The Fundamentals of Living a Happier and Healthier Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a blessing in itself. Nonetheless, it is essential to strive for a good pregnancy. If you talk about a good pregnancy, it is not just all about being physically healthy. While it is important, it is equally important for expectant methods to be happy, prepared, and mentally calm. In this article, you will read about the fundamentals of living a happier and healthier pregnancy and how you can keep the body and mind in harmony.

1. Eat and drink healthy
Eat a balanced and varied diet. The key to eating healthy while pregnant is to consume food rich in vitamins and essential nutrients like iron, folic acid, iodine, and calcium but not in fats. The diet must be varied in terms of required dairy products, fruits, vegetables, legumes, cereals, and some fish and meat proteins. A healthy diet also means keeping yourself properly hydrated. Drink enough water and milk for your much-needed calcium. Consume juices that are natural and not sugary. Avoid drinking coffee and alcoholic beverages during these times.

2. Take recommended vitamin supplements
In addition to a healthy diet, your doctor will be recommending you vitamin and mineral supplements like folic acid, iron, calcium, iodine and more for the benefit of your pregnancy. By taking them, you will help in the proper development of the fetus growing inside of you. You are also able to avoid deficiencies that may complicate the pregnancy, the baby, and the mother.

3. Do regular exercises
While pregnant, it is still essential to perform appropriate physical exercises to maintain an ideal weight and ensure your overall well-being. You can do some walking, swimming, Pilates, and yoga, as necessary. By performing regular moderate exercises, you will be able to improve your muscular and cardiovascular condition and maintain a good posture. Your overall physical condition will be improved and you will be dealing with fewer risks with your pregnancy and childbirth.

4. Visit your gynecologist regularly
Visiting your gynecologist regularly allows them to provide you with proper prenatal care and do the necessary tests for the safety of your pregnancy. This ensures that health of you as the mother as well as that of your baby. These tests allow you and your partner to have more peace of mind about the baby growing inside you. Having ultrasonography tests even allows you to get close with your baby.

5. Wear pregnancy-appropriate clothing
Always choose to wear comfortable clothing even your shoes to give way to your increasing volume and weight. By doing so, you can help your blood circulate better and your movements be correct and not forced. You can also keep your skin healthy. Wearing appropriate clothing does not imply that you will be dressing like potato bags. Today, being pregnant holds a lot of fashion opportunities and you see a number of stores that now sell beautiful maternity clothes. You can rest wearing heels but still favor beautiful and more comfortable shoes and sandals.

6. Pamper your mind
Aside from taking care of your body, you need to also make some time to take care of and relax your mind. Your body is not only vulnerable during pregnancy but also your mind. You can feel better by doing relaxation exercises and finding your own tranquility. You can continue to do some reading, crafts, going out of the country, and going to the movies.

Top Tips to Keeping Your Kids Safe Come the Holiday Season

Now that the holiday season is fast approaching, you have to make sure to find ways to keep your kids safe at all times whether it be inside of your home or outside. To help you out on this matter, here are some top tips to keep the safety of your children in mind.

• Trim your tree safely
According to the National Fire Protection Association, Christmas trees cause about 210 house fires yearly. You may go with a fireproof artificial tree; however, your children may miss out on selecting and trimming a fresh tree. To be sure that you keep your tree out of dangers and fires, go with the fresh tree in the lot. Make sure to keep it away from heating sources and keep them saturated with water at all times. Cut off any low branches that could poke the eyes of your kids. Also, if you must put the tree in a wide-based stand, you should secure the tree from tipping over.

• Decorate safely
In the early 1500s, Martin Luther started adding lit candles to the holiday tree. Until this time, sparkling lights always remain a staple in every holiday decor. However, you have to be cautious with burning candles. Make sure to teach your children not to touch the flame, place them away from surface edges, and remove any flammable paper and fabrics within the vicinity of the lit candles.

