Looking for information about pregnancy and childbirth education? How about car seat and other child-related product recalls? Odds are you can find what you're looking for on the Web -- for free. There are dozens of agencies and organizations whose sole mission is to offer information, support and answers to your most pressing parenting questions. Here are some Web sites that are worthy of a bookmark:
Pregnancy Support and Education
- American College of Nurse-Midwives (www.midwife.org)
The ACNM is a health care organization that both educates nurse-midwives and provides information about pregnancy and childbirth to pregnant women. If you're interested in having a certified nurse-midwife act as your primary health care provider during pregnancy and labor, you can use the site to find one in your area. You'll also find links to dozens of pregnancy, childbirth, and parenting sites.
- Doulas of North America (www.dona.com)
DONA's mission is to improve pregnant women's physical and mental health by helping them find doulas -- lay people trained to support a woman during childbirth and the postpartum period. A doula may be trained in massage and relaxation techniques to help with labor, have breastfeeding expertise, and even be willing to do light housekeeping and cooking once baby comes home. You can find a referral to a doula in your area on the site.
- Lamaze International (www.lamaze-childbirth.com)
Members of this nonprofit organization believe that childbirth is a natural occurrence and they are devoted to educating women about the process so they can have the best birth experience possible. On the site you can locate a Lamaze class in your area, tips for enjoying a healthy pregnancy, and read about the Lamaze philosophy about pregnancy, childbirth, and parenting.
- Depression After Delivery, Inc. (www.behavenet.com/dadinc/)
A nonprofit organization whose mission is to raise awareness about mood and anxiety disorders surrounding pregnancy and childbirth. On the site you'll find descriptions of common postpartum depression symptoms and causes, plus where to find help.
- National Association of Working Women (www.9to5.org)
A nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of working women, and tackling family and maternity leave issues. Find information about how to combat sexual harassment and other workplace discrimination, and learn about your rights as mandated by the Family and Medical Leave Act.
Children's Health and Safety
- American Academy of Pediatrics (www.aap.org)
The AAP offers information about raising babies and children. Topics range from toy safety and preventing handgun injuries and death to treating allergies and diaper rash. For a complete listing of topics, click on "You and Your Family."
- American Red Cross (www.redcross.org/hss)
The Red Cross provides comprehensive information about issues ranging from home fire safety to drowning prevention and basic first aid.
- Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (www.jpma.org)
JPMA is the national trade organization that represents the manufacturers of products such as cribs, car seat, strollers, etc. The site provides consumer information about the safety issues related to such products, including product recalls.
- National Safe Kids Campaign (www.safekids.org)
Dedicated to the prevention of unintentional childhood injuries, the NSKC site provides tips about reducing the risk of injury and death from accidents related to automobiles, swimming pools, and fire.
The content on these pages is provided as general information only and should not be substituted for the advice of your physician.
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