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Pregnancy, Childbirth, and the Newborn: The Complete Guide

Pregnancy, Childbirth, and the Newborn: The Complete Guide

4.1 29
by Penny Simkin, April Bolding, Ann Keppler, Janelle Durham

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Now completely updated, expanded, and redesigned, expecting couples will find the latest edition of this authoritative and complete pregnancy “bible” to be more readable, more visually appealing, more accessible and, of course, the medical information and advice has been completely updated:

-Accessibility: We've used a magazine layout


Now completely updated, expanded, and redesigned, expecting couples will find the latest edition of this authoritative and complete pregnancy “bible” to be more readable, more visually appealing, more accessible and, of course, the medical information and advice has been completely updated:

-Accessibility: We've used a magazine layout featuring more photos, illustrations, and boxed features to call attention to the most interesting and salient information.

-Readability: The book reads less like a prenatal training guide and more like an interesting, informative book about pregnancy and childbirth (actually, it's both). Readers will find lots of new boxed features, including “Q&A” (containing frequently asked questions with answers); “Two Views” (first person accounts by mothers who present opposing views about common childbirth issues); “In Their Own Words” (mothers describe their experiences, e.g. with labor or discomfort or pain-relief drugs in their own words); “Fact or Fiction?” (the authors present common misinformation and the facts); “Advice from the Authors” (which presents precisely that).

-Attractive Layout: The new look is more graphic, more visual, and borrows proven techniques from magazines and newspapers to make reading and finding information easier and more productive.

-Updated Medical Information and Advice:

• Revised discussion on nutrition/serving sizes during pregnancy to reflect the latest information from the USDA
• Information on complementary induction approaches, like acupuncture
• Fully updated information on options for labor pain medications.
• Revised discussions on warning signs of complications, interventions during childbirth, preterm labor risk factors, prenatal exams and tests, and exercise during pregnancy to reflect the latest knowledge
• Revised statistics and discussions on cesarean birth and vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC) to reflect the latest knowledge
• Revised childhood immunization schedule and information on the vaccines
• Revised discussion on circumcision

Meadowbrook Press expects the more accessible format and more readable information to expand the market for the book, which has trained more than a million mothers for childbirth over a 30-year period.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“This is the ultimate guide to all aspects of birthing. It is a must for all pregnant women and those who love them!”

—Christiane Northrup, MD, Author of Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom and The Wisdom of Menopause

“Women can only make informed choices when they’re able to get comprehensive information on the many decisions that come up during pregnancy, labor, birth, and the postpartum period. This book provides such information. I heartily recommend it to all pregnant women!”

—Ina May Gaskin, Author of Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth, Ina May’s Guide to Breastfeeding, and Spiritual Midwifery

“Current research, wisdom, and women’s voices together create the most comprehensive book on understanding your options. It will educate, inspire, and nurture you to make informed decisions as you welcome your baby into the world.”

—Debra Pascali-Bonaro LCCE, CD (DONA), PCD (DONA), Coauthor of Orgasmic Birth: Your Guide to a Safe, Satisfying and Pleasurable Birth Experience; director, Orgasmic Birth: The Best-Kept Secret

“Once again the authors have provided the right information, at the right time, and have delivered it with the kind of reassuring expertise that helps expectant parents prepare for the most meaningful moment of their lives.”

—Bernie Dorsey, Founder of Conscious Fathering

“This is the revision we have been waiting for! It is the best book for parents…and a wonderful resource.”

—Kathleen A. Lindstrom, CD (DONA), LCCE, FACCE, Perinatal Program Manager, Douglas College, Coquitlam, BC

“This book is authoritative without feeling overwhelming. It keeps the woman and her family in focus and provides a range of options. If expectant parents could have one book, this would be the one.”

—Trish Booth, MA, LCCE, FACCE, Childbirth education consultant, Manlius, NY

“A truly wonderful book for expectant families. It’s informative, thorough, and helpful. We give it to all our patients, and they think it’s great, too!”

—Carolyn Kline, MD, MPH, Perinatologist Eastside Maternal Fetal Medicine, Kirkland and Bellevue, WA

“The material is beautifully organized and the presentation is crystal clear.”

—Sheila Kitzinger, Author of The Complete Book of Pregnancy and Childbirth

“For the most part, pregnancy books are written for and read by women, but if you’re a caring father (or father-to-be), this is an outstanding book. It gives the fairest and most complete descriptions of the myriad medical options available during childbirth. It is the best of the many books available.”

