipple Shield

Now, as amazing as the nipple shield sounds, there are a few reasons why a mom should consult with a pediatrician or lactation consultant before, during, and after the use of a shield. Some precautions should be taken when using the shield to make sure both mom and baby have a beneficial breastfeeding experience.

High Maintenance – Handle With Care!

The first drawback to using a nipple shield is the maintenance. Much like any bottle, care, and attention to detail is necessary when cleaning the shield. Not only can body oils from mom get onto the shield, but milk can collect in the hole. You need to thoroughly clean this to avoid the growth of bacteria which can harm the baby. 

Effect on Milk Supply and Feeding

As mentioned before, it’s usually a good idea to consult with a pediatrician and/or lactation consultant before, during, and after the use of a nipple shield. Due to their design being more like a bottle than an actual nipple, there’s only one hole for milk to flow through as opposed to the multiple holes that a nipple has. Using a shield can slow down the flow of milk, and this can affect two significant things, mom’s milk supply and how much milk the baby is getting.

Research shows that breast milk production is based on supply and demand. This means it’s crucial to keep in mind that if less milk is being expressed, pumping after breastfeeding might be a good idea.

In addition to decreasing flow and supply, a nipple shield can cause the baby to get less milk during feeding sessions. This can lead to the baby losing weight, which although relatively normal during the first few days after birth, may cause a pediatrician to recommend supplementing with formula.

 

Difficulty Weaning Off of The Nipple Shield

One final drawback is the difficulty of weaning the baby (and sometimes yourself) off of the shield. Weaning takes patience and time, and a sense of open-mindedness when it comes to trying new breastfeeding holds and positions that are comfortable for both mother and baby.

 

Support is Available

These factors may cause apprehension when deciding if using a nipple shield is the right course of action, and it’s essential to keep in mind that this is a temporary solution for breastfeeding difficulties. If there are any questions or concerns that relate to breastfeeding and the overall health and growth of the baby, it’s best to direct these toward a pediatrician, who is always willing to provide answers to wary parents.

Lactation support is available in many areas, and there are many online resources to aid in finding a lactation professional.

 

Best Nipple Shields To Use

Below are 3 great options for you to purchase. They are all safe ultra thin and easy to clean!

Medela Contact Nipple Shield With Carrying Case

best nipple shield

Philips Avent Nipple Protector

best nipple shield

Purifyou Premium Nipple Shield

 

 

Please reach out to our Facebook Group if you are having any struggles with breastfeeding! We are here to help and there is a whole tribe of mamas who have been where you are.

 

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Best Nursing Covers + 3 Other Ways to Use Them

Breastfeeding is one of the most amazing, magical things that our bodies can do! That doesn’t mean it comes without its fair share of struggles, though. You should feel free to feed your baby when and where you want, but sometimes it’s nice to have a nursing cover when you don’t want to put it all out there. Don’t take this the wrong way though, we are all about freeing the boobies! You should never feel like you need to use a nursing cover. However, we still recommend adding one on to that coveted baby registry because there are so many other uses for them. 

best nursing cover

 

Best Nursing Covers

Trendy Nursing Covers

Milk Snob Multifunctional Cover

These are the cool kids of nursing covers. These nursing covers come in the absolute best patterns; from florals, Disney themes, stripes, and pretty solids. As you can see in the photo below, they are made with the idea of having multiple uses. You can simply throw them over what you are wearing to be a nursing cover. It provides all around coverage and is super stretchy. The material is light and breathable, so even in the summer months you won’t feel trapped under there.

You can also pop them over your car seat to give your baby some privacy. I loved doing this when I had newborns and needed to run errands. So many people just feel that they can reach in and touch your baby, and I am not a big fan of that so keeping the car seat covered was a must. Here is current pricing!

best nursing covers

Nuroo Nursing Scarf 

The Nuroo is a classic scarf option, but you can also wear it as a wrap or shawl. The scarf has snap along the edge which makes it easy to customize how you wear it. It is a super soft, breathable material, and the best part of all it stays wrinkle free! It’s a gorgeous scarf and you can easily incorporate it into your wardrobe even when you are no longer breastfeeding. One mama in the reviews said to check out Lulu Lemon’s Vinyasa scarf styling videos to get some different ideas of how to wear it. The Lulu Lemo scarf and the Nuroo are almost exactly the same with the buttons and light material. Absolutely loving that tip! Check pricing here.

