HiPP Organic

HiPP's Baby & Nutrition Blog

Newborns: Tiny, demanding... and so very wonderful

Posted on 8 April 2016 by lindsay



Have you ever looked back at the early days and weeks of parenthood and realised that your memories are – to put it politely – somewhat fuzzy? You’re definitely not alone! Nearly all of us find that the sleep deprivation, hormonal rollercoaster and emotional ups and downs of those first few weeks pose quite a challenge. (And if you ask us, the few parents who say otherwise are either fibbing or have had a lot of help from the grandparents!)

In the second section of our survey, we asked more than 6,000 parents to remember those dim, sleep-deprived memories and share with us the moments that stood out most clearly from those heady, exhausting newborn days.

The first weeks – joy and exhaustion in equal measure

After baby’s safe arrival, our newly-fledged parents seem to have got right down to the nitty-gritty of parenting a newborn, with a majority reporting they had positive feelings about tasks like feeding, dressing and bathing their little one. (Oddly enough, even nappy changes were largely a happy time for this lot! Perhaps the passage of time has dulled the memory?)

However, the data on sleepless nights begins to balance the picture – more than half of our respondents said they were emotional, nervous or worried about the lack of sleep they were getting in those first few weeks. Other common challenges: feeding issues, recovering from the birth, keeping up with basic housework, and getting that all-important hot cup of tea now and then! 

“In my sleep-deprived state, I once put the used teabag in the dishwasher and tossed the teaspoon in the bin!”

Luckily, there were also lighthearted moments to be remembered – though it must be said that the majority of them involved bodily functions! (Poonami, anyone?) Other high points our mums and dads remembered were introducing the new baby to older siblings, successfully sorting out a feeding routine, and achieving the level of organisation needed to venture out of the house for the first time. Hats off to all these parents – these are noble achievements indeed!

“The first night, he weed in my husband’s face, which was hilarious. A few days later, he weed in his own face, and his look of shock was exactly the same as his dad’s!”

Breastfeeding: Natural, but not always easy

When it came to feeding their little bundles of joy, the parents we surveyed overwhelmingly chose to at least try breastfeeding – which is a great choice, as breastmilk is the single best food a baby can get!

Most of our intrepid mums said they had initially planned to breastfeed for between 4 and 6 months, with another big group planning to feed for 10-12 months - and some of them did exactly that. However, the responses also show the challenges breastfeeding may pose; overall, the largest single group of mums said they actually did breastfeed for three months or less.

It wasn't the same for everyone on the breastfeeding front, mind you – the next biggest group of mums were those who may not have originally intended to feed for a year or more, but ended up doing so well that they persevered. (We say well done to all of you!)

“If it works for you then treasure every moment, because before you know it it's over, and I miss it so much!

When it came to location, our mums were well aware that the choice wasn’t always up to them – when your baby’s hungry, it’s automatically dinnertime! Most of our respondents said they felt happy, relaxed and confident when feeding alone at home or with female company; in contrast, feeding in public or in a mixed-gender group was much more likely to make them feel shy, stressed or embarrassed, and having people watching was frequently mentioned as being the most stressful thing about breastfeeding.

Which is not to say it stopped them, however! When we asked our lactating ladies about the oddest place they’d ever breastfed, we got a veritable avalanche of amazing responses – from the London Eye, to a (presumably quite chilly) rugby pitch, to Disneyland, to the top of Mount Snowdon!

“The strangest place I breastfed was standing up in a phone shop in a busy shopping centre. (It was my husband’s fault!)”

Funny moments were there in spades, too (though when you’re that sleep-deprived, let’s face it, lots of things strike you as funny.) Quite a few hungry babies (and at least one family dog) got impromptu showers when the let-down came on too strong, and more than one groggy mum forgot to button up before answering the front door to the postman... Oops.

“I couldn't understand why there was milk all over her face; it turned out I was so full I was squirting her in the eye!”

But in the end, it’s all worth it, isn’t it? Our group of proud parents said that the convenience, closeness and confidence that they were doing everything they could to give their babies a good start in life made breastfeeding a positive experience for them (and presumably their babies as well!)

Did our survey results ring a bell with you, or were your experiences totally different? We’d love to hear about your baby’s first few weeks! You can catch up with us on Twitter or Facebook, or add a comment below.



