Malta Baby & Kids Directory: Pregnancy & Birth

Welcome to our Malta Baby & Kids Pregnancy & Birth directory filled with Malta’s Antenatal, Breastfeeding, Doula Services, Exercise Pre & Post Natal, Family Planning, Hospitals – private & public, Massage & Complementary treatments, Nuchal Transluscency Scans, Parenting Skills Courses, Stem Cells & Yoga.

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    Pregnancy & Birth    

 

Pregnant? Nothing fits anymore?

 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

 

 

Postnatal fitness and wellbeing

What you need to know 

 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

 

You are pregnant - Congratulations! 

 

 

To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

Does your baby need a sleep coach? 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

What I need to buy or borrow checklist 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

On your way to becoming a parent? 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

Maternity bag essentials 

 

 To read this, and many other interesting articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here!

 

 

 

Low back pain during pregnancy. Can osteopathy help?

What is Osteopathy?

Osteopathy is a manual medicine which is widely practiced throughout the world. In the UK, an estimated 30,000 people consult an osteopath every working day. Most of the ailments presented to the osteopath are of a musculoskeletal nature, which include chronic back pain, neck pain, tension headaches and general stiffness.

 

Do expectant mothers suffer from back pain?

 It has been shown that about 76% of expectant mothers report episodes of back pain throughout their pregnancy, and that many seek the opinion of an osteopath. Treatment and followups by an osteopath have been clinically shown to improve outcomes with back pain during pregnancy, particularly in the case of those suffering from sacroiliac joint dysfunction and pubic symphysis dysfunction.

 

What is sacroiliac joint dysfunction and how is it treated? Pregnancy brings about hormonal changes in the body to enable it to carry the child and for delivery. Relaxin is a hormone specifically produced to soften ligaments, allowing the pelvis to become more mobile (lax) to accommodate the growing baby. This increased ligamentous laxity can bring about undue strain on joints and ligaments, particularly the sacroiliac joint (you can feel this over the ‘dimple’ on your lower back). Manual manipulative treatment (such as that performed by an osteopath) can address imbalances in the pelvis, improve weight distribution and allow the joints to function properly.

 

Where can I find a qualified osteopath in Malta?

 Osteopaths are required by law to have a warrant to practice in Malta. The Council for Professions Complementary to Medicine (CPCM) regulates the profession. A minimum B.Sc. (Hons.) qualification in Osteopathy is required in order to be able to practice. Osteopathy Malta Clinic in Ta’ Xbiex houses highly experienced, UK qualified osteopaths. For more information, please visit www.osteopathymalta.com or email info@osteopathymalta.com

 

 
 

 

  

 

 Maternity bag essentials

 

 

The following list includes all the essentials that you and your baby will need during your stay in hospital

 

 

Labour bag

• Your medical record chart

• Birth Plan

• Two cotton nightdresses or pyjamas

• A light dressing gown, socks and slippers

• Headphones

• Bottled water, drinks and snacks for you and your partner

• Relaxation materials - books, cards, games…

• Camera, spare batteries and an extra memory card

• Hairbrush

• Facial mist spray, facial wipes, face cloth and hand towel

• Massage oil/lotion

• Cooling water spray

• TENS machine if you choose to use one for pain relief

• Shower gel/shampoo

• Toothbrush and toothpaste

• Maternity pads

 

 

 For baby

• Cotton wool

• Newborn nappies x 3

• Babygros

• Vest

• Hat

• Cardigan

 

 

Hospital bag for mum

• Two nursing bras

• Nightshirt or t-shirt - front opening for breastfeeding

• Disposable underwear

• Breast pads

• Three packs of maternity sanitary towels

• Toiletries including toothbrush and toothpaste, shower gel, shampoo, facecloth

• Nipple Balm and healing Compresses

• Make-up bag

• Hairbrush and travel hairdryer

• Money for buying snacks, magazines etc

• Clothes for in hospital and for going home, loose comfy maternity wear and comfy shoes

• Mobile phone, charger and numbers needed

• Intimate wipes

 

 

For baby

• Car seat

• Three baby gros

• Three vests

• Baby blanket

• 24 disposable newborn nappies

• Nappy cream

• One roll of cotton wool

• One pair of socks or booties

• Hat

• Jacket or snowsuit (depending on time of year)

• Muslin squares

• Scratch mitts

• A going home outfit: hat, all-in-one suit and blanket

 

 

Going home

• Your partner or somebody else can bring a car seat for the baby to travel home in. (In most countries the hospital will not let your baby go home without this).

