Five Not-So-Common Terms Expecting Parents Should Know
Pregnancy is such an exciting time, but it can be a little overwhelming. Most first-time parents must learn all about the details of pregnancy, childbirth and caring for a newborn in a very short period of time. Even the terminology can be confusing. There are so many words that most people have never even heard of!
From scientific medical terminology to myths and slang, here are five of the top not-so-common terms de-mystified:
The fontanels, which are sometimes referred to as the soft spots, are located on top of the baby’s head. They are two areas between the bones of the skull that are not quite formed completely. The fontanels help the baby’s head to emerge more easily during vaginal childbirth.
The fontanel near the front of the baby’s head, called the anterior fontanel, is larger and it should close when the baby is around 18 months old. The one in the back is called the posterior fontanel and typically closes between 2 to 3 months old.
2. Witch’s Milk
Witch’s milk is a colloquial phrase for what doctors call neonatal galactorrhea. It refers to a rare, but not harmful, condition that causes a newborn to excrete a white, milky substance from his or her nipples. It is caused by the elevated hormone levels in the placenta before birth. About 5% of newborn babies have this condition. It should go away on its own, but if you have concerns then you should consult your baby’s pediatrician.
Prolactin is a hormone that helps to enlarge breasts in pregnant women and also helps to make breast milk. Pregnant women produce 10 to 20 times the amount of prolactin than they did before they were pregnant. This hormone also causes increased hair growth in areas like the face and belly, but once your baby comes and your hormones settle down, so does the excess hair.
A doula, sometimes called a birth coach, is a trained support person who provides physical, emotional and educational support to a mother during pregnancy and shortly after childbirth. Doulas are not healthcare professionals and cannot give medical treatment or advice, but they can be very helpful and comforting.
5. Stork Bite
A stork bite is a very old-fashioned term for a certain type of birthmark that 1/3 of all newborns have. It is pink, flat and generally appears on the baby’s face or back of the neck. This type of birthmark usually goes away by the time the baby is 18 months old. It is not dangerous or a cause for alarm, but if you are worried about it then you should speak with your baby’s pediatrician.
Though there are many, many terms and conditions that you might be worried about, remember that you are not alone. Make sure to consult with a healthcare professional if you are worried about your little one. There is nothing wrong with asking questions.
Ease your worries a little more by using a doctor-recommended Baby Blendy anti-colic portable baby blender and bottle system. Avoiding uncomfortable gas bubbles in your baby’s bottles will help your baby be more comfortable and happier.
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