The Husband Stitch


The scary truth behind the husband stitch and what this represents.

Preventing tearing, or repairing tears or episiotomies from birth is a key part of helping a woman recover post childbirth. At a time when post-natal care and the mother's health is paramount, an antiquated procedure known as the 'husband stitch' is still being performed on women after childbirth.

What is the 'husband stitch?'

Referred to as the 'daddy stitch' or 'husband stitch,' it's an extra stitch given to women in the repair process after a vaginal birth. The idea behind this is to tighten the vaginal opening for the purpose of the increased sexual pleasure of a male partner. Administered immediately after childbirth when a new mother is too emotionally and physically exhausted to make an informed decision, the 'husband stitch' often has painful consequences for women well after childbirth.

In today's day and age, it can be hard to fathom that this kind of practice still takes place - a practice that shifts the focus of medical care from the patient for the benefit of a third party. Some have wondered if it's an urban myth but, unfortunately for some women, the 'husband stitch' has been administered in recent years raising questions about how far we have actually come in progressing a woman's right to choose what she does with her own body.

Adjusting to motherhood

Adjusting to motherhood is a monumental change. Not only has your body changed but the time after childbirth brings up a flood of emotion, and learning as you adjust to motherhood and let your body recover. At a time when looking after yourself is just as important as looking after your new baby, some women don't even realise or know that they may have had the 'husband stitch' until painful experiences long after childbirth.

While there haven’t been scientific studies to determine exactly how many women have been affected by the 'husband stitch', the growing number of anecdotes from women act as a word of warning to be diligent and careful about the medical professionals who look after you post childbirth.

As outlined in a recent article on Healthline.com, Tamara Williams, a 27-year old mother from La Marque, Texas recalls how she felt before, during, and after realising she had been given an extra stitch. Williams found out she had been given an extra stitch following her 2015 birth when her boyfriend mentioned it. Her boyfriend mentioned he thought Williams had heard the midwife saying she would 'throw in an extra stitch for him.'

Williams had been on such a 'baby high' after the birth that she had no memory of the midwife making that statement. Now, knowing that she was given the 'husband stitch' Williams wrestled with emotional pain while dealing with continued pain during sex even after the birth of her second child.

What actually happens to a women's body in childbirth?

Going through pregnancy and a vaginal childbirth can put a strain on your pelvic floor. The pelvic floor is a collection of muscles, ligaments and tissues that stretch across the pelvic bones. The pelvic floor supports your pelvic organs including the womb (uterus), vagina, bladder, and bowels.

As the muscles in your pelvic floor become stretched during pregnancy and childbirth, they may weaken. This makes strengthening your pelvic floor muscles fundamental for healing your body post-childbirth. Strengthening this area of your body helps you to maintain bladder and bowel control while enhancing the feeling and senses in your vagina after childbirth. Focusing on strengthening this area with your own health as the priority will contribute to helping you heal after childbirth and enjoy a healthy sex life as you choose.

What the 'husband stitch' represents

With the emotional adjustments that come with being a new mother, and the physical changes to a women's body that occur in childbirth, another misguided part of the 'husband stitch' is the lack of understanding and knowledge of a woman's body that this procedure represents. The idea of the 'husband stitch' demonstrates the belief that some medical professionals think the strength of a woman's reproductive region, for the purpose of pleasing a sexual partner, is only conducive to a single stitch in an area that fundamentally has nothing to do with the health of a woman's pelvic floor. Further, it shows a lack of understanding of a woman's body and goes against the principles of providing medical care focused solely on a birthing mother herself.

The strength of the pelvic floor is what helps women maintain bladder and bowel control, particularly after childbirth. This is what helps a woman recover and enjoy a healthy sex life after childbirth, not surface level procedures such as the 'husband stitch' that aren't focused on the health and recovery of a new mother.

While this procedure is concerning, it serves as a reminder to be diligent when you are in the process of deciding on which medical professionals will help you through your pregnancy, childbirth, and post-natal care. From the anecdotal evidence recounting the painful experiences of the 'husband stitch,' ensuring medical professionals are just as invested in your health as you are will have a positive impact on your health years after childbirth.

Going against the surgical principles of healing for a new mother, the practice of the 'husband stitch' represents the dark undercurrent of misogyny that is perhaps still alive in the medical profession today - an undercurrent that, as we become more educated about these issues, will hopefully begin to fade.


With a keen interest in holistic health and wellness, Nicola Smith works with clients in the health and wellness industry providing copy that engages audiences and helps businesses grow. Her goal is to help people have a holistic approach to their health, and inspire others to simplify their lives, pack a suitcase, and book a ticket to somewhere they've always wanted to visit or live. You can also follow her adventures on Instagram @luggagelifestyle.

3 Tactics to Numb Chronic Pain


Chronic pain in any part of the body can be seriously aggravating. Not only does it last for weeks or so, but it's also very hard to cure. It's very difficult to diagnose and pinpoint the exact cause of chronic pain. It can be anything from an injury to sleep deprivation or mental state. Pain is very subjective and its source can be hard to locate. The fact that it persists for so long can be quite detrimental to a person's well-being.

However, do not despair. Although all of this is true, chronic pain can be cured, or at least alleviated to a certain point. There are many techniques you can try, and some are bound to work for you.

Painkillers

Doctors usually prescribe analgesics, or painkillers, to a patient suffering from chronic pain. They are definitely the obvious way to go. There are various types of pain relievers, since there are various types of pain, too. They range from mild ones that don't even require a doctor's prescription, to opioids, much stronger ones that are used in extreme cases of unbearable pain. All this aside, you should always check with your doctor before taking any of these.

Milder ones are usually ibuprofen or aspirin-based. These drugs will only help temporarily. And there is another downside to them - there's a risk of becoming reliant on painkillers to the point of becoming immune to them.

Much stronger drugs should basically be the last resort. They can have an anti-inflammatory effect, and they can be steroidal or not. It all depends on what your particular diagnosis is. These are used for much higher levels of pain. Although very effective, they can do serious harm and be highly addictive, especially opioids like morphine. Doctors also use antidepressants, corticosteroids and anti-seizure drugs to cure chronic pain, even though it is not these drugs' main purpose.

Other Medicinal Methods

Local painkillers include different types of numbing ointments and creams that have an anesthetic effect on the affected area. These usually don't require a prescription since they are not that strong. Still, they can be somewhat effective. Just apply the numbing cream on the painful area and you should feel instant relief. However, the relief is rather temporary.

Massage and physical therapy are certainly more common. Anyone can get a massage, even if they are not in pain. It can help you relax your muscles and thus alleviate some of the pain. Physical therapy is more specific and focused on the problematic body part.

Without a doubt, the most invasive method is surgery. However, surgery is necessary only in extreme cases of chronic pain.

Non-Medicinal Methods

Acupuncture has become quite popular as a means of numbing chronic pain. In case you didn't know, acupuncture involves careful careful insertion of very thin needles into specific points on the body. It's considered alternative medicine, so the outcome is somewhat unpredictable. But, there have been cases where acupuncture worked perfectly.