 

 
 

 

  

Mission Statement

 

 

To protect the right of the child

To foster an optimal start in life

And to encourage the mother’s right to achieve it

 

 

A lot is being said and done about this very emotive subject. Some argue that breast is best, while others argue that it doesn’t matter, as long as they have given birth to healthy babies. The choice is theirs, and it should be respected.

 

 For those who are still unsure about the advantages of breastfeeding, the following information highlights some of its benefits – both for the baby and the mother – based on recent research.

 

Apart from being the perfect food for the baby because it is so easily digested, breastmilk contains antibodies which protect babies from various allergies and infections such as gastroenteritis, as well as chest, urinary and ear infections. It also reduces the risk of diabetes and some childhood cancers, decreases the likelihood of obesity, high blood pressure and cardiac disease in later life, improves cognitive development, and works on mouth/jaw development.

 

The uterus contracts during breastfeeding, thus helping the mother’s shape return to normal at a faster pace. Breastfeeding also reduces the chance of ovarian or breast cancer and helps bone density in the mother.

 

Breastfeeding saves money, since breastmilk is free. Furthermore, it saves time and is proven to be more convenient for busy mums, as it involves no heating or sterilising.

 

Apart from having the right to decide whether to breastfeed her infant or not, a mother also has the right to be given the correct information.

 

If you would like more information or require support to make an informed choice about your feeding method, the Association of Breastfeeding Counsellors (as a branch of Cana Movement) can help. Call our association on 9983 7170, send us an email on charmainegalea@ gmail.com or find us on Facebook.

 

 

 

 
 

 

  

The Purest Ingredients for a New Beginning

 

thanks to Weleda Mum & Baby Range

 

 

Since it was established, Weleda has pursued objectives which sprang from its founding principles. Its products are intended to support people in their personal development, in maintaining, promoting and restoring their health, and in their efforts to achieve physical well-being and a balanced lifestyle.

 

Skin as delicate as your baby’s, needs very little intervention to become the priceless natural shield needed for life. Treat dry, chafed or irritated skin, cleanse little bottoms, or enjoy a soothing massage together with the simplest of all formulations. Light organic sesame oil and extract of organic calendula are all we need to offer you this treasure. Softening, warming, calming and relaxing – for tender moments with your little one from the first day

 

To create a perfectly gentle wash that works for babies, we put in a lot of thought. Formulated with beneficial ingredients like extract of organic calendula, the wash helps to gently lift dirt, leaving skin soft, hair easy to comb and baby’s own scent intact. Sweet almond oil prevents dryness, and the soft lather doesn’t sting baby’s eyes. No tears, no tugs, no roughness – just a clean, sweet-smelling, wriggly baby.

 

Organic calendula, the humble pot marigold, has exceptional anti-inflammatory properties, and is used in our Calendula Baby Care products. In our hard- working Nappy Change Cream we blend calendula and chamomile extracts with sweet almond and sesame oil, making a rich cream to reduce redness and gently care for the nappy area. Skin-friendly lanolin and zinc oxide provide a barrier against damp. Midwives agree we’ve been offering an exceptional product for nearly 30 years!

 

And for Mum: Perineum Massage Oil An all-natural oil to help you prepare for the birth of your baby. Perineal massage enhances skin’s flexibility, protecting against tears and cuts during childbirth.

 

 

 
 

 

  

 

 

What I need to buy or borrow checklist

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nursery Clothing Essential supplies For travelling

• Cot and mattress

• Moses basket/crib

• Linen (sheets, blankets, etc.)

