Babies Breastfeed for Many Reasons




"He's just feeding for comfort" is a comment breastfeeding supporters hear a lot. And why not? Anyone who has breastfed will soon come to realize that breastfeeding is about far more than just food. Yes it's handy that this act of liquid love is also optimally designed to grow and nourish our babies, but there is far more to it than that.

Of course babies ask to breastfeed when they're hungry. And they're hungry a lot! But they may also be thirsty and just want a quick drink, especially in hot weather. Or their bodies and brains may be in a fast period of growth which needs to be fueled. They may also ask to feed if they're feeling cold, if they want a cuddle, if they've missed you, if they're feeling lonely, or tired, or poorly, or scared. Or if they are in pain. All of these reasons are just as valid as hunger.

Breastfeeding your baby whenever they ask, ensures not only that they receive enough nutrition but that their physical and emotional needs are met as well.

-Kathryn Stagg IBCLC

More from Stagg at: KathrynStaggIBCLC.com

Find support, community, and research based answers in the Breastfeeding Group

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What benefits are in ONE teaspoon of human milk?




What is in one amazing, powerful mere teaspoon of human milk?

Between 50,000-65,000,000 living cells that make up nutrients, antiviral, antibacterial, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, prebiotic, probiotic hormones and stem cells!! 

Breastfeeding is life-changing for a life time.

If you nurse your baby (for any amount of time): http://www.DrMomma.org/2009/12/if-you-nurse-your-baby.html

The perfect book for moms looking ahead to breastfeeding - Breastfeeding Made Simple.


Snapshot of a natural weaning moment...
37 months of 'the good stuff!'

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What my body needs...




Today I asked my body what she needed,
Which is a big deal
Considering my journey of
Not Really Asking That Much.

I thought she might need more water.
Or protein.
Or greens.
Or yoga.
Or supplements.
Or movement.

But as I stood in the shower
Reflecting on her stretch marks,
Her roundness where I would like flatness,
Her softness where I would like firmness,
All those conditioned wishes
That form a bundle of Never-Quite-Right-Ness,
She whispered very gently:

Can you just love me like this?

❤️

-Hollie Holden

More from Holden at: www.HollieHolden.me



How to Relieve Your Baby’s Congestion


Babies have underdeveloped immune systems compared to adults, and this makes them more susceptible to infections and diseases. When your little one starts showing symptoms, you can’t help but worry if it’s an indication of something dangerous. In particular, one of the commonly occurring ones is congestion.

What is Congestion?

When the body encounters pathogens or other foreign invaders, it secretes mucus. This sticky fluid will then accumulate in the airways and nose. Too much mucus blocks these parts, making it difficult to breathe and feed. The general discomfort from the blockage can also affect your little one’s quality of sleep. And if untreated, it might lead to sinusitis.

Newborn congestion is more dangerous than infant congestion due to their weaker immune system. If your child is under three months of age, we suggest that you immediately take him/her to the doctor.

Those older than three months of age, on the other hand, doesn’t pose as much risk. Infants will commonly experience congestion because if you think about it, their passages are narrower than ours. It’s faster for these spaces to fill up with mucus compared to an adult's. However, like with any other health issues, nothing can bring you more peace if you talk to your child’s pediatrician.

Symptoms of Baby Congestion

Mucus Discharge

A runny nose along with nasal congestion indicates common cold in babies. Depending on the cause of your baby’s congestion, you might find mucus ranging from clear, white, or yellow in color.

Difficulty in Eating and Sleeping As we have mentioned earlier, congestion is uncomfortable, and it can affect normal body functions. Babies might refuse to eat/suck because of the resulting difficulty in breathing caused by congestion. Babies may also become more restless and avoid sleeping or napping because of the discomfort.

Faster Breathing If your baby’s respiratory passages are blocked by mucus, then consequently he/she is going to breathe faster than normal to compensate for the difficulty. To give you an idea, babies normally take 40 breaths per minute. However, if your child takes more than 60 breaths per minute, it would be safer to take him to the hospital right away.

Other symptoms that may be involved with baby congestion are:

  • Coughing 
  • Grunting 
  • Wheezing 
  • Noisy breathing 
  • Sniffling 
  • Runny nose


Causes of Baby Congestion

Before we go on with how you can relieve your little one’s congestion, it is important that you know what might be causing it.

Common Cold

There are different cold-causing viruses. And since a baby is just starting to build his/her immunity against them, he/she is more prone to catching them.

Allergy

Every baby will differ in potential triggers and allergens. If you suspect that he/she has come in contact or has eaten something that might have caused an allergic reaction, visit the doctor for a test.

Foreign Object Blockage

As unexpected as it might seem, a random object or a piece of food can get lodged in your baby’s nose. Of course, the body will treat it as a foreign invader and secrete mucus in response. However, you must not remove the object yourself, especially if it’s deep down the passage. It’s better that you take your child in the emergency room for a safer removal.

Other potential causes:

  • Asthma 
  • Pneumonia 
  • Flu 
  • Dry air
  • Weather changes 
  • Cigarette smoke 
  • Pollutants/Irritants


How to Relieve Your Baby’s Congestion

It’s worrisome to see your baby suffering from congestion. They have smaller passages than us so they’ll need extra help in clearing the mucus out. We are going to focus here on how you can make your baby more comfortable. At the same time, on how you can help his/her body get rid of the mucus.

Do note that these suggestions are not the sole solution or cure for congestion. Be sure to consult your child’s doctor to know if there are underlying issues that need to be addressed.

Saline Drops

If your baby is under 6 months, you’ll have an easier time with this first suggestion. What the saline does to the mucus is thin it out, so that it’ll be easier for your child to expel it out. For younger babies, you can use a bulb syringe to remove the mucus yourself. However, this can be tricky to do, especially with babies older than 6 months.

You can ask your doctor when looking for a brand of saline solution. However, did you know that you can also use breastmilk in the same way? According to some lactation consultants, breastmilk is familiar enough for babies. This way, they wouldn’t oppose it if they happen to swallow some in the process compared to salty saline.

Now, it might be tempting to give your child cold medications, treatments, or rubs. It works effectively on adults, right? But for young children, these medications are too dangerous. Never attempt to medicate your baby with medicines unless you have the approval of his/her doctor.

Humidifier

Baby congestion and humidifiers are often related to each other. The reason for this is because the air moisture quality, such as dry air can worsen congestion. Parents typically look for the best baby humidifier that can safely alleviate their baby’s discomfort. In fact, some manufacturers even came up with designs and features targeted for nursery use.

Humidifiers are helpful for breathing and preventing the body from producing more mucus. If the air is dry, then the sinuses will also dry out. The body will compensate for this and produce more mucus, which is the opposite of what you want.

However, humidifiers also have some risks. The good news though is that you can avoid them with good hygiene and proper usage. Remember to keep its reservoir clean and always use distilled water to prevent white dust.

TLC

Perhaps the easiest out of these suggestions, some tender-love-and-care will go a long way in making your baby comfortable. You can do this by giving gentle pats on his/her back with him leaning slightly forward. This will help loosen the mucus for easier expulsion. You can even softly rub the bridge of your baby’s nose to soothe him/her before bedtime.

A warm, steamy bath can also make your child more comfortable. Similar to how we feel a tad better when we have a cold. This bath time also serves as your bonding moment while distracting him/her from the stuffy feeling.

Overall, these suggestions can help relieve your child with the discomfort from congestion. At the end of the day, it is best to see his/her doctor to make sure you’re not worsening or ignoring other health concerns.

Nose Frida for babies with colds and congestion

Development in the Uses of CBD Oil


CBD oil is one of the most exciting medical innovations to come along in recent years. People have been using CBD oil for a while now, but new research is showing signs of tremendous new developments in the near future.

We’ve known for awhile that CBD has natural anti-inflammatory properties, making it effective in pain relief for any people. It’s especially useful for nerve pain and pain caused by stiffness and joint problems. We also know that CBD can help those suffering from anxiety, depression, or insomnia.

But it looks like there might be a lot more to CBD oil as we learn to apply these properties to various conditions. Read on to learn about a few of them.

Epilepsy

In private, people have been using CBD oil to treat their own or their children’s epilepsy for years. But in 2018, the Food and Drug Administration officially approved CBD as a treatment for Dravet Syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome.

These are two conditions that cause epilepsy in children and both are very hard for current conventional medications to treat. CBD oil has the power to make a difference. Research into the effects of CBD oil for general epilepsy is ongoing.

Arthritis

Chronic inflammation can lead to all kinds of problems, including arthritis. Studies done in 2011, 2014, 2016, and 2017 have all shown that CBD oil has a positive effect on arthritis pain and stiffness.

More studies are needed, but research is developing quickly. CBD oil may soon take its place among orthopedic treatments, dietary changes, and conventional medications as an effective way of controlling arthritis.

Type 1 diabetes

Unlike Type 2 diabetes, which is typically related to diet and lifestyle, Type 1 diabetes develops when inflammation triggers a person’s immune system to attack the pancreas. Early research is showing that CBD can ease pancreatic inflammation.

There’s a lot more work to be done in this direction, but so far, things look promising. A study done in Lisbon in early 2017 demonstrated that CBD oil is capable of reducing inflammation in mice; and even stopping some mice from developing Type 1 diabetes at all. You can keep an eye on this sort of research at https://thecbdinsider.com.

Neural issues

Researchers are currently looking at how CBD oil can affect the many conditions caused by injuries or disorders to the neurological system. These include not only epilepsy, but also psychiatric diseases and damage or degeneration of the nerves.

So far, CBD oil shows promise in treating some types of schizophrenia as well as chronic nerve pain and neurodegeneration. Once again, research is ongoing, but there is every reason to believe that CBD oil may become an effective treatment for at least some of these conditions.

Cancer

Everyone hopes for effective cancer treatments. Current cancer treatments, although effective, tend to be toxic and cause pain and discomfort for cancer sufferers. CBD oil has very low toxicity and few side effects.

Recent studies show that CBD oil may be an effective treatment for cancer. A lot of work still needs to be done, but some studies show that, in the lab at least, CBD oil suppresses cancer cells and tends to trigger them to self-destruct.

Addiction

One of the hardest things about treating opioid addiction is the side effects of opioid withdrawal. These can be profound, and the suffering associated with withdrawal keeps some people from seeking the help they need.

In one study, smokers treated with CBD oil experienced no cravings. At this point, research is still in very early stages when it comes to using CBD oil to treat opioid addiction. But it has the potential to make withdrawal much easier and become a powerful tool in the war against the opioid epidemic.

How the 30 Minute BRIEF Assessment Works


The second edition of the Behavior Rating of Executive Function (BRIEF2) is an assessment to measure impairment of executive function with the use of rating scales. It is used to assess children ages five to eighteen.

The administration time is ten minutes or less for all forms including the parent, teacher, and self-report forms, and scoring takes approximately fifteen minutes for a total of no more than thirty minutes. A single manual contains information and research about each screening form.

What’s New

This second edition contains an increased sensitivity to executive function. It eliminates items that distract from the sensitivity of key clinical groups like autism spectrum disorder and ADHD. There is also updated normative data from all fifty states in the U.S.

The scales are more concise, making it easier for teachers, parents, or adolescent respondents to conduct and assess. The parallel structure across all three screening forms has increased as well.

There are three indexes included in the BRIEF2: behavioral, cognitive, and emotional. Identifying unusual responses is easier than ever with a new infrequency scale.

Administration and Scoring

Administration and scoring time takes no more than thirty minutes, and sometimes less. The BRIEF2 can be hand-scored in this time for increased accuracy and efficient results. It includes feedback reports, protocol summary reports, interpretive reports, and i-Admins on PAR’s digital platform. Online scoring or a mixture of hand and online scoring are also available.

Reliability, Validity, and Norms

The BRIEF2 has been used in over 800 studies around the world and has a greater ability to provide targeted diagnostic information than any other assessment of its kind. The lack of new items added to the clinical scales allows smooth and consistent transitioning from the first to the second edition.

The nationally stratified standardization sample across all fifty states includes 3600 cases matched by gender, age, parent education level, and ethnicity to the U.S. Census for reliable and accurate results.

The reliability coefficients for both the teacher form and the parent form are consistently above .90 and the self-report form has a reliability coefficient of more than .80. The BRIEF2 correlates with other measures of behavior and IQ, like CBCL, Conners-3, BASC-2, RIAS, ADHD-RS-IV, WAIS-IV, and WISC-IV for increased reliability and validity.

Extensive analysis has determined that the three-factor solution including Emotional Regulation Index, Behavior Regulation Index, and Cognitive Regulation Index is accurate and reliable.

The professional manual of the BRIEF2 provides base rates and mean performance across clinical groups like ASD, ADHD types, LD, TBI, anxiety, cancer, epilepsy, diabetes, and NF-I. In addition, new reliable change statistics allow easy measurement of significant changes in scores over time.

Clinical and Validity Scales

There are a number of clinical and validity scales for the BRIEF2 contained in its indexes.

The Behavior Regulation Index includes inhibit and self-monitor executive composites that help measure impulse control and monitor the child’s ability to keep track of the effects of their behavior on others.

The Emotion Regulation Index includes shift and emotional control executive composites that measure the child’s ability to effectively move from one activity to another and modulate appropriate emotional responses.

The Cognitive Regulation Index includes initiate, task completion, working memory, plan/organize, task-monitor, and organization of materials executive composites. These executive composites help identify the child’s ability to generate their own ideas, complete schoolwork or chores on time, hold information in their mind to complete tasks, anticipate future events, check their own work, and keep their work space clean.

The validity scales include inconsistency, negativity, and infrequency scales designed to measure how inconsistently or negatively the child answers BRIEF2 items and the extent to which they endorse unlikely events.


How To Prepare For Your First Baby Shower


There’s nothing more exciting or rewarding than having a baby, and there’s plenty to plan and prepare, including a baby shower. It’s easy to be unsure about how to go about planning this, but don’t worry! We’re here to help you out – here is a step-by-step guide on how to prepare for your first baby shower.

Before The Big Day

Before the day, there are certain things you need to make sure you know. What date is your baby shower? What time are you planning on starting? Where’s it going to be? If your baby shower’s going to be in the summer, a garden party could be nice, as long as the weather’s good, that is! You also need to decide who you’re inviting, as well as how much you’re willing to spend. Once you’ve got all this information, put together some invitations – if this stumps you a little, and you want to make a statement, there are plenty of templates out there so you can get the perfect invite for your guests. Once you’ve got the simple stuff down, it’s time to get into a bit more detail; what menu are you having? Are you making sandwiches and cupcakes, or are you after a few entrees to add a bit of class? Of course, you need a cake, but are you making it yourself or investing in a bakery-made one? Add some comfort food in there – after all, it’s for the mom expecting too! You also need to invest in some décor to give your baby shower a little bit of style – we recommend sticking to 2 or 3 colors, so your shower looks fun without looking messy.

What To Do At The Shower

You also need to plan what you’re going to do at your baby shower – usually, there are some forms of games as well as gift opening. Plan about half an hour for guests to arrive, and then throw yourself straight into an activity or game. Our favorite is “Baby Sketch Artists”, where each guest draws a sketch of the baby and the best wins, but there are plenty more games to take part if that isn’t your style! Once you’ve played one or two games, set out the food and let your guests have a snack (and a bit of champagne, if you’re feeling cheeky) whilst they watch you unwrap some gifts, allowing people to take a seat back and relax without losing interest. Maybe slot in a few more games before letting your guests leave – don’t forget to invest in some favors for them to take away to remember. Try and get it to suit your theme – for example, if you’re going for an animal theme, a little stuffed toy is the perfect accompaniment, but if that’s a bit tricky, some chocolates or little soaps or candles always work a treat.

Preparing for your first baby shower can be a lot to do, but is also a lot of fun to put together. With these tips, you’re sure to put together a baby shower that neither you nor your guests will forget. Enjoy!

Effects of Air Pollution on Pregnancy and How to Stay Safe


Learning that you are pregnant and expecting your first child can often be one of the most impactful moments of your entire life. After all, it marks a milestone with you and your family, with you moving forward to start a family of your own. While there are many different things to celebrate in this stage of life, there are also many more things that you need to be wary of.

Adapting to Protecting Your Child

The human body changes quite a bit during pregnancy to accommodate the growing life. Because of this, expecting women need to be a little bit more careful about what they do and where they go so that they can remain as safe as possible, and their children can be born as healthy as possible as well. Of course, it borders on impossible to expect people to avoid everything that is even mildly unsafe, but there are some things that you should try to avoid more than others.

Out of the many things that pregnant women need to avoid, most people are well aware of smoking, alcohol, and seafood. However, there are still many other things that you will need to try and stray away from as well. One of the things that you might be worried about is air pollution and how it could affect the baby inside you. Thankfully, the idea of how air pollution affects pregnancy is one that has been studied for quite a while now, which means that it is easier than ever to get an answer.

First things first though, you need to understand the basics of air pollution and what exactly it can do to your body if you are exposed to it for too long.

Understanding What Air Pollution Is

To put things simply, air pollution occurs when there are particles in the air that aren’t necessarily safe to breathe for prolonged periods of time. This means that there are many different things that can fall under the umbrella term of “air pollution.” From ozone to vehicular exhaust, second-hand smoke, and dust, there are many things in daily life that can easily be considered air pollution. In fact, people who live in major cities tend to be exposed to minor air pollution on a near-constant basis.

This doesn’t necessarily mean that it is bad for you, or your baby, but it does mean that you have to be more aware of how it affects your body. When your body starts showing signs of prolonged exposure to air pollution, that’s when you know when it is truly affecting you. It is safe to assume that if it is affecting your health, then it can affect your baby’s health as well. Because of this, you should be well aware of the signs of exposure to air pollution. More often than not, these symptoms will include the following:

  • Coughing and wheezing 
  • Irritation in the sinuses and eyes 
  • Respiratory diseases, such as asthma and bronchitis 
  • Decreased lung capacity 
  • Shortness of breath 
  • Physical damage to the heart and lungs 
  • Cancer


As you can see, there is certainly a range of symptoms when it comes to air pollution. Typically, more severe symptoms, such as damage to the lungs and cancer are signs that your body has taken quite the beating from breathing in polluted air. On the other hand, minor symptoms, such as coughing and eye irritation, are signs that you should probably think about how you can keep yourself safe during your pregnancy.

What Are the Dangers of Prolonged Exposure to Air Pollution?

Of course, the occasional exposure to the more polluted parts of the city isn’t going to cause irreversible damage to your child. However, repeated and prolonged exposure will cause damage. This damage often rears its ugly face after the pregnancy is over, which means that you should do whatever you can while you are pregnant to keep yourself safe. One of the most common dangers of exposure to air pollution is having a low birth weight. Most newborns should weigh between six to nine pounds. Babies who are under five pounds and eight ounces are considered to have a low birth weight, which can cause a number of issues when the child is first growing.

What is more worrisome is that exposure to severe air pollution has the chance of causing a preterm birth. Depending on how early the child is born, this can be incredibly dangerous for your child. In fact, about 18% of all preterm births are caused by air pollution. There are numerous risks for children who are born before they are fully developed, which can range from permanent disabilities to neurological disorders. You should try and reduce your risk as much as possible by staying as safe as you can from polluted air.

If you have asthma, living in an area that is susceptible to air pollution can actually be extremely dangerous. As many people with asthma know, polluted air can worsen the symptoms and even trigger an asthma attack. This is already dangerous enough for your baby, but it becomes even more dangerous because asthma has been linked to causing preeclampsia. Preeclampsia causes elevated blood pressure while decreasing the function of the kidneys and liver, which can severely affect your child. As long as you take care of your asthma, your child should be fine, but this means that you should take extra care to stay as far away from polluted air as possible.

There are many other risks to being pregnant in an area that has air pollution issues, but these are arguably some of the most severe issues. Other issues that you can have include the fact that you are far more likely to have a child with autism. There have been a few studies that link air pollution to the increased chance of miscarriages, although more studies point toward lower fertility rates in both men and women.

Staying Safe From Polluted Air

With all of this being said, it becomes even more important for you to keep yourself safe from polluted air while you are pregnant. Thankfully, there are many ways that you can keep you, and your unborn child, as safe as possible. For one, you should always keep yourself up to date on the Air Quality Index (AQI). This will give you an idea of just how polluted the air is in your area, which should give you an idea of just how far to take these next steps to stay safe.

You can also get the best home air purifiers for your house. While it won’t completely remove all the pollutants, it will remove the majority of them. Coupled with the fact that you should stay inside as much as you can to avoid the brunt of the polluted air, a good air purifier can do a lot in terms of keeping you safe. Air purifiers will ensure that your home becomes a place where you can rest comfortably without worrying about the quality of the air. You can increase this comfort by also getting some air-purifying plants to further clean the air.