If you will be using string lights rather than burning candles, make sure to go with lights and cords that have been approved by the Underwriters Lab. Take the time to inspect each strand for loose connections and exposed or frayed wires before plugging them in. Also, for every extension cord, only attach up to three strings of these lights. Your home insurance will most likely include accident coverage. Nonetheless, you just have to make sure to keep your children away when you secure your lights and cords for them to not trip on them or pull them.

Aside from lights, you will no doubt be using other holiday decorations. If you have small children around, avoid using small decorations since they are choking hazards. In the same manner, you should avoid using marbles as decorations or any item that looks like candy. Avoid using ribbons or tinsels that could twist around the toes or fingers of your little ones. For creches and glass angels, place them on high shelves that will make be hard to reach for children.

• Bake safely
Animal crackers started in the late 1800s while decorative boxes started in 1902. If you are planning to make baking holiday treats and animal cookies your family activity during the holidays, here are five safety tips to keep in mind.
1. Always supervise your kids while cooking and baking.
2. Keep a fire extinguisher in your kitchen. Choose one that is comfortable to hold and can handle flammable liquids, ordinary combustibles, and electrical fires.
3. Never let young children consume popcorn, mints, and nuts. They are choking hazards.
4. Keep baking extracts with alcohol content, alcoholic beverages, and alcohol away from your children’s reach.
5. Keep your children away from sharp cooking tools like knives.

Will Doing Household Chores Pose Any Danger to Pregnant Women?

If a woman is pregnant, they tend to do unusual things like doing stuff on whims and eating stuff they do not normally eat. However, when it comes to doing household work, expecting mothers are always provided certain instructions for them. As you know by now, there are some chores that will not be safe for moms-to-be. If you are expecting, you should follow such advice and stop them entirely. There are no safe limits to lifting weights and you should never try to do them while pregnant.

While you are pregnant, your back will be strained from carrying your baby inside of your womb. This is because the center of gravity of your body shifts. Now, if you lift some weight while carrying the baby or do groceries or move heavy furniture and gas cylinder, your back will be put under more strain. Some doctors recommend expecting mothers to not lift weights as it may trigger amniotic sac rupture, premature labor, and bleeding.

When there is a need for you to use certain chemicals like those used for cleaning products, always be sure to use some gloves. Ensure that your room is kept well-ventilated. If possible, avoid the use of chemicals altogether and go with more natural and safer cleaners like vinegar and baking soda. Harsh chemicals like bleach, mosquito spray, and cleaners lead to producing noxious fumes all around you. Avoid them as much as you can. While washing the dishes, make sure to wear gloves. Protect yourself from exposure to spores, hair, and dust if you must do some vacuuming. If you have cats, never clean the cat litter. Cat feces may contain toxoplasmosis that is a rare disease but is very much possible. Make sure to steer clear from people who are smoking. Never inhale second-hand smoke that contains more than 4000 harmful chemicals all in all.

Before consuming any vegetables, make sure to wash them thoroughly. Their soil may be contaminated with pet and wild animals as well with chemicals.

Avoid doing household chores that require you to do some balancing and climbing. Never reach out for stuff on your kitchen cupboard, shelf, or loft. Avoid climbing ladders and stools. You may be graceful but while pregnant, you may not be your usual graceful self and you may fall down. Have another family member or a maid be the one to clean your windows, ceiling fans, and mirrors. Leave concerns associated with your electrical fittings and bulbs to your electrician.

If you must sleep on the floor, have a family member pick up your mattress, bed linen, and quilt. Picking up stuff and bending down will affect your back. Scrubbing the floor and washing your clothes can have some effect on your back. To widen your center of gravity, squat instead of bend to do such stuff.

In addition, avoid standing up for too loin. If you must chop vegetables, pull up a chair and sit down close to a television or near your table. Take the time to do breaks and then complete your work afterwards. Go for dishes that only require a short preparation time or do not require you to stand a long time.