Categories: About Hipp Organic, Baby development, Milk feeding, Pregnancy

Actions: Permalink | Comments (0)

According to parents, choking is their no. 1 concern when starting to wean.

Posted on 5 April 2016 by lindsay


We recently asked over 6,000 parents about the various standout moments in their little one’s development. When we asked about weaning, choking was the number 1 concern. So we asked St John Ambulance if they could give our parents some guidance on this topic. Here’s what they said:

Introducing your baby to solid foods can feel scary. At St John Ambulance, we’re often asked by parents what to do if their baby starts choking during mealtimes, because four out of five admit to not knowing.* No wonder Hipp Organic’s recent survey has found that choking during the weaning stage is the biggest concern for mums and dads.

The transition from liquid to solid meals is a period which can pose a real risk, however it need not be frightening. As with almost every emergency, the best way you can prepare is to know what to do in the worst case scenario.

As a parent, it feels like there are so many tips to juggle. Luckily, a few simple pointers can ensure a smooth transition from liquids to mushy food. Before all else, the biggest step is ensuring your baby is ready for the change. After a six month period, you should notice that:

  • Your baby can sit upright, holding their head steady
  • They can co-ordinate their eyes, hands and mouth to look at and pick up/swallow food

When you choose to start weaning your baby, there are many informative articles to help you through the process. It’s vital to stay present while your child eats, even if he or she has been weaning for months without any problems. This could be the difference between spotting a life-threatening incident and remaining ignorant until it’s too late.

When a baby chokes, they may become distressed, have noisy breathing, or be unable to cry or cough. If food blocks your baby’s airways, it is vital to act fast remembering these four steps – you can also watch this video:

  1. Slap it out. Sit down and lay them face down along your thigh supporting their head. Supporting the baby's head, give up to five sharp blows between their shoulder blades with the heel of your hand
  2. Check their mouth for obstructions. If you can, pick the object out carefully with your fingertips without pushing it further in
  3. Squeeze it out. If the back blows fail to clear the blockage, give up to five chest thrusts: With the baby laid face up along the length of your thigh, put two fingers just below the level of their nipples and push inwards and downwards, towards the baby's head up to five times.
    Keep checking the mouth for obstructions and repeat back blows and chest thrusts up to three times, until you've dislodged what's stopping their breathing.
  4. Call for help. If they're still choking, call 999 or 112. Continue steps 2 and 3 until what’s in there has cleared, help arrives, or they become conscious.

For more advice or to attend a St John Ambulance baby first aid course, designed for parents, carers, and parents-to-be for £25 + VAT go to www.sja.org.uk/NurseryRhymesInc

*Research carried out in November 2014 by Opinion Matters on behalf of St John Ambulance. 4,000 parents in England surveyed.

By Clive James, St John Ambulance Training Officer



Categories: Baby development, Pregnancy, Weaning

Actions: Permalink | Comments (0)

You’re pregnant – congratulations! (Now what?)

Posted on 4 March 2016 by Admin


All you veteran mums out there - do you remember the moment you first realised you were pregnant? Chances are, it’s permanently emblazoned on your memory – because whether your pregnancy is a much-anticipated, longed-for event or a total surprise, seeing that little blue line or hearing those words from your GP is a moment that changes your life forever.

First, there’s the adrenaline rush – the unmistakable sensation of a major milestone being reached. Many women simply sit and stare at the test for a few long moments, as if it might change if they take their eyes off of it. And the monologue in your head might sound something like this:

Right, so I’m pregnant. We’re going to be parents. Oh my, I’m going to be a MUM. Like, with a REAL BABY. But I’ve never even changed a nappy! This is real - WE’RE GOING TO BE PARENTS. OMG, what on earth do I do now??

As soon as the shock has worn off a bit, and you’ve told your partner the happy news, however, you’ll probably find yourself with questions. Lots and lots of questions. And one of them will probably be, “Who should I call first?”

Of course you’ll likely want to tell your best friend and your parents…and your partner’s parents, but don’t put the phone down just yet: if you’ve taken a home pregnancy test, you’ll also want to ring your GP surgery to make an appointment. They will set you up for antenatal care with a midwife (including those exciting ultrasound scans, when you’ll get your first glimpse of your little one!) You’ll have up to 10 appointments over the course of your pregnancy, to make sure your baby is growing well and answer any questions you have.

