Thursday, September 5, 2013

Evening Primrose Oil to Prepare for Labor

(Disclaimer: I am NOT a doctor or in any way medically trained. Please consult your doctor before you try ANY method of inducing or helping labor!)
When I was pregnant with Lila and hit my due date, my midwife suggested I try Evening Primrose Oil to help my cervix soften and prepare for labor. I had never heard of Evening Primrose Oil, but trusted my midwife, so immediately after my appointment I went right to the store to find some. (I also did a little research of my own. A few informational sites here and here.) Evening Primrose Oil doesn't induce labor, but it does help to soften and ripen the cervix, which will help with dilation.

I followed my midwife's prescribed regimen, which is as follows:
Day 1: 3000 mg (6, 500-mg capsules taken at 6 different times during the day)
Day 2: 2500 mg (5, 500-mg capsules taken at 5 different times during the day)
Day 3: 2000 mg (4, 500-mg capsules taken at 4 different times during the day)
Day 4-baby comes: 1500 mg (3, 500-mg capsules taken at 3 different times during the day)

(Note: I started the capsules on a Friday night and went into labor Sunday night! I think the EPO capsules definitely helped with dilation)

I found my EPO caplets at Smith's (the Kroger store in my area); EPO capsules can also be found at health food stores and perhaps other grocery stores, as well.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Bottled Cubic Zirconia: Another Amazing Use for Lanolin

Ah, Lansinoh Lanolin. When Reed was born and I was blissfully unaware of the pain that can accompany breastfeeding, I had never even heard of lanolin. In the hospital postpartum, when I was cracked and bleeding, I quickly learned of the miraculous power of lanolin when a lactation consultant gave me a tiny trial-sized tube of Lansinoh lanolin--and when I say tiny, I mean tiny. By the time we left the hospital, the lanolin was already gone. So Ryan and I left Reed in the care of my mom--we really needed to get out of the house--and went on a date to Target. When we saw the price of the lanolin, Ryan declared it "Bottled Diamonds"--then edited that to "Bottled Cubic Zirconia" when we realized we were exaggerating a little on the price. At the time, Ryan was still in school and we were living on a very small budget, so I almost passed on the lanolin. But Ryan made me buy the lanolin and I was so grateful I did because many painful breastfeeding days were ahead of me. 

Anyway, you probably know of the benefits of lanolin for breastfeeding mothers. But in the hospital, I learned another use for lanolin: lanolin makes the absolute best lip balm for dry, cracked lips. My four year old has eczema and also has lots of trouble with dry, cracked lips. His poor little lips get very cracked and very sore very quickly. But, after only 1-2 applications of lanolin, his lips are completely back to normal. Nothing else works even close to that well when his lips are bad. We just call the Lansinoh our "special chapstick" and no one bats an eye. He might find the use of lanolin a little odd once he gets to, say, middle school, and pays attention to the tube...but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it.