Lastly, divide household duties. To get some exercise while pregnant and while at home, go with the safer chores. Being pregnant is no reason to neglect the cleanliness of your home. But at least, you should get some help.

The Benefits of Chiropractic Care for Your Children

Just by looking at how your children play and get on with their daily activities, you will come to learn that they are much more active than most adults. It may seem extremely unlikely that they are also subject to the same injuries that most adults get. This may seem like it with lower back pain. But then, according to a recent study that looked into the prevalence of lower back pain among children, spinal pain was found to be the most common. In this short article, you will learn more about the common low back pain disorders among children and adolescents and what is the best solution for them.

As mentioned above, children and adolescents tend to be very much active. If you look at children, most especially those belonging in the juvenile age group, you will come to see that they are always in motion. If you let them be, they seem to never stop to sitting still, walking, or even standing. They are often seen running, jumping, hopping, and skipping. Their default setting seems to always be constant movement. Just by looking at them, you will see that they get some joy, happiness, and pleasure just with their vigorous physical movements.

With how exuberant children and adolescents are, it may seem hard to believe that they can be candidates to developing lower back pain. However, a study published in March 2017 by BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders has found that spinal back pain is very much common among both children and adolescents. The research monitored schoolchildren aging between 8 and 15 for three consecutive years. During this duration of time, 55% of the participants experienced at least one or more spine pain episodes. Even if most of the children only have short-lasting periods of such spinal pain, more than one out of every five children had three or more pain episodes during each year of the study. And 17% of all of these episodes lasted for over a month. This has made the researchers conclude that spinal pain is indeed a common problem among children during these ages.

It is basically worth noting, though, that most lower back pain episodes among children happen on an occasional basis and are just short-lived. However, a number of adolescents and juveniles are known to have chronic or reoccurring conditions of back pain. Sadly, children with lower back pain will grow up as adults with back pain. In the United States alone, chronic lower back musculoskeletal pain among adults is already a significant problem. These individuals often always required more healthcare and thus more healthcare monetary expenditures. They tend to suffer more disability that will create some burden on the part of the caregivers as well as the family. They may come to the point of not holding their employment thereby requiring payments in government disability coverage.

Everyone will benefit from minimizing or preventing more of the population from suffering from chronic lower back pain. One of the most effective solutions to putting an end to it will be through the provision of chiropractic care for children. Professional chiropractors are trained to treat and evaluate children with musculoskeletal pain. The care that children get from these professionals are safe, drug-free, nonsurgical, and cost-effective.

Choosing Between a Nanny and a Babysitter

No matter how much you love your children, you still want to have some quiet adult time with your partner, your friends, or even on your own. No one is judging you or your partner. Every parent can relate. But what happens to your children if you have no family living near you that can look after them if you are planning to go out for some adult time, like dinner perhaps? For most parents, hiring a babysitter is the way to go. A babysitter is often a teenager living near you or someone whom your trusted friend knows who will come over and watch your children for a few hours while you are out. This babysitter that you hire will be put in charge of your children, make sure they eat their dinner, and even clean up the dishes after. They also take charge in putting your children to bed and arranging some time for some games to be played or stories to be told.

However, if you are going to go back to work and have children that you do not yet want to put into a daycare, what must you do? For this kind of situation, you should be hiring the services of a nanny. Yes, you read that right. A nanny performs tasks in taking care of children in the same way as babysitters. But then, most nannies do so much more for your children, your family, as well as yourself.

Usually, a babysitter will be paid a flat fee for the evening or by the hour and only after you will return home. For a nanny, on the other hand, their salary will be provided to them bi-weekly or each week for the work that they have done with your children. Nannies work an actual job in comparison to babysitters who only make some money on one night, usually, on a Saturday night.

A nanny will be dealing with tasks that involve taking care of the children, giving them baths, helping with homework, making them meals and cleaning them up afterwards, taking them to sports or lessons, playing games, and being them for them the entire duration of their shift. A nanny can either live with the family or live at her own place. Nonetheless, he or she will always have some time off during the week just like any other job.

A lot of people think that having a nanny is just exclusive for royalty or the celebrities. However, this is never always the case. You see, a lot of families have come to employ them in order for their lives to be made much easier. They give parents a feeling of security that their children are being well taken care of by the right people. Furthermore, they will not have to worry about the needs o their children being met because they will surely do. You see, aside from nannies getting proper early childhood development training, they also have a passion for children and working with them.

Clearly, hiring a babysitter on certain occasions to watch over your children can be a great idea. However, you should not confuse them with nannies. A nanny is someone who does a professional job and ensures to work hard to look after your children while you are away.

Things to Tell Your Teen to Stop Them from Driving After Drinking

In the United States, the legal drinking age is 21, and for other countries, it varies. Nonetheless, being the teens that they are, they will always find ways to find and drink alcohol before reaching such age. As a matter of fact, based on statistics, most teens have tried drinking one or two by the time they reach the age of 17. This could also imply that your teen may try driving even after a few drinks. Perhaps they may even get inside a car with someone who has been drinking and is now driving.

If you have a teen, this fact can be very much scary. However, this should never cross your mind if you educate your teens about the risks they face when they drive intoxicated. What follows are some things to do and to tell your teen to stop them from driving after putting some alcohol in their system.

1. Be there for your teen. This may sound very basic, and you may even think that your child will come to you with just about anything. However, most teens these days avoid picking up their phones and calling their parents when they need a ride home. Why? Well, a lot of teens find it embarrassing to be calling their parents to pick them up after they have been drinking, more so, if they know that they will be punished for it. However, for your teen’s safety, you should talk to them and tell them that you are there for them. Let them understand that it is okay for them to call you or your spouse for a ride home regardless of the time.

2. Let your child understand that you know that teens not of legal drinking age still drink. Just be sure that you also explain to them that there is no reason for them to drive drunk or ride with someone who has been drinking. Once your teen knows that you do not condone their drinking, they will have more chances of avoiding drinking while driving.

3. Give them a transportation alternative. You can take away the temptation or need to drive from your teen by giving them extra money for some Uber or taxi if they do end up in a sticky situation.

4. Do not drink and drive yourself. Children will always learn from what their parents are doing. Thus, if you do not drink and drive, you can expect your children to not do the same regardless if it is just a glass of cocktail or wine at dinner.

5. Educate them about what will likely happen to them if they will drive after drinking. Let them read the news clips, explain the consequences to them, and show them photographs. The more they know about the dangers of drunk driving, the less likely it is that they will do it.

6. Keep your home free from alcohol. If you have any alcohol inside of your home, lock them up. If possible, you should not let your children see you drinking at home. If your children can easily see them or have easy access to them, then drinking may become a normal and casual thing for them to do. And clearly, they will not have to think twice anymore with driving after they have had a few drinks.

The Complete Guide to Picking the Perfect Name for Your Baby

Picking the perfect name for your baby is probably one of the most challenging and thought-provoking moments of your life as an expecting parent. Clearly, you have a lot of baby names to choose from. You can choose from the more traditional ones to the more creative and unique ones. If you are still in the process of deciding what name you should give your baby, here are a few tips in finding the perfect one for your little angel.

• Surname
When picking from a variety of baby name options, the first pointer to keep in mind is to find a baby name that will go well with your surname. For example, you should avoid choosing a name that rhymes or is too similar with your surname. Furthermore, be sure to pick a name that does not disrupt the flow of your surname.

• Liked by both
No matter what name you will be picking out for your baby, what matters most is that the both of you as parents liked it. It may be challenging at first to find a name that is liked by both; however, it helps to reach a common ground. One may need to compromise, yet this is far better than choosing a name that one parent despises.

• Initials
While looking at your many baby name options, be sure to consider as well what their first, middle, and surname will spell out. If you just realize this now, there may be some initials that unfortunately spell out a word that is undesirable. And most likely, once your child goes to school, they may be quick to pick this undesirable word out.