—Tom Seager, father of three, Potsdam, NY

"Pregnancy, Childbirth and the Newborn has been a standard guide for expecting parents since the first edition in 1979. With the 4th edition, the book has undergone some amazing changes. The pages are more graphical in design and easier to search, with each chapter broken into smaller sections. Sidebars break up the text so important information can be pointed out easily to the reader. Lots of sketches and black and white photographs adorn the pages. Easy-to-read charts describe trimester changes, sample fetal movement counts, newborn tests, procedures and much more.

The book covers everything from prenatal nutrition to making a birth plan. Doulas, pain relief options and homebirth are all presented in a fair, evenhanded manner, leaving the reader to decide what options may be best for herself and her baby. The authors have done an excellent job at outlining the many options available to pregnant and birthing women today. There is an entire chapter describing what labor may be like, as well as one about possible complications. I liked that these two were separate; moms-to-be can read about what normally happens, and then go on to learn about possible complications. The book does this with postpartum, too. There is a chapter on cesareans and one on breastfeeding.

The book also includes helpful appendices on common medications used in labor, a summary of normal labor without pain medications and recommended resources that readers may want to pursue. All in all, a wonderful book has been made even better. I would recommend all midwives keep this book in their lending library for new parents. It would also make an excellent baby shower gift."

Toni Rakestraw, Midwifery Today Issue 97

Library Journal
Now in its fifth edition, this informative guide covers the multiple stages of the birth experience and beyond. Childbirth educator and doula Simkin; registered nurse and lactation consultant Janet Whalley; registered nurse and lactation specialist Ann Keppler; social worker Janelle Durham; and childbirth educator, doula, and author April Bolding, contribute their insights in this handy reference that will help readers make informed decisions on everything from whether to hire a doula to diet and exercise, complications (breech birth, high blood pressure), and cesarean procedures. A "calendar of pregnancy" shows trimester changes on charts. The authors recommend creating a "birth plan" so that everyone involved is on the same page. Stages and phases of labor are examined along with pain relief (epidurals, spinals) and relaxation techniques. "Key Points To Remember" appear throughout. Also included is material on adjusting to parenthood, coping with postpartum issues, caring for the baby, and breast feeding. The authors consider vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC) and how siblings will adapt to the newcomer. Photos appear throughout, and a list of recommended resources of books, websites, and DVDs is useful. The often requested What To Expect When You're Expecting is a similar title on the topic, but public libraries can benefit from having multiple volumes on this subject. VERDICT Readers considering having a baby or who are already pregnant will find this a valuable resource.—Barbara Kundanis, Longmont P.L., CO

Product Details

Publication date:
Edition description:
4th Edition
Product dimensions:
9.22(w) x 11.08(h) x 1.01(d)

Meet the Author

Penny Simkin, a physical therapist, has been a childbirth educator and doula since 1968. She trains childbirth educators, doulas, and doula-trainers and frequently conducts workshops for doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals.

Janet Whalley, a registered nurse, has been a childbirth educator since 1975. She is the former executive director of the Childbirth Education Association of Seattle. She provides breastfeeding counseling for new mothers and teaches classes on newborn care.

Ann Keppler, a registered nurse, parish nurse, and lactation specialist, has taught childbirth classes and new-parent classes since 1975.

April Bolding has a doctorate in physical therapy and is a childbirth educator, birth doula, water fitness instructor, and author.

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Pregnancy, Childbirth, and the Newborn 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 29 reviews.
roosta More than 1 year ago
This book was recommended by my doctor for it's accuracy, and updated information. This being my first child, it has been very helpful to have a book that is backed by my doctor. The information is very valuable, and I use it daily as a resource. I highly recommend this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is a MUST read! This is my first child and I feel calm and prepared (well, knowledgeable at least) going into childbirth, and that's priceless. I also dog-eared some pages to keep as reference throught the process.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Can't put this book down...love this book! It doesn't make you feel dumb for being a 1st time mom-to be. Also like how the book gives you suggestion questions to ask yourself and those involved in your big adventure. Just enough medical information...some books you need a PhD to be able to read, this book is great for an everyday women. Would highly recommend it!
Guest More than 1 year ago
For all you expectant mom's out there this is a great pick! It is not only recomended by a lot of mothers it is also on the required reading lists of the doula certification boards.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am expecting my first child and as an attorney, I have a research-based approach to learning. I found this book to be extremely informative and easy to read. I have read certain sections over and over and I believe I learn something new each time. I would highly recommend this book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book really helped me during my pregnancy. Everything, that happened to me I knew ahead of time thanks to this book.
Anonymous 11 months ago
I dare to read this book and see if i get pregnant. I probaly will. I dont care if i get pregnant.-jenna willis
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you can read this book you will get pregnant for sure so do not read this book!!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I LOVE IT!!!!!:):):(:]•••••
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book has so much helpful information on the labor and delivery process. I also like the numerous sections for birth partners. This is a must read!
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