• Changing mat/table

• Wardrobe

• Chest of drawers

• Play mat

• Baby bath

• Night light

• Baby monitor

• Musical mobile (to hang over cot)

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

• Cotton sleep suits

• 3 x sleeping bags

• 4 cotton vests

• 1-2 two-piece outfits

• 2-4 cardigans

• 4-6 pairs socks/bootees

• 1 pair gloves/mittens (for winter)

• 1 snowsuit (for winter)

• Muslin clothes/ bibs

• 1 hat

• 1 pair soft shoes/ booties

 

 

 

• Disposable or washable nappies

• Baby wipes, cotton wool

• Nappy bags

• Barrier cream/petroleum jelly

• Breast pump

• Bottles

• Sterilizer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

•Pram/pushchair

• Rain cover and cosytoes

• Car seat

• Baby carrier/ sling

• Travel and changing bag

• Travel cot 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 
 
 

 

 Maternity Bag Essentials

The following list includes all the essentials that you and your baby will need during your stay in hospital

Labour bag

       Your medical record chart

       Birth plan

       Two cotton nightdresses or pyjamas

       A light dressing gown, socks and slippers

       MP3 or MP4 and headphones

       Bottled water, drinks and snacks for you and your partner

       Relaxation materials - books, cards, games…

       Camera, spare batteries and an extra memory card

       Hairbrush

       Facial mist spray, facial wipes, face cloth and hand towel

       Massage oil/lotion

       Cooling water spray

       TENS machine if you choose

         to use one for pain relief

       Shower gel/shampoo

       Toothbrush and toothpaste

       Maternity pads

For baby

       Cotton wool

       Newborn nappies x 3

       Babygros

       Vest

       Hat

       Cardigan

Hospital bag for mum

       Two nursing bras

       Nightshirt or t-shirt - front opening for breastfeeding

       Disposable underwear

       Breast pads

       Three packs of maternity sanitary towels

       Toiletries including toothbrush and toothpaste, shower gel, shampoo, facecloth

       Nipple cream and compresses if breastfeeding

       Make-up bag

       Hairbrush and travel hairdryer

       Healthy snacks to nibble & share, small bottles of water or small cartons of juice

       Money for buying snacks, magazines etc

       Lots of change for phone credits in hospital and mobile phone

       Clothes to wear in hospital and for going home, loose comfy maternity wear and comfy shoes

       Phone and charger

       Pen and paper to write essential instructions down

       Intimate wipes

For baby

       Car seat

       Three baby gros

       Three vests

       Baby blanket

       24 disposable newborn nappies

       Nappy cream

       One roll of cotton wool

       One pair of socks or booties

       Hat

       Jacket or snowsuit (depending on time of year)

       Muslin squares

       Scratch mitts

       A going home outfit: hat,

         all-in-one suit and blanket

Going home

       Your partner or somebody else has to bring a car seat for the baby to travel home in since this is the law in  Malta (the hospital will not let your baby go home without this).

 

 
 
 

 

The Stages of Pregnancy – Month by Month

1st Month

- Embryo implants in uterus

- Embryonic cells start specialising in function

- Brain and spinal cord start to form

- Heart starts beating

- Embryo is size of grain of rice by the end of the month

Mother

2nd Month

- Breasts enlarge and become tender

- Pressure on bladder causes increase in frequency of urination

- Vaginal secretion increases

3rd Month

Morning sickness may stop

- Increased appetite

- May have mood swings

4th Month

- Abdomen bulges

- First kick

5th Month

- May feel more energetic

- Needs frequent rest

- Uterus feels heavy

- May have leg cramps at night

6th Month

- Discomfort due to size of bulge

- Back pain can be eased by exercise

7th Month

- May experience false contractions (Braxton Hicks)

- May develop stretch marks on breasts and abdomen

8th Month

- Frequent urination

- Breathing may be laboured

- Tires easily

9th Month

- Ready for labour

- Increased urination

- Needs plenty of rest

- If contractions experienced – refer to doctor or midwife

 