Another similar method is electrical stimulation of the injured body part. Electric impulses stimulate your muscles to help them relax and prevent muscle cramps, which will build their strength and eventually relieve the pain.

Psychotherapy can also be very helpful with chronic pain. It's quite different from all the other tactics in this article because its effects are probably the least apparent. But, your pain can be caused by mental issues without you even knowing it. Insomnia, stress, depression - all of these can be huge contributors to your pain. Psychotherapy can help you deal with them.

A good diet can have a big impact on your pain, too. What is considered a 'good diet' is still rather vague, but all practitioners agree on one thing - a good diet should include a lot of healthy proteins and a moderate amount of carbohydrates. Proteins strengthen your muscles, whereas excess carbohydrates only contribute to weight gain and actually weaken your muscles.

And the last tactic, but certainly not the least, is CBD oil treatment. CBD, or cannabidiol, is a completely natural mixture of cannabis and hemp extracts. Lately, CBD oil has become so popular that even doctors are recommending it to patients with chronic pain. It has virtually no side effects and it's effective right away. If you want, you can check out a study by iSum on this topic.


How to Keep Your Family Photos Safe and Secure


Family photos are a treasure trove of memories. From cherished photos of our kids when they were young to photos of relatives who have passed on, nobody wants to lose their much-loved photograph collection. Whether your family’s photograph collection is stored in albums or you have a digital archive, read on for some useful tips on keeping your photos safe and secure.

These days, many photos are digital, so they are stored on computers and other digital devices. This is both a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, you can store a huge number of digital photos without needing any space in your home, but on the other, digital photos are at risk of data theft and hardware failure.

Local Storage

Digital photos are typically stored on memory sticks, SD cards, and hard-drives. This is great, but don’t underestimate the misery caused when a device fails and you lose a precious collection of irreplaceable photos. Imagine how traumatic it would be if you stored some photos of your baby on a computer and the hard-drive died. If you had no other copies or backups, those photos would be lost forever.

Technology devices are not immune to hardware failure. They are also the items most likely to be stolen during a break-in at home or work. There is also the possibility that you might end up leaving a laptop on a train or in a car that’s subsequently stolen.

Recovering Lost Digital Files

Accidents happen and sometimes, despite our best efforts, hard-drives fail or devices stop working. If this happens to you, try not to panic. It is often possible to recover data from corrupted or damaged hard drives. Companies such as Secure Data Recovery can recover data from a damaged device and bring your photos back to life.

Cloud Storage

To protect your family’s digital photo collection, ensure you back up the files to an online cloud service, where files are encrypted and stored on multiple services.

Many people store their data in the cloud because it is perceived to be safer than storing it on a local device. This is sensible, but only if you use a reputable service and password protect your account. Family photos are unlikely to be targeted by hackers unless you are a celebrity, but this doesn’t mean that a hacker won’t try to access your account when searching for more interesting data.

Imagine if your iPhone or iPad is stolen and the hacker has access to your iCloud account. They could delete your files and you could lose all your precious family photos.

If you don’t want to lose your photos, always store them in multiple locations. Maintain a cloud storage vault, keep a collection on a hard-drive or memory stick, and print off your favorite photos and have them framed.

Don’t forget to keep printed photos safe and sound, especially if they are irreplaceable. Old photos can be scanned and turned into digital files for posterity. Otherwise, store them in a fire-proof box, just in case.


How to Give Safe Gifts for 10-Year-Olds


The older kids get, the less parental supervision they want. Some kids will even go to great lengths to escape their parents’ watchful eyes—hiding in the basement or attic, staying up late to play, or claiming they were “studying” at a friends’ house when they were actually watching TV.

All these are part of growing up; kids want to be their own person, someone whose identity isn’t dependent on mom or dad.

That doesn’t mean you as parents won’t do all that they can to make sure that their kids are safe and that they grow up to be good people. Try as you might to supervise your kids every time they’re out playing, you can’t be omniscient and omnipresent. Sometimes, the best you can do is make sure their toys are safe and teach them proper safety guidelines.

With the holiday season coming up, here are the safety standards you should be looking for when choosing Christmas gifts for 10-year-olds.

General safety guidelines on choosing gifts for all ages 

KidsHealth has compiled a list of general safety guidelines when it comes to buying gifts for kids of all ages. Here’s what you need to look for when buying gifts for babies and kids:

1. Flame resistant. The fabric used in toys must be flame resistant or retardant.
2. Washable. Toys, even plushies, should be easy to clean and wash.
3. Lead-free. The paint used in toys must be lead-free.
4. Non-toxic. Art materials, such as crayons and paints, should be nontoxic. Look for the ASTM D-4236 label, as this means the toy is approved by the American Society for Testing and Materials.
5. Noise appropriate. Make sure the toy isn’t too loud when played or used. Musical or electronic toys can be very loud, which can damage your kids’ hearing.

How to buy safe gifts for 10-year-olds 

Intopten.com has a list of the best gifts for 10-year-old boys, and topping the list are pogo sticks and walkie-talkies. Does safety mean forgoing fun toys and buying your children a nice, softbound, plastic-covered book instead?

The truth is, there’s no such thing as a toy with zero risks.

Kids are creative; they can probably find ways to endanger themselves with a soft white pillow, let alone a book they can hurl across the yard. They’re children—there’s no point in getting them a boring gift they’ll hate and never play with.

That being said, cool and fun toys should still be compliant with safety standards. Here are must-dos when choosing toys for 10-year-olds.

Skip the hand-me-downs. If safety is your top concern, don’t give old or hand-me-down toys as these may not pass the current safety standards.

Buckle down. Ensure that your kids use helmets and other recommended safety gear (e.g., shin, hand, and wrist guards) when playing with ride-on toys, such as bicycles, scooters, hoverboards, and skateboards. Look for CPSC or Snell certification on the labels.

Get quality nets. Nets should be well made and firmly attached to the rim. Otherwise, these nets can become strangulation hazards.

Weapons aren’t toys, and toys aren’t weapons. When choosing pretend weapons:

  • Ensure that the ends of toy darts or arrows should be suction cups of soft tips instead of pointy material. 
  • Choose toy guns in bright colors so they can’t be mistaken for real weapons. 
  • Teach your children to never point toy weapons at anyone. 
  • Always choose age-appropriate toys, as there are some toys that should only be played by kids over 16 years old. 

Check the label. Electric toys should be labeled UL, an indication that they are approved by Underwriters Laboratories.

Keeping toys safe at home 

The first step toward safety is buying safe toys. The second is keeping them safe while at home. KidsHealth recommends the following steps to ensure continued safety:

  • Teach kids to take care of their things and put toys away. 
  • Regularly check toys for breaks and damages. Rust, sharp edges, and frayed wires should be remedied right away. Discard immediately when toys are unusable or pose risks. 
  • Throw away broken toys or repair them right away. 
  • Store outdoor toys properly when they're not in use, so they're not exposed to rain or snow.

Choosing safe toys for 10-year-olds isn’t a difficult task when you know what to look out for.

