Gestational Diabetes

by Admin on November 29, 2017

In general, your pancreas does a great job of balancing blood glucose, or sugar, by producing insulin. However, sometimes when you’re pregnant, your body works in a different way to benefit the growing baby. During pregnancy, the placenta creates an abundance of hormones that cause your body to resist insulin, also called insulin resistance, which makes it hard for the body to use insulin. Without enough insulin, glucose cannot be converted to energy when leaving the blood stream. This causes the pancreas to produce more insulin, sometimes three times the normal amount. If the body can’t keep up with the increased amount of insulin, the result is gestational diabetes.
According to the American Diabetes Association, gestational diabetes occurs when pregnant women who have never had diabetes experience high blood glucose levels during pregnancy.  An analysis in 2014 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated that the prevalence of gestational diabetes is as high as 9.2%. Women who are black, Hispanic, American Indian or Asian have a greater risk of developing gestational diabetes.

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Most often your doctor will put in an order for you to have a glucose screening as general prenatal care. Please don’t worry. It is recommended that pregnant women between 24 and 28 weeks get screened for gestational diabetes. The test is simple. Either the doctor’s office or lab will give you a syrupy glucose drink. The drink contains approximately 50 grams of glucose and it tastes like flavored soda. You can have the choice of different flavors: orange, lime or cola. There are specific instructions that you need to follow which explains how to consume the drink and when to get your blood drawn at the lab. Basically, you will need to drink this within five minutes. Then, one hour later, you will have a blood sample taken to determine your blood sugar level. Your doctor will discuss the results with you. If the test comes back with an abnormal or high level, you will need to take a three-hour Glucose Tolerance Test. Once those results come back, the doctor will let you know if you have gestational diabetes. Gestational diabetes is controlled with a specific diet. A dietician can help you plan your meals, teach you about physical fitness and you will also learn how to check your blood sugar.
If you are pregnant and experience unusual thirst, vaginal or bladder infections, frequent urination, blurred vision, or nausea you should let your doctor know. This can largely be controlled for the most part with diet and exercise and it generally resolves after pregnancy.

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Classical Music for Baby

by Admin on November 29, 2017

Does classical music benefit the development of an unborn baby?
Although there is no official way to know, there has been some research that supports the notion that fetuses move when music is played. It is difficult to assess what the movements really are since the unborn baby cannot directly be observed very well. There is data that focuses on older children and the benefits of classical music, just not for fetuses at this point.  The thought is that music can help toddlers boost their spatial reasoning skills tested 3- and 4-year-olds. Many experts deduce that if music has so many great benefits for toddlers, perhaps babies and even fetuses would have the same benefits.
Some parents vouch that their babies recognize a familiar song that was played when they were in the womb. Researchers do not have conclusive evidence, but some parents believe this and continue to play music for the baby in the womb.
If a pregnant women wants to play music for the unborn child, it is best to use a regular sound system or car radio. Experts do not recommend using headphones on your belly because the music could be too loud or overstimulating for the baby. There have been studies in the 1990s by the American Academy of Pediatrics correlating exposure to loud noise over a long period with premature birth, lower birth weights, and high frequency hearing loss. Please be aware that these studies included pregnant women who worked in high noise areas.Surrogate Mothers
Since the research on this topic is so minimal, medical professionals have mixed opinions on whether music is beneficial or bothersome to fetuses. Pregnant women are advised to play music to relax and unwind, which can be an indirect benefit for the baby. We don’t recommend trying to teach the unborn baby Mozart’s symphonies. If you choose to play some calming music for the unborn baby, keep the sound at a moderate level, similar to what you would hear at a department store. This will keep the baby from getting startled.

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Baby Blues

by Admin on November 16, 2017

Many people wonder what it’s like to go through the whole process of pregnancy and childbirth, but not have a baby to care for afterwards.

How do you know if a surrogate has Postpartum Depression (PPD)?
How should you act around a surrogate after she’s given birth?
How long should you wait to connect with the surrogate after she gave birth to the baby?
Is she an emotional wreck?
How do you address the situation in a sensitive manner?

These are all very normal questions about how to react to surrogacy after the baby is born. The reality is, surrogates do understand how others may perceive the situation to be. There is no reason to walk on eggshells and we will explain why.

