Maria Lactans

Maria Lactans
Maria Lactans (wikimedia commons)

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

An Ecological Breastfeeding Mother's Gratefulness List

1.  Sweet baby smiles after baby is finished nursing
2.  An older baby's glee right before you nurse her
3.  Warm milk that is just the right temperature and has all the best nutrients
4.  The hormones, oxytocin and prolactin, which help make milk, facilitate let down and RELAX the nursing mom and sometimes help put her to sleep :)
5.  No cost food for baby
6.  Middle of the night snuggles with a nursing baby
7.  Months or even years of natural infertility due to breastfeeding
8.  Breastfeeding's help with postpartum weight loss
9.  An easy way to tame a toddler's temper tantrum
10. Taking part in God's plan for mom and baby
11. Time to sit down and rest during a busy day
12. Not needing all sorts of bottles and supplies to go out for the day
13. Decreased risk of breast cancer in the mom
14. Decreased risk of all sorts of health concerns in the baby such as leukemia, diabetes, ear infections, Crohn's disease, obesity, and celiac disease just to name a few
15. Sweeter smelling dirty diapers
16. Reduced risk of orthodontia in baby later on
17. Being able to follow the example of Mary nursing Jesus
18. That special bond that breastfeeding fosters between mom and baby
19. A few extra IQ points in baby
20. Being able to delegate dinner making duties to someone else for a time on Thanksgiving when baby needs to nurse :)

Thursday, November 8, 2012

NFP Resources for Nursing Mothers

At some point, either while still breastfeeding or after weaning, a woman's fertility will return.  At first, she may just have patches of mucus days if she had previously been dry or she may start experiencing patches of more fertile type mucus against the background of continuous, tacky or sticky type mucus.  After prayer and discussion, a couple may decide they should practice natural family planning to postpone pregnancy.

There are several NFP methods, fortunately, from which couples can choose.  The most ecological breastfeeding friendly option is the sympto-thermal method taught through NFP International.  The sympto-thermal method involves the use of the mucus sign, the temperature sign and also checking the cervix if desired.  The most recent scientific study on the sympto-thermal method determined its effectiveness to be 99.6% in postponing pregnancy if used according to the rules.  NFP International includes ecological breastfeeding as part of the total NFP package and they are the discoverers, if you will, of ecological breastfeeding.  Here is a link:

Another less known NFP method that some women have found helpful is the Marquette Method. This form of NFP observes the mucus sign and uses a fertility monitor to track fertility.  Here is a link to their fertility monitor instruction page for breastfeeding mothers:

There are several mucus only methods available.  The advantage of the Creighton Model is that women with continuous peak type mucus can chart successfully.  Peak type mucus is the kind one usually experiences close to ovulation, so you can see why this can potentially make charting difficult.  Here is a link to their site:

Written by Gina M. Peterson, BS IBCLC