Remember: the real gifts you’re giving your kids are these lessons on safety and the assurance that you’re always looking out for them—gifts that’ll be useful for the rest of the year and for the years to come.

Print out this checklist or bookmark it on your phone, so you can bring these safety guidelines with you when you go shopping.


Keeping Your Kids Safe as They Get Older


When your kids are young, we do everything we can to keep them safe. Everything around the home is padded, there are covers on the outlets, Halloween candy is checked before consumed. We do this as long as we can, but there comes a time when your kids need to start looking out for themselves. The older they get, the more they do on their own, and the less we can protect them.

That being said, there are still some things that we as parents can do. Here are just a few suggestions on how you can help to keep your kids safe as they get older.

Teach Safety Precautions

First, you should start teaching your kids some safety precautions. These are the things that your parents likely taught to you – don’t go anywhere with strangers, always look both ways before crossing the street, don’t walk alone at night, etc. Unfortunately, there are dangers everywhere, even just walking down the street. According to MyPhillyLawyer, “Thousands of people are injured or killed in traffic accidents involving pedestrians, motorcycles and bicycles each year in the U.S.”

Every kid has to learn these lessons at some point, so you might as well start instilling them in your children now. The sooner you do, the more ingrained they will become. Then, long after they have left your home, they’ll still be looking both ways whenever they cross a street.

Pass on Safe Driving Habits

One of the more dangerous aspects of anyone’s life is driving. You’re cruising around at high speed alongside other drivers who are doing the same. While you can’t control their actions, you can at least control your own, and put into place practices to keep yourself safe. It’s these habits that you’ll want to pass onto your kids.

Show them the importance of wearing a seatbelt, of going the speed limit, and of always using their blinker. Teach them how to inspect their car for any issues before they drive, and how to remove distractions. By setting a good example, when the time comes for your kid to get their license, they will have a solid base of good habits in the back of their minds.

Know Where They Are

Even as your kids start to become more independent, you’ll want to keep track of where they are. If they’re going to a friend’s house, find out the address. If they have a club meeting or sports event, find out where it is. When they move out, have them check in with you when they’re traveling long distances. Knowing exactly where they are will help to ensure that they stay safe and also give you some piece of mind.

Just as important as knowing where they are though is knowing who they are with. What adults are in charge where they are going? Who can you call in an emergency? Can you trust the people they’re with? Get some detailed information before you let your child go anywhere, and keep up this habit for as long as they’ll let you.

Teach Them to Care for Themselves

Finally, no matter what you do, the time will come when they will be on their own. When this time comes, you want them to be able to take care of themselves. You can help to prepare them for this by providing them with the right tools.

For instance, they should know who to call in an emergency. Show them how to set up an appointment with their doctor, how to find a lawyer if they need one, or what to do when calling the police in an emergency.

You can also show them how you have made your home a safer place. Show them how to check the batteries in a smoke alarm or carbon monoxide detector, where to store a fire extinguisher, and what to place in a first aid kit. These are important things to know, and you’ll want your kids to be prepared when they move out.

Protect Your Kids for Years to Come

As parents we dread the day when we are no longer able to keep our kids safe. But if you instill in them the right lessons, and take some extra precautions yourself, you can do a lot to keep them safer even though they are becoming more independent. Just a little bit of time and effort can go a long way. Hopefully this list was able to give you some ideas, and both you and your kids will be able to live long and peaceful lives.


Could your child's sleep problems be a sign of separation anxiety or ADHD?


The ideal amount of sleep that is necessary for a child to properly function both physically and mentally, decreases with each passing year by roughly 15 minutes. For example, a newborn child should sleep for at least 14-16 hours, while the same child, on hitting 17 years of age, will require only about 8 hours of sleep.

Unfortunately, according to the National Sleep Foundation, almost 70 percent of children below the age of 10 usually go through some sort of a sleeping disorder that cuts down their sleeping hours. We will now discuss some of the most common reasons behind sleeping disorders experienced by children and how you can help your son/daughter overcome it.

Separation anxiety and how it disrupts sleep in children

Kids often find it difficult to sleep during the night simply because they are afraid of being away from their parents for an entire night. This is termed as separation anxiety and it may cause the child to fantasize about his/her worst fears. A child suffering from separation anxiety might begin to exhibit troubled behaviour and signs of stress as soon as the pre-bedtime routine begins or maybe even earlier.

Studies have shown that children with separation anxiety will in most cases have trouble sleeping even after being tucked in at night. Effects of insufficient sleep in such cases will start to affect the child’s daytime routine as well, thus making him/her anxious, lethargic and sometimes even depressed throughout the day. Check with the points below to see if your child is suffering from night time separation anxiety.

  • Excuses to delay bedtime.
  • Significant signs of stress and visibly spoiled mood before bedtime.
  • Erratic and distressed behavior as sleeping time approaches.
  • Requests to sleep with parents. 
  • Climbing into bed with parents during the night. 
  • Regular nightmares and shrieking. 
  • Calling on parents multiple times during the night after being put to bed.

How parents can counter separation anxiety induced sleep disturbances in children

As the problem originates from a feeling of insecurity, the primary objective is to make the suffering child feel secure and this requires tactical approach, knowledge and patience. The guidelines below are designed to help both you and your child sleep better by addressing the issue at its roots.

Patience - Patience is a virtue and it is more so in this particular scenario. You can never get angry or cranky with your children even if you are losing your own sleep. One needs to remember that sleep disturbance is not “bad manners” but a serious and stressful condition that your son/daughter is going through. It has been found through research that some children even believe with firm conviction that if they go to sleep alone, they may die.

Acceptance and control - Now that you have understood and accepted the fact that your youngster has a real problem, the next step is to not reinforce it. What we mean is that you should not let your child sleep with you every time he/she wants to. If the mind of the child does not face its imaginary fears, it will never truly get over them.

Conversation - As discussed previously, parental assistance is a must in getting over separation anxiety and therefore, you must start by finding out what scares your child. Although the particular fear plaguing the mind of a child will differ widely; darkness, monsters, fear of being harmed or family getting harmed are usually the ones that top the chart.

Assistance - After finding out exactly what is troubling your kid, discuss the issues in detail. Try to find ways of convincing him/her about the imaginary nature of the fears by talking for as long as it takes. If required, take further measures such as checking under the bed for monsters or just putting in a low-powered night lamp. Keeping the door slightly open to let the hall light seep in is a time-tested way of making children feel safer. You can also use calm music or sounds that reassure your child to ensure a good night’s sleep for the entire family. A white noise machine is found to be exceptionally useful in putting children to sleep. Do whatever is necessary to make your child feel safe by assisting in facing the fears but never really helping to avoid it.

Routine - Finally, parents must remember to regulate their children’s day cycle in such a way that come bedtime, they are too tired to be disturbingly imaginative. Additionally, a warm bath with scented candles and bedtime stories make for a relaxing pre-bedtime routine rather than an abrupt end to a day. Do not allow consumption of sodas, chocolates and other food that may contain caffeine or might have a high sugar content as that can significantly disrupt sleep even in adults when consumed before going to bed.

