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New study finds stress linked to delayed fertility in some women

Posted by Lara Salahi March 25, 2014 08:56 AM

It's a phrase that many women struggle to conceive hate to hear:  "Just relax, don't think about it so much and it'll just happen."  But a new study suggests there may be some truth to that often unsolicited advice.

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The Pros and Cons of Water Births

Posted by Lara Salahi March 20, 2014 09:43 AM

Whenever I share my birth story to friends asking for labor advice, I always say that if I could go back, I would have labored longer in water. 

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Runner's Bump series: Geriatric pregnancy, seriously?

Posted by Lara Salahi March 19, 2014 08:08 AM
NEW Caitlin mug.jpeg

Caitlin Hurley of Bedford, Mass., has two children ages 5 and 8 and is pregnant with her third. She ran until 7 1/2 months into her pregnancy with her first two children and is planning on doing the same with her third, depending on how she feels.She ran the 2013 Boston Marathon in 2:58, and her next finish line will be delivering her baby late July 2014.  Each week she'll document her progress on Ultra Sound Pregnancy.

The Runner's Bump series documents one woman's pregnancy journey and her commitment to maintaining and healthy and responsible level of fitness with clearance from her physician. The views expressed are not meant to offer medical advice. Pregnant women should consult their own physician about appropriate physical activities based on their pregnancy status. 
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Many pregnant teens don't see OB/GYNs, new report finds

Posted by Lara Salahi March 18, 2014 07:35 AM

A new government report released Tuesday suggests that many pregnant teens are seeking prenatal care outside of an obstetrician's office.

An estimated 20 percent of routine prenatal visits by girls ages 15 to 19 happened in places other than ob/gyn offices, such as community health centers, or non-emergency hospital departments, according to the report. 

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Runner's Bump series: Getting Bigger

Posted by Lara Salahi March 12, 2014 08:23 AM
NEW Caitlin mug.jpeg

Caitlin Hurley of Bedford, Mass., has two children ages 5 and 8 and is pregnant with her third. She ran until 7 1/2 months into her pregnancy with her first two children and is planning on doing the same with her third, depending on how she feels.She ran the 2013 Boston Marathon in 2:58, and her next finish line will be delivering her baby late July 2014.  Each week she'll document her progress on Ultra Sound Pregnancy.

The Runner's Bump series documents one woman's pregnancy journey and her commitment to maintaining and healthy and responsible level of fitness with clearance from her physician. The views expressed are not meant to offer medical advice. Pregnant women should consult their own physician about appropriate physical activities based on their pregnancy status. 
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Infant sound machines could be dangerous to babies’ ears

Posted by Lara Salahi March 3, 2014 08:00 AM

Many parents of newborns swear by white noise machines as the only thing that can get their infant to sleep for prolonged periods of time. But a new study now suggests that some ambient sound machines specifically marketed for infants may actually damage their hearing. 

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Father's age may increase risk of psychiatric disorders in child

Posted by Lara Salahi February 26, 2014 04:11 PM

For years, psychiatric disorders that developed in children have been linked to the mother’s genes. But growing evidence now seems to suggest that a number of factors in fathers play a larger role in the development of psychiatric issues in their offspring.

A new study published Wednesday in JAMA Psychiatry found that children who are born to fathers older than age 45 may be at higher risk for disorders like autism, ADHD, psychosis, and bipolar disorder compared to children born to younger fathers. They also tend to do worse in academics, be involved in drugs, and attempt suicide, the study conducted by researchers in Sweden found.

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Mass. bill to ban shackling pregnant inmates in labor clears first major step

Posted by Lara Salahi February 19, 2014 10:50 AM

**Update** On Thursday, Feb. 20, Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick announced an end to shackling pregnant inmates in labor. The comment came less than a week after the bill was presented to the state Legislate, and is part of a program he proposed to reduce recidivism by prison inmates by 50 percent over five years.