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First off, we should not assume that a surrogate will experience PPD because she “gave up the baby”. Symptoms of PPD include loss of appetite, insomnia, irritability or the blues. The fact is, surrogates generally have to participate in health and mental screenings with a psychologist to help with their mental well-being. Women who decide to be surrogates understand the final outcome of the process — to give the baby to the intended parents. So if PPD does occur, it is a side effect directly related to the birth, not necessarily because the surrogate wanted to keep the baby. Approximately 10-20% of women experience PPD which is a hormone imbalance, regardless of whether they are a surrogate or not. The bottom line is that there is no causal relationship between being a surrogate and experiencing PPD.

Surrogates may not feel back to their normal selves after birth, which is normal and has nothing to do with giving the baby to the intended parents. Post-birth, some surrogates may experience nostalgia for the surrogacy process, or simply a void after having completed such a moving opportunity. However, most surrogates are happy to know that they delivered a healthy child to a welcoming home. They are satisfied to see the parents cry tears of joy as they finally hold their baby.

If you know anyone experiencing the blues related to a pregnancy, the best thing to do is be supportive to make sure she gets the proper help she needs to feel better. Counseling or therapy with a medical health professional or social worker can be helpful.

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Money isn’t Everything

by Admin on November 13, 2017

Let’s face it, egg donors are paid well. Through egg donation, women can earn a pretty penny. Many companies generously compensate egg donors an average of $7,000 for the first egg donation and this amount often increases for each subsequent successful donation. The truth is, we would like our egg donors to be just as concerned about helping infertile couples as they are concerned with making money.  We are dedicated to matching donors with care and compassion and we choose our donors carefully.

Understanding Egg Donating

Women interested in donating eggs really need to understand that there will be a baby out there that is part of them. Coming to terms and being psychologically ready for egg donation is a big part of the process. These decisions have to be understood and made before going through it just for the money.  Unfortunately, there are cases of women who donate their eggs and end up regretting their decision.  There is a strict regimen of fertility drugs, birth control pills and medication, blood drawing, an egg retrieval process that can cause cramping and discomfort, and anesthesia side effects to consider.

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If you are seriously considering egg donation to assist infertile couples, our team will support you through the process from beginning to end. We understand this is a big decision and we will compassionately answer all your questions and keep all your information confidential.

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Silenced by Infertility

by Admin on November 9, 2017

No couple ever wants to imagine that they will face infertility. Some will never experience the joys of a positive pregnancy test. These couples may watch their family, friends and acquaintances build their families while they sit silently in agony wondering when they will get to partake in this miracle themselves.
Women struggling with infertility often feel broken. They lose their spirit and frequently question why they cannot have a baby on their own. It’s hard for couples who become consumed with the reality of infertility. They become emotionally invested and hopeful that IVF will work and her eggs will be fertilized, yet even after multiple cycles of IVF it does not happen.  Couples become crushed, angry and heartbroken. They often avoid conversations about starting a family and others have to walk on eggshells to avoid these topics. No one wants to say the wrong thing.  Even everyday events—getting invited to a baby shower, seeing a baby in a stroller—can put them over the edge.

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For couples who do not talk about their infertility, it makes for an even more painful situation. Couples report that it is easier to tell others that they don’t want a family, rather than admit that they have difficulty getting pregnant. There are so many questions that ensue that it becomes a burden to even open up about infertility as people can be insensitive and inconsiderate.
Since infertility is not readily talked about, not much gets done about it. However, there are other solutions for couples who cannot conceive. It is not something to be ashamed about, yet the grief and frustration can disconnect couples from the important people in their life who can provide support. There are online blogs, support groups and therapists who can provide guidance, solutions and encouragement to pursue different options to building a family.