Positive reinforcement – After your initial methods begin to bear fruit and you see that your child is putting in real effort to get over the sleeping problem, it is time to reinforce that effort with positivity. For example, after their first successful night of sleeping alone, reward them with something small but dear to them. Following that, make a chart or a table and encourage them to aim for higher rewards by sleeping well for a certain number of nights alone in a week first, and then a month.

Depending on your kid’s situation and psychological build-up, it may take anywhere between a few weeks to several months in order for separation anxiety to completely leave the child’s mind. Nonetheless, he/she will get over it in due time with your assistance and love.

ADHD and its effects on children’s sleep

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder or ADHD is an extremely common psychological disorder that affects a lot of children around the world and may even trouble teenagers and adults in certain cases. A child affected by ADHD may find it difficult to concentrate or pay attention towards anything at all.

In addition to having a poor attention span, the hyperactive mind of the child might cause him/her to behave impulsively and uncontrollably. As any parent who has a child distressed by ADHD will tell you, the disorder directly or indirectly affects all aspects of a child’s life as well as that of his/her parents.

It has been found that the hyperactive and irritable nature of ADHD also interferes with a child’s sleeping habits, which in turn makes the condition even worse because of the effects of sleep-deprivation. In fact, research is ongoing to find out if medicines used to control the adverse effects of ADHD are at times responsible for the sleeping problems which are rampant among kids with ADHD.

Unfortunately, the link between ADHD and sleep is not commonly known. Sleeping problems is just one of many symptoms and the diagnosis is established based on severity and combination of symptoms. While many ADHD signs can appear in early age, the formal testing for ADHD is usually not recommended before the child is at least 6 years old. However there are some online screening tests for child ADHD that could be used starting from age 4.


How can you help your child with ADHD sleep properly?

The truth is that all children who suffer from sleeping problems need to be put through more or less the same routine, irrespective of whether or not they are suffering from ADHD. Nonetheless, here are a few extra tips in addition to the ones mentioned above.

Strict scheduling – A fixed “lights out” time is necessary to build a strict sense of routine. What this means is that you must put your children to bed every night at the same time and also wake them up every morning at the same hour. This helps the body of your child in setting his/her biological clock in sync, thus eliminating sleeping problems on most nights.

Control stimulants – Children are sensitive and children with ADHD are more so. Therefore, maintain a calm environment within the house prior to bedtime. Parental arguments, loud TV or music, video games or physically arousing play sessions are all counterproductive and should be avoided.

Wake them gently – You should not wake up anybody with a loud noise or a vigorous shake, let alone a child suffering from ADHD and sleep deficiency! Try pulling the curtains off so that the daylight gets in the room or call them in a gentle voice.

Prepare a morning routine – As ADHD makes children abnormally hyper at the slightest of stimulation, it is essential that they go through a morning ritual which prepares them slowly for the day ahead. Avoid stress induced by rushing at the last moment to ensure a good start to the day for your child.

Control napping sessions – Although small children do need to sleep a lot more throughout the day, the same does not apply for your teenager. Other than the nightly sleeping session, he/she should not be allowed to sleep for more than half an hour during the working part of the day as that would make it even more difficult for someone with ADHD to go to sleep at night.

Consult your pediatrician – If all else fails, mild medications like melatonin in small doses can be used to help children with ADHD sleep better. However, consulting your pediatrician before taking such steps is a must.

There are exceptional cases where the condition of the child is so advanced that he/she might need additional medical assistance. In such cases, special care institutes can come into play. Most children however, usually get over their sleeping troubles if they have supportive and knowledgeable parents.


5 Dietary Additions to Amplify Progress Toward Your Health Goals

When you're motivated to make lifestyle changes, you want fast results. You may see room for improvement when you look in the mirror. Perhaps the lab results from your last physical concern you and your doctor. Now that you're committed to your health goals, you'll need to consider how your diet affects your body. After all, choosing the right foods will help you reach your health goals that much faster.

Use Whole Eggs to Build Muscle

Have you seen the movie "Rocky?" In the opening scene, the hero starts his day by chugging a glass of raw eggs. It turns out Rocky was on to something. A recent study indicated that whole eggs are better than egg whites for promoting muscle growth. Eggs, especially the yolks, are packed with muscle-building protein.

The yolk is also rich in vitamin B12, which helps the body break down fat and supports muscle contraction when you work out. Eating raw eggs preserves nutrients. However, cooked eggs are safer to eat and still provide valuable vitamins and protein.


Add Coconut Oil to Super-Charge Weight Loss

Dieters often focus on low-carb, high-fat diets to lose weight. Meals that severely limit carbs cause the body to enter ketosis. When you're in a ketogenic state, your body burns fat instead of carbohydrates to produce energy.

Coconut oil contains medium-chain fatty acids (MCTs) which support ketosis. Coconut oil can also help you feel satiated and eat less food. Lifesum explores coconut oil's effect on low-carb diets in detail.

Support Heart Health With Salmon

If you're reading up on heart health, you'll learn about the benefits of eating omega-3 unsaturated fatty acids. Omega-3's support cardiovascular health by reducing inflammation. This is important because inflammation can damage blood vessels, increasing the risk of heart disease.

You may lower your blood pressure and of the risk of stroke by adding omega-3s to meals. Fatty fish, including salmon, is a healthy source of omega-3s. A 3-ounce serving of salmon has 1,500 milligrams of omega-3s.

Boost Your Memory with Cherries

Do you lose your keys or forget why you walked into a room? If you suffer from random bouts of brain fog, you're not alone. Try snacking on a bowl of cherries or a glass of cherry juice to boost your memory.

Cherries and dark berries are rich in anthocyanins and other flavonoids that support cognitive health. A European Journal of Nutrition study concluded that drinking cherry juice improved long-term and short-term memory.

Choose Oatmeal to Lower Cholesterol Levels

Routine blood work often includes testing your cholesterol levels. Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) is the bad cholesterol which leads to blocked arteries, heart attack, and stroke. Eating oatmeal and other high-fiber goods can lower your LDL levels.

Oatmeal contains soluble fiber, which helps stop the absorption of cholesterol in the body. As a bonus, eating oatmeal does not lower your high-density lipoprotein (HDL) good cholesterol.

What motivates you to reach your health goals? You may want to build a leaner or stronger body, improve your memory, or ace your next physical. Try these power foods to start making positive changes today.


2ND YEAR ANNIVERSARY GIFT IDEAS AND TRADITION


The second wedding anniversary for a couple has been traditionally celebrated by an exchange of gifts made of cotton, while the more modern expression of second-year love is china, with each of these having its own specific relevance to the relationship.

Traditional vs. Modern

Cotton is an interwoven fabric, highly durable in nature, and this is a reminder to the couple that their lives should also be tightly interwoven, so that their relationship can endure against all. Some possibilities might be: luxurious Egyptian cotton bedsheets and pillowcases, cotton tablecloth or placemats, His and Hers matching robes, or some kind of cotton garment.

China, on the other hand, is a beautiful and elegant indicator of how potentially fragile a relationship can be, if that tight bond is ever weakened. A few ideas involving china might include: a gold dipped natural rose, a China vase or plate, any kind of garnet (the gemstone theme) jewelry, or some kind of floral gift based on lily of the valley (the flower theme).