best nursing covers

Copper Pearl Multi-Use Cover

All I have to say is, I am absolutely obsessed with the Sloth pattern that you can get this nursing cover in. So stinking cute! Besides that, the design allows it to have 5 different uses. It is obviously a nursing cover but you can also use it as a car seat cover, a shopping cart cover, a high chair, or an infinity scarf. The fabric is a high-quality rayon blend perfect for any season. As a car seat cover, it will protect your little one from the elements like rain or snow. Aside from the elements, it will also keep unwanted strangers for peaking in at them. When using this as a nursing cover, it is really easy to check in on your little one and make sure their latch is good without having any peak a boo show. Take a look!

Practical Nursing Covers

Boppy Infinity Nursing Scarf

Boppy has long been coming to the rescue of nursing moms, and this full coverage nursing cover is just one more amazing item they have added to their list. It can be worn just like a scarf, and then when you are ready to feed you unwrap it. There are snaps that allow you to create a halter strap, which will keep the nursing cover in place. I love the sheer panel near the top of the cover because it makes it easy to keep an eye on your little one. It is also lightweight, ultra soft, and machine washable. Here is current pricing.

best nursing covers

Motherhood Maternity Pull Over Tulip Hem Nursing Tee

Veering off the path a bit, we bring you one of the coolest nursing inventions. It is a nursing t-shirt! You might be thinking you would never wear something like this, but it is actually so cute. I do not think anyone (besides another mom who has one) would think it’s anything other than a pretty shirt. It can be pulled over whatever you have on to easy nursing or pumping. Get yours here!

Hooter Hiders Cover

This is an easy to throw on apron style cover. It comes in gorgeous patterns, but more than that is designed for convenience. The nursing cover has internal pockets where you can put breast pads or pacifiers. The top of the cover has a bowed shape, so without any adjusting, you can just look down and see your baby. This nursing apron even comes with a little pouch to stick it in so that you can throw it into your diaper bag with ease. Check out current prices. 

Kiddo Care Nursing Infinity Scarf 

This infinity scarf cover boasts 10 different possible options for wear. It can be a scarf, poncho, sunshade, swaddle blanket and more. It is very lightweight, but because of it’s high-quality material it is not see through. The bold striped pattern is so cute! Here is more info! 

Poncho Covers

Skip Hop Grab & Go Hide & Chic Nursing Scarf 

A poncho cover is one of my favorite options because they just make covering up so easy. There is no fuss or worry, you just throw it over and you’re set to nurse. This Skip Hop scarf can be bunched up to make a cute infinity scarf and simply pulled down into a nursing poncho. It has a toggle that you can adjust, making it easy to get the exact right fit. You can also pull one arm out to make an over the shoulder cover. The material is soft and breathable. It also has a mesh peek in section. Take a look!

Bamboobies Nursing Cover Shawl 

This Bamboobies cover looks so pretty as a shawl that I would wear it even if I wasn’t nursing! It drapes over your shoulders and hangs perfectly. The material is super soft containing bamboo and a touch of spandex. It is also very easy to use as a car seat cover and contains UPF 50+ for sun protection. This is also a really cute maternity accessory, so you can get some use out of it even before breastfeeding. Here is current pricing.

 

Our Favorite Alternative Uses 

1. Car Seat Cover- Car seat covers are an absolute essential, but they often times get left off the essentials list. They are a great way to protect your baby from the elements when you are out and about, whether you are running errands or hanging out with friends. Many nursing covers will fit right over your car seat, but you can also simply drape one over! 

2. Shopping Cart Cover- Shopping carts are full of germs, so you will always want to cover up the seat for your little one. You can easily use your nursing cover to do this. Just be sure to throw it in the wash after and get rid of any germs it may have picked up. 

3. Baby Blanket When You’re In A Pinch- Nursing covers are a soft, breathable material making them a perfect blnakett. You never know when the blanket you have with you might get spit up on or pooped on, but you can easily get creative and find a replacement! 

 

Have some questions about Nursing Covers? Feel free to list them in the comments! Also, check out our Rookie Moms Facebook Group, it’s a great group of moms where you can share your experiences, ask for advice and even help out another mom!

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