Special Situations

Family Midwifes

The family midwife takes care of pregnant women, young families, or single parents, who are in a difficult situation. She will visit you at home and show you how to feed your baby correctly and what needs your baby has. She also informs you of who you can turn to in case you have problems. Family midwives accompany families and children up to the first birthday of the child, in order to ensure a smooth start to your new life.

Their service is available for special circumstances, such as:

  • Teen-pregnancies
  • Excessive family demands
  • Families who live in social isolation
  • Families with low income
  • Families with premature infants
  • Burdens or illnesses
  • Families with addiction problems
  • Families with domestic violence situation
  • Families with a migration background and lack of integration into the health system
  • Chronic diseases in the family
  • Women/partners with mental health problems

Main focuses of the work are:

  • Advice for all circumstances around the birth of a child
  • Promoting the parent-child-relationship
  • Observation of the child’s development
  • Advice and guidance regarding age-appropriate nutrition, care, and support
  • Accompaniment to doctors and offices and support for participation in screening and prevention measures for mother and child
  • Integration of the family in existing group offers
  • Motivation of mother and child in difficult living circumstances through self-help
  • Network and collaboration regarding closure of health care gaps and possible referral to other aids

Family counseling and early childhood health promotion Bremerhaven
The family counselors advise you in pregnancy and in the first three years of life of your child.

Bremerhaven-Leherheide-West, Hans-Böckler-Straße 36 F
Telefon 0471 66128
Offene Sprechstunde Di + Do 9.00 –11.00 Uhr

Bremerhaven-Lehe, Lutherstraße 7 (in der „Theo“)
Telefon 0471 52133
Offene Sprechstunde Di + Do 9.00 –11.00 Uhr

Bremerhaven-Geestemünde, Voßstraße 41
Telefon 0471 38633
Offene Sprechstunde Di + Do 9.00 –11.00 Uhr
Other appointments and home visits by appointment.

Family Midwives Bremen
Help with social and medical burden , for pregnant women and mothers and fathers with children up to the first year of life .
(0421) 361 152 45
Opening hours Monday, Wednesday to Friday 9.00 – 12.00 h
Tuesday 9:00 to 10:00 h ( otherwise answering machine)

Home visit program Pro Kind
Pro Kind accompanied pregnant women and their families to the child’s second birthday . Applications are open to all who are expecting their first child and are in a special situation. Pro Kind is voluntary and free .
Deutsches Rotes Kreuz, Pro Kind
(0421) 3403 211
Office hours: Monday to Friday , 10:00 to 12:00 h

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Crying Babies

Why does our child cry so extremely? We have done everything we can to make him feel comfortable!
These are the thoughts that some desperate parents have after they carried their dearly loved child, well-fed and freshly diapered, around for an entire night. All babies cry, but some cry more than others and it can be difficult to calm them down. Even if the parents have done everything they possibly can to satisfy the baby’s needs. Sometimes, the crying doesn’t stop for hours and finds its peak especially in the evening hours.

The causes can be very diverse and vary from simple bloating to allergies, sensory overload, stress and an inappropriate sleeping environment to the KISS syndrome and other diseases. Sometimes, even simple aids and a change in the parent’s approach might help, but sometimes some detective work is required to find the cause.

There are different places and facilities in Bremerhaven and Bremen that offer advice and support to families with crying babies and babies with sleeping and feeding problems. Parents of babies with regulation disorders can learn how to interpret the behavior of their baby correctly. The baby shall be supported with the help of calming measures to find his balance again.

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Premature Birth

Babies, which are born before the 37th week of pregnancy, are called premature babies or preemies. Their senses and their bodily functions are not yet fully mature. In this case, it is safer when the baby is born in a hospital with an attached pediatric clinic, since a possible transfer to a different hospital is not necessary.

A premature baby is not used to the life outside of the warm and protective womb and needs, depending on the week of pregnancy, time to mature.

The emotional and physical support for the preemie by the parents is very important for his development. Breast feeding is especially valuable, since it adapts to the individual needs of the baby and it also supplies the necessary nutrients and protective antibodies for the baby. This results into an optimal protection against infection.

Support by the midwife during the pregnancy
Sick leave, rest and/or stress reduction and relief provided by a domestic helper, have proven to add to the successful treatment of premature contractions. In addition to the doctor’s visits, the midwife can assist you at home. Through relaxation exercises, advice regarding nutrition and lifestyle habits, as well as through discussions, she will assist you in looking at finding solutions, which provide support and relief to you.

