birth, breastfeeding, and postpartum resources in Fairbanks

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local prenatal and birth resources

  • Hypnobirthing childbirth education is available locally from two instructors:
    • Insights Hypnotherapy, Jim Conner.  The four-session class uses Marie Mongan's book HypnoBirthing, a copy of which is included in the tuition for the course.    
    • Change Made Easy, Nevada Walton.  nevadawalton@hotmail.com | (907) 378-9470
       
  • Childbirth classes are taught monthly at both Fairbanks Memorial Hospital (weekday evening classes) and at Tanana Valley Clinic (weekend classes).  For information on the classes available through Foundation Health Partners, click here.   Alaska Family Health and Birth Center also offers a childbirth class once a month on a Saturday, taught by Kate Parks, CDM, CPM.  For more information or to register, please call (907) 456-3719.
     
  • Arctic Family Circle Prenatal Education Group: A three-session childbirth preparation course is available at Alaska Family Health and Birth Center, and is available to any expectant parent (you don't need to be a Birth Center patient or to plan to deliver there in order to take the course: "Whether you are giving birth at a hospital, home, or birth center, we believe that birth outcomes are improved by replacing fear with knowledge of your health and trust in your body.  Learn how to have a happy pregnancy, birth, and postpartum and give your family the best possible start.").  Beginning in July 2018, classes are on Wednesdays on a rotating basis from 10:00 to 11:30 a.m.  Please call the front desk at (907) 456-3719 to register.
     
  • Lunch with the midwives: the last Tuesday of every month, you are invited to join the midwives at Alaska Family Health and Birth Center for a potluck lunch with the midwives from 12:00 to 2:00 p.m; no reservation is needed, but check their Facebook page or give them a ring to verify that the potluck will be happening.  
     
  • Doulas are birth professionals who are dedicated to supporting the laboring mother (while also often supporting partners through the process, as well).  Studies have shown that having a doula present during labor reduces the incidence of cesarean delivery by 30-50% .  In the words of John Kennell, M.D., "If a doula were a drug, it would be unethical not to use it."  Fairbanks is fortunate to be the home to a number of amazing doulas, who can often be found on the Facebook page Doulas of the FNSB.   Please also check out the list of currently practicing doulas that appears below.  (Note: I'll do my best to keep this list updated, but please let me know if there are any inaccuracies, or if I need to add anyone!)
     
  • Placenta Encapsulation is offered by several local birth professionals, including Parvati BirthConfident Beginnings Birth Services; Monica Mazakis (monicamazakis@hotmail.com); and Will Hutto (will.huto.doula@gmail.com).
      
  • Chiropractors who specialize in the care of pregnant women can be a complete and total game changer when it comes to the discomforts ( - or completely debilitating pain - ) that can come with pregnancy, including but not limited to sacral, back, hip, and pelvic pain.  They can ALSO be incredibly helpful in helping baby achieve positions that are advantageous for labor and birth.  Fairbanks has several chiropractors who specialize in this type of care, including Dr. Heather Gappert at Fairbanks Chiropractic Clinic; Life Sprout Chiropractic; Spaulding Chiropractic; and Woodland Wellness Center
     
  • Osteopathic Manipulation can also be a great relief for physical pain during pregnancy.  Several of the D.O.s at TVC's Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine Clinic specialize in the care of pregnant women.  
     
  • Acupuncture is another treatment that can offer what is sometimes tremendous relief during pregnancy, including in the drug-free treatment of morning sickness.  Some acupuncturists can even help naturally "induce" labor for post-dates mamas or encourage breech babies to turn.  Here in Fairbanks, Shilo Hargrave of Asian Acupuncture treats pregnant and postpartum women, as does Katie Schalberg at Tian Acupuncture.  Paula Kunkle at Holisitc Medical Clinic also specializes in the treatment of expecting mamas and infertility treatments, and Spaulding Chiropractic also offers acupuncture.  
     
  • Moxibustion is a traditional Chinese medicine therapy using moxa made from dried mugwort.  It has been known to help turn breech babies.  Locally, it is available at Tian Acupuncture and at Spaulding Chiropractic.  

  • Henna is a beautiful addition to a blessingway or baby shower.  There are several wonderful local artists who are also doulas and birth professionals, including Georganne of Cloud 9 Doula Services.  