After those three exciting calls, though, you may want to pause for thought. Yes, you now have the biggest, most delicious secret of your life... but many experienced mums would advise you to keep the news fairly close to your chest, at least at first.

Why? For one thing, if you’re working, you’ll want to make a well-thought-out decision about when to inform your boss (see our article on Your Rights at Work for more information on this). The other reason is more sobering, but still worth considering: while they are still rare, 80% of all miscarriages happen in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. So while you’ll almost certainly want to tell your family and close friends, you may decide you’d rather not post the announcement on Facebook or Instagram just yet.


A few other things you may want to do in the early weeks of your pregnancy:

  • Think ahead. Yes, it’s still nearly 10 months until your little bundle of joy will actually make an entrance, but regardless, one of the first things you’ll be asked is where you want to have your baby. Would you rather have a hospital birth, or do you prefer the more homely environment of a birth centre? Or perhaps you’d like to aim for a homebirth? You’ll probably have lots of questions while you’re considering, but that’s okay – your midwife is a great resource to help fill in any gaps in your knowledge.
  • Write things down. It’s a great idea to keep a notebook handy, whether you use it to jot down questions for your midwife or muse about what you’re feeling, or your hopes and dreams for your baby-to-be... any and all of it will be precious later on, particularly when your child asks you what it was like when he or she was in your tummy!
  • Get out the camera. Documenting your changing body is a fun way to mark the weeks of your pregnancy; many women take a weekly or monthly shot in the same position to show that gorgeous bump getting bigger. Photo printing websites like Snapfish offer pregnancy photo book formats that will turn your pics into a lovely keepsake (and if you join our HiPP Baby Club, you can order one for half price!)
  • Give some thought to how you’re going to ‘eat for two.’ Granted, in the first couple of months of pregnancy food may be the last thing you want to think about, but it’s worth having a quick look at the best foods to eat during pregnancy, and those that are best avoided. (After all, your appetite’s bound to come back sometime!) And if you’re not already taking a prenatal vitamin with folic acid, now’s definitely the time to start.
  • Follow along from the outside. Keeping track of what’s going on in your burgeoning belly is fascinating – for example, did you know that your baby’s tiny heart begins to beat as early as the sixth week of pregnancy? Our pregnancy week by week calendar gives you a glimpse into the amazing things happening inside!

 Most of all, though, any mother would tell you to try to relax and really enjoy this heady time – it’s unlike any other, and you’ll remember it for the rest of your life!

 Experienced mums, help the newbies out: what did you do – or wish you’d done – early in your pregnancy? If we’ve missed out on any great ideas, let us know in the comments section!


Tags: , , ,

Categories: About Hipp Organic, Pregnancy

Actions: Permalink | Comments (0)

Thinking of having a home birth?

Posted on 17 March 2015 by faguet

If you like the idea of having that first cuddle in your own home, new guidance was published last year by NICE (National Institute of Health and Care Excellence) that might help: statistics show that home birth is just as safe as hospital birth for low risk women having their second child or more. So if your pregnancy is going well, you are in good health and your first delivery was straightforward, then you could think about planning a home birth.  But even if this is your first baby, it could be right for you too - your midwife will help you decide.  And don't worry, you can change your mind at any time and have your baby in a birth centre or labour ward.

On the day, two midwifes are usually present, one arriving earlier during labour and one just before delivery.  This means that, in an emergency, one midwife can care for you and one for your baby. 

A few weeks prior to your due date, you will need to ensure that you have the appropriate equipment at home as well as your normal maternity bag.  Here are some of the things you might need:

·         plastic sheet to protect floor, sofa or bed

·         old towels or sheet to put onto of the plastic sheet

·         containers in case you feel sick during labour

·         a warm blanket - bin liner

·         a desk light for your midwife

·         clean warm towels for the baby or baby blanket.


Tags: , , , , , ,

Categories: Pregnancy

Actions: Permalink | Comments (0)

Introducing lumps to your baby's diet

Posted on 16 March 2015 by Helen