Baby and toddler care consultations
Many parents and carers will have some difficulty with establishing breastfeeding, or with learning how to settle their new baby, or perhaps with an older baby’s sleeping, eating, teething, toilet training etc. Over the years, I have helped many families to find solutions to these and many other problems. Although most children follow a fairly predictable route of development, individual children – and individual families – do vary enormously. “Average” covers a lot of ground! Accordingly, I tailor my services to suit each family. Rather than dispensing generalized advice, I find that analysing the individual problem, and working as a team with the whole family, is a much more efficient solution.
First I visit the family at home for an initial consultation, to observe, to discuss problems and solutions with parents, and to meet the little one/s. What happens after the initial visit? This depends on the problem. I often find that just that one visit is enough to set things in motion. At my first visit I usually leave parents with some strategies which they can begin to implement themselves: how much, depends on the individual situation. I also provide followup care where required. For instance, if our example is a sleep issue, a combination of day, evening and night followup visits may be involved.
Postnatal Overnight Care
Today’s healthcare system allows new parents very little time in hospital, and limited support while you’re there. In the past, Mothercraft Nurses were an integral part of hospital postnatal nursing care, teaching and supporting new parents. My postnatal overnight care service provides support, care and education for the new mother and baby, in the comfort of your own home. This includes assistance with:
- Breastfeeding and / or bottle feeding, including nasogastric tube feeds
- Rest and recovery from birth (including caesarean section delivery)
- Helping parents and carers to learn babycare skills, such as bathing, dressing and nappy changing
- Gentle settling techniques that give parents a greater understanding of the developmental needs of their little one
- Establishment of a routine to suit both you and your baby
– If you are considering a postnatal booking, it is advisable to contact me reasonably early in your pregnancy, in order to ensure my availability. It is essential that you meet with me prior to the birth of your baby, to discuss all of your questions and needs. I encourage the attendance of your partner at this meeting.
– Please save your time, and mine, by not contacting me if you intend to follow popular self-help books (eg Gina Ford’s and Tizzie Hall’s books). I neither agree with nor approve of their philosophies.
-“Controlled crying”: I do not practice, teach or condone any form of controlled crying (by any name). Simply put, responding to the needs of babies teaches them that their needs will be met. Not responding teaches them to give up crying, as their needs will be ignored. Studies have shown that, although they are no longer calling out, babies’ cortisol levels (stress hormone) are still high. My philosophy is to provide for the needs of the child *first*, but in such a way that the needs of the carer can also be met. This is usually a combination of education (Bub’s developmental stage and needs), respite and assistance with planning the family’s routine around everyone’s needs.
-Cancellation policy: Postnatal overnight bookings of three or more nights per week, for two weeks or longer, require a holding deposit of $1000, which is not refundable in the event of cancellation less than two weeks before the commencement of the booking. Postnatal overnight bookings can be cancelled once they have begun, but a cancellation fee equal to two weeks’ fees is required.
Mummy Mentoring Program
“The original, and the best”… Unlike similarly named programs now being advertised, this is a one-on-one, face-to-face, in-home program that I run for new parents.
Originally offered to new Mums who do not have access to the support of family or friends locally, I provide this service to any new parent who, for one reason or another, needs regular and ongoing support. After meeting for an initial consultation, we meet again either weekly, or every couple of weeks, to build on Mum’s (and Dad’s) brand new parenting skills, to discuss Baby’s development, perhaps to keep an eye on Baby’s feeding / weight gain, or to deal with an ongoing issue such as sibling rivalry, or postnatal depression. I am also available by phone and email to touch base with these families between visits. The initial visit is a regular four hour consultation. Follow-up visits are also usually four hours, for either four or eight weeks. I also offer a monthly follow-up option for those Mums who have already done either four or eight weeks.
A while back I added casual spaces to my mentoring group. Many mums who don’t need the full program do still need support, with one or two visits and contact in between. One of the things I love about what I do is being able to tailor my services to suit my client family’s need.
Hospital antenatal classes are an invaluable source of information about the birthing process. My antenatal consultations are all about what comes after that momentous event: parenthood, and a baby to care for! An antenatal consultation provides you with one on one time (or one on two, if your partner would like to be involved) to learn about the things that are important to you in preparation for the arrival of your baby. This can include parentcraft skills training (nappy changing, dressing, bathing, etc), help with organising what you need to buy, and information about breast and bottle feeding.
This is an up to four hour block with grandparent/s to be (and your expectant parent/s to be if desired). While we have a laugh about how things have changed since our kids were born, we have hands-on practice (with my Dolly) with whatever skills you wish to refresh: basics such as holding, lifting, various wrapping methods, nappy and clothing changes, settling positions, etc. It’s a good chance to discuss SIDS and safe sleeping, immunization, and any other issues you might have in mind.
Gift certificates are available for all consultations, postnatal overnight care and mummy mentoring packages.