Mother & Baby Programme
From pre conception to early years
We would all like to give our children the best possible life that we can offer.
Simply what you do and, especially what you eat, before, during and after your pregnancy has the most profound effect on the development and subsequently the health of your child.
Preparation is the key word. Preparation physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. The better prepared we are the more confident we are in our ability to give birth, become a mother and create a family.
Preparation starts before conception. Both mother and father contribute to the conception of a child so both equally have responsibility for ensuring optimal health at this time.
Optimum nutrition before birth and in the first years of life can enhance all levels of development. It is particularly critical at this time as it is the most rapid period of development in a human life. The brain develops most rapidly and good nutrition has been shown to prevent behavioural and learning disabilities such as ADHD and autism. Good nutrition will have a positive impact on immunity by ensuring prevention of infectious illnesses, reducing intensity of common childhood diseases and reducing the occurrence of allergies and asthma.
Basically, optimum nutrition, during early childhood, forms the foundation of health, learning and future well being of our children. It is the key to a full and productive life for a child; it influences their family, society and the community.
Early childhood is a period in development where environment actually has an important impact on determining how the child grows and develops. It is guided to a large extent by the child’s sensory experience of the outside world. It is well known that early stress can affect brain function, learning, memory and immunity adversely and permanently. Children who experience extreme stress in their earliest years are at greater risk for developing a variety of physical, cognitive, behavioural, and emotional difficulties later in their life.
Therefore, a mother’s attitude, confidence and security at this time influence her child and family. The quality of her pregnancy will influence and determine her labour and early infancy experience. Through practices such as meditation, Yoga, visualisations, gentle exercise and complementary treatments such as homeopathy, reflexology and massage a woman can nurture herself and her baby and prepare for the birthing experience.
Of course, specific clinical conditions to which you may be susceptible through previous or family medical history will have to be addressed if they occur. But this programme offers a framework within which to concentrate on the holistic health of mother, child and their family.
The 2 year program
Debbie Rayfield has created a 2 year program to support the health of mothers and their babies following the principles of homeopathic medicine and naturopathic nutrition. If illness occurs homeopathic medicine is her first choice of management.
Homeopathy has a great deal to offer the pregnant woman, during both the pregnancy and delivery. One of the fantastic things about homeopathy is that it can be used safely by the pregnant or breastfeeding woman with no fear of it interfering with the baby. In fact, each year more and more midwives train in homeopathy so that they can administer it as part of their general care for the expectant mother.
The programme is holistic and yet underpinned with sound medical judgement and experience.
If you have questions about the use of conventional medicines, vaccinations and the possible alternatives then Debbie can discuss options with you.
Your first visit is ideally 3 months before you and your partner plan to conceive your baby. At this time a general health picture is taken of both mother and father. Strategies will then be planned and discussed to optimise your health.
Your second visit will be at or within the first few weeks of conception. Here we will discuss the importance of the first few months of pregnancy and some of the ways we can manage health issues such as morning sickness, loss of appetite, and constipation if they arise.
The following 2 visits are at the beginning of the second and third trimesters of pregnancy.
The fifth visit is a few weeks before your baby is due to be born. Here we will discuss support during labour and the immediate post delivery care and breast feeding.
Following the birth of your baby your visits will be every 8 weeks for the next 2 years. These visits will be from 20 mins to 30 mins depending on what needs to be discussed. Debbie will offer help and advice around breast feeding and alternatives, weaning, transition to solid foods, the common problems seen in the first stage of life – from nappy rash to broken sleep, fussy eaters, recurring colds, constipation, colic and reflux. She can also discuss with you the emotive issue of vaccinations and alternative options if you are interested.
Interim visits may be necessary if there is illness or change in behaviour or other matters to be discussed such advice about vaccinations and immunity if travelling overseas.