Tag Archives: valentine’s day

Swimming Tips for Babies

Getting your baby used to water early in his life makes sense from a safety point of view. Swimming is also great fun and good exercise. Here’s some advice on taking the plunge with your little one.

When can I start swimming with my baby?

It’s best that you wait until six weeks after your baby’s birth before you go swimming. If you go sooner, there’s a chance you could pick up an infection. If you’ve had a caesarean section or a perineal tear, your health visitor or GP may recommend that you wait longer than six weeks, usually until after your postnatal check.

Even if you gave birth with no intervention or tears, you will experience some bleeding as your body gets rid of the lining of your womb after birth (lochia). It’s normal to bleed for anything up to six weeks after birth.

However, your baby can go swimming at any time from birth, although most baby swimming classes start at six weeks. If you are keen for your baby to be introduced to swimming before he is six weeks old, your partner or someone else can take him. Some private baby swimming classes start as early as four weeks. There’s no need to wait until your baby is immunized before taking him to a pool.

If your baby is younger than six months old only take him to a pool that’s heated to about 32 degrees C. It’s best to go to baby swimming lessons that use warm pools for young babies. Big, public pools are too cold for young babies.

What will I need to take?

Top of the list will be reusable swim nappies. Accidents can happen! You’ll also need to pack:

A warm bottle for after the swim if you are bottle-feeding.

A towel, preferably one with a hood, or a toweling dressing gown.

A snack if your baby has started solids. Swimming makes babies hungry.

A few of your baby’s bath toys to encourage a relaxed and fun atmosphere.

Changing mat and nappy bag.

How do I keep my baby safe in the water?

Make sure the pool is warm enough. If necessary, ask the pool attendants to check the temperature for you. Babies under six months need a temperature of about 32 degrees C. Make sure the water comes up to your baby’s shoulders to keep him warm, and keep him moving in the water.

As soon as your baby starts to shiver, get him out of the pool and wrap him up warmly. Babies lose heat more quickly than adults, so they shouldn’t stay in the pool for too long.

Start off with sessions of 10 minutes and build up to 20 minutes. If your baby is under a year old, limit your time in the water to 30 minutes’ maximum.

If your baby has a bad cold, a temperature or seems unwell, don’t go swimming. Also, your baby shouldn’t swim with a tummy bug and shouldn’t go swimming until he has been clear for at least 48 hours.

If your baby has a skin complaint, check with your GP to make sure that the chlorine won’t irritate him. Always rinse the chlorinated water off your baby after swimming and apply a moisturizer all over his skin, especially if he has dry skin or eczema.

I’m taking my baby to the pool on my own. Any tips?

Start by getting your baby used to the water. Make bath time fun. Gently splash water over his body or lie him on his back and move him gently through the water.

When you first visit a public pool, pick a time when it’s not too busy. Phone ahead to find out if there is pushchair access and changing tables. Ask a friend to come with you or join a mum-and-baby session. If you feel relaxed and confident, your baby will too.

There are lots of things you can do to make swimming fun for your baby and help boost his confidence in the water:

When you get in the pool, hold your baby close and keep eye contact with him.

When you feel more confident, try extending your arms and swishing your baby around.

Talk to him and praise him all the time.

Let your baby splash and play with his bath toys. Throw one a few feet across the pool and “zoom” him through the water to retrieve it.

Put your mouth under water and show your baby how to blow bubbles. This is an important lesson for him, as he can’t inhale water if he is blowing. If your baby is very young, blow a toy across the water and get him to blow it back or at least copy you blowing.

When he can sit up, put him on the side of the pool and sing “Humpty Dumpty”. When you get to the line “Humpty Dumpty had a great fall” lift him down into the water with a splash.

Lay him on his back with his head resting on your shoulder. Encourage him to kick his legs.

I’m not confident in the water, should I still take my baby swimming?

Even if you’re not keen on being in the water, you can make sure your baby gets the benefits that come from learning to swim.

You could try going for a few swims on your own in your local pool before taking your baby with you. Or you could join a baby swimming class. This will boost your confidence as much as your baby’s, and is a great way to meet other parents.

Learning to enjoy the water with your baby will strengthen the bond between the two of you as well as making you feel more positive about swimming.

What happens at baby swimming classes?

Baby swim classes are usually made up of a small group of parents and babies. The classes are usually arranged by ability. If you join a beginner’s class it will be everyone else’s first time too.

Baby swim teachers aim to make their sessions relaxed and fun, and to encourage learning through play. Young babies are born able to do primitive swimming strokes. Your teacher will build on these natural reflexes until your little one is completely happy moving in and through the water.

Once the two of you are in the pool, hold your baby in a way that allows you to keep eye contact. Give him constant praise to build his confidence. Your support and encouragement helps him to feel safe and secure.

Once your baby is confident in the pool, your teacher may encourage your baby to try swimming under water.

It’s natural for you to feel anxious the first time you and your baby try this. Rest assured babies have a natural affinity with water. Plus, your baby’s inbuilt gag reflex is generally strongest up to six months old. This reflex allows him to hold his breath under water without even thinking about it.

What do seeing babies in a dream mean?

Dreaming of babies may represent an immature aspect of yourself or a new aspect of yourself that is still maturing or developing. It may also symbolize a part of you that is feeling neglected or needs to be nurtured, loved and accepted by you.

Alternately, a baby may represent someone that is acting like a baby or someone who is naïve or innocent (possibly you).

A baby dream may also be prodromal and is telling you that you are pregnant.

Other dreams with babies

Changing a baby’s diaper or seeing a baby that needs to be changed may suggest changes that you need to implement in some aspect of life or within yourself.

Dreams about babies dying may suggest that you are maturing and letting go of your babyish thinking and behavior.

A dream about a baby drowning may suggest that your emotions are overwhelming you and you are crying like a baby – you need help to keep from drowning in your emