This website and many others can give you excellent professional advice about pregnancy and childbirth, as well as about how to care for newborns and children. Here are some links we recommend.
Pregnancy, Childbirth, and After
The Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada offers information about age and fertility, alcohol and pregnancy, birth plans, breech childbirth, C-sections, cancer during pregnancy, calculating your due date, folic acid (preconception and during pregnancy), group B streptococcus (GBS) infection in pregnancy, healthy eating and exercise during pregnancy, healthy weight gain in pregnancy, herbal remedies, HIV testing in pregnancy, immunization before and after pregnancy, medications and drugs before and during pregnancy and while breastfeeding, multiple births, nausea and vomiting during pregnancy, normal childbirth, prenatal screening, preterm labour, ultrasound in pregnancy, umbilical cord blood, and vaginal birth after a Caesarean section (VBAC).
The Motherisk Program from the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto provides a website with information and forums on topics such as morning sickness, drugs in pregnancy (including alcohol, nicotine, and substance abuse), breastfeeding and drugs, folic acid, cancer in pregnancy, various health conditions in pregnancy (including HIV and its treatment), infectious diseases in pregnancy, nutrition, herbal products, toxic exposure in pregnancy, and occupational and environmental exposures. There are also helplines available as well as links to current studies and news items related to mother and newborn care.
The Public Health Agency of Canada offers a number of programs to promote healthy pregnancy and infancy. A significant one is the Canada Prenatal Nutrition Program (CPNP): http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/hp-ps/dca-dea/prog-ini/cpnp-pcnp/index-eng.php. From the program’s website, you can find a CPNP location. Of more general interest is the agency’s Healthy Pregnancy website, which offers tools such as a healthy pregnancy calendar, guide, and quiz, as well as information on prenatal nutrition, folic acid, alcohol and pregnancy, physical activity and pregnancy, smoking and pregnancy, oral health, emotional health, caffeine and pregnancy, calcium and vitamin D, constipation, nausea and vomiting, heartburn, iron, swelling, water and other fluids, and low cost nutritious choices.
Prenatal Education – Key Message for Ontario is an evidence-based online tool from the Government of Ontario. It identifies universal key messages for service providers in Ontario to share with their clients related to preconception, prenatal, postpartum and newborn health, as well as the supporting evidence for each of these key messages. It is written for care providers but is very relevant for non-medical practitioners too.
Dad Central provides information for the new father and father to be, although the material on parenting offered by this site is also useful for mothers.
La Leche League Canada has supported breastfeeding families since 1961. Its website offers access to support groups and to one-on-one advice and information from a trained LLLC leader by phone, email, or at a local group.
The Canadian Mental Health Association can put women who are suffering from postpartum depression in touch with the appropriate resources:
The Parent Resource Centre in Ottawa also has a support program for those suffering from postpartum depression; it is offered through Family Services. The centre also offers a resource phone line, access to drop-ins and playgroups, and parent education workshops.
OMama is a website and a mobile application (app) that connects women and families to trusted, evidence-informed healthy pregnancy, birth and early parenting information for Ontario, Canada. Keep in touch with OMama by visiting our Facebook page.
Resources about Children
Caring for Kids, a website from the Canadian Paediatric Society, provides a wealth of information on pregnancy and babies, infants’ healthy development, keeping kids safe, growing and learning, illnesses and infections, behaviour and parenting, and adolescent health. There are also tips and checklists.
Growing Healthy Canadians: A Guide for Positive Child Development is an online publication provided by the Canadian Mothercraft Society: http://www.growinghealthykids.com/. The society’s main site is also useful.
Safe Kids Canada has joined with Safe Communities Canada, SMARTRISK, and ThinkFirst Canada to create Parachute, a national organization dedicated to injury prevention. Resources include material on helmets, hockey concussions, and preventing other sports injuries; car seats; preventing drowning, farm injuries, and poisoning; home, rail, and pedestrian safety; and holiday, Halloween, and product safety.