Support by the midwife after giving birth
Every woman’s body must recover after giving birth. Women who have given birth to her baby prematurely usually do not get the chance to recover. Visits to the pediatric clinic take priority, so that the women delay their recovery. The midwife can help out. Even if the baby is still in stationary care, the mother is entitled to help from a midwife.

And even during the time after the baby is released from the hospital, many questions and uncertainties arise that require clarification, for which the midwife is helpful. The midwife will provide assistance with breastfeeding and/or with pumping breast milk and feeding, as well as the care of the baby and determining roles in the new situation of life.

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Miscarriage and Stillbirth

Miscarriage and stillbirth, birth and death are very close. Some parents have to go through this painful experience, which deprives them of a life with their child. Some children die very early in the pregnancy and enter this world as a miscarriage; some children die shortly before the expected date of birth. Often, there is no reason for the death of the child and the parents are visibly affected and helpless facing this stroke of fate.
But even if the reason is a serious illness of the child, and the parents may have been aware of this, the pain of they share is no less.

Monitoring of women and couples encountering a miscarriage or giving birth to their dead child is a service provided by the midwife. Knowledge of the importance of the grieving process is a requirement for the competent support for the affected parents. Some midwives have dealt specifically with monitoring grieving parents. If interested, please contact the Bremen Midwives Association.
Supporting information can be found on our links page.

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Postpartum Depression

After the birth of their baby, all parents hope for a happy start to their lives together. Sometimes it happens differently, and mothers are extremely insecure and at a loss if other, unexpected feelings arise rather than the happiness they expected.

  • Joy and energy for anything seems to be lost
  • Worries and fears become loyal companions
  • Exhaustion and excessive demands exist despite sleep
  • Shame and doubt spread, even a „normal“ mother would not feel so

These and similar, unforeseen feelings are experienced by 10 – 20% of all mothers on different emotional levels. These are not bad mothers, but they are desperate mothers. Short-term psychological instability, also known as “baby blues,” is not meant herewith. It refers to emotions that feel like an iron band around your heart, without hope of improvement. This can develop during the first few days after giving birth, but sometimes not until weeks or months later.

Have confidence in your midwife to enable her to support you in this emotional state.

Additional and supporting information can be found on our link page.

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Domestic Violence

Pregnancy and birth are a time of upheaval. These changes can mean a variety of stressors for the partnership, which are not always a positive impact on the relationship. Sometimes, conflicts are not solved without violence.

The extent of violence against women is high: one in four women have experienced violence by their partner at least once, one in seven women reported sexual violence (Schröttle / Müller 2004).

Often, this has consequences for the health: not only can physical injuries result, but sleep disorders, depression, pain, or excessive consumption of cigarettes or alcohol can occur. The health of the newborn might already be affected.

Get support. Talk to your midwife.
There are many facilities where you can find free help – also anonymously and via telephone.

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Domestic Help / Family Care

Family Care during pregnancy
If a pregnant woman is not able to manage her household due to complications during her pregnancy (e.g. premature labor pains, premature birth efforts or extreme vomiting due to the pregnancy), a physician may prescribe domestic help/family care in accordance with § 24h SGB V. In this case, it is not required that a child under the age of 12 lives in the same household, as is usual.

Family Care in puerperal
Domestic help/family care after birth is also addressed by § 24h SGBV. The prescription for domestic help/family care through a midwife is, in principle, possible for the first six days after birth. Almost all health insurance companies grant up to eight hours per day, if it is requested by the midwife or as directed by the doctor during this period, and if the family filed an application. Domestic help/family care can be arranged through family care services or can be arranged privately.

Prenatal Diagnosis

„I am pregnant will my child be healthy?“ That is the question posed by expectant mothers and fathers for generations. Prenatal diagnosis seems to offer, on one hand, a reassurance for women and couples and, on the other hand, they also raise a variety of questions:

  • What does it mean if I decide for a prenatal diagnosis, and what happens if I decide against it?
  • How will prenatal diagnosis change my pregnancy experience?
  • What does it mean for my life, if my child is handicapped, or a handicap was diagnosed?

If question about the health of the child suddenly arise due to an ultrasound examination, which require additional examinations, the pregnant women suddenly and unexpected faces the conflict of having to make a decision. First, whether or not to pursue further diagnostics, then – as a possible consequence – for or against her unborn child.
Women should be informed about risks and significance and possible consequences before each prenatal examination.

For additional information, please visit our Linksite.
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