• Shortened version
Most names can be shortened easily. For example, the name Catherine can be shortened to the name Kate. If you find the shortened name not that appealing, it would be worth it to forget about the original name and go find another one.

• Popular names
There are particular names that are too popular, and a lot of parents tend to avoid them altogether. This is a good idea. Also, do not forget to avoid giving your baby names from popular celebrities or even their children. This is something that you should think about if you intend for their names to be more unique.

• Similar names
If you already have an existing child or children, make sure to find a new baby name that will go well with theirs. For example, you should avoid picking names that are similar sounding with one or two of your other children. Giving your children similar sounding names will make it hard for other people to remember who among your children is who. Furthermore, the names should sound fine when you will be calling them in a park, playground, or any similar place.

• Later in life
The name you give your baby should be one that becomes acceptable to them even when they grow old. There are a lot of baby name options that fit them just fine while they are still newborns. However, such names may sound silly as your child grows old. If the name does not sound too good for an adult, then you may reconsider and find another one.

A Few Tips in Creating Your Own Baby Food

Babies need all the nutritional food that they can get for their bodies and brains to develop rapidly. Feeding them nutritious food is also essential for strengthening their immune systems. Once your baby reaches six months of age, they are recommended to begin eating solid foods. Solid foods in baby terminology are soft foods. It has been common practice for parents to feed their babies with pots of baby food that they can easily find in their local grocery stores. However, you never know what preservatives are added into them. If you are conscious about this matter, then do know that you can actually create your own baby food for them.

Creating your own baby food is not really that hard. It is actually simpler than you thought, and what is great is that there are many varieties that you can make when you do it on your own. You just have to get your own blender and a small pot and obviously, your own ingredients. Once you get these, you can now begin to prepare your own baby food. In creating your own baby food, you have to keep them as natural as you can. Thus, you can start with fruits and vegetables. It is a bad idea to be adding some additives, sugar, or salt on what you are making them.

If you are going to be making your baby fruit-based baby food, you can start with one or a variety of fruits. You can start to mash strawberries or banana as their sweet treat. For an interesting combination, you can also combine the two together. You can also use apples as an option. Be sure to peel the apple, cut it into slices, and cook it until they become soft. You may blend it or use a fork to mash it.

For vegetable-based baby food, you can also come up with different varieties. You can cook carrots, butternut, potato, and sweet potato. With the use of your blender, you can blend the potato with either of the mentioned vegetables. As another option, you can also blend and serve one kind of vegetable only on its own.

You may try to put chicken into these meals. A good chicken part that you can use are chicken breasts. Just be sure to cook it thoroughly before blending it. For a smoother consistency, you can add a little milk or water so your little one will not have a hard time digesting it.

When preparing food for your little one on your own, it would be best if you go with a high-speed blender. In this way, you can easily blend your vegetable and fruits to a soft and smooth consistency.

By preparing the food of your baby yourself like using fruits and vegetables, you will not be guessing anymore what you are getting your child like you do with baby food in pots. As a parent, you exactly know what you are giving your child and what is in the food you give them. Basically, you are giving them a more natural and wholesome meal. If you have made a lot of baby food, you can use it for another day by storing them in ice cube trays or little food pots and then freezing them.

Top Reasons Why Your Babies Cry and What You Can Do About It

One of the most common fears and sources of frustration among new moms is a baby who is crying profusely and continuously. You finally brought a new miracle into this world by giving birth, yet it seems that the world you have brought them into is causing them pain. You now see everything in a new light. And then it finally hits you. Being a mom is most definitely an emotional roller coaster ride that you never saw coming.

But don’t worry, mom. It is a fact that all babies cry. According to studies, crying is their only way in which they can communicate their needs to others. As a new mom, it is vital that you understand your own baby. This means that you should know the reason why they cry and what it means. It is by knowing and understanding their crying patterns that you can provide them consolation with the discomfort that they may be going through.

