I am now 7 months pregnant, I conceived right away. Thankfully I had no hyperemesis. After one incident of nausea I got acupuncture and felt better immediately. I have to wonder if my anti-inflammatory protocol helped. I also added oral FemDophilus to my regimen and when I started I inserted one as a vaginal suppository. I have been faithfully checking my vaginal pH with the over the counter Vagisil test strips. The lowest it reads it 4.5 and Group B Strep (GBS) cannot grow at a pH below 4.2. Also lactose fermenters prevent growth of GBS. My vaginal pH has not ever gone higher than 4.5, which is great.
Due to placenta placement, I may require a c-section. The Human Food Project posted about a vaginal transplant after a c-section. This can be done by placing a gauze pad in mom’s vagina and removing it and placing it in the baby’s mouth after birth. Or just using fingers to take some vaginal fluid to the baby’s mouth. This would be a great way to prevent the increased risk of allergic disease due to c-section.
Hopefully I can have a vaginal birth. The research shows a ~50% reduction in c-sections when a doula attends a birth. This is probably because during labor a woman is not able to advocate very well due to physiological changes in mental status. In a hospital setting, the emphasis is on liability for the medical staff, not the best outcome for mother and baby. A doula is well educated on evidence based birth medicine and will be able to help advocate for the best outcome for mom and baby. A lot of hospital procedures slow down labor and also create more pain for mom, making interventions such as epidurals and pitocin necessary, both of which can lead to an unnecessary c-section.
I was surprised to learn that delayed cord clamping reduces the risk of necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC). NEC rates are known to be lowered by breastfeeding and probiotics and can be caused by giving formula with too many calories. NEC is a frequently fatal inflammatory condition in premature infants that is associated with lipopolysaccharide crossing the gut and the TLR4 receptor. Obviously breastfeeding and not prematurely clamping the cord are very important to the baby’s health and well-being. My OB group has never done a delayed cord clamping during a c-section, because no one asked for one. I have requested this and it is very important to me. It should be the standard of care because it reduces NEC, intraventricular hemorrhage, and need for transfusions in preemies. An argument I have heard from the OB group is that delayed cord clamping can cause polycythemia. Well, since no one did studies when doctors started immediate (premature) cord clamping, no one knows if it’s really polycythemia or the normal physiological state. The increased iron from delayed cord clamping can reduce developmental delays in infants, a wonderful reason to delay clamping.
My doula offers placenta encapsulation. This is when the placenta is steamed and put into capsules for the postpartum mother to swallow. This helps restore iron stores after childbirth. My last pregnancy I developed anemia after childbirth and was prescribed iron pills which I had to stop after severe GI symptoms. It seems like a good idea to consume the placenta after birth because other mammals do this. Placenta is a rich source of stem cells so I would prefer to consume it fresh. My doula also offers placenta smoothies to make fresh placenta go down easily. I also wonder if it’s a good idea to take placenta capsules frequently because of the iron content, as iron can cause growth of pathological gut flora.