Baby 

2nd Month

- Embryo almost 1 inch long

- Brain and spinal cord almost complete

- Limbs and all major organs start to form

3rd Month

- Embryo is now a fetus

- About 3 inches long

- May respond to sounds

- Heart beat audible by a doptone

4th Month

- May move and kick

- Lanugo and vernix develop

- Umbilical cord thickens

- Sex can be determined through ultrasound imaging

5th Month

- Fetus almost 30cm long

- Maximum length and weight gain by baby during this month

- Period of increased activity

- Respiration and urination begins

6th Month

- Skin wrinkled

- Movements more vigorous

- Responds to sound

- Baby considered viable

7th Month

- Weighs just over 1 kg

- Finger prints and all organs developed

- Movements decrease

8th Month

- Fully formed

- Moves into birth position – head down

- Lanugo reduces 

9th Month

- Fully grown – ready to be born

- Lungs fully developed

- Body fat regulates temperature

- Immune system developed

  For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here 

 

Should you have a Birth Plan?

 

When it comes to having a baby, does the expectant mother have a right to choose the way she would like to have her baby? Truly, what are her choices?

It is common knowledge that encouraging the pregnant couple to make a Birth Plan helps them to shoulder parenting responsibilities in the future. To be able to make choices, they need to become knowledgeable about what happens during the birth, claim ownership of the situation and be able to participate in decision-making with the support of their caregivers. Space needs to be given should a couple not like what is being offered to them, and then if necessary, they may ask elsewhere for a second opinion and even opt for another system that appeals to them better.

Ideally, true choices lie in different systems that are made available. One should be able to choose the people who will care for them, the place and the management of birth. It is one’s right to ask pertinent questions with regards to statistics, safety and methods used. This depends on whether the pregnancy is considered low-risk or high-risk. The plan needs to be flexible to cater for instances when the outcome takes a different route than expected.  

Some of the topics that offer choices are best discussed during pregnancy, hence the importance of education early in pregnancy. There are many options and whether one prefers a natural, non-medicated birth or a medically assisted delivery, a Birth Plan is the perfect tool to having one’s desires met as much as possible. Here are some choices to consider:

•        Place of Birth: Home, Midwife-led Birth Centre, Doctor-led Private hospital or Public hospital

•        Due date:  Labour starts naturally or induced?  What kind of induction – natural vs medical?

•        Intervention:  Monitoring- continuous vs intermittent, vaginal exams, stripping of membranes, rupture of membranes, episiotomy?

•        Presence of support persons: partner, doula, family, other qualified persons

•        Pain relief: Medical vs Natural.  When to offer? Epidural, sedative, tranquillizer, narcotic, / relaxation & breathing techniques, birth pool, hypnotherapy, acupuncture, acupressure,

•        Comfort choices:  privacy, mobility, positions, room temperature, shower, birthing ball, dim light, music, hot water bottle, ice chips, aromatherapy, TENS,

•        The Birth: Pushing, delivery by mother/father, cutting chord delay, skin-to-skin contact, silence, placenta

•        Cesarean: total anesthesia, epidural, incision, presence of partner, hospital stay.

•        After the Birth: Breastfeeding, formula, bottles, pacifiers, photographs

•        Hospital stay: single/shared room, short (hours) or long (days) 

Personalising your birth makes it tailor-made for your wishes.  This helps make your birth experience a memorable milestone in your life you do not want to forget!

 

Marianne Theuma I.C.C.E. is a qualified teacher, childbirth educator and an experienced Doula. She directs “In The Family Way”, a school for parents based in Marsascala, where various parenting courses, parent clubs and other activities are held regularly. For more information visit Website: www.inthefamilyway.net. or phone 21636735.

 

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here 

 

What I need to buy or borrow checklist

For the Nursery

•Cot and mattress

•Moses basket/crib

•Linen (sheets, blankets, etc.)

•Changing mat/table

•Wardrobe

•Chest of drawers

•Play mat

•Baby bath

•Night light

Clothing

•Cotton sleep suits

•3 x sleeping bags

•4 cotton vests

•1-2 two-piece outfits

•2-4 cardigans

•4-6 pairs socks/bootees

•1 pair gloves/mittens (for winter)

•1 snowsuit (for winter)

•Muslin clothes/ bibs

•1 hat

•1 pair soft shoes/ booties

 

Essential supplies

•Disposable or washable nappies

•Baby wipes, cotton wool

•Nappy bags

•Barrier cream, Vaseline

•Breast pump

•Bottles

•Sterilizer

 

For travelling

•Pram/pushchair

•Rain cover and cosytoes

•Car seat

•Baby carrier/ sling

•Travel and changing bag

•Travel cot

 

Maternity bag essentials

The following list includes all the essentials that you and your baby will need during your stay in hospital.

