Saturday, July 31, 2010

Natural treatment of *Ahem* Femine Issues

If you're sensative to "TMI" topics you may want to stop- right now! I am going to be covering how I've successfully home treated a few womanly issues, starting with what's going on with me right now:

Yeast Infection/Bacterial Vaginosis:

I'm putting these together because I'm not sure which one I'm battling. *sigh* It started a few days ago with itching then progressed to painful urination, burning, strange discharge (not cottage cheese, which is why I'm wondering if it could be BV). Luckily they have very similiar home treatments. Here's what I'm doing:

Garlic suppositories: exactly as it sounds. You unpeel a clove of garlic, use your fingernail to puncture the skin a time or two and insert into the vagina. Lovely. Usually overnight until the symptoms are gone (+ one more night for good measure) is all that you need but I did it all last night and half of today. I think this is what has worked the best, so far. You can also make a garlic tampon by wrapping the garlic in cheesecloth and tieing with unwaxed dental floss.

Raw apple cider vinegar: at first I squirted full strength ACV with a syringe down there, just on the outside. Holy moly! It burned like none other! My Bradley Method pain relieving "relax as though your life depends on it" tool came in very handy. After about 4 minutes the stinging stopped and all of a sudden my "down theres" felt sooo much better! Later on I diluted the ACV with 3 parts water and dabbed on with TP. No stingy but all of the relief! I just had the idea to use my Peri-bottle I received after birth to gently squirt. I do this everytime I remember. Maybe 3 times a day.

Internal Probiotics: It's definetly better if you can take a broad spectrum probiotic but all I have is acidolphilus. It'll do. Two tablets, AM and PM. You could also drink Kombucha or Kefir for the same effect.

Immune boosting herbs: I'm taking echinacea, goldenseal and organo oil. You could also cut up a clove of garlic and swallow that. What can't garlic do? I also read that olive leaf and black walnut tinctures work great!

**These alone would probably be enough to heal what I got goin' on. But I'm an over achiever so I'm also applying the Oregano oil* on my 'down theres' for good measure. This also stings like crazy!! But, oh, my goodness, after the stinging subsides the result is a cooling sensation that virtually takes away all memory of the former itchiness. I did 4 drops of oil (70% concentration) to about 1/8 cup of water.

By the way, between the oregano oil and garlic, my bathroom smells like an Italian cafe everytime I pee! Hahahah! I just had to tell someone that! :-)

Other stuff that supposed to work wonders:

*Applying plain yogurt to a tampon and inserting overnight
*Applying a couple drops tea tree oil to a tampon and inserting overnight
*Applying diluted AVC to tampon and weaing overnight
*Applying diluted TTO to a soft towel or cotton ball and dabbing on the 'area'
*Watch what you eat! Avoid processed foods and especially sugar

I will try to remember to update my blog with the results of my home remedies! I started my routine yesterday and I do feel quite a bit better. I will keep at it until all of my symptoms have been gone for 24 hours.

*Oregano oil is a GREAT immune system booster! I've heard of people taking it in the early stages of food poisening or the stomach flu and it healing them in less than an hour!

Baltic Amber Necklace... Update!

Jericho's been wearing his baltic amber teething necklace for (I think) 2 weeks now. I wish I could say that miracles happened the second we clasped the beads on, but- nope.

I will say, though, that the night I wrote the first teething blogpost, he woke up at 2am with a crazy high fever. 102.8. He never fully went back to sleep. Just for fun I decided to take him to Dr. Shlafer... Just in case. Dr. Shlafer figured it wasn't the eruption of the molars that was causing his fevers but a benign childhood illness called Roseola (you can google it for more info). Sure enough, 4 days later he broke out in the telltale Roseola rash... And as of yesterday he has come down with a cold. *Sigh* We don't get breaks in the Songstad household.

His molars are now JUUUUST below the surface. Jericho is fussy day and night. Car rides are torture. This is hard core teething. Not for the faint hearted. I wish I could be one of those moms who say that "BAM! Stuck the necklace on and my child slept 12 hours straight and was an angel all day!"

I will still recommend the necklace to people because those "BAM!" moms are out there! Loads of them. Besides, who knows if it would be EVEN worse if we took the necklace off?

Monday, July 19, 2010

I'm now a Postpartum Doula!

WHOOOO HOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

*Ahem* Ok, just had to get that out.

Here's the thing: In order to become DONA and NAPS certified, I need to help 3 families for 8 hours + in their immediate postpartum time (first 3 weeks). Two out of the three families need to be breastfeeding so that I can get experience helping with latch/supply, etc.

If you are pregnant and would like some extra help after your baby is born, I am available for FREE to three families (at least two must be breastfed, please) for 8 hours. After the initial 8 hours, I will charge only $10 an hour until I get certified (or plenty of experience, which ever comes first. I will be sure to let you know before the rate increases). The going rate for postpartum doulas in our area is $25 to $35 an hour. I am available for 4 hours at a time shifts during the daytime.

What exactly would I be doing as a Postpartum Doula?

A doula has been described as a "mother to the mother". My main goal is to encourage and support the new mom (dad, too!). The time after birth is an emotionally charged, often difficult time and sometimes a listening ear can make all of the difference! I have been trained and have a lot of experience in infant care* and can provide information and help in that aspect also. I can also do light housework including bed making, animal care, FOOD PREP (!), tidying, etc. If you weren't able to clean your bathtub while 9 months pregnant, I will do that for you, too! :-) Every new mom needs to have (clean) bath relaxation time. Oh! I have been trained and have experience with the postpartum body and how to care for mama!

If you're pregnant and interested and live in the Snohomish county area, please let me know. We will then arrange for a prenatal meeting to cover the specifics. You can either email me at or on Facebook and I will give you my phone number.

* Infant care includes bathing, diapering, breastfeeding, formula feeding, babywearing, dressing, soothing, etc, etc with a flair for natural/attachment type parenting :-)

Teething and tantrums and fever, OH MY!

Jericho's premolars have been threatening to emerge for the last month. It started with Niagra Falls being unleashed down his chin but nothing too serious. We're now in deep (or should I say JUST below the surface, haha!) and my baby is miserable. Jericho's fever set in yesterday, runny nose last night and he's been attached to the boob all morning.

Let me add that when my baby gets teeth, NOTHING seems to work for relief. When his front top ones emerged, not even Motrin touched the pain. At night, he woke up every hour for 4 weeks and 3 days. The very day the 3rd (out of 4) top tooth came in he slept a blissful 8 straight hours. Once the very last tooth came in he slept 11 hours straight. I clearly have a 'bad teether' on my hands. Oh, and by the way, the Motrin I gave my child was later recalled. Ick. I've determined that Motrin and Tylenol will NOT be used to treat teething (or fevers but that's a different post).

I posted the picture of Jericho frantically attempting to unlock the door because you can see the magnet teething necklace that a mom at church made for us. It hasn't made much difference for us but it has worked wonders for other babies.

OK, so, my reason for posting: today my Baltic Amber teething necklace arrives. My intentions are to have a running dialouge while I try the amber to see if it works. I'm praying it does! The mailman couldn't get here soon enough! In my research I have NOT found ONE bad review of using Baltic Amber as a natural analgesic (I hope I'm spelling that right).

Here is a link where you can read the benefits and logic of the necklaces:

Here is the necklace we ended up purchasing:

I will post later about whether or not the necklace helps!!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Babywise. Part 2.

This was important enough to include in our Postpartum Doula training. I am posting it here because I get asked about Babywise a lot... Controversial? Definetly. Sorry. But it's science/fact backed and I'm throwing it out there.