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Massachusetts is one step closer to banning the practice of handcuffing pregnant inmates while they're in labor. The legislation, known as the “anti-shackling bill,” would prohibit shackling pregnant women during and immediately after childbirth. After a decade of its existence, the bill was cleared Friday through the Massachusetts Legislature.

It’s a step in the right direction for the state, and it’s about time.

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Is Advil safe to take when pregnant?

Posted by Lara Salahi February 3, 2014 12:01 PM

When I’m asked what the most challenging part of my pregnancy was, I say without hesitation: headaches.

A headache didn’t come on often, but when it did, it was so painful I could barely open my eyes or keep my head up. Any form of light was so piercing that I’d have to pull the shades down and lay in bed for hours with my eyes closed.

While I didn’t experience the same intensity of headaches before pregnancy, I knew that if I had ever gotten one then, an Advil or Motrin would often do the trick. For pregnant women however, the medicine cabinet can quickly become a tricky maze of “take this, not that.” That’s because with pregnancy comes a whole host of restrictions on medications you can take, from certain pain relievers to antidepressants.

Headaches were the most debilitating part of my pregnancy and came on strongest during the first and the start of the second trimester. In general, most pregnant women are told by their physicians that during that period of their pregnancy they can safely take acetaminophen, or Tylenol, to treat any pain conditions, including headaches. Physicians tell women that other common pain medications such as Advil and Motrin, known as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), are off-limits at any point during pregnancy. But should they be?  

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Should we cut back on IVF?

Posted by Lara Salahi January 29, 2014 09:19 AM

In vitro fertilization (IVF) has given about 5 percent of couples who suffer from infertility a shot at parenthood. But are we overusing the technology without clearly understanding its risks? Yes, say a group of European researchers who came to the conclusion by reviewing studies on women who underwent the procedure and the health of children born using the technology.  

IVF was originally approved for use in women with fallopian tube disorders and men who suffered with infertility. Today IVF is used with couples with other types of infertility-related disorders -- including unexplained infertility. In their analysis published Tuesday in the British Medical Journal, the European researchers say we may be overusing IVF to treat an expanded list of conditions without clear evidence that it will be effective. Even if it does work, the procedure is performed without knowing what the risks may be for the women or IVF-born children later on.

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Runner's Bump series: Myth busting

Posted by Lara Salahi January 29, 2014 08:41 AM
NEW Caitlin mug.jpeg

Caitlin Hurley of Bedford, Mass., has two children ages 5 and 8 and is pregnant with her third. She ran until 7 1/2 months into her pregnancy with her first two children and is planning on doing the same with her third, depending on how she feels.She ran the 2013 Boston Marathon in 2:58, and her next finish line will be delivering her baby late July 2014.  Each week she'll document her progress on Ultra Sound Pregnancy.

The Runner's Bump series documents one woman's pregnancy journey and her commitment to maintaining and healthy and responsible level of fitness with clearance from her physician. The views expressed are not meant to offer medical advice. Pregnant women should consult their own physician about appropriate physical activities based on their pregnancy status. 
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Runner's Bump series: Learning to let go

Posted by Lara Salahi January 15, 2014 12:57 PM
Caitlin Hurley1.jpg

Caitlin Hurley of Bedford, Mass., has two children ages 5 and 8 and is pregnant with her third. She ran until 7 1/2 months into her pregnancy with her first two children and is planning on doing the same with her third, depending on how she feels.She ran the 2013 Boston Marathon in 2:58, and her next finish line will be delivering her baby late July 2014.  Each week she'll document her progress on Ultra Sound Pregnancy.

The Runner's Bump series documents one woman's pregnancy journey and her commitment to maintaining and healthy and responsible level of fitness with clearance from her physician. The views expressed are not meant to offer medical advice. Pregnant women should consult their own physician about appropriate physical activities based on their pregnancy status. 
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Runner's Bump series: We're not all marathon runners

Posted by Lara Salahi January 8, 2014 08:42 AM
Caitlin Hurley1.jpg

Caitlin Hurley of Bedford, Mass., has two children ages 5 and 8 and is pregnant with her third. She ran until 7 1/2 months into her pregnancy with her first two children and is planning on doing the same with her third, depending on how she feels.She ran the 2013 Boston Marathon in 2:58, and her next finish line will be delivering her baby late July 2014.  Each week she'll document her progress on Ultra Sound Pregnancy.

The Runner's Bump series documents one woman's pregnancy journey and her commitment to maintaining and healthy and responsible level of fitness with clearance from her physician. The views expressed are not meant to offer medical advice. Pregnant women should consult their own physician about appropriate physical activities based on their pregnancy status. 
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The science-based resolutions you should make this year

Posted by Lara Salahi January 2, 2014 08:21 AM
How inconvenient that the first of the year happened to fall right in the middle of the week, especially since research shows that people are most likely to start new resolutions on a Monday. I guess that means there's still time to make and keep some resolutions. Resolve yourself to these research-based promises a healthy pregnancy this year... starting Monday, of course. 


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Runner's Bump series: New year, new challenges

Posted by Lara Salahi January 1, 2014 08:49 AM
Caitlin Hurley1.jpg

Caitlin Hurley of Bedford, Mass., has two children ages 5 and 8 and is pregnant with her third. She ran until 7 1/2 months into her pregnancy with her first two children and is planning on doing the same with her third, depending on how she feels.She ran the 2013 Boston Marathon in 2:58, and her next finish line will be delivering her baby late July 2014.  Each week she'll document her progress on Ultra Sound Pregnancy.

The Runner's Bump series documents one woman's pregnancy journey and her commitment to maintaining and healthy and responsible level of fitness with clearance from her physician. The views expressed are not meant to offer medical advice. Pregnant women should consult their own physician about appropriate physical activities based on their pregnancy status. 


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Wishing you a happy and healthy new year

Posted by Lara Salahi December 31, 2013 07:11 AM
Sound planning. Sound pregnancy. Sound family to you. Happy and healthy 2014. 

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Runner's Bump series: Parallels of pregnancy and running

Posted by Lara Salahi December 25, 2013 08:59 AM
Caitlin Hurley1.jpgCaitlin Hurley of Bedford, Mass., has two children ages 5 and 8 and is pregnant with her third. She ran until 7 1/2 months into her pregnancy with her first two children and is planning on doing the same with her third, depending on how she feels.She ran the 2013 Boston Marathon in 2:58, and her next finish line will be delivering her baby late July 2014.  Each week she'll document her progress on Ultra Sound Pregnancy.


The Runner's Bump series documents one woman's pregnancy journey and her commitment to maintaining and healthy and responsible level of fitness with clearance from her physician. The views expressed are not meant to offer medical advice. Pregnant women should consult their own physician about appropriate physical activities based on their pregnancy status. 

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In the spirit of giving… give love

Posted by Lara Salahi December 23, 2013 11:40 AM

As I sit here writing this, I’m thinking to myself – should I run out and get my husband that one last thing I think he needs? Or how about that toy that all the moms swear by? Should I let Santa know that my daughter would love it?

I’m not going to budge. 

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Runner's Bump series: Meet Caitlin

Posted by Lara Salahi December 18, 2013 08:50 AM
Caitlin Hurley1.jpgCaitlin Hurley of Bedford, Mass., has two children ages 5 and 8 and is pregnant with her third. She ran until 7 1/2 months into her pregnancy with her first two children and is planning on doing the same with her third, depending on how she feels.She ran the 2013 Boston Marathon in 2:58, and her next finish line will be delivering her baby late July 2014.  Each week she'll document her progress on Ultra Sound Pregnancy.


The Runner's Bump series documents one woman's pregnancy journey and her commitment to maintaining and healthy and responsible level of fitness with clearance from her physician. The views expressed are not meant to offer medical advice. Pregnant women should consult their own physician about appropriate physical activities based on their pregnancy status. 

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FAQ: How will a doula help a woman's birthing experience?

Posted by Lara Salahi December 16, 2013 06:39 AM
Tara Poulin.jpg
Tara Poulin, a mother of five, is a certified Birth Doula, a Birth Doula Trainer and founder of Birthing Gently. Her primary interest lies in working with high-risk mothers and planned cesarean sections at Brigham and Women's hospital in Boston. She is also a childbirth educator and teaches classes at various Isis Parenting locations in Massachusetts. 
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When you’re having three… naturally

Posted by Lara Salahi December 6, 2013 10:24 AM

One Sacramento couple may want to try a hand at the lottery after welcoming identical triplets last month – that’s because the triple bundles were reportedly conceived naturally.

Multiple births are more common when assisted reproductive technologies are used, such as in vitro fertilization. But doctors say the chance of conceiving identical triplets, where a single fertilized egg divides into three separate embryos, without fertility treatments, is nearly one in a million. 

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Healthy travel tips for babymooners

Posted by Lara Salahi November 20, 2013 05:21 AM
One advice among the many that expectant couples get is to travel one last time before baby arrives. Or, at the very least, go to the movies every weekend. The idea behind the instruction is that once baby comes, you’ll likely not have the time, money, or energy to go anywhere or do much. And if you do, it likely won’t be just the both of you, at least for a few good years. 

It’s not all true. We have taken our daughter on two international and one cross country trip already before her first birthday. It was just fine. Still, more couples are babymooning – that is, taking one last vacation while expecting before the baby arrives.  We babymooned, perhaps because we bought into the fear of the unknown, but mostly because we had planned the trip before we even knew we were expecting. We ended up bumping up our trip to Costa Rica a few months because our original trip time would have been my final pregnancy month. 

According to the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology, the best time to travel (or “babymoon”) is during the second trimester. However, most airlines allow pregnant women to fly up to 36 weeks of pregnancy. There’s certainly no clear formula for when or where pregnant women can travel, but if you're looking to babymoon, here are a few travel tips to consider:
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Regaining body control after giving birth

Posted by Lara Salahi November 8, 2013 09:43 AM

Losing control. It’s a common feeling for many mothers the first few weeks after giving birth. It may seem difficult to get a grip on your emotions let alone your schedule with your seemingly nocturnal newborn (what time is it again?).

But what is more often overlooked is the physical toll birth takes within many women's lower bodies, beyond just gaining baby weight. The conditions are known as pelvic floor disorders and occur when the muscles, ligaments, nerves and tissue that keep our pelvic organs like the bladder and uterus – which undergo incredible pressure during birth -- weaken or tear.

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Reproductive services under Obamacare: 5 things you should know

Posted by Lara Salahi October 30, 2013 07:46 AM

President Obama is scheduled to visit Boston Wednesday to talk about the Affordable Care Act and use Massachusetts’ experience – which passed its health reform law in 2006 -- as encouragement for Americans to sign up for health care. Given the fact that Healthcare.gov, the website Americans will need to sign up for health care has been a navigation nightmare for many, he may need the positive energy the Bay State has built up from the anticipated Red Sox win tonight to get a few good cheers.

The slow start and partisan bickering about the health care law that shut down the government seems to have only added more confusion about the health care law. If you’re a woman who is pregnant or planning to become pregnant or in need of reproductive health services such as fertility procedures, what the ACA offers – and doesn’t – should matter to you.

Here are 5 important aspects of the Affordable Care Act women need to know when it comes to their reproductive health:

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Cold & Flu: Your questions answered

Posted by Lara Salahi October 21, 2013 08:40 AM

Should pregnant women get the flu shot? At what age should my child get the flu shot? Does the flu shot even work?

Dr. Ben Kruskal, chief of infectious disease at Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates answered those questions and more that readers asked on the cold and flu. See the transcript below.

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About the author

Lara Salahi is an award-winning multimedia journalist whose specialty is reporting health and medical stories. She has worked in local, network, and cable television, international print, and documentary film. She More »

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