Second-Year Theme

As noted above in the gift suggestions, the traditional themes for the second anniversary are garnet as a gemstone, and either cosmos or lily of the valley as a floral theme. The Greek connotation for floral cosmos refers to love, modesty, and completeness, while lily of the valley signifies trust, purity, and sweetness. A floral alternative would be rose, and a gemstone alternative would be rose quartz, with the second-year color theme of red in sync with both alternative choices. Rose is meant to be a color-compatible romantic expression of eternal love, and would be a good choice for this anniversary or any other.

Of course, you are entirely free to seek your own ideal solution for a second anniversary gift, but these two suggestions can serve as guidelines to help you in your quest for the perfect gift.


References:

http://time.com/4771179/history-anniversary-gifts-paper-silver-gold/

https://lovepicker.com/blogs/news/2nd-year-anniversary-gift-ideas-and-tradition

https://www.sciencedaily.com/terms/cotton.htm

Family's Professional Photos Delivered with a Hilarious Twist



We've all invested in something that didn't pan out to be as great as we thought it would be... big or small, there's something most parents have looked back on and wished they could have a do-over. For Pam and Dave Zaring of Missouri, it may be their most recent family photos. After Pam says she went many months upset because their "professional" photographs were not being given to them, the portraits finally arrived in the mail. And what she found is worth a whole lot of good hearted belly laughs -- at least $250.00 worth.

"This is NOT a joke," Pam shared with her Facebook friends in a public post. "She said the shadows were really bad [...] and that her professor never taught her to retouch photos."

The internet is ablaze with laughter over the finished product, that the photographer added her copyright watermark to, saying she "stands by her work" and the funds will not be returned.

As of this writing, the family has yet to receive their original photographs.




How to Support Your Creative Child


Children tend to have powerful imaginations and strong innovation skills from a very young age. Creativity helps kids become more confident, develop their social skills, and encourages learning in every subject. In fact, studies have shown that creativity offers a wealth of emotional, intellectual, and even health benefits. As children, most of us were more in touch with our creative sides than we are as adults – school, exams, college, and working in the corporate world aren’t always conducive to creativity. As a parent, there are several things that you can do to support your child with their imagination and creativity.

#1. Design a Creative Space for Them:

Chances are, your child has a few creative hobbies that they enjoy taking part in. For example, if they enjoy drawing and painting, you might want to consider setting up a small art studio at your home for them. If they’re obsessed with movies and want to start making their own, a desk where they can learn how to put clips together with a simple-to-use movie editor, decorated with their favorite movie posters, could inspire them to pursue a career in the entertainment industry as an adult. The space doesn’t have to be elaborate – a playroom or corner with some gadgets and hands-on toys such as LEGO is a great idea.

#2. Allow for Free Time:

It’s just as important to give your child some free time for themselves. After they’ve completed their homework, for example, allowing them an hour or two to please themselves with creative play is a great way to keep their imagination stimulated. If you can, let your child decide what they’d like to do with their free time – this could be anything from going to the beach to collect pebbles to paint, to building models of their favorite planes and cars.

#3. Discuss Creativity:

Talking to your child about their ideas and encouraging them to pursue their creative dreams is a great way to keep their flow going. Ask your kids when they come up with their best ideas – maybe it’s when they’re in the car for a long journey, or when walking to school. Give them a notepad for these moments, so that if they’re unable to act on their creative ideas straight away, they can write it down to save it for later.

#4. Encourage Your Own Creativity:

Since many kids learn by following their parents’ lead, seeing you getting creative will certainly encourage them to stay in touch with their own creative juices. Take the time to discuss your own creative ideas with your child and ask them for their opinion. When your child is coloring, building or creating, join them and offer your help and ideas. Even if you don’t class yourself as a very creative person, getting involved with your child’s ideas can be hugely encouraging to them.

Creative kids tend to develop better both emotionally and intellectually and getting creative can have a huge positive impact on their physical and social skills.


Camping Time: 7 bedding options for your kids this summer


Ah! The annual family camping trip is often a blissful time where even if those little devils smuggled it on the trip, technology never works! With the ebb and flow of the river and the sweet sounds of nature, it is sure to be a trip to remember. But you don't want the trip to be memorable because no one slept well. Our little ones can be fussy about where they sleep and there are not many easy sleeping options so without further ado, here are some bedding options for your kids this summer!

Camping cots

Camping cots are a good option because they are narrow so you can fit more of them in the tent and they are close to the ground so your kids won't hurt themselves if they fall from it. The con is that it is quite low to the ground so it could pose mobility issues getting in and out of it.

Sleeping bags

Sleeping bags make great space savers as you can pack them in your child's bag. They are good as they require little setup and allow your children to have a cozy sleep. A con of sleeping bags is that sleeping on the ground could cause neck or back discomfort and the child may not be able to regulate their temperature while in the sleeping bag.

Folding mattress

Folding mattresses are good for the more fussier child as they mimic their bed at home and allow them that little bit of familiar comfort in what can sometimes be a scary environment. Folding mattresses are a great way to bring creature comforts with you but they don't always come assembled, lack instructions and can sometimes collapse.

Air mattress

If you don't want to lug a folding mattress on your next camping trip, then why not take an air bed, they are compact, lightweight and offer your child a fun nights sleep wriggling around on them and keeping the whole tent up! Just make sure you don't forget the pump! The obvious cons of any air mattress are their ability to deflate during the night and they could be punctured easily.

Self-inflating mattresses

Self-inflation mattresses are a good idea as you require no tools or pump to assemble and it allows your children some responsibility for themselves on the journey. As above remember these things can deflate easily and sometimes have a maximum weight level to them. So they may not work for sleeping more than one child.

All in one bed

This is self-explanatory basically the bed looks like a sleeping back attached to a bed. While they can be bulky again if it keeps your kid happy and quiet then what else matters. On a plus side, you don't have to lug blankets with you on the trip. The con to these is obviously how bulky they are and also the fact that your child could overheat as the blankets are stitched on. Moreover, if they had an accident it may be difficult to clean them.

Carp Fishing Beds

These little babies are amazing because they have adjustable legs to allow for a restful and safe sleep on an uneven surface. So if your child wants to sleep by the river bed then no harm no foul! As a con, the mattresses on these beds are very thick and they are very expensive. You could make the same kind of bed for less using a stretcher.

There are many options out there for your next camping trip so just do your research and even let your child help you pick the right bed for them to ensure a happy and safe camping trip this summer!


How to Fight Addiction


Fighting addiction is not easy. Therefore, trying to get clean becomes a tug-of-war conflict that is compared to the infamous biblical battle of David and Goliath. Addiction is a grotesque monster incarnated in many forms that will take over your mind if you allow it to guide you into an unwanted direction. Most importantly, you will not even consciously recognize that there is a problem until it is too late. This article will give you a few tips about how to fight addiction and end this internal fight once and for all.

Recognize That There Is A Problem

Most people will not admit their own faults. They put on a front like everything is all good in life when nothing could be further from the truth. Sometimes you need to get out of your own way for success to take place. People tend to get disillusioned when they are addicted to substances and/or behaviors because they perceive their indulgence as a "good feeling”. Once you make a conscience effort to say there is a problem, your mind will automatically look for the solutions. At that point, you can only rise up.

Use Will Power & Motivation to Move Forward

Sometimes you need a push in the right direction. This prodding could come from anywhere. Motivating yourself to move above and beyond the mundane grip of addiction means discovering a deeper reason to get clean. Maybe you have hit the proverbial “rock bottom” and have no choice but to go up. Maybe you want to avoid getting locked up and dealing with violent inmates who do not care about your withdrawal symptoms, which puts your life in jeopardy, and corrupt guards who will let anything happen to you. The scars derived from enduring these events are devastating.

Educate Yourself by Reading More Recovery Literature

The answer is out there. Someone who has been down the same road wrote about it in a publication. You just need to search for it. Read more recovery literature about the brain chemistry and the steps you can take to overcome this mental grip. Once you understand how substance abuse changes your mood, perception of life, and even memory, you now have a solid reason to quit. The long-term effects could be completely irresistible when the brain is damaged by long-term substance abuse. Do you want to live your life with a constant loss of appetite, hallucinations, insomnia, and permanent brain damage? These prolonged effects are drastic.

Getting Help at a Rehab Facility

The professionals know how to handle the substance abuse problems in individuals properly. They have consulted many people in the same predicament as you, therefore they know exactly the right treatments that will work. Once you have realized that help is needed, it is time to move into the right direction! Getting into a Clearwater rehab facility is a great choice in the quest to overcome your addiction issues. Clinics like these have an on-site staff ready for unexpected detox events. They will provide the proper care with the right expertise. Moreover, detoxing in a warm state like Florida is comforting and encouraging.

7 ways you need to transform your home, when you have a baby


Congratulations! Every day the due date is coming closer and closer. Are you excited? We bet you are. This is the happiest moment in the life of a couple. And it is way happier when you know that all the arrangements are made and your home is a safe and well-prepared place for a new member of your family. In order to help you keep everything in mind, we have gathered several of the most essential changes in your home that can make life easier for you.

Tip 1: Prepare your meals in advance.

Trust us, you will likely have time to plan and cook your meals, at least for the first months after your baby is born. Freezer meals are lifesavers for many young parents today. Because, they can make and preserve as many portions as their freezer can hold, and have a new meal every day.

If your fridge is not very capacious, you can either use food zipper bags to save useful space or opt for a larger fridge. By the way, when they compare side-by-side refrigerators with conventional models, many young parents select the former type due to its capacious and child-friendly design.

In case you have no idea what to cook to guarantee you and your significant other adequate nutrition, there are a lot of healthy recipes on the Internet to help you out.

Tip 2: Safety exam

Secure furniture corners, sockets, and other potentially dangerous areas for your baby. It might seem there is enough time for this, but time slips past rapidly. One minute you help your baby hold her head and the other she makes her first attempts on walking. It might seem a bit childish, but if you are not sure how baby-friendly your house is, try to crawl and walk it far and wide. This can help you neutralize many dangerous zones that your baby might find.

Tip 3: Organize your bedroom

Because the American Academy of Pediatrics and other health organizations recommend sleeping safely within an arm's reach of your new baby, many young parents place a baby crib right next to their bed, or even turn it into a side-car, so that they are always nearby throughout the night.

Dark curtains or window shade are another useful thing in a nursery. They help you mimic nighttime during daytime naps. Because darkness means bedtime, your little one will more likely fall asleep faster.

Tip 4: Arrange nursing and diaper change zones wisely

There will be a lot of baby gear all around your house soon. And the best thing you can do is to organize it wisely to have everything at hand any time you need it. You could hang a shelf for diapering stuff (creams, wipes, baby powder, etc.) over the changing table or get a baby dresser that will hold it for you.

There are tons of baby gear in stores today, but try not to overbuy, even if it seems like the cutest thing you have ever seen. Follow the list of essentials instead, it includes most of the really needed stuff. Plus, you can always buy online postpartum if the need be.

Tip 5: Make sure you know how to fasten a car seat properly

Your car can rightly be called the extension of a house, so it should also be safe for a newborn. In this regard, a good car seat is must-have equipment. It is better to get it in advance and practice in fastening it so that when the time comes you will do it right.

Tip 6: Clean your house far and wide

Let’s be honest, it is almost impossible to keep a house germ-free. And you don’t have to disinfect it far and wide every day. Instead, make a deep clean before your baby is born. Your target is breeding grounds for bacteria such as a kitchen sink, toothbrush holders, countertops, etc. The same is with dust bunnies (lamp shades, ceiling fans, under beds). Because mold, bacteria, and toxic dust are hazardous for every member of your family, the sooner you get rid of them the better.

Tip 7: Control your environment

The proper temperature ( 68 - 72 degrees F) and humidity levels (35 - 65%) in your home are essential for you and a newborn. Too dry or too moist air is the reason of bacteria growth, which in turn, may cause health issues for you and your baby. In order to avoid this, many parents place humidifiers in their house.

Medical Tests and Screenings Women Need in Their Lifetime


Aside from maintaining a healthy lifestyle, going to doctor’s appointments and taking health screenings are more ways to keep our health in tiptop condition.

While men and women are both expected to undergo certain medical tests sometime in our lives, women may have to take additional tests to ensure the best possible health. Your eligibility for such tests may even be higher if you are at high risk for any health condition.

Be on top of your health by having yourself checked regularly. Educate yourself with these medical tests and screenings that are recommended for women to undergo in their lifetime.

Pap Tests

Also known as a Pap smear, a Pap test is a medical procedure to test for cervical cancer. This routine screening test can be taken by women regularly starting at the age of 21, but may be more frequently in women who are HIV-positive or who have a weakened immune system due to chemotherapy or a surgery, such as an organ transplant. It is important to note that women who are in a monogamous relationship are still encouraged to get regular Pap smears, as HPV virus can suddenly become active after being dormant for many years.

A Pap smear is a simple and quick procedure, yet some women may find it uncomfortable. During the test, your doctor will ask you to lie down while she inserts a speculum into your vagina to better access the cervix. Using a clinical spatula, your healthcare provider will then scrape a small sample of cells from the cervix, which will be sent to the lab for testing of any cancerous cells.

Mammograms and Breast Exams

While you can self-check your breasts anytime, a clinical breast exam and a mammogram can better detect breast cancer and prevent it from worsening. A mammogram is done by compressing the breast in between plates to better capture an image through X-ray.

According to the American Cancer Society, women should begin getting mammograms starting at the age of 45 yearly and every other year beginning at age 55. However, women may start breast screenings as early as 40, if they prefer. Meanwhile, your doctor should manually assess and examine your breasts during regular checkups if you are 20 and above.

Bone Density Screening

According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, about 54 million Americans have low bone mass, putting them at high risk for osteoporosis. What’s more is that an estimate of one in two women is likely to have a bone injury due to osteoporosis. Women are known to lose 30 percent of their bone mass five to seven years after menopause.

