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'Love Hormone' Helps Dads and Babies Bond

Posted 2 days 18 hours ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Feb. 17, 2017 – The "love hormone" oxytocin may program fathers to bond with their young children, a new study suggests. "Our findings add to the evidence that fathers, and not just mothers, undergo hormonal changes that are likely to facilitate increased empathy and motivation to care for their children," said study lead author James Rilling of Emory University in Atlanta. Oxytocin is a naturally occurring hormone. MRI brain scans revealed that dads who received boosts of the hormone through a nasal spray had increased activity in brain areas associated with reward and empathy when looking at pictures of their toddlers, Rilling's team said. The findings also "suggest that oxytocin, known to play a role in social bonding, might someday be used to normalize deficits in paternal motivation, such as in men suffering from post-partum depression," Rilling said in a university news ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Anxiety, Anxiety and Stress, Postpartum Depression, Dysthymia, Delivery, Psychiatric Disorders, Oxytocin, Premature Labor, Pitocin, Labor Pain, Cesarean Section, Prematurity/Underweight in Infancy, Syntocinon, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

Lingering Baby Weight? Don't Blame the Pregnancy

Posted 2 days 18 hours ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Feb. 17, 2017 – Women have long blamed pregnancy for weight gains that linger after their babies are born, but a new study suggests the demands of motherhood might be to blame. "We found that by one or two years after birth, women who had children were very similar [in weight gain] to those who did not," said lead researcher Olga Yakusheva. She is an associate professor of nursing at the University of Michigan, in Ann Arbor. However, "from that time on, women with children were gaining weight at a faster rate than women without," she added. Yakusheva has a theory, which wasn't tested or proven in the study, about why. "Mothers tend to put the needs of their children first, so they might not be exercising or taking care of themselves," she said in a statement. "It might also be little things like finishing the food on their child's plate or spending more time sitting with their ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Weight Loss, Delivery, Premature Labor, Labor Pain, Cesarean Section, Lactation Augmentation, Prematurity/Underweight in Infancy, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

The Motherlode of 'Mother Love' Chemicals

Posted 7 days ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 13, 2017 – The feel-good brain chemical dopamine appears to play a role in the development of a healthy bond between a mother and baby, a new study suggests. Dopamine may motivate moms to do more for their children because it makes mothers feel better, researchers said. And this may not end when babies get older. "It is very likely that the processes we observed between mothers and their infants continues through the life span as their children grow," said study co-author Lisa Feldman Barrett. She's a psychology professor at Northeastern University in Boston. "It may also be the case that this process supports people as they provide care and nurture to one another in close relationships," she added. Previously, research has linked mother-baby bonding to the hormone oxytocin. In this study, the researchers wanted to learn more about what goes on in the brain that helps ... Read more

Related support groups: Delivery, Psychiatric Disorders, Premature Labor, Labor Induction, Labor Pain, Cesarean Section, Prematurity/Underweight in Infancy, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

Obstetric Complications Tied to Slightly Upped Risk for Autism

Posted 17 days ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Feb. 3, 2017 – Complications that occur late in pregnancy or during delivery may slightly raise a child's risk for autism, a new study suggests. Researchers found that infants who were exposed to maternal high blood pressure during pregnancy – a condition called pre-eclampsia – were at higher odds for developing an autism disorder. So were children who experienced oxygen deprivation at birth (asphyxia), or those who faced other problems around the time of delivery. However, the study wasn't able to prove cause-and-effect, and one autism expert stressed that the findings shouldn't unduly worry most women. In absolute terms, "the risk of an autism spectrum disorder was still exceedingly low among women who had one or more pregnancy complications," said Dr. Andrew Adesman. He's chief of developmental and behavioral pediatrics at Cohen Children's Medical Center in New Hyde Park, ... Read more

Related support groups: Autism, Delivery, Asperger Syndrome, Premature Labor, Labor Pain, Cesarean Section, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

Certain Bacteria May Affect Preterm Birth Risk

Posted 17 days ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Feb. 3, 2017 – Certain types of bacteria in a pregnant woman's cervix and vagina can affect her risk of preterm birth, a new study finds. The discovery could lead to new ways to prevent preterm birth (before 37 weeks of pregnancy) either by getting rid of bad bacteria or boosting protective bacteria, according to the researchers. For the study, the investigators analyzed vaginal swabs from 2,000 expectant mothers at three different points in pregnancy. The researchers found that specific types of bacteria – such as certain bifidobacterium and lactobacillus species – lowered the risk of preterm birth. They also found that other types of bacteria – specifically several anaerobic bacteria – greatly increased the risk. If further research confirms the findings, it could lead to new treatments to reduce the risk of preterm birth, the study authors suggested. "For the first time ... Read more

Related support groups: Delivery, Premature Labor, Diagnosis and Investigation, Labor Pain, Apnea of Prematurity, Prematurity/Underweight in Infancy, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

Can Pregnancy Harm Your Heart?

