What to Read: Pregnancy, Birth & Postpartum

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There are many ways to gather the information you seek about your pregnancy and upcoming delivery.

You can take childbirth education classes, or search the internet for your specific questions. You may talk to friends and family, or read one of the million pregnancy books available online or in stores.

Our clients often ask about which books we would recommend that provide the knowledge they are seeking. Part of our role as doulas is to stay current on best practices and information. As a result, we have created this reading list.

*Disclaimer, the following links are not affiliated links and Tucson Doulas does not make any money from the purchase of these books.

What to Read – Pregnancy & Birth:

  • The Mayo Clinic Guide
    • From Amazon: With detailed information about fertility, prenatal care, common pregnancy symptoms, and childbirth, this comprehensive guide will be your go-to source for answering all your ordinary—and not so ordinary—pregnancy questions.
  • Pregnancy, Childbirth, and the Newborn: The Complete Guide
    • From Amazon: Parents love this book because it puts them in control; experts love it because it’s based on the latest medical research and recommendations from leading health organizations. Pregnancy, Childbirth, and the Newborn provides the information and guidance you need to make informed decisions about having a safe and satisfying pregnancy, birth, and postpartum period–decisions that reflect your preferences, priorities, and values.
  • Gentle Birth Gentle Mothering
    • From Amazon: An authoritative guide to natural childbirth and postpartum parenting options from an MD who home-birthed her own four children.
  • The Real Food for Pregnancy: Science and Wisdom for Optimal Prenatal Wisdom 
    • From Amazon: Prenatal nutrition can be confusing. A lot of the advice you have been given about what to eat (or what not to eat) is well-meaning, but frankly, outdated or not evidence-based. In Real Food for Pregnancy, you will get clear answers on what to eat and why with research to back up every recommendation.

What to Read – Postpartum:

  • The Informed Parent
    • From Amazon: The ultimate resource for today’s science-minded generation, The Informed Parent was written for readers who prefer facts to “friendly advice,” and who prefer to make up their own minds, based on the latest findings as well as their own personal preferences.
  • The Fourth Trimester
    • From Amazon: This holistic guide offers practical advice to support women through postpartum healing on the physical, emotional, relational, and spiritual levels—and provides women with a roadmap to this very important transition that can last from a few months to a few years.
  • Happiest Baby on the Block
    • From Amazon: Never again will you have to stand by helplessly while your little baby cries and cries. There is a way to calm most crying babies . . . usually in minutes! Thousands of parents, from regular moms and dads to Hollywood superstars, have come to baby expert Dr. Harvey Karp to learn his remarkable techniques for soothing babies and increasing sleep. Dr. Karp’s highly successful method is based on four revolutionary concepts.
  • Caring for Your Baby and Young Child, Birth to Age 5
    • From Amazon: All parents want to provide the very best care for their children. This essential resource from the most respected organization in child health is the one guide pediatricians routinely recommend. Whether it’s resolving common childhood health problems or detailed instructions for coping with emergency medical situations, this new and revised edition of Caring for Your Baby and Young Child has everything you need.

What to Read – Infant Feeding:

  • Guilt-free Bottle Feeding
    • From Amazon: In Guilt-Free Bottle-Feeding award-winning journalist Madeleine Morris and pediatrician Dr. Sasha Howard challenge the simplistic message of ‘breast is best’, revealing what everybody knows, but nobody says out loud – that bottle-fed babies can grow up to be perfectly happy, healthy and smart. 
  • Breastfeeding Made Simple
    • From Amazon: Breastfeeding may be natural, but it may also be more challenging than you expect. Some mothers encounter doubts and difficulties, from struggling with the first few feedings to finding a gentle and loving way to comfortably wean from the breast.
  • Lactivate
    • From Amazon: Breastfeeding moms will tell you milk makin’ comes with health and convenience benefits―and a million questions. Lactivate! is a judgment-free advice book with the latest knowledge of breastfeeding, supporting you to make the best decisions for yourself and your family. From solving everyday breastfeeding problems to clearing a plugged milk duct, this guide will help you create the ultimate biological synchronization between you and your child.
  • Dr. Jack’s Guide to Breastfeeding
    • From Amazon: Breastfeeding is the natural and healthy way to nourish your baby, yet it’s not always easy. New mothers need practical information about getting off to a good start and solving breastfeeding challenges. Health professionals need this information too because it is rarely taught in medical school.

What to Read – Honorable Mention:

  • The Birth Partner
    • From Amazon: Since the original publication of The Birth Partner, partners, friends, relatives, and doulas have relied on Penny Simkin’s guidance in caring for the new mother, from her last trimester through the early postpartum period.

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