This condition is often dubbed as a silent disease, as someone who has it can’t feel their bones weakening. This should encourage women to undergo a bone density test when they reach the age of 65 and every five years thereafter. An osteoporosis screening is performed through a dual-energy X-ray (DXA) test, which is the most accurate bone-density procedure. This test should be safe and non-invasive, as the X-ray machine takes a scan of your spine, wrists, and hips.

Blood Pressure Test

Heart disease is commonly the cause of death for both men and women in the U.S., yet symptoms of this condition may be different in both genders. For instance, women may be experiencing a heart attack without any chest pain, unlike what many men experience. One important way to prevent such condition altogether is getting screened for high blood pressure or hypertension. Once you are diagnosed with hypertension, your healthcare provider may then be able to prescribe proper medications to keep your blood pressure well controlled.

Blood pressure monitoring is one of the routine procedures done during your doctor’s appointment, together with body temperature reading, which can be done through the use of temperature probes, if the situation calls for it. Keeping your vital signs in check significantly detects any health problems before they occur.

Depression Screening

About 15 million people in the U.S. experience depression every year, and majority of them turn out to be women. It is essential for all adults to keep tabs on their mental health, especially women, who can fall easily into postpartum depression once they’ve given birth. A depression screening simply is a conversation with a medical professional about your mental health. While depression is often viewed as a subjective condition, it tops the list of the leading causes of disability around the globe. This is one of the many reasons why it is important to make depression screening a part of regular health care for women.

A good overall health is what women need in order to face the daily challenges that life throws at them. These preventive screening tests greatly help in keeping track of their health and keeping diseases at bay, giving them more chances of enjoying life to their fullest potential.

*******

Things you should know about postpartum depression

The thought that you cannot care for your baby efficiently can be disturbing. After waiting to hold your baby for nine long months, the last thing you want is to have postpartum depression. This state is powerful and can last for some time. Mothers who suffer from this illness find it hard to care for their babies. This is due to the feelings that accompany this illness. There are one or two things that you don’t know about this postpartum depression. Read on to find out more.


It can start during pregnancy or after birth

While everyone expects the condition to kick off soon after birth, postpartum depression can begin during pregnancy. The symptoms can also begin in during the three months of birth.

Women are at risk

According to studies, women who have a family record of anxiety or mood or depression are at a higher risk of developing PPD. Also, those who suffer significant mood-related changes associated with menstrual cycles are at risk. Those who have experienced postpartum depression in their previous pregnancy have a significant chance of having it again. This means, if you have had PPD before, you need to take precautions early. Women and teenagers who are financially unstable, also have a significant risk of developing PPD.

It is difficult to discuss

The feeling to express happiness is overwhelming and thus making it hard to address the condition. Most women find it hard to express themselves or experience the joy they anticipated to have with the little ones. You will not enjoy the birth of the baby.

It is treatable

While some women don’t get treated for this condition, you can get treatment if you identify that you need help. A mixture of psycho-treatment and anti-depressant can healing can be a slow process, but you will eventually get better in three or four months. You can get help from people who are qualified in treating postpartum depression. Alternatively, you may seek help from a postpartum depression foundation. Many PPD foundations offer support to the sufferers.

You can be a good mother

Even with the condition, you can be a good mother and wife. This can be achieved by having supportive people around you. People who have partners with PPD should learn how to assist and support their partners. This can help PPD patients to feel they belong to the family and they are no less than other women without the condition.

Conclusion

If you are suffering from PPD, just know you are not alone. There are several women out there who are suffering like you. But the good news is that you can get help from the experts. You should also know that even symptoms are not the same for all women. One of the common sign of this condition is that you will feel disconnected from your little one. Other women also experience disorientation, fogginess, and Barnes. Others also have their sleeping pattern altered. In case you feel these symptoms, seek medical help right away.


Fun and Simple Activities for Introducing Kids to Their Environment


Children become more active as they reach a certain age. Depending on when your children learn to walk, their exploration instincts kick in at a certain age and they become more curious about their surroundings. Teaching kids how to interact with their environment is an essential process to complete at this stage.

You don’t have to resort to boring lessons to help kids become more familiar with their environment. Certain activities, games, and even adventures will help them pick up the knowledge and skills they need while having a lot of fun along the way.

Trampoline-Jumping

Trampolining, or jumping on a trampoline, is one of the most fun things to do. Even as adults, we often imagine what it would be like to have a giant trampoline and some time to just let loose and have fun. Your kids will find the activity extremely exciting, plus they will be exposed to the elements while they have a lot of fun.

First, you need a good trampoline. Fortunately, you are not alone when it comes to choosing a trampoline. There are reviews and other resources on Trampolinefirst.com that will help you find the perfect one to pick up in no time. You also have user reviews and testimonials to go through.

Make sure the trampoline is installed properly for maximum safety. You want the kids to have fun early in the morning or late in the afternoon when the sun is not too hot. This way, you don’t have to worry about excessive heat and exposure to UV rays.


Hiking Adventures

We normally think of a long trip to the mountains when talking about hiking. In reality, hiking doesn’t have to be all that complicated. A simple walk through a trail that you create yourself in the park can be rewarding enough. Share the experience with the kids and you have a winner.

A short hiking trip will arouse a child’s curiosity. They will start admiring birds, tree branches, and other details around them. Don’t rush through the experience. Answer every question patiently and let the children take in the experience to the fullest.

If you have older children, sharing a hiking trip is also worth considering. The extra challenges and more exposure to the elements are good for them and their learning experience.

Backyard Camping

Yes, spending some time outside during the evening is also highly recommended. Schedule a camping night and have a lot of fun sharing a barbeque, exchanging stories, playing camping games, and doing other things.

Since it is camping in the backyard, there is no need to worry about preparing things. A tent and some basic camping equipment are all you need; besides, you can always come into the house once you are done for the evening. You’ll be surprised by how excited the children will be when learning about the stars.

Pick any of these activities and help your children get to know their surroundings better. It is an exercise you will certainly enjoy.


KEEPING OUR AIR CLEAN FOR OUR CHILDREN


The world is not a gift from our ancestors but is instead a loan from our children. This is why it is vital to ensure that our children get to breathe in air that is clean and healthy. Today, the environment is quite polluted. Contaminants in the air are more common than ever. This is detrimental to everyone’s health; however for children with their weaker immune systems, it is an even bigger cause for concern.

Parents may try to shield their kids from all sorts of danger, including the health hazards that can be caused by breathing in unclean air, however, they can’t control everything. Fortunately, now with products like air purifiers, parents can at least ensure that the air inside their home is clean and safe.

Some statistics show that indoor air might actually contain more contaminants and pollutants than outdoor air. This is because nature has a natural way of purifying the air through plants and vegetation. However, inside the homes, this is not the case. Which is why a lot of care needs to be taken in ensuring that the air that you and your children breath inside your home is suitable for healthy living.

Here are some of the benefits of clean air in homes and tips on how you can achieve this.