  • Prenatal Yoga classes are offered locally through Heart Stream Yoga and TraxYoga.  In addition, Parvati Birth offers a variety of other prenatal fitness as well.  Jasmine Johnson-Kennedy also teaches private prenatal yoga classes and offers Reiki to expecting mothers.  

  • Home Birth Midwifery and prenatal care are available through the Alaska Family Health and Birth Center (for women who have low-risk pregnancies and have not had a prior cesarean section delivery).   

 

Local Birth Doulas: 

  • Cloud 9 Doula Services - Georganne Hampton.  (907) 427-2229 | cloud9doula@gmail.com 
  • Jennifer Waters.  (907) 460-7250
  • Parvati Birth - Jessica Christenson.  (907) 347-9916 |  parvatibirth@live.com
  • Heavenly Doula Services - Jean Fifield, RN, LCCE, CD (DONA).  (907) 378-7881 | northpolejean@yahoo.com 
  • Confident Beginnings Birth Services - Kassandra Ryan.  (907) 347-8300 | birthdoula@cbbirthservices.com 
  • Joy Unspeakable Birth Services - Dawn Tozier and Andrea McEwen.  (907) 347-6762 (Dawn) and (907) 460-2372 (Andrea) | tozier.dawn@gmail.com and ak5homegrown@gmail.com
  • Cause of Our Joy Birth Services - Alani Ralston.  (254) 833-7825 | adralston@yahoo.com
  • Beautiful Births and Beyond Doula Services - Stephanie Rundle.  (907) 687-0875 | kenandsteph2004@gmail.com
  • Cherished Moments - Courtney Chamberlain-Lewis.  (907) 460-8712 | pretty_in_pink99709@hotmail.com
  • Kith+Kin Birth Services - Ayla Fagre.  (303) 859-6310 | kithkin.doulaf@gmail.com
  • Juniper Jade Birth & Botanicals Professional Doula Services - Rachael Stanze.  (612) 801-4419 | rachael.stanze@gmail.com
  • Will Huto (doula in training) (907) 750 - 3092 | will.hutto.doula@gmail.com
  • Jessica Hunneyman (907) 687-7185 | jessica.h.birth@gmail.com
  • Your Journey Birth Services - Jennifer Willeford, IBCLC, birth doula.  (907) 347-5498 | yourjourneybirthservices@gmail.com
  • Labor of Love Doula Services - Rosella Middleton.  (907) 488-5317 | rosellamiddleton5@gmail.com

For postpartum doulas, please scroll down to the Postpartum Resources section!  


breastfeeding support in fairbanks

  • The Successful Breastfeeding Class is taught at the Fairbanks Public Health Center every month by Public Health's wonderful IBCLCs (International Board Certified Lactation Consultants) and is especially intended for mamas (and their partners) in their last trimesters of pregnancy.  Free of charge, it is currently offered on the fourth Tuesday of each month from 6:00 to 8:30 p.m.  For more information on the class or to register, please call 907-451-1629 or see their flier here.  
     
  • WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) supports and promotes breastfeeding and employs several IBCLCs on staff to help WIC clients reach their breastfeeding goals.  
     
  • The Tanana Chiefs Conference WIC Program at Chief Andrew Isaac Hospital offers peer support counselors, information, and short-term pump rental for WIC clients.  (907) 451-6682 | option 3778
     
  • The Virtual Breastfeeding Support - RCPC WIC- Fairbanks Facebook Group is a truly incredible local resource.  You do NOT have to be a WIC client to join the group; anyone is welcome to join and participate.  The group admins are RCPC peer breastfeeding counselors and WIC's IBCLCs.   Group members are encouraged to ask questions, provide peer support, and reach out for help and resources when needed.  
     
  • Resource Center for Parents and Children (RCPC) offers several breastfeeding resources, including a bi-weekly peer support potluck group, a monthly breastfeeding class for pregnant women, a pumping class, and a lending library.  
     
  • Breast pumps & equipment: RCPC maintains an excellent list here of local sources.
     
  • The Fairbanks Breastfeeding Coalition is a wonderful place to participate in local breastfeeding advocacy and to stay apprised of what the breastfeeding community has in the works in terms of education, support, and events.  FBC also presents several annual opportunities to serve the community, including the Parent Pit Stop at the Tanana Valley State Fair, a booth at the Women's Affair, and an annual juried breastfeeding art show.  FBC is one Facebook here.  You can get more information on the monthly meetings or subscribe to the email list by contacting Laura Kolasa at laura.kolasa@alaska.gov.  
     
