Recommended Reading List for Pregnant Moms & Partners
What to Expect When You're Expecting by Heidi E. Murkoff and Sharon Mazel.
100,000+1 Best Baby Names by Lesley Bolton.
The Mother of All Pregnancy Books by Ann Douglas. This is worth picking up when you are expecting. It contains a lot of information and it's delivered in a non-preachy manner.
Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy by the Mayo Clinic.
What to Expect the First Year by Heidi E. Murkoff and Sharon Maze.
Ina May’s Guild to Childbirth by Ina May Gaskin.
The Birth Partner by Peggy Simkin. For anyone planning to assist the mother during labor, this book includes it all. This is a great book for fathers, partners, family and doulas.
Birthing from Within by Pam England. This holistic approach to childbirth examines this profound rite-of-passage not as a medical event, but as an act of self-discovery. Exercises and activities such as journal writing, meditation, and painting are designed to help mothers analyze their thoughts and face their fears during pregnancy.
Happiest Baby on the Block by Dr. Harvey Kaup.
Caring for your Baby - Birth to Age 5 by Kathleen Huggins.
Healthy Child, Healthy World: Creating a Cleaner, Greener, Safer Home by Christopher Gavigan.
Gentle Birth Choice by Barbara Harper. RN Harper explains why birthing centers and home births, along with other "gentle birth choices," are beneficial to both mother and baby.
Gentle Birth, Gentle Mothering: A Doctor's Guide to Natural Childbirth and Gentle Early Parenting Choices by Sarah Buckley. An authoritative guide to natural childbirth and postpartum parenting options from an MD who home-birthed her own four children. Speaks to a new generation of parents who are concerned about the medicalization of childbirth and want current and science-based info about alternatives.
A Good Birth, A Safe Birth by Korte & Scaer. This is an excellent book to help parents understand why childbirth has become such a medical event and how to negotiate your way through the system to have the kind of birth you want. This book is several years old, but the information is timeless.
Mothering the Mother: How a Doula Can Help You Have a Shorter, Easier, and Healthier Birth by Marshall H. Klaus, John H. Kennell, Phyllis H. Klaus. A doula is an experienced labor companion who provides continuous emotional support and assistance before, during, and after birth. Through research with over 2,000 women, the authors show that the presence of a doula shortens labor by an average of two hours, decreases cesarean sections by over 50%, decreases the need for pain medication, helps fathers participate, and more.
Pregnancy, Childbirth & the Newborn: The Complete Guide by Peggy Simkin, Whalley & Keppler. It covers all aspects of childbearing from conception through early infancy. It includes information on what to expect during pregnancy and birth and how you can work with your caregivers to make childbirth a happy and healthy experience.
The Thinking Woman’s Guide to Birth by Henri Goer. This is a great book for a woman who is taking charge of her birth experience and interested in what the research says about birthing options. It covers nearly every issue that parents may include in a birth plan from an evidence-based perspective.
The Secret Life of the Unborn Child A pioneering physician, Dr. Thomas Verny, gives startling new evidence based on two decades of medical research.
Your unborn baby is:
• Capable of learning
• Able to warn you of medical problems you and your doctor may not be aware of
• Able to hear and respond to voices and sounds—including music
• Sensitive to his parents’ feelings about him
• Capable of responding to love
• An active, feeling human being.
CALMS A Guide to Soothing Your Baby
Honest, short, sweet and scientific, CALMS A Guide to Soothing Your Baby offers parents and professionals a new view of babies and a tool kit for creating family harmony and parent-child connection.
The Breastfeeding Café: Mothers Share the Joys, Challenges & Secrets of Nursing by Barbara L. Behrmann. This book isn't a how-to manual on breastfeeding; instead, it offers a thoughtful forum for women to share their experiences with others. Approaching nursing as a feminist issue and one that is very important to child rearing, the book embraces the wide spectrum of women's experiences when breastfeeding their children. A must-read for clinicians, breastfeeding consultants, and both new and expectant mothers who are curious about the nursing experience in all its variety.
Breastfeeding Made Simple: Seven Natural Laws for Nursing Mothers by Nancy Mohrbacher & Kathleen Kendall-Tackett. These are laws you can use to get breastfeeding off to a good start and avoid common challenges. If you are having difficulties, these laws can help you get back on track.
The Nursing Mother’s Companion by Kathleen Huggins. If you plan to breastfeed your baby and can only afford one book, this is the one to get. Included are answers to breastfeeding problems as well as techniques for breastfeeding.
Birth After Cesarean: The Medical Facts by Bruce L. Flamm. A patient advocacy book, filled with recommendations and support for women who want to deliver normally even when they've had a prior cesarean. In a straightforward question-and-answer format, Dr. Bruce Flamm assesses the conflicting information many pregnant women receive.
The VBAC Companion: The Expectant Mother's Guide to Vaginal Birth After Cesarean by Diana Korte. The VBAC Companion is a clearly written and thorough guide to lead women step-by-step through the process of planning for a VBAC.
The Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC) Experience: Birth Stories by Parents and Professionals by Lynn Baptiste Richards & Michel Odent. Here for the first time are intimate stories of the VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean) experience, as told by mothers, fathers, midwives, obstetricians, labor coaches, and others whose lives have been affected by VBAC. The stories demystify in a powerful way the idea of "once a cesarean, always a cesarean." By example, each story is a telling critique of birthing practices in general and the cesarean outcome in particular, as well as a primer for mothers, fathers, and professionals on the VBAC experience.
Postpartum Depression (PPD) And Traumatic Births
Birth As a Healing Experience: The Emotional Journey of Pregnancy Through Postpartum by Lois Freedman. This book emphasizes and examines the emotional aspects of pregnancy and postpartum, presenting these periods as important opportunities for a woman's growth and healing from previous traumatic births or pregnancy losses.
Overcoming Postpartum Depression and Anxiety by Linda Sebastian. One of the most practical and informative books for mothers who are working through postpartum mood disorders.