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Daddy Survival Guide

by Admin on November 7, 2017

Congratulations! You’re a daddy! Now it’s time to bring baby home…GULP!
The months and weeks preparing for bringing home baby is finally here. This is the moment you’ve been waiting for. You just couldn’t wait to hold that cute, cuddly baby with the sweetest scent close to your heart. Then you realize, I don’t know how to hold a baby!! Daddy, you won’t drop the baby, don’t worry. Your daddy instincts will kick in. Just make sure that precious little one’s head is resting on your chest and slide your hand up to make sure the neck is supported. Little babies are fussy, they wiggle and they are like a little bobble head doll. So please, always remember to support the baby’s head. Use a cradle hold to gaze into your baby’s eyes and stare lovingly for as long as you like. Or…until the baby starts crying.
Once you conquer your fear of holding your baby, it will probably be replaced by another: changing the little munchkin’s diaper. Now comes the fun. The first step is to decide whether to use cloth or disposable diapers. Whatever your fancy, there are adorable options for both to make the process a little more bearable. You will be changing diapers for a long time and you will become a pro in no time. You’re probably going to wonder how a cute little creature could possibly need so many diaper changes per day. Just wait for the dirty diapers. Those poopy diapers will be the subject of many conversations to come.

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The basics to changing a diaper is simple. First, lay your baby on his back and remove the soiled diaper. Gently, lift your baby’s bottom up to scoot the diaper away from his body. Use baby wipes to clean the area wiping front to back. You can add diaper ointment to your bay’s skin before putting on a new diaper. Place the diaper under the baby and bring the front up to the stomach and secure the tabs by the waist. Dress the baby and now you’re done. Now repeat every couple hours or when the baby soils the diaper and change it promptly. It’s a good idea to put your baby down in a safe place – like on the floor or bassinet – while you clean up the diaper mess and wash your hands.
Now comes the time to bathe the baby for the first time. Generally, to bathe in a bath tub, you need to wait until after the umbilical cord stump dries up and falls so the area is be fully healed. Until then you can sponge bathe the baby in the kitchen sink using a small plastic tub. Bathe the baby in warm water and gentle baby soap every other day to not dry out his skin.
Daddy you got this!! Whether you’re doing this solo or with your partner, you will be a wonderful caretaker to that beautiful baby. Trust us, everyone has fears when it comes to newborns. There are always tutorials available on the internet to answer any question you have.

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Are You Suffering From Sleep Deprivation?

by Admin on October 30, 2017

An average adult needs between seven to nine hours of sleep per night. A pregnant women may need a few more hours of beauty rest or a couple short naps throughout the day. We agree that it is important to get a good night’s sleep during your surrogate pregnancy. During pregnancy, women may encounter issues that can affect sleep. These include heartburn, bladder discomfort, nausea, anxiety, leg cramps, snoring, among other things.

 

Women may experience severe heartburn throughout their pregnancy, while others may not at all. If you find that heartburn causes sleep disturbances, then try to avoid foods that are spicy, acidic or greasy. This means try to avoid pizza and fries late in the day. Yes, we know…cravings!  Even eating heavy meals, especially before bedtime, could be a heartburn culprit. Try eating lighter meals earlier in the evening so that your body has time to digest the food before you go to bed. If all else fails, antacids will be your best friend.

High Angle View Of Pregnant Woman Sleeping On Bed
You may find that sleeping with extra pillows to prop yourself up may help reduce heartburn and help you sleep better at night.  Sleeping slightly propped up makes digestion flow better.  Take it from us, extra pillows are a must for pregnant woman. The more pillows, the better. You can also use them to place between your knees, or on either side of you to make turning over more comfortable.
Another common issue that pregnant women say is a major player in sleep disturbances — your bladder. So you’re finally sleeping comfortably in bed and then you realize you need to go to the bathroom. But didn’t you just go 45 minutes ago? The baby in your belly is sitting right on your bladder making it very difficult to ignore the urge to go to the bathroom, especially in the middle of the night. The worst part then is trying to reposition yourself to get in that comfortable space again so you can fall back asleep. As the pregnancy moves along, you will notice that you will be frequenting the bathroom a lot. Perhaps try to drink less in the early evening to reduce the need to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night.

When you’re trying to fall asleep, anxiety or thinking too much about the pregnancy can make you go stir crazy. The more you want to relax, the more your mind won’t stop! Our advice? Make some ginger tea, which also is helpful with nausea, listen to some relaxing music, take a warm shower, or try some meditation exercises.

By following some of these simple tips, you can start sleeping more soundly at night. A lot of surrogates suffer fatigue during the day. Much of this is associated with not getting a good night’s sleep. Take care of your body by trying to nap during the day to catch up on needed sleep.

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Surrogacy in the LGBTQ Community

by Admin on October 6, 2017

Surrogacy provides LGBTQ couples, often same-sex male couples, with the ability to have a biologically related child when they otherwise would not be able to. This can be an exciting, yet overwhelming process with tons of questions for LGBTQ couples. How does the surrogacy process work? What are the financial costs incurred? Is this affordable for us? What is surrogate matching? Who will be the egg donor? Who will be the surrogate? However, before you get to the nitty gritty, you need to know if there are any legal implications in your state for the LGBTQ community when it comes to surrogacy.

Surrogate Mother

Surprisingly, many states do not address surrogacy, meaning there are no regulations for LGBTQ couples or their gestational carrier. There are some states that have very unfavorable laws for LGBTQ that forbid surrogacy, such as New York, that could lead to extensive monetary fines. It is important to know if your state has favorable surrogacy laws, especially if you are LGBTQ. California is one such state that has laws in favor of surrogacy for all individuals, including the LGBTQ community.
There have been cases where an LGBTQ couple lives in one state, while the gestational carrier lives in a different state, where the baby will be born. It is important that the gestational carrier reside in a state that has favorable surrogate laws and protections to avoid any monetary fines or legal implications.
We believe that all people in the LGBTQ community should have the opportunity to have a family, if they so desire. Our compassionate services help LGBTQ parties navigate the ins and outs of surrogacy in order to have an amazing and successful arrangement.  We work  with all couples, including LGBTQ, during the matching process to help clients seeking an egg donor and/or surrogate. You can rest assured that our experienced team will assist you with every step of the surrogacy process from match to post-delivery. We support and educate our intended parents, along with their gestational carrier, in a sympathetic, caring and professional manner. No question is ever left unanswered.

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Where do you start with understanding all the information out there about egg donation and all that comes along with it? There is so much information available, it can be hard to decipher what is the truth and what is a wee bit bogus.

Myth Vs. Fact

Egg donation

Myth:  Egg donors are older woman.
Fact: In general, egg donors are on the younger side. Our donors are typically between the ages of 20 and 29 of all ethnicities and religious backgrounds.

Myth:  Egg donation will complicate my fertility if I want to have my own child in the future.
Fact: Egg donation is a very safe and common procedure performed daily. There are no significant health complications related to egg donation. In fact, the medications used in egg donation are very similar to the hormones that are naturally released by your body. We have health professionals who assess each situation and inform donors of any potential side effects that may occur.

Myth:  Egg donors are only interested for financial reason.
Fact: It is true that egg donors are generously compensated for their services. However, this also includes important commitments, including time, as well as other screenings that an egg donor needs to adhere to. Our egg donors have a real desire to help women dealing with infertility to be able to create a family. That goes beyond anything money can buy. It is true emotional satisfaction that our donors receive.

Myth:  I won’t have any eggs left if I become an egg donor.
Fact: Scientifically speaking, women are born with one to two million eggs in their ovaries. It is true that they won’t make any more eggs in their lifetime. Through the years, a majority of the eggs will die naturally. A typical egg donation cycle will retrieve 10 to 20 eggs. Women remain just as fertile after they donate their eggs.

We hope that some of the common misconceptions were cleared up. We are here to give hope to those struggling with infertility by making the process a little easier for you.

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My Two Dads

by Admin on September 5, 2017

In today’s world the modern family isn’t what it used to be. Whether gay or straight, an increasing rate of males desire to have biological children. No longer does homosexuality equate to childlessness. More and more, same sex (and LGBTQ+) couples are having families with the help of surrogacy and this is becoming the new norm of modern parenthood. In fact, there is a new term associated with this, the “gayby boom”.
Gay parenting comes with many barriers to having biological children. Some of these include discrimination, lack of information, legal implications and considerations, high costs of family planning and societal pressures. And, the journey may be long and requires patience. However, one thing remains true, we see that gay men who intentionally want to build their family are truly dedicated to bringing a baby into a loving and caring home. We want to be part of creating that beautiful family unit every step of the way!
There are so many technological advances in surrogacy which provide choices to those who are committed to the process. Biological parenting for gay men entails having an egg donor and a surrogate to carry the pregnancy to term.
Our team is here to address your questions and concerns in a confidential, empathetic and sensitive manner. We are here to make your dream of having a child a possibility and to become great dads!

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