Five surprising maternal health facts

by Natalie McBride

Five surprising maternal health facts on pregnancy, birth & postpartum

We’ve been off the page, lately, working hard on some exciting new business features and opportunities. It’s all we can do to contain ourselves about what is upcoming for Baby Boldly! We’re making new connections, forming our network, and developing new ideas that will truly allow us to empower growing families. This is all while attempting to juggle motherhood, full-time work, sleepless nights and anything else life throws at us. Thank you for keeping up with us! Your support means so very much to both of us as we grow into our entrepreneurial journey together.

Today’s post explores the state of maternal health today through five facts about pregnancy, birth and postpartum..

ACOG postpartum care guidelines.

We are thrilled with this recent recommendation by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. It is a big step in the right direction for providing better care for new moms following birth. We know that one of the biggest gaps in care is during the postpartum period. Unfortunately that’s causing a detrimental ripple effect on moms, families and our communities at large. Would you appreciate seeing your doctor after giving birth sooner than the then-standard six week postpartum date?

CDC Pregnancy Mortality Surveillance System

Alarming, right? How can this happen here? There is certainly no single reason. We are neglecting moms, especially after giving birth. Many are suffering from complications ranging from hemorrhage, cardiomyopathy and infection, to postpartum depression and anxiety. How would you describe your feelings about this fact?

CDC Pregnancy Mortality Surveillance System

This fact can change. We can make a difference in new mom’s postpartum experience. We all play a part in making this change. From policy and clinical care to our friends and family becoming true helpers to mom instead of just visitors seeking a “new baby smell” whiff. Dropping off a casserole is helpful, but it’s not enough. Not only does she need more from us, she deserves more. What can you do to help your next momma-friend following her birth?

Postpartum Period (wikipedia)

Yes, it could be longer or shorter, but on average there is a vast difference in time spent laboring the baby to birth and living out the postpartum period. Makes the labor seem like a lot less to endure, huh? {Some of us} may agree that we need an epidural for motherhood more than labor. Amiright? This becomes even more substantial when you consider the next fact…

On average new moms-to-be are investing a lot more time and money into preparing for their birth experience than they are their postpartum experience. We are huge proponents for birth planning and preparation, in fact, we both contributed to this statistic! How about you? Perhaps it’s a lack of understanding what the postpartum experience holds for new moms. Perhaps it’s denial, because if you’ve been through postpartum before, you know it’s messy, like really messy. We can’t get caught up in all the buttons and bows of the nursery and forget {or neglect} to prepare for the unsightly bloody mess that will become us as a fresh new mom. We don’t have to maintain life as it was before baby. Let’s commit to defying the expectations of our culture to “bounce back”. F that. It’s okay to ask for help. It’s okay if it doesn’t click for you right away. It’s okay if you feel like you’ve lost your {old} self. It’s okay if you have a weak pelvic floor or diastasis recti. (I happen to have both). It’s okay to take the time to seek help to recover. That being said, we need better policy in place to support new moms’ opportunity to recover. We need workplace flexibility and onboarding for moms returning to work. We need to nix the phrase “bouncing back.”. We need to truly value moms and honor them for their selfless transformation following birth, by allowing them time to recover and grow into their new-found identity and power as a mom.

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Today’s Bold Momma

Natalie is co-founder of Baby Boldly, wife to James and mom to Abigail (4 years) and Mabel (1 year). Her passion (alongside pizza and chocolate) is with new moms and dads, striving to empower them for improved birth and postpartum experiences and changing the way society relates to new moms’ and dads’ unique needs.