Practical Principals for Peaceful Parenting

By Vivian Hazzard, BSN,PHN, RN


How can we possibly accomplish all that is required of the mature, responsible adult who holds multiple titles of an employee, spouses/partner, individual, and parent?

This question is faced by the average parents daily. We are busy making a living to ensure our households have what is necessary and if we can, what is desired. Securing social and extracurricular activities to help expand the horizons, entertain and ensure well rounded experiences are had by our children. The effort and time required to raise children in this modern society can be overwhelming to say the least. The pressures of parenting often begin even before the birth of the child. Interviewing the right pediatrician, getting the unborn child the right care providers by getting placed on the waiting lists for the “best” child care centers and kindergartens. Scheduling play dates, organizing car pools, working on school assignments and projects, attending sports and music events, career day, book day costume creation, chaperone for school trips and events, the list goes on and on.

Many of us subscribe to the philosophy and social norms that more is better and “helicopter” parenting is the only way to ensure your children get what they deserve. There are in fact social-contextual forces shaping parental behavior and some parents are more susceptible to environmental factors than others. Research has shown that just as there are many individual characteristics and stages in which a child developments; there are various styles of parenting, not just one “perfect” way.

Our modern society with its many conveniences often serves to create additional distractions, chaos, feelings of depression, anxiety, inadequacy, strain, and superfluity. We PUSH (Put Unhealthy Strains on Us) trying to be the perfect rather than the joyful, harmony producing, peace filled parents. We even accept negative criticisms about our parenting styles and allow others to influence us instead of doing what we know is best for “ours.” This constant “pushing,” to press against with force in order to drive or impel or to try to move beyond or expand is not helpful to our children, ourselves, nor the communities we live and work.

Our bodies produce a natural hormone called cortisol in which many of us know in relationship to the “fight or flight” response. The body actually needs and uses this hormone every day to function normally. If we are constantly in the fight or flight mode, the cortisol levels stay elevated instead of in the cyclic pattern our bodies require for balance. This chronic condition along with other physical or mental health problems can impact the lives of our children. Persons who are exposed to chronic episodes of “stress” or trauma may feel overwhelmed to the point of depression or hopelessness referred to as “toxic stress” for which intervention is necessary.

The key to balancing multiple responsibilities is in remembering that you are also a person, an individual outside of these roles and find ways to focus on the joys of parenting by decreasing the “drama” and increase the “love.”

There are some basic principles and lessons that will help parents find peace in the midst of parenting no matter what style of parenting they choose.

Consider the developmental and emotional stage of each child. Increase the child's protective factors, help equip them to understand that they are not responsible for their parent's difficulties, accept responsibility for their own actions, and have the capacity to maneuver life's challenges by:

  • Finding ways to develop a warm and supportive relationship with each child 
  • Accepting help and support from family and friends 
  • Providing opportunities for children to articulate their feelings 
  • Fostering a sense of being loved by you 
  • Helping children feel positive about their individual characteristics 
  • Encouraging healthy peer relationships 
  • Placing value on interest and personal success in school 
  • Exhibiting and modeling positive, yet honest interactions at home


Give your children the best version of your “Healthy” self.

Adopting a healthy lifestyle to include caring for yourself mind, body and spirit is important in order to parent peacefully. It also models a healthy lifestyle for your children.

Practice relaxation.
Find ways to stay calm. Adopt meditation and relaxation techniques. Consider using the “Stop, Drop and Breathe” method when under parental duress.

Exercise daily. 
Develop scheduled time to be active. Talk with your health care provider about what activities are best for you and make it fun. Remember exercise naturally produces hormones called endorphins that help to improve your overall health.

Eat healthy. 
Consuming food that provides adequate nutrition, fluids, calories and nutrients help to maintain or improve overall health.

Get adequate sleep. 
Have a set sleep schedule for the family. Everyone is different, so this is not an exact science, but something to consider and adjust to your needs. Sleep time recommendations range for adults versus infants, toddlers, children and the elderly.

Avoid alcohol and drugs. 
These substances are often glamorized in social media as ways to reduce stress and blow off steam. The fact is they can often worsen stress. If you're struggling with disorders and substance abuse, get help.

Be yourself. 
Develop values and goals that are important to your individual family. Avoid the urge to imitate popular TV versions and/or faddish social styles of parenting. Know your child(ren), learn their individual emotional, physical and developmental needs.

Use support systems. 
Engage and interact with people who are like minded and/or understand your family values and goals: Consider friends, family, counselors and community parent training and support groups.

Laugh, Play and Love More. 
We live in a world of rush, rush, hurry up, get, get, give me, give me. Take time to let go by running, jumping, playing, laughing and loving your children. This simple advice goes a long way, does not have to be costly, and increases the flow of “happy” hormones for the entire family.

We have all heard the anecdotes of those who have lived long lives: “If I had life to live over again I would laugh and dream more, complain less, stomp in puddles, walk in the rain, stop and smell the flowers, play with my children more and find peace in the midst of chaos.”




3 Things Every Pregnant Woman Should Know Before Having Their Baby


Finding out you're expecting a baby is an amazing moment in your life. If you've never been pregnant before, the news can be a little overwhelming. With all the excitement, some important things may be overshadowed, such as calling your insurance provider or finding the perfect daycare. Don't stress out; take a deep breath and celebrate every moment. Here are three things every pregnant woman should know before having her baby.

Contact your insurance company

Health insurance companies can differ in their policies and plans. You can find out what's covered for your prenatal care and the cost of delivery. For example, how many doctor visits are covered and if you need to pay anything out of pocket. You’ll also want to find out what you are responsible for if you haven't reached your deductible before giving birth. Some insurance companies will cover necessary items up to a certain amount like compression stockings for preeclampsia. In some countries such as Australia and the US, many people choose to take out private insurance. There are multiple plans to choose from depending on your needs and can afford. Ask your insurance company about any additional charges you may incur, such as newborn testing and hospital stay beforehand. This can help you prepare for that bill in the mail and what is optional or necessary during your pregnancy. For families that qualify as low-income, you may be eligible for government assisted healthcare in the US and similar affordable healthcare programs in Australia.

Body changes

You may have heard other mom's talk about strange changes during pregnancy. Your hair, for example, can change texture or color. Your body is producing a lot of hormones which can give you teenage-like acne or a smooth, flawless complexion. Many women find their joints have loosened in some places but stressed (like the sciatic nerve) in others. Morning sickness is a deceptive name; you can experience nausea and vomiting at any time of the day. You can find relief with a few sips of your favorite ginger soda, sour candies or your doctor may prescribe a nausea medication.

Your hormones can affect your memory causing frustrating by perfectly normal brain fog, also known as pregnancy brain. As you get further along you may begin feeling more fatigue especially if you are still working. If you haven't already, explore your employer's policies for maternity and paternity leave once you plan to tell them you're pregnant. Some larger companies such as Spotify and Microsoft offer anywhere from 18 to 20 weeks paid leave. In the US, employees of companies that don't offer paid time off can sign up for FMLA. If you are accepted, this federal program can pay you temporary benefits for up to 18 weeks. Australia's government has a similar program for bonding time for fathers and partners that can be used before or after the baby comes home.