Labour Bag

•Your medical record chart

•Birth Plan 

•Two cotton nightdresses or pyjamas

•A light dressing gown, socks and slippers

•MP3 or MP4 and headphones 

•Bottled water, drinks and snacks for you and your partner 

•Relaxation materials - books, cards, games… 

•Camera, spare batteries and an extra memory card 

•Hairbrush 

•Facial mist spray, facial wipes, face cloth and hand towel 

•Massage oil/lotion 

•Cooling water spray 

•TENS machine if you choose 

to use one for pain relief

•Shower gel/shampoo 

•Toothbrush and toothpaste 

•Maternity pads 

 

For baby  

•Cotton wool 

•Newborn nappies x 3 

•Babygros 

•Vest 

•Hat 

•Cardigan

 

Hospital bag for mum

•Two nursing bras 

•Nightshirt or t-shirt - front opening for breastfeeding 

•Disposable underwear 

•Breast pads

•Three packs of maternity sanitary towels

•Toiletries including toothbrush and toothpaste, shower gel, shampoo, facecloth

•Nipple cream and compresses if breastfeeding

•Make-up bag

•Hairbrush and travel hairdryer

•Money for buying snacks, magazines etc

•Lots of change for phone credits in hospital and mobile phone with numbers needed and phone charger

•Clothes for in hospital and for going home, loose comfy maternity wear and comfy shoes

•Phone and charger

•Intimate wipes

 

For baby  

•Car seat

•Three baby gros

•Three vests 

•Baby blanket 

•24 disposable newborn nappies 

•Nappy cream

•One roll of cotton wool

•One pair of socks or booties 

•Hat 

•Jacket or snowsuit (depending on time of year)

•Muslin squares 

•Scratch mitts

•A going home outfit: hat, 

all-in-one suit and blanket  

 

Going home

•Your partner or somebody else can bring a car seat for the baby to travel home in. (In most countries the hospital will not let your baby go home without this). 

 For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here   

 

Baby Shower Editorial

The modern Baby Shower traces back hundreds of years to when people would bring helpful gifts to new mothers. Although there was no actual party, it was only a matter of time before these little celebrations evolved into baby showers as we know them today.   

A theme adds a special element to the party, be it storks, angels, teddy bears, traditional colours signalling the gender of the baby or simply something fun or whimsical. Deciding on a theme is the first step to take before choosing invitations, decorations, and even food.  

Shaping or cutting your treats & sandwiches into rubber duck or teddy bear shapes is another great idea to give your party food that special touch. 

Table decorations could be anything from matching plates, cups, napkins to baby decorated confetti, plastic pacifiers & feeding bottles filled with jellybeans or sweets. You can also add banners & hanging decorations.  

And when it comes to gifts, no baby shower would be the same without having a baby shower diaper cake.    

Diaper Cakes or Nappy Cakes are skilfully made up from useful baby items, including Diapers, Blankets, Clothes, Bath Products, Booties, Bottles, Soothers, Soft Toys, Socks, Pacifiers, in fact anything you can think of that would be useful for a new born.   

Diaper Cakes are becoming so popular because they are original & great group gifts. Baby shower hostesses love them because they are a cute and impressive centrepiece for the party & they can be decorated to match any theme you have chosen for your shower.  

Baby Shower favours are a great way to thank your guests. Candles, soaps, and bath salts are just a few ideas to give as favours. If you would like to get creative, some nice baby shower favours to make are cookies & cupcakes.  

   For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

Cosmetics to avoid during pregnancy

Maltese women know very well how to care for their hair, make-up and nails. It is important too that pregnant women are aware of what cosmetics they should avoid during pregnancy and breastfeeding. 

We all love pampering ourselves, so let’s keep doing that even when we have a baby developing inside our body. 