Posted 17 days ago by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 2, 2017 – Pregnancy might affect a woman's risk of future heart problems, two new studies suggest. A woman's risk of atrial fibrillation – an abnormal heart rhythm – rises with each pregnancy, up to a nearly 50 percent increased risk with six or more pregnancies, according to the results from one study. "There's something about pregnancy itself that predisposes women toward this risk," said lead author Dr. Jorge Wong. He's a cardiologist with the Population Health Research Institute at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario. Meanwhile, a second study reports that women who experience a preterm delivery have a 40 percent higher increased risk of heart attack or stroke later in life. Neither of these studies proves a direct cause-and-effect relationship between pregnancy and heart problems, both teams of researchers noted. For the heart rhythm report, researchers ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Contraception, Emergency Contraception, Heart Disease, Postcoital Contraception, Angina, Delivery, Premature Labor, Vitamin/Mineral Supplementation during Pregnancy/Lactation, Labor Induction, Labor Pain, Ischemic Heart Disease, Cesarean Section, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

Do Weekend Deliveries Pose Risks for Moms?

Posted 18 days ago by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 1, 2017 – New research suggests that for pregnant women, a weekend delivery could mean a slightly increased risk of complications, including maternal death. While the rate of deaths was higher on weekends, the researchers stressed that any one woman's risk is quite small. Women don't need to think: "Oh gosh, I'm going into labor on Saturday, I'm going to die," said lead researcher Dr. Steven Clark. He's a professor of obstetrics and gynecology and maternal-fetal medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. "The actual differences in the risk of death are extremely small, and the majority of women are going to be fine no matter when they deliver," Clark said. For the study, researchers reviewed outcomes from more than 45 million pregnancies in the United States between 2004 and 2014. They found a slightly increased risk of death among mothers who delivered over the ... Read more

Related support groups: Delivery, Premature Labor, Labor Induction, Postpartum Bleeding, Labor Pain, Cervical Ripening, Cesarean Section, Prematurity/Underweight in Infancy, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

Toxins in Your Fast-Food Packaging?

Posted 19 days ago by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 1, 2017 – Many grease-resistant fast-food wrappers and boxes contain potentially harmful chemicals that can leach into food, a new study contends. Testing on more than 400 samples from restaurants nationwide revealed that nearly half of fast-food wrappers and one out of five paperboard food boxes contained detectable levels of fluorine, said lead researcher Laurel Schaider. She's an environmental chemist at the Silent Spring Institute in Newton, Mass. Previous studies have linked some fluorinated chemicals such as perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) to kidney and testicular cancer, low birth weight, thyroid disease, decreased sperm quality, pregnancy-induced high blood pressure, and immune system problems in children, the study authors said in background notes. Major U.S. manufacturers voluntarily phased out PFOA and PFOS for most uses ... Read more

Related support groups: High Blood Pressure, Hypertension, Thyroid Disease, Renal Cell Carcinoma, Immunosuppression, Poisoning, Premature Labor, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Labor Pain, Testicular Cancer, Hypertensive Heart Disease, Prematurity/Underweight in Infancy

Teach Your Kids to Use Media in Healthy Ways

Posted 30 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Jan. 30, 2017 – Some pediatric health experts may have loosened the reins a bit on "screen time" for the youngest of children, but that doesn't mean parents should rely on electronic devices as babysitters, one pediatrician says. "Most of us use media every day. It's how we interact with the world and it's how we learn new ideas," said Dr. Sara Lee, who's with University Hospitals Rainbow Babies and Children's Hospital in Cleveland. "Children will need to know how to use these forms in healthy, effective ways," Lee said in a hospital news release. New guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) "give parents a lot more guidance on how to use media with their kids at home," she added. In the new screen-time guidelines for children, the AAP admitted there are notable benefits associated with educational shows or apps, and connecting with friends and loved ones ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Anxiety and Stress, Social Anxiety Disorder, Delivery, Labor Induction, Labor Pain, Cesarean Section

Should Pregnant Women Always Be Treated for Underactive Thyroid?

Posted 26 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 25, 2017 – Many women may be affected by an underactive thyroid gland, but new research suggests that treating it in pregnancy comes with benefits and potential harm. "Our findings lead us to believe that overtreatment could be possible," study co-author and Mayo Clinic endocrinologist Juan Brito Campana said in a Mayo news release. Campana and his colleagues advise a more nuanced approach when deciding whether or not to treat a pregnant woman for a mildly underactive thyroid. The thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland in the neck that produces hormones vital to metabolism, growth and maturation. But the gland can produce too much hormone (hyperthyroidism) or two little (hypothyroidism), according to the U.S. National Institutes of Health. A mildly underactive thyroid gland – "subclinical hypothyroidism" – causes a slight rise in levels of thyroid stimulating hormone ... Read more

Related support groups: Levothyroxine, Synthroid, Hypothyroidism, Underactive Thyroid, Levoxyl, Delivery, Levothroid, Eltroxin, Premature Labor, Vitamin/Mineral Supplementation during Pregnancy/Lactation, Labor Induction, Tirosint, Toxemia of pregnancy, Euthyrox, Oroxine, Labor Pain, Gestational Diabetes, Levothyrox, Apnea of Prematurity, Unithroid

Deportation Fears Tied to Poor Birth Outcomes for Hispanics

Posted 25 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 25, 2017 – The threat of deportation from the United States may put pregnant Hispanic women and their babies at risk, researchers suggest. In their study, the researchers from the University of Michigan discovered that the chances of both preterm birth and having low birth weight babies went up for pregnant women affected by a large-scale federal immigration raid in Iowa in 2008. The finding comes as many Hispanics' deportation and discrimination fears mount in the United States. On Wednesday, President Donald Trump issued an executive order that calls for construction of the long-discussed border wall between America and Mexico. The Postville, Iowa, immigration raid was one of the largest single-site raids in U.S. history. Officials arrested 389 workers at a meat-processing plant. Ninety-eight percent of those arrested, handcuffed and held in detention centers were ... Read more

Related support groups: Delivery, Premature Labor, Labor Induction, Labor Pain, Apnea of Prematurity, Cesarean Section, Prematurity/Underweight in Infancy, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

Pediatricians Say No to Wearable Smartphone Baby Monitors

Posted 24 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Jan. 24, 2017 – Parents should think twice before buying "smart" clothing with vital signs monitors to keep tabs on their baby's health, pediatricians recommend. A new class of home baby monitor has come to the market. Electronic sensors attached to socks, onesies, buttons and such continually check "vitals" like breathing, pulse rate and oxygen levels. They notify parents of any abnormalities via smartphone. But repeated false alarms from the monitors jangle parents' nerves and lead to unnecessary tests performed on babies, said Dr. Christopher Bonafide. Bonafide is a doctor with the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. He's also lead author of an editorial in the Jan. 24 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). These baby vital signs monitors have not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and there's no evidence the devices prevent ... Read more

Related support groups: Oxygen, Delivery, Premature Labor, Diagnosis and Investigation, Labor Pain, Apnea of Prematurity, Cesarean Section, Prematurity/Underweight in Infancy, Body Imaging, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

U.S. Health Care Costs From Birth Defects Total Almost $23 Billion a Year

Posted 20 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Jan. 19, 2017 – About three of every 100 U.S. newborns have a serious birth defect, and health care costs tied to these difficulties total almost $23 billion annually, new research shows. The findings might help "motivate change" in reducing costs associated with birth defects "through prevention, early detection and care throughout the life span," said researchers from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. According to the advocacy group March of Dimes, birth defects are health conditions in newborns that "change the shape or function of one or more parts of the body." Common and serious birth defects include heart defects, cleft lip/palate and spina bifida (a major spinal cord defect), the group said. Each year in the United States, more than 120,000 babies are born with a birth defect, the March of Dimes said. The costs to the baby's health – and the ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Contraception, Emergency Contraception, Postcoital Contraception, Delivery, Labor Induction, Hydrocephalus, Labor Pain, Brain Anomalies incl Congenital, Cesarean Section, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome a Global Problem: Report

Posted 17 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Jan. 17, 2017 – About 119,000 children worldwide are born each year with fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS), a new report finds. The syndrome refers to a group of conditions that include poor growth for the baby both in the womb and after birth, and mental, physical and developmental problems for the child that can last through adulthood, according to the U.S. National Institutes of Health. Globally, an average of nearly 10 percent of women drink alcohol during pregnancy. But, the rate is as high as 45 percent in some countries, said researchers at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) in Toronto. The five countries with the highest alcohol use in pregnancy were Russia, United Kingdom, Denmark, Belarus and Ireland. As a region, Europe had a 2.6 higher prevalence of the syndrome than the global average. The lowest levels of drinking during pregnancy and fetal alcohol ... Read more

Related support groups: Alcohol Dependence, Alcohol Withdrawal, Alcoholism, Delivery, Hangover, Premature Labor, Hydrocephalus, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Labor Pain, Brain Anomalies incl Congenital, Cesarean Section, Acute Alcohol Intoxication, Prematurity/Underweight in Infancy, Fetal Maturation

Home Visits Can Help New Parents

Posted 27 Dec 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Dec. 26, 2016 – A home visit program for new parents helped reduce their use of medical services for their infants, a new study finds. The research included 244 first-time parents living in New Mexico. The parents were randomly assigned to either a control group that received no additional help, or were enrolled in a program in which health care workers and parent educators made home visits during the infant's first year. Compared to those in the control group, parents in the home visit group were a third less likely to take their infants to the emergency room. Parents who received home visits were also 41 percent less likely to take their infants to a primary care doctor nine or more times during the first year, the study found. Typically, an infant is expected to have seven well-child visits during the first year, according to American Academy of Pediatrics' recommendations. ... Read more

Related support groups: Delivery, Premature Labor, Labor Induction, Postpartum Bleeding, Labor Pain, Cervical Ripening, Cesarean Section, Prematurity/Underweight in Infancy, Labor and Delivery including Augmentation

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