Help when you are home

You may want to find a daycare or full-time nanny if you work (or need some extra hands) to relieve you of extra stress before you and the new arrival come home. There are online nanny organizations that give you information like experience, specialties, reviews, and if you want, a background check. Once you are back at work, you may want to consider some nighttime help such as a relative willing to sleepover occasionally or a night nanny. Sleep deprivation can interfere with work and everyday activities. There are a couple of quick tips to make things easier at night. If you plan to bottle feed, you may want to keep bottles and pre measured formula ready for multiple night-time feedings. Soft lighting can help you see during midnight diaper changes without waking your baby.

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What Dads Should Do After Childbirth


Fatherhood is something that many fathers long for. However, for many fathers, especially first-time fathers, fatherhood can be a difficult time. This mostly as a result of the fact that they do not really know what’s expected of them and what they should do in helping their wives. To help those who find themselves trapped in such unfortunate scenarios, this article is going to share with all fathers what they should do after childbirth.

Become the new cook and nutritionist

Labour drains women of most of their energy. As such, after childbirth, fathers should do most of the household chores as possible including cooking. It’s important however that in addition to assuming the role of the house cook, fathers should also become nutritionists as women soon after birth need to eat nutritious diets. Fathers should provide more proteins and vegetables. In the same vein, it's important that the wife also takes lots of water.

We know becoming a ‘house husband’ maybe a whole new experience for many but it's important to note that you can always engage in your favourite pastimes in the comfort of your own home, for instance, replacing your casino visits by simply opting to play at a casino online.

Massage her

The first few days after childbirth may be quite uncomfortable for the wife especially if she had to go through the caesarian section. As such, in order to ensure that your wife is always stress-free and comfortable,it’s advisable to become her new masseuse. Thanks to the power of the internet, fathers can easily learn all about massaging online.

Encourage her to seek support from other mothers

As alluded to above, the first few days after childbirth maybe uncomfortable for the wife, as such, one way of ensuring that your wife removes the ‘uncomfortable’ burden is to encourage her to seek support from other mothers. Through mixing, mingling and sharing stories with other mothers, she may learn a thing or two of how she can cope with the stress that comes with giving birth.

Regularly compliment her

Another great way of ensuring that your wife is stress-free during the immediate days after giving birth is to regularly complement her. Whenever she undertakes to do a task and she completes it, remember to tell her how immensely proud you are. This will only help to raise her confidence and to make her stress-free.

Let her cry

After a difficult birth, it's only normal that she may go through some emotional trauma. When this happens, you should not force her to keep her emotions inside but rather, you should encourage her to let her emotions out. Keeping one’s emotions inside will only compound the situation.

No pressure for sexual acts

We all know that fathers love intimacy. However, it's advisable to postpone our quest for sexual acts to later dates when she is comfortable and ready. Pressurizing for sexual acts soon after childbirth may lead her to resent you and the relationship.

New baby visitor guide.

How To Handle A Car Accident That Isn’t Your Fault


You have likely stumbled on this article because you or someone you know has been in accident. No matter how careful you are - life doesn’t always go according to plan.

Do you know what to do if the collision wasn’t your fault? Your first reaction will be one of shock, and you may even start crying. No one wants to be in this type of situation, but you also need to be prepared for it.

Here is some advice that will help you survive a car accident.

Stay calm

When you are in a car accident, your pulse will quicken, your breath will feel fast and shallow and you will no doubt be sweating a lot. Some people may even become excessively nauseous, and you will feel anxious and stressed the entire time.

All of this will drain your energy, and staying calm is the best thing that you can do. Focus on taking a few deep breaths, in and out. Your body is likely very tense, and it’s equally important that you loosen up, whether you need to unclench your jaw or let your shoulders down.

Collect all necessary information

When you are still at the scene of the collision, you should collect all of the necessary information that you will need from the other party for your insurance claim.

This includes facts about what happened, the name and address of the other individual, their vehicle registration information and license plate number.

Notify the correct authorities

No matter how major or minor the car accident was, it’s critical that you contact the police. They will create a legal accident report, and this is important for your insurance claim.

Visit the doctor if needed 

If you incurred any type of injuries as a result of the accident, you need to visit the doctor as soon as possible so that they can do a thorough examination of you.

Contact a lawyer

If you were personally injured as a result of the collision, you need to receive the appropriate compensation from the other party.

A lawyer is the best person that can help you receive your settlement and get your life back on track. For instance, the personal injury attorney is always available for a consultation if you need them.

Talk about it with your family

There is nothing more important than feeling supported by your loved ones when something bad happens to you. It has been proven that spending quality time with family helps relieve your stress and makes you feel happier.

Your loved ones can help regulate your emotions after the car accident. It’s normal to feel anxious and scared about getting behind the wheel again, and talking about this helps.

A car accident is never a pleasant experience. Still, it’s not the end of the world, and life isn’t a straight line. So long as you are prepared for it, stay calm and collected and follow protocol, the accident will become nothing more than a distant memory.

What Are The Best Games To Play With Your Toddler?


Free time with kids can be a lot of fun! Rather than sitting around in front of another video game or watching television, let's get creative, become imaginative, and interact with our little ones in game play that sparks their mental development along the way. Fun, educational games give us the ability to have fun while our kids learn! Not all games are suitable for every child. Within this guide, we'll look at some fun games to play with young children.

Simon Says

PokiesHQ offers a lot of fantastic information regarding casino games. These are excellent for adults, though not suitable for children. Still, similar games are played by kids each day, and too often these children seem to have troubles listening or following directions as they get older. Simon Says is a perfect game for small children to interact with parents and develop close listening skills. It's a game everyone can play, and fun for all.

It will help your child develop and perfect their listening skills. On top of that, you’ll be able to use this game to bond with your child. With that being said, you should start with this game and try others if you have more free time to kill.

One For You And One For Me

While you’re at it, you should think about playing “one for you, one for me”. This is a very fun game that will teach your child the importance of sharing. It is a good choice for young toddlers. The concept is very easy and this makes it suitable for everyone. On top of that, you won’t be required to buy anything special. You need to find objects that you and your child are going to love. For instance, you can use coins or cookies. Anything similar to that should do the trick. Your child should distribute the items while saying one for you or one for me.

Once all of the items are gone, you can enjoy them if they’re edible. Either way, this game can be fun and educational.

Hot And Cold

This is a very good chance that can help your child develop many skills. It will encourage them to move around a little and they’ll also need to use their problem solving skills. How does it work? Well, you’ll need to find an item that your child loves. When they’re not looking, you should hide it in a good location. Now, it is time for the toddler to begin looking for the item in question. When they do so, you can let them know how close they are by saying hot or cold. You say hot when they’re getting closer and cold when they’re getting further away.

This will prove to be very beneficial for your child. After all, it’ll improve their patience and it’ll teach them to never give up. Again, this is a game that requires very little besides time. It offers a whole lot in return.