Being pregnant does not need to mean nine months of staying in, because of weight gain and ‘mask of pregnancy’ (dark splotches on facial skin). We can try to control our weight and to even the colour of skin. With the right help it does not take too much work.

Be careful what creams you use during pregancy and check that none of them contains retinoid or salicylic acid which might harm developing baby, cause birth defects and pregnancy complications. Everybody should remember that every cosmetic that is applied on the skin, is absorbed into the bloodstream and travels to the placenta which feeds baby.

I am sure we all want to protect our babies, now we should learn what ingredients to avoid to prevent pregnancy complications. Stay away from these:

Retinoid is a type of vitamin A that is used in anti-wrinkle and acne treatment products. Salicylic acid is used to treat skin disorders, including acne, and you can find it in a number of skin products, such as cleansers and toners. 

Soy can make the ‘mask of pregnancy’ worse, as can oil of bergamot which is in many organic products.

When choosing the right sunscreen we should check if it contains oxybenzone, which might interfere with hormones in the body, and nano-sized ingredients, which are potentially linked to reproductive and developmental problems.

Make a list of forbidden ingredients and shop for cosmetics always carrying the list with you, so you can check which product is safe for pregnant women.

When you get pregnant you might need to put away cosmetics that you have been using so far, they might sensitize, irritate your skin and what’s worse harm developing baby. Anti-wrinkle creams, acne treatments products or anticellulite creams that contain caffeine

should be banned in this special time, that pregnancy is. Scents of certain products might become unbearable for you, so choose products with very gentle scents.  This emerged from research performed by  Leslie Baumann, professor of dermatology at the University of Miami and author of ‘The Skin Type Solution’. 

During pregnancy use only cosmetics designed especially for pregnant women, with extra gentle flavour composition and without allergens.

  For many more great articles, purchase the latest edition of the book here

 5 things to do on maternity leave before your baby’s born:

 You’re about to introduce the most time-consuming ‘project’ you’ve ever worked on into the equation, so maternity leave is the perfect time to indulge yourself and do things before the birth of your bundle of joy. 

Apart from keeping yourself in condition for your baby’s sake during pregnancy, in the months before the baby is born you should pay special attention to your teeth, skin, breasts and blood circulation.

1. An expectant mother can get so involved in her coming baby’s welfare that she forgets to look after her own teeth. During pregnancy, it is very important to do this, and to have a dental check. See Health Section, Dental Surgeons.

2. Many expectant mothers worry about being left with permanent “stretch marks” on the skin after childbirth. It is possible to help the skin to stretch more easily during pregnancy, and so reduce the chance of permanent marks afterwards. Oil and massage techniques starting in the fifth month of pregnancy are beneficial. See Pregnancy & Birth Section, Massage & Complimentary Treatments 

3. To keep your breasts in condition throughout pregnancy, you will need a well-fitted bra and a routine of care for breasts and nipples. Get used to handling your breasts and nipples before you have a baby to feed. See Pregnancy & Birth Section, Breastfeeding 

4. When you stand still the downward pressure of your baby may interfere with the flow of blood in the pelvis, and all the way back through the thighs and legs to the feet. This can increase the risk of varicose veins and hemorrhoids. You can reduce the effects of this pressure by moving about. Circulation can be improved generally through light exercise. See Pregnancy & Birth Section, Exercise Pre & Post Natal 

5. Very few people are adequately prepared for the consequences of an accident or emergency with their children. It is not just a question of knowing where the plasters are kept, but more a matter of deciding what to do. Parents do not like to think of their child being involved in any mishap, which is why the subject of first aid is often put off until tomorrow. This is a natural reaction but avoiding the subject does not reduce the chances of having to cope with it. See Health Section, First Aid & Safety pg 

5 things to do on maternity leave after your baby’s born:

1. BABY MASSAGE:

Massage is one of life's simple pleasures, and research has shown that baby massage can help babies grow better and behave better. It’s known to help babies who suffer from colic and it is thought to increase the baby’s immunity to illness. Massage helps babies breathe better and stimulate their senses, assisting in brain development. While massaging baby you both release the hormone oxytocin, which is the feel good hormone. This skin-to-skin connection is known as the therapeutic touch and helps parents and baby communicate better too, without saying a word. It's also a great way for dad to get in on the baby-bonding act. This is one of the simplest ways to calm your baby and, perhaps, even you. A gentle massage prior to bedtime every night is a lovely way to introduce a routine and prepare your baby for a good rest. Enrol yourself for one of these baby massage courses. For more information see Pregnancy & Birth Section, Massage & Complimentary Treatments 

SWIMMING:

Babies love the water and they can be introduced to swimming as early as six weeks. When newborns are exposed to water, they make automatic swimming movements. Also, early swimming helps develop a baby’s personality and decreases the chances of developing a fear of water. Swimming is great for their physical development as the water allows a baby to use their muscles without the constraints of gravity. The time spent in the water allows for a great bonding opportunity for both mum and dad! When a baby is younger than 6 months they will need to swim in a pool heated to a minimum of 32 degrees. Buy disposable swimming nappies or a reusable water one. See Sports Activities, Swimming 

2. PLAY CLASSES:

Play classes are a great way to encourage your baby’s social development, along with their mind and body. A vital activity for a child's development and learning is interactive play & floor time with their parent or primary caregiver. Play classes provide age-appropriate fun and creative stimulation for infants, toddlers and preschool children, your child will turn play into rich learning and you will enjoy this special bonding time together. These classes are very social and provide lots of new friends for both children and parents. There are a variety of classes from playing classes to music focused ones. So pop along to a few until you find the one which works best for you and your baby. See Pregnancy & Birth, Yoga, Activities Section, Mother & Baby Clubs, Baby sign language

3. FITNESS GROUPS:

Exercise is a great way to lift your spirits. There are classes suitable for new mums that accommodate baby in stroller. This environment can help with your confidence as you are with other women at the same stage as yourself. The exercise routines are designed for a post natal body focusing on increasing your stamina, toning your muscles and burning excess ‘baby fat’. Yoga and Pilates classes are available for both mother and baby and these are usually suitable from the time your baby is 6 weeks old – apart from being a great way for the new mum to de-stress, exercise also improves the baby’s digestive health and sleep. See Pregnancy & Birth, Exercise Pre & Post Natal pg xx, Yoga pg xx. Where money is tight, you can always put on your runners, pack the buggy and find other mums in your area to go walking with at no cost. It’s a perfect chance to spend time with baby while you exercise - guilt free! See Days Out Section, Public Parks & Gardens, Picnic Areas, Activities Section, Nature Walks 

4. MOVIE CLUBS:

There isn’t much choice but if it floats your boat and you decide to go to the movies it no longer has to be an ordeal and potentially fitting in between feeds. You can go with your hubby or a group of other mums. These ideal shows should have dimmed lighting and a lower volume so that it is a calmer environment for little ones. Since the movies cater for babies, crying during the screening is not an issue. Baby changing facilities are provided on site. Screenings are generally in the mornings on a weekday. While ticket prices are usually lower than general admission prices these also include a variety of freebies. These events are a great social gathering for both parents and babies alike. See Activities Section, Cinemas 

Finally don’t forget to register on our official website www.maltababyandkids.com for upcoming events for new mums in Malta.

 

 
 

Maternity bag essentials

The following list includes all the essentials that you and your baby will need during your stay in hospital.

 Labour bag :

      ·         Your medical record chart

      ·         Birth Plan

      ·         Two cotton nightdresses or pyjamas

      ·         A light dressing gown, socks and slippers

      ·         Headphones

·         Bottled water, drinks and snacks for you and your partner

·         Relaxation materials – books, cards, games…

·         Camera, spare batteries and extra memory card

·         Hairbrush

·         Facial mist spray, facial wipes, face cloth and hand towel

·         Massage/oil/lotion

·         Cooling water spray

·         TENS machine if you choose to use one for pain relief

·         Shower gel/shampoo

·         Toothbrush and toothpaste

 

·         Maternity pads

For baby :

·         Cotton wool

·         Newborn nappies x3

·         Babygros

·         Vest

·         Gat

·         Cardigan

Hospital bag for mum :

·         Two nursing bras

·         Nighshirt or t-sirt – front opening for breastfeeding

·         Disposable underwear

·         Breast pads

·         Three packs of maternity sanitary towels

·         Toiletries including toothbrush and toothpaste, shower gel, shampoo, facecloth

·         Nipple Balm and healing Compresses

·         Make-up bag

·         Hairbrush and travel hairdryer

·         Money for buying snacks, magazines etc

·         Clothes for in hospital and for going home, loose comfy maternity wear and comfy shoes

·         Mobile phone, charger and numbers needed

·         Intimate wipes

Going Home :

·         Your partner or somebody else can bring a car seat for the baby to travel home in.
(In most countries the hospital will not let your baby go home without this).

    

Mission Statement

 

To protect the right of the child
To foster an optimal start in life
And to encourage the mother’s right to achieve it.

A lot is being said and done about this very emotive subject. Some argue that breast is best, while others argue that it doesn’t matter, as long as they have given birth to healthy babies. The choice is theirs, and it should be respected.

For those who are still unsure about the advantages of breastfeeding, the following information highlights some of its benefits – both for the baby and the mother – based on recent research.

Apart from being the perfect food for the baby because it is so easily digested, breastmilk contains antibodies which protect babies from various allergies and infections such as gastroenteritis, as well as chest, urinary and ear infections. It also reduces the risk of diabetes and some childhood cancers, decreases the likelihood of obesity, high blood pressure and cardiac disease in later life, improves cognitive development, and works on mouth/jaw development. 

The uterus contracts during breastfeeding, thus helping the mother’s shape return to normal at a faster pace. Breastfeeding also reduces the chance of ovarian or breast cancer and helps bone density in the mother.

Breastfeeding saves money, since breastmilk is free. Furthermore, it saves time and is proven to be more convenient for busy mums, as it involves no heating or sterilising.  

Apart from having the right to decide whether to breastfeed her infant or not, a mother also has the right to be given the correct information.

If you would like more information or require support to make an informed choice about your feeding method, the Association of Breastfeeding Counsellors (as a branch of Cana Movement) can help. Call our association on 9982 7170, send us an email on charmainegalea@gmail.com or find us on Facebook.

 

The Purest Ingredients for a New Beginning

Thanks to Weleda Mum & Baby Range

 Since it was establishes, Weleda has pursued objectives which sprang from its founding principles. Its products are intended to support people in their personal development, in maintaining, promoting and restoring their health, and in their efforts to achieve physical well-being and a balanced lifestyle.

Skin as delicate as your baby’s, needs very little intervention to become the priceless natural shield needed for life. Treat dry, chafed or irritated skin, cleanse little bottoms, or enjoy a soothing massage together with the simplest of all formulations. Light organic sesame oil and extract of organic calendula are all we need to offer you this treasure.  Softening, warming, calming and relaxing – for tender moments with your little one from the first day.

To create a perfectly gentle wash that works for babies, we put in a lot of thought. Formulated with beneficial ingredients like extract of organic calendula, the wash helps to gently lift dirt, leaving skin soft, hair easy to comb and baby’s own scent intact. Sweet almond oil prevents dryness, and the soft lather doesn’t sting baby’s eyes. No tears, no tugs, no roughness – just a clean, sweet-smelling, wriggly baby.

Organic calendula, the humble pot marigold, has exceptional anti-inflammatory properties, and is used in our Calendula Baby Care products. In our hand – working Nappy Change Cream we blend calendula and chamomile extracts with sweet almond and sesame oil, making a rich cream to reduce redness and gently care for the nappy area. Skin-friendly lanolin and zinc oxide provide a barrier against damp. Midwives agree we’ve been offering an exceptional product for nearly 30 years!

 

And for Mum: Perineum Massage Oil.
An all-natural oil to help you prepare for the birth of your baby. Perineal massages enhances skin’s flexibility, protecting against tears and cuts during childbirth.

 


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Malta Baby & Kids Directory is created by mums for mums and childcarers.
Lisa Grech is the founder of the Malta Baby & Kids Directory and website. Together with Denise Briffa and Crysta Darmanin we combine work on the publication and website while bringing up lots of children (seven between us!).


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