  • Fairbanks Regional Public Health Center has a number of RNs who are also IBCLCs on staff who will see mamas in clinic or at home to provide breastfeeding assistance, assessment of problems, information, and referrals to other community resources.  LET ME REPEAT: home visits.  HOME VISITS.  At this time, these visits are often low-cost on a sliding scale or completely free of charge as a service provided by public health.  (907) 452-1776; ask to speak to a lactation consultant.
     
  • Chiropractic care can often help newborns who are having trouble getting the hang of nursing (and is great for postpartum mamas, too).  Dr. Gappert at Fairbanks Chiropractic Clinic is specially trained to care for newborns and babies, as are the providers at Life Sprout Chiropractic and Spaulding Chiropractic.  
     
  • Osteopathic Manipulation can also help newborns with latch or other feeding issues, as well as many other concerns.  Several of the D.O.s at TVC's Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine Clinic specialize in the treatment of newborns.  
     
  • Massage can help babies who have difficulty latching or feeding due to muscle stiffness, torticollis, and a host of other situations.  Woodland Wellness has an LMT on staff who is specifically trained to treat newborns and babies, and other LMTs who offer postnatal massage to moms.  Spaulding Chiropractic also offers postnatal massage, and the Alaska Family Health and Birth Center also has an LMT on staff who specializes in prenatal and postpartum bodywork.
     
  • Jessica Harper, IBCLC has a private practice providing breastfeeding support and education through one-on-one visits.  She is currently located in Anchorage, but may still be able to offer support via phone, Face Time, and/or Skype.  I encourage you to check out her website (linked) to see all that she offers.  (907) 687-7401
     
  • Olivia Claire Doula + Lactation Services.  (334) 208-1259 | http://www.oliviaclairedoula.com
     
  • Bassett Army Community Hospital: military families can speak to Jennifer Hyatt, RN, IBCLC.  (907) 361-4000 | option 4 | option 1 | option 2.  
     
  • Fairbanks Memorial Hospital's Women's Center holds a New Parent Clinic by appointment only, for breastfeeding assistance (several RNs on staff are IBCLCs).  Your baby does have had to have been born at FMH to attend, but you do have to have a referral from your care provider in order to schedule an appointment.  (907) 458-2000
     
  • Breastfeeding and Alaska Law flier - courtesy of the Fairbanks Breastfeeding Coalition
     
  • How to Make Your Business Breastfeeding-Friendly flier - courtesy of the Fairbanks Breastfeeding Coalition
     
  • Breastmilk Donation and Peer Milk Sharing: Alaska has two groups dedicated to facilitating peer-to-peer breastmilk donation, Human Milk 4 Human Babies and Eats On Feets.  

postpartum/the fourth trimester

  • Postpartum doulas are trained to provide expert support to the new parent, whether it's your first baby or forth (or fifth, or sixth).  They help transition the mama-baby pair into life together by setting you up with everything you'll need to spend your "babymoon" bonding with your baby.  This can include nutritional advice and food preparation, light housework, breastfeeding support, and support for recovering from childbirth.
    • Charmed Mothercare - Pheobe Kersula.  (907) 378-1940 | pkersula@gmail.com
    • Molly Lemen (907) 460-9679 | brigidshearth@hotmail.com
    • Confident Beginnings Birth Services - Kassanda Ryan.  (907) 347-8300 | birthdoula@cbbirthservices.com
    • Cherished Moments - Courtney Chamberlain-Lewis.  (907) 460-8712 | pretty_in_pink99709@hotmail.com
    • Joy Unspeakable Birth Services - Dawn Tozier and Andrea McEwen.  (907) 347-6762 (Dawn) and (907) 460-2372 (Andrea) | tozier.dawn@gmail.com and ak5homegrown@gmail.com
    • Cause of Our Joy Birth Services - Alani Ralston.  (254) 833-7825 | adralston@yahoo.com
    • Beautiful Births and Beyond Doula Services - Stephanie Rundle.  (907) 687-0875 | kenandsteph2004@gmail.com
    • Olivia Claire Doula + Lactation Services.  (334) 208-1259 | http://www.oliviaclairedoula.com
    • Your Journey Birth Services - Jennifer Willeford, IBCLC, birth doula.  (907) 347-5498 | yourjourneybirthservices@gmail.com
    • Labor of Love Doula Services - Rosella Middleton.  (907) 488-5317 | rosellamiddleton5@gmail.com
  • Postpartum Support Group at the Alaska Family Health and Birth Center: "Adjusting to life with a new baby takes time—and support. We invite all of our mothers, fathers, and anyone else who needs it to join the postpartum support group that meets at the Alaska Family Health & Birth Center. Topics can include newborn care, adjustments to parenthood, self-care, relationship changes, breastfeeding/bottle feeding, body image, ect. Anyone with a supportive heart and open mind is welcome. Come to offer support, or receive it, free of charge."  This group meets on the first Tuesday of each month at 6:00 p.m. and is facilitated by Heather Vest, CMT, LMT (907-687-1638).  
     