Parachute

If you have multiple kids or you’re running a daycare, you should think about playing the parachute game. This is very similar to Simon Says since it will require your toddlers to pay attention. How does it work? Well, you’re going to need multiple people and a large sheet. Now, you’ll need to give out commands. Remember that you can give commands and play along too. Everyone will need to work together to ensure that you’re successful. You’ll want to say up, up and up! Or, you can say down, down, down!

The children will need to follow orders. This will turn the sheet into a parachute and it will be very entertaining for your children.

Hide And Seek

Finally, you should think about playing hide a seek. This is a classic game that will keep your toddler entertained for hours. On top of that, it can be educational and helpful. Just remember that you shouldn’t hide too well. If you do, you might make it too difficult on your child and they might not find you.


Day Trips and Excursions from Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe is in and of itself, a beautiful place to visit and the Lake Tahoe area offers plenty to do and see!

Winter

When you’re visiting Lake Tahoe in the winter, skiing is what much of the activity centers around. You can ski resorts like Heavenly Mountain Resort or Northstar, and there are also cheaper ski resorts in the area like Diamond Peak. Along with skiing, there are other winter activities such as sledding and tubing.

Summer

In the summer months, Lake Tahoe is just as beautiful, and you can enjoy boating, swimming or jet skiing. The water at Lake Tahoe is crystal clear, and the lake is surrounded by hiking and biking trails.

Lake Tahoe has good restaurants, shops, and villages that surround it too. Beyond these things, there are day trips and excursions in and near Lake Tahoe that you can take advantage of.

Some of the best family-friendly Lake Tahoe day trips and excursions include:

Yosemite Valley Tour 

The Yosemite Valley is a place you can reasonably day trip to from Lake Tahoe, although it can make for a long day so be prepared. When you do a Yosemite Valley tour, you can see the waterfalls and granite peaks the area is known for, and many of the tours will also include lunch. These sightseeing tours may take you over Tioga Pass which crosses the Sierra Nevada Mountains. That gives you a view from nearly 10,000 feet. Choose a tour where you enter Yosemite National Park and you can see the alpine meadows and streams. Some of the well-known spots you might enjoy on a Yosemite day trip tour include the Half Dome and El Capitan. There’s also the Tenaya alpine lake, and the eight-mile Yosemite Valley itself.

Virginia City, Nevada 

If you’re looking for family-friendly day trips from Lake Tahoe, consider a trip to Virginia City, Nevada. Virginia City is around 20 miles south of Reno, and it’s a historic town that once was a hub of mining. During a day trip to Virginia City, you’ll be transported back to the mid-1800s as you walk along the wooden sidewalks and visit a saloon. There are steam engine rides and haunted ghost tours, as well as the Historic Piper’s Opera House, which has played host to the likes of Mark Twain and President Grant among others. The Fourth Ward School was built in 1876, and it’s now a museum dedicated to the American West. The Virginia & Truckee Railroad is the most famous short-line railroad, and you can take a ride on it from Virginia City to Gold Hill.

Apple Hill 

Apple Hill is home to many ranches and vineyards. You can visit Apple Hill and purchase fresh fruit and in particular, apples. There are also options to purchase wine, apple donuts, and apple pies, among other freshly baked items. Apple Hill is located in the western Sierra Foothills, in El Dorado County. There are not only fruit orchards and wineries but also breweries and tree farms. Peak season at Apple Hill is in October, so be aware the crowds will be heavy at this time. You can pick your own apples at the farms in the area, or you can buy them already picked. Boa Vista Orchards is a farm where you can pick up a fresh apple tart, or you can go to Indian Rock Tree Farm, particularly if it’s near the holidays.

Grover Hot Springs 

Finally, one of the lesser-known gems that makes a great day trip from Lake Tahoe is Grover Hot Springs State Park, which is in Markleeville, California. The park is on the eastern side of the Sierra, sitting at the edge of the Great Basin Province. The park has hot springs, as the name implies, as well as areas for picnicking, hiking, and camping. The hot springs are green because of mineral deposits on the bottom of the pool, and there are many trail options if you’d like to hike while you’re there. For example, the Burnside Trail takes you to a waterfall if you take a three-mile round trip. There’s also Burnside Lake, which is a 10-mile round trip. There is one hot pool you can sit in with temperatures usually ranging from 102 to 105 degrees, and that pool is fed by six mineral springs. There’s also one cool pool. You can have a relaxing soak while enjoying the 10,000-foot Hawkins Peak located to your northwest, and the 9,400-peak of Markleeville to the southwest.

Lake Tahoe - Fall

The Pros and Cons of Vaping CBD


CBD vape juice, also known as cannabis e-liquid or CBD e-juice, is often considered one of the most beneficial and convenient methods of consuming CBD. One of the best things about vaping CBD liquid is that it doesn’t get you high, but does deliver the medicinal and therapeutic properties of cannabis. If you’re considering including CBD vape oil in your lifestyle, then you may be concerned about the pros and cons.

#1. Pro: Health Benefits

CBD is well known for its range of medicinal properties, and for helping with issues such as stress, anxiety, depression and more. It can also have a positive effect on preventing degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, and has been used as treatment for issues like arthritis. It has even been used as a cancer treatment. Vaping CBD oil has a fast-acting effect and high bio availability, making it one of the best ways to get all the health benefits.

#2. Pro: Fast-Acting

As mentioned earlier, vaping CBD oil is a popular choice today due to the fast-acting effects. In fact, the effects are almost immediate; once you vape CBD oil, you will quickly begin to start feeling the calming and relaxing effects on your body. The health benefits will begin to take effect almost immediately as the substance is taken straight into your lungs and absorbed into your bloodstream, where it is redistributed throughout the body.

#3. Pro: Discreet and Convenient

Another advantage of vaping CBD is that the devices used are portable and convenient. Vaping CBD is very easy; all you need is a vape pen and the vape juice. The best thing about these devices is that they are usually easy enough to fit in your purse or pocket, and due to the widespread popularity of vaping, it’s easy to discreetly vape with nobody knowing that you’re vaping CBD e-juice. Check that you are getting your vaporizer device from a reputable brand. Many are white label products such as these private label CBD vape pens, which may be sold under different brand names but originate from the same supplier. If you’re unsure about a brand, it may be worth checking if you can find out who the supplier is.

#4. Con: Health Risks

The good news is that vaping CBD is very low risk, but it’s always very important to be cautious about the techniques that you are using and the amount of liquid that you vaping at one time. You should also be careful when it comes to the temperatures at which you are heating the e-liquid. Inhaling CBD liquid can also cause coughing and even nausea if you over do it, so it’s important to be extra careful if you have any pre-existing health conditions, particularly lung conditions.

#5. Con: Addiction

Although doctors and researchers have cited that CBD e-liquids and oils are unlikely to be addictive on their own and can even be used in a positive way to help cure addictions to other substances, other studies have found CBD vaping to have the potential to become addictive. Some people can become preoccupied with the aspect of vaping CBD oil due to its ease and convenience compared with more traditional consumption methods.

If you want to experience some of the main health benefits of CBD, then vaping is one of the easiest and most convenient ways to do so.