Basically, babies cry for a number of reasons. Just like adults, they also have different sources of comfort for every situation. Hunger is one of the most common and basic reasons why babies cry. Knowing that they can only feed on breast milk for the first few months of their life, it is no wonder that they easily get hungry and want to suckle every after twenty minutes. But don’t feel bad about it. This is the reason why you have breasts to feed them. So, never deprive your baby of them if they are hungry. Once he or she becomes full, it will calm them down and sooth their bodies.

Discomfort is another reason why babies cry. Perhaps the baby is too cold or too hot. Generally, doctors recommend putting one more layer of clothing to your baby than you. This allows them to feel cozy enough and thus calm. Check if the clothes they have on are too tight. Keep in mind that your baby’s skin is not as tough as what you have. Thus, letting them wear tight clothing is just a big no-no. Be sure to regularly check if their diapers are soiled. Babies never have difficulties with excretion. They can immediately drop it if they have to pee or poo. They do not give a care in the world if you judge them. As a mother, though, you have to still check their diapers regularly. If they are soiled, be sure to clean your baby up. If you will be delaying changing your baby’s diapers, then you are increasing their chances of getting infection.

Some babies simply cry if they need a nap. Babies want to rest just like you, but sometimes, they may just not know how to fall asleep by themselves. That is why they cry because they want to be cuddled and held by you until they sleep. They have just come from a calm and warm environment that is your womb. That is why it is just natural for them to continue getting that secured and snuggled feeling inside. Thus, hold your baby against you, and let the rhythm of your heart sooth them to sleep.

Lastly, if your baby still continues to cry after doing all of the things above and their cries seem to now be more high-pitched, it may mean that something is really wrong with them. Make sure to immediately have them checked by your pediatrician before it becomes too late.

Preparing Your Baby’s Room and Getting the Right Furnishing

For families who are expecting another addition to the family, they make sure to prepare a baby’s room for their precious bundle of joy on the way. A lot of parents become too overwhelmed about getting everything for their little one that they tend to overdo things. It is important to understand that babies do not necessarily need a lot of space when they are born. You only need to make more space for them the moment they start to walk and play. When it comes to your baby’s room, it should begin as a space intended for your preference as well as your comfort as a parent.

In preparing your baby’s room, there are essential furnishings that you have to put inside. These include the crib, a dresser, a changing station, and a bin that must be emptied on a regular basis. You may also get a bassinet for your baby to help them sleep better as well as a rocking chair that has more or less the same effect as the bassinet, and some stimulation for your baby.

Having all of these furnishings arranged inside of the room is just something that you can easily deal with. As long as you have the necessary space to be walking around the room without necessarily moving your furniture pieces, there is no doubt that you will not be having a hard time getting things done. If, however, you have to move your furniture pieces around, then this is an implication that your baby’s room is not big enough or that there are unnecessary things lying around.

When it comes to your crib, it should be easily accessible even in the dark. Thus, you need to have a clear space to walk towards it if you must tend to your baby. Most parents make a straight path as much as they can so that they can navigate easily in the dark.

A lot of apartments and houses already have built-in cupboards installed. If you need an extra dresser, though, you need not place it close to the crib. You may place it next to the built-in cupboard or against the wall adjacent to the door.

With your changing station, you can place it in any part of the room as long as it does not block anything or no item is placed in front of it directly. In an ideal setting, you may put your changing station near the crib, most especially if you need to place your baby back into the crib after changing them. Of course, practicality-wise, your bin should also be placed right next to it.

Placing an armchair or rocking chair can also be of great help to you if your baby wakes up in the middle of the night. This furniture will let you sit comfortably without having to switch rooms. At a later stage, though, you should have this chair moved to another location.

Also, do not forget to put some form of stimulation inside the baby’s room that is helpful to his or her development. You can start by hanging colorful paintings and pictures and getting mobiles that can play music and spin. You can also achieve stimulation by getting them toys of different colors.