Helps with Asthma and Allergies

The symptoms of asthma and allergies can be aggravated due to airborne irritants. If these irritants are removed from the air, then children and adults alike will find some relief from their allergies or other respiratory conditions. Moreover, even children who do not have any allergies or asthma can benefit from clean air. This is because the dust and impurities in the air can cause irritation and inflammation in the nasal passage and the rest of the respiratory system.

Improved Digestion and Other Bodily Functions

For most of us, breathing is simply a process we do all the time which is why it is rarely given the importance or the attention it deserves. However, the truth of the matter is that without ample supply of oxygen that the body receives through breathing, the body will not be able to perform all the bodily functions optimally. For example, digestion. Clean oxygen in ample supply is required to keep the muscles in the digestive track contracting and relaxing rhythmically. Without it, the food will not be broken down or utilized properly by the body. If the air is impure and unclean, the amount of oxygen that the body receives with each breath decreases. Moreover, clean air and oxygen are vital for the growth and development of children.


Improved Mood, Emotional Intelligence, and Cognitive Abilities

Are your children moody, grumpy or blue a little too often? The air in your home might be the culprit. Clean and fresh air is strongly linked to improved mood, emotional intelligence, and cognitive ability. In fact, some neuroscientists have even linked clean and fresh air with improved brain function. All of these things are extremely important for the growth and development of children.

Long and Healthy Life

Breathing in the impure air for prolonged periods can cause a buildup of contaminants and irritants in the respiratory system. This can lead to several diseases, many of which can even prove to be chronically dangerous for both children and adults alike. These diseases include emphysema and bronchitis. Therefore, by providing our children with clean air, parents can ensure that their children live longer and healthier lives, free of such diseases and conditions.

How to Get Clean Indoor Air?

The benefits of clean air are many, and fortunately, it is quite easy to rake in these benefits. By following just a few simple steps, you can dramatically improve the quality of the air inside your house.

Air purifiers are a simple and effective way to achieve exactly what their name suggests- pure air. The top air purifiers come in a variety of designs and can be installed in different ways, however, one of the most effective ways is to install an air purifier so that it works in tandem with your home’s cooling or heating systems.

Apart from this, getting your house inspected for mold is a good idea, as this can also contaminate the air. Moreover, ensure that you regularly vacuum the house to get rid of the dust particles and allergens, avoid smoking in the house, and invest in some indoor plants. The plants will improve the oxygen levels in the air in your home.


Sources: 

http://www.bobjenson.com/blog/6-benefits-good-indoor-air-quality/

https://greenairenv.com/blog/3-benefits-of-clean-air-on-children/

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/how-to-fix-indoor-air-pollution_us_59e0cc85e4b03a7be58012b1

The Art of Teaching Kids to Fly Fish


For anglers who understand and agree with the need for conservation, investing the time and patience needed to teach children to fly fish is returned tenfold when children discover, and take to, the beauty, grace, and challenges of the sport by becoming lifelong fly fishermen. So, even though having more fly fishermen in the world is kind of a “catch 22” since more fly fishermen means more fishing pressure, it also means more conservationists and, the more conservationists we have, the more likely we are to be able to keep our local trout streams pristine and accessible to the public. However, teaching children to fly fish is not an easy task even for an experienced fly fishing instructor but, there are certain things that are helpful to both know and practice when teaching children to fly fish that will undoubtedly make your efforts more successful.

10 Helpful Tips for Teaching Kids to Fly Fish 

1. Have the patience of Job 

For those of you who are not familiar with the story, Job was a character in the Christian Bible who endured a seemingly endless series of trials administered by God but, because Job remained loyal through it all, he was handsomely rewarded in the end. So, when teaching kids to fly fish, the first requirement is to have the patience of Job! The reason for this is that kids are either intensely interested in fly fishing or they are not and, if they are, then they will want to learn from you but, if they are not, then nothing you can do will engage their attention.

2. Make it fun for them

This tip is almost as important at the tip mentioned above! Even if the kid or kids you are teaching are interested in learning, you still need to make it fun for them. So, because kids like both games and challenges, one of the best ways to make fly fishing fun for them is to make a game out of it. For instance, a game to see who has the best cast or, who can cast their fly the most accurately or, anything else you can dream up that is both teaches them a particular aspect of fly fishing and is also fun for them. That way, they will have a memorable day even if they don’t catch any fish.

3. Show them as well as tell them 

Some kids learn well by listening to the lectures their teachers give them during their classes and thus, they also learn well by having you explain a particular fly fishing technique to them. However, some kids are visual learners and thus, they learn much better when they see a person demonstrate a particular technique for them. So, it is a wise idea to always carry a rod of your own along when teaching kids to fly fish so that you can show them as well as explain to them what you want to teach them.

4. Don’t hover over their shoulder 

On the other hand, kids hate having an adult hanging over their shoulder scrutinizing and correcting their every move and thus, it is very important to respect not only their personal space but their need to explore as they learn. So, rather than hover behind them like an overprotective parent, approach them to tell them or show them what you need to and then, back off and let them practice a bit while you provide a bit of friendly coaching from the sidelines.


5. Praise their successes and have patience with their mistakes

Children are genetically preprogrammed to seek approval from both their peers and from adults who they either like or admire. Thus, by having patience with them, making fly fishing fun for them and, not hovering over their shoulder, while also praising their successes and pointing out but, not chastising, their mistakes, kids will appreciate you and thus, they will be far more inclined to listen to you and do as you instruct.

6. Remember that you are taller and stronger than they are

This is a big one! Adults tend to forget that they are both taller and stronger than kids are and thus, terrain that is relatively simple for an experienced adult to traverse can sometimes be extra challenging to a kid. So, when teaching kids to fly fish, it is important to remember that they are shorter, weaker, and lighter than you are and thus, it is important that you choose your path along the stream, as well as your stream crossings, with a kid’s smaller stature in mind.

7. Provide them with an outfit appropriate to their stature

Despite the fact that kids most certainly can cast effectively and accurately with a 9 foot fly rod, if you will stop and think about it for a moment, to a kid who is only three and a half or four feet tall, a 9 foot fly rod looks like a 14 foot spey rod does to an average adult! So, it’s really helpful to kids to purchase a rod for them that has both an action and a length that is appropriate to their stature.

8. Have fun yourself or they will know

It might not seem like it at times, but kids are very sensitive to the moods of the adults that they interact with and thus, if you are not having fun teaching them to fly fish, then they will definitely know it. So, even if they are having enough fun on their own to ignore your sour mood, they will still know you are not happy about being there and it will adversely affect their fly fishing experience. So, if you don’t like spending time with, or teaching, kids, then find and hire a dedicated fly fishing instructor who thoroughly enjoys teaching and have them teach your children for you. Then, you can fly fish together once their instructor has taught them how.

See more tips on taking kids on their first fishing trip…


About author: Bill Bernhardt is a professional fly fishing guide and instructor with over fifteen years of experience. Also, he is a professional editor and outdoor author who has published eight books and written more than 1,500 articles and, he has contributed to both American Outdoor Magazine and Southern Trout e-zine.


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