  • Counseling is now available on site at the Alaska Family Health and Birth Center.  For more information, please go here.  
     
  • The Fairbanks Memorial Hospital Parents' Warm Line is a phone service available to any parent of a newborn in the community (your baby does not have to have been born at FMH).  Call to leave a message and a health care professional will call you back ASAP.  (907) 458-5210 | (907) 452-4588
     
  • Interior Coalition for Perinatal Wellness - For more information, please see their Facebook page (linked) or call (206) 755-6708.

  • New Mothers' Support Group at Headwaters Wellness and Counseling meets every Wednesday at 11 a.m. at a cost of $10/session.  RSVP to (907) 456-2256.
     
  • RCPC Cuddle Cure Class is designed for babies from 0-3 months of age and their parents, as well as anyone else who has the best interests of a "fussy" baby at heart.  Based on the book "The Happiest Baby on the Block."    
     
  • RCPC Sling It Forward Program provides loaner baby carriers and informal babywearing instruction to any local parent (you do not have to be a WIC client) for up to 60 days, free of charge.  It's an amazing resource!  
     
  • Postpartum Yoga for mamas is offered at Trax Yoga, as is a Mama-Baby Yoga Class.  Heart Stream Yoga also offers a mama-baby yoga class that often incorporates babywearing!
     
  • Postpartum Massage is offered by Heather Vest, LMT, at the Alaska Family Health and Birth Center or on-location by appointment.  
     
  • Car Seat Technicians.  You can make sure your carseat is installed correctly, and that you are using the restraints correctly on your baby or toddler, by seeing a certified carseat technician.  The Fairbanks Fire Department often has a car seat tech available, as does Public Health.  In addition, Kassandra Ryan of Confident Beginnings Doula is certified and takes appointments.  
     
  • ICAN: the closest chapter of the International Cesarean Awareness Network is the South Central Alaska branch, but it can still be a great resource for connecting with other moms and learning about the healthcare options within the state.  The South Central Alaska Facebook page is here, and they also have a closed Facebook group you can request to join for in-depth discussion and advocacy.
     
  • The Babywearing Walkalong Group of Fairbanks on Facebook: a group of local babywearing enthusiasts and a great place to meet other moms.  Members are encouraged to organize babywearing walks and events as well as share information and education among the group.  If you're having trouble finding the right carrier or getting babywearing in general to work for you, this is a fantastic resource for peer support, tips, and tricks.  
     
  • Serenity Grows Postpartum Wellness.  Maranda Bower is actually based in the Palmer area and has built an amazing, interactive online community centered around postpartum wellbeing, self-care, and connection.  I highly recommend checking out her website full of resources and subscribing to her newsletter.   

more information:

not necessarily local, but some great stuff nonetheless.  

  • spinningbabies.com: a great resource for safe tips, tricks, and exercises for helping your baby achieve an ideal position for labor and birth, including turning breech babies.  
     
  • birthwithoutfearblog.com: dedicated to sharing birth stories and other information to empower women in motherhood, whatever their individual journey may look like.  Also the host of an active social media community on Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat.  
     
  • 4thtrimesterbodies.com: the photo-journalism activism of Ashlee Dean Wells dedicated to body positivity, empowerment, and celebrating ALL mothers.  Founder of the Stop Censoring Motherhood movement.  
     
  • thebusinessofbeingborn.com: both the site and the series of documentaries by the same title are full of incredibly valuable information.
     
  • Postpartum Support International.  PSI Warmline: 1-800-944-4773
     
  • "Unsolicited Advice": a reading list of books I personally found helpful and informational during my pregnancies.  :)  Click here to view as a PDF.  

 


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