Fighting Negative Body Images in Teens


In a social culture that is constantly seeking perfection, teens can find it difficult to be happy with their body, self-image, or looks. They may want curly hair, straight hips, to be taller, bigger pecs, or a smaller nose. No matter what the teen focuses on, that part of their body becomes a negative issue that can follow them for their entire life. Here are some of the many topics pushing teens to develop negative body images and how to fight against them.

Fashions

The clothes teens cover their body with are more than just fabrics they slip on each morning. Their idea of fashion is a means of individualistic self-expression, personal social status, and identification of which group he or she belongs to. The fashion industry often preys on teens by creating images of waifs dancing through streets to meet buff young men, and the happy, joyful group embraces and wanders into the future. For the youth that wants to emulate these ideal fashion icons, problems arise when there are five extra pounds to lose, or they aren’t tall enough. The need to build abs or lose belly fat are real emotional battles the teens face, and that is why the fashion industry and eating disorders have been linked so many times. Teaching teens early that no one is perfect is an important first step in the creation of a positive body image. Being comfortable in the skin you have can take a long time for many people, but it is an important lesson to learn.

Peers

Most teens do everything with their friends. They hang out and discuss their feelings, shop for the latest fashion trend, and talk on the phone for hours. This is how many teenagers bond. Using their peers to mirror their self-esteem is an important way they can build and affirm their sense of belonging and importance. The problem with this sense of self can come when teens realize they are different from one another and begin to disassociate with something about themselves in order to associate with something in their friends such as perfect, blemish-free skin, ability to attract the opposite sex, or perfect teeth. While one person may be tall, another may be short, and this can have a large impact on the youth that is trying to be perfect in a world he or she is still trying to understand through the eyes of his or her friends. Constantly worrying about how others perceive their clothing, laugh, nose, and figure can result in emotional and mental problems. That is why it is important to emphasize being unique is essential in a society of sameness, i.e., Steve Jobs, J.K. Rowling, Albert Einstein, and Oprah Winfrey.

Social Media

The teen years are rife with pressures from inside and outside, but when social media sprang out of nowhere, the pressure multiplied by hundreds of times. Not only were the teens able to compare themselves to those around them, but all the sudden they could evaluate themselves against a world of photoshopped bullies. Hidden behind a keyboard of false representation, the images people presented to the world suddenly became created instead of natural, what they wore was fake, and where they spent their time was falsified. Teens can innocently be drug into comparing themselves to these false images if they are not made aware of the unreal world social media can create. Preventing feelings of inferiority to a world that does not exist is important as a teen begins to create his or her own story with a narrative about what makes him or her strong and positive. Teaching the youth to remove the unrealistic expectations he or she develops about a world that doesn’t exist is vital for both tweens and teens as they flip through their social media sights. They must also understand how to perceive the trolls and bullies of the media world and how to navigate around the faceless negativity as they learn to look at the comments with a grain of salt.

Products

The world is bombarded with products that are guaranteed to make the users look better and feel healthier. From makeup to protein powder to energy drinks, the shelves are lined with products that present unrealistic expectations to get everyone to use them. Advertisements are created that prove using the item will get the user a fast car, better skin, a cuter boyfriend, or a whiter smile. Since the teen consumer can be especially vulnerable to this type of marketing, the products often focus on this age group. For many, marketing has a negative impact because of the reverse psychology involved. If the teen doesn’t use the product, they won’t have a fast car, get clear skin, or build bigger muscles. Trying to make a teen understand he or she doesn’t need to try the product to begin building a positive body image is a difficult task because teenagers believe what those they admire have to say.
No one is perfect, yet everyone wants to be a better image of who they believe they can be – especially the vulnerable teens. The best thing parents can do to help teenagers develop a positive body image is to create an atmosphere of openness and discussion. Making sure home is a positive force, and protective environment that keeps the bullies and negativity at bay can allow the child time to discover who he or she is and what strengths he or she can fill the world with. Encouraging uniqueness that includes all body types is the best gift you can give your teenager.


Three Easy Ways to Keep Your Eyes Healthy


If you want to improve a certain aspect of your health, such as your weight, your skin or even your mind, there are certain practices and treatments you take to accomplish it. This also applies to your vision and the overall health of your eyes. When you embrace certain healthy actions, you can improve the condition of your eyes and even prevent certain diseases from affecting them. Consider following these tips to maintain your eyes and improve your vision.

Exercise and Stay Active

Keeping an active lifestyle improves your overall well-being. This also extends to your eyes. Daily exercise helps oxygen and blood flow throughout your body, including your eyes, keeping them healthy. Staying active also prevents a condition called diabetic retinopathy. It is common in Type 2 diabetes patients and occurs when an excess of sugar in the bloodstream affects the walls of the arteries in the retina, causing blood leakage and sight impairment.

Consume Vitamins and Minerals

Some eye conditions degenerate the eye over time and severely impact your vision. However, you do not need to be an experienced ophthalmologist like Kang Zhang to prevent them from emerging. By eating foods rich in certain vitamins and minerals, you can improve your chances. Primarily look for foods and drinks rich in vitamins A, C and E, as well as omega-3 fatty acids and zinc, to improve your sight and prevent eye diseases.

Take a Break from Screens 

It might be difficult in this technology-reliant time to let your eyes cool off from digital screens. Organizations like the American Optometric Organization recommend taking a 20-second break for every 20 minutes in front of a screen to look at something 20 feet away. This practice prevents digital eye strain, which irritates your eyes and can even harm your vision.
Your eyes are subject to a variety of hazards that can have long-term consequences. Take these simple tips to improve your chances at keeping your eyes healthy for a long time.

11 Rainy Day Activities for the Kids


Along with the rain coming down outside your heart might be sinking wondering what new activity you can dream up to do with your children. Luckily, this list contains 11 fun-filled activities that can be done rain or shine and will keep the whole house happy!

1. Have an Arts and Craft Day

Every kid loves an arts and crafts day, and it can keep them entertained for hours at a time. Some fun ideas that you could try are making a cardboard town, rock painting, making pictures with pasta and finger painting. Once you've decided what you’re going to do for the day head out to the store and pick up some supplies. Most of what you need will be fairly cheap and easy to find.

2. Create a Pillow Fort

This is a super fun activity that you can do on a rainy day that costs nothing at all! Raid the cupboards and find all the sheets and pillows you can in your house. Take them into your living room with a bunch of clothes pegs and some twine and create the most elaborate pillow fort you can. You can even set a little competition among your kids to see who can build the best fort. It will also give them somewhere to hide away for the rest of the day to read or play games.

3. Seek Out an Indoor Playground

There are loads of indoor playgrounds that you can go to in towns and cities, and they are the perfect way to spend a fun day when you can't get to an outdoor playground. An indoor playground is just as fun if not better and has many different obstacles such as trampolines, climbing courses, rope swings, and indoor slides. Most of these indoor play areas will have an adult area too where you can grab some food and a coffee which your little ones tire themselves out.

4. Teach Your Children to Swim

Taking a trip to your local swimming baths can be fun for the whole family and it’s a cheap way to spend a rainy day. Some pools might even put on special children's days where there are inflatable toys put in the pool for them to play with. If your children aren’t that confident in the water, it could be a good opportunity to give them a swimming lesson or book them in to have a swimming lesson with a coach at the pool.

5. Re-Decorate Your Childs Room

This one may take a bit more planning and isn’t something you can just do on an impromptu basis but it can be great fun if you’re prepared. If there is painting to be done then that may be best left to the adult but if you are picking out new furniture like curtains or a bed then it’s a great opportunity to head out to a store and let them pick what they want in their new room.

6. Create a Home Movie

Have you thought about tapping into your kids' creativity and getting them to star in their own home movie? Going through the whole process of writing a short script, choosing parts and choosing costumes is all part of the fun. You could even go as far as painting some cardboard to create different scenes. After that you can start filming. All you need is a cell phone or a camcorder and you will be creating your very own masterpiece. Then, at the end of the day you can all sit down with popcorn and attend your very own home movie premier.

7. Go and See a Movie

If you’re not finding the inspiration to write and film a shirt home move yourself then that’s okay because someone has already done it. There’s nothing quite like heading out to the movie theater to see the latest release. Soda, popcorn and sweets all add to the experience and it’s a great way to treat those well-behaved children!

8. Visit an Aquarium

If you head to one of the bigger aquariums then it could take you the whole day to go around so checking the size of the aquarium beforehand is important if you're on a timescale. Kids love aquariums and getting to see big and little fish up close and personal is really quite exciting. As well as fish they might also have reptiles and birds like penguins as well as furry little creatures like otters.

9. Play Some Board Games

Usually the instant reaction when suggesting board games is that they are boring but there are so many games out there that you are likely to find one that will keep them interested. Games like Operation are great because they are really simple but have different elements and noises. More recently there are board games that have come out that make use of an iPhone or tablet to give a traditional boardgame a digital twist.

10. Bake Some Cakes and Cookies

Cakes and cookies are really easy to make and taste delicious which is why kids love making them so much! To make cakes and cookies you only need some basic ingredients which you might even be able to buy as part of a baking kit at the local grocery store. If you’re making cookies or biscuits then you could also buy some cookie cutters and decorations so you can decorate them too. Sprinkles and colored icing are always a popular choice.

11. Make a Scrapbook of Your Day or Holidays

If your children are on their summer break then one great way to capture all the fun moments you’ve had is to create and keep your very own scrap book or picture diary. Taking lots of pictures and printing them out so they can be stuck into the scrap book is a great way to get your children writing about what they’ve done, what they created and the things they enjoyed most. It’s great fun for them and it will give you something to keep too!


Is CBD Safe to Use During Pregnancy?


With regards to questions regarding CBD and its efficacy for pregnant women, the safest answer is to talk with your doctor regarding any plans to use cannabidiol during pregnancy.

As of writing, there is no conclusive proof of the effect CBD has for the fetus or the mother’s health. This means that referring to your OB-GYNE is imperative to know whether taking CBD is safe for fetal growth and development, and also to your health.

CBD-containing products such as CBD oil has made rounds in the news and social media after the US 2018 Farm Bill has been passed. This removed industrial hemp from the list of controlled substances. Hemp being the source plant from which CBD is extracted. It’s also not just in the US; CBD has made quite an impression all over the world. In Europe and China, several CBD brands and shops have popped up, all aiming to cash in on this popular venture.

There are also many online stores that you can check out, all offering CBD oil and CBD-infused products that are beneficial for a number of medical conditions.

Why is CBD so popular? CBD or cannabidiol is lauded for being a miracle remedy for various ailments, including stress relief and pain management. It’s also pretty controversial for the fact that CBD is extracted from the same source plant as marijuana, a psychotropic substance. However, it does not produce the ‘high’ as cannabis does due to tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content.

With users claiming that CBD is very effective and safe, it’s no wonder why everyone is clamoring to try one and see if it works better than over-the-counter drugs or prescribed medicines. Expecting mothers are part of the demographic that wishes to experience how CBD can help in the dilemmas of pregnancy, particularly in nausea and other physiological changes related to it.

Why are pregnant women taking CBD Oil?

Pregnancy causes a lot of bodily changes. While the famed “pregnancy glow” might make it seem like it’s easy to carry another life inside your womb, it’s harder than it looks. There are several undesirable symptoms that come with this significant life event, and it is thought that CBD oil can be the answer to many, if not all, of these dilemmas.

Here are some of the symptoms in pregnancy that CBD oil might just help alleviate, which makes it interesting for expecting moms to try out.

Pain

A growing belly to accommodate the development of the fetus inevitably causes general pain and discomfort. It causes back pain and muscle cramping, especially on the arms and legs.

The CBD oil has been noted to treat inflammation and extreme pain, which makes it a very attractive natural remedy to gestational discomfort.

Nausea

Not every mother experiences morning sickness, but those who do know how taxing it is to wake up and feel drained every morning. A study from 2011 states that cannabinoids may indirectly activate serotonin receptors, which produces the anti-nausea effects of CBD.

Sleep

More than half of pregnant women suffer from insomnia at different stages of their gestation. Pain and discomfort might cause sleepless nights for an expecting mother, but this can also be attributed to stress and other mental challenges during pregnancy. There are several studies that show how CBD can increase total sleeping time for a person and maybe therapeutic in people who have trouble sleeping. This evidence may be the answer to pregnancy-related insomnia, too.

Anxiety or Depression

The emotional effect of pregnancy in women is pronounced and can be quite problematic if not handled properly. Some commonly associated psychological changes with gestation are anxiety and depression. Such conditions may be caused by hormonal changes, but can also be due to the fact that child-bearing is a stressful event in anyone’s life.

CBD oil is known to reduce anxiety, and users are praising it for being a natural combatant to stress. This may prove useful to expecting mothers who want to be as stress-free as possible and make the pregnancy much easier to bear.

Is it Safe?

CBD oil is considered by many to be a therapeutic remedy and even a nutritional supplement. Although it is not addictive like marijuana, it also has its own setbacks, namely that not many clinical trials and studies are made around CBD.

Pregnancy is a delicate process, and introducing any new substances is generally frowned upon by medical practitioners. CBD might be decorated with a lot of therapeutic properties, but most of these claims aren’t proven.

Also, different researches are a very contradiction at the moment. A meta-analysis revealed that THC, which is also found in cannabidiol although in lower doses, may result in the baby’s low weight and complications after birth. On the other hand, one study showed that there are no noted significant changes in babies whose mothers have consumed THC during gestation.

It is very unfortunate that much research and clinical studies need to be done to establish CBD’s efficacy in pregnancy. Expecting mothers would greatly benefit when taking CBD oil to make child-bearing an easier and more enjoyable experience. For now, it is considered unsafe for pregnant women and lactating mothers to take any CBD-containing compounds until researches prove otherwise.

If you are pregnant but want to try CBD oil, arrange a meeting with your doctor to discuss whether it is the right course of treatment for you. You may also want to check out alternative remedies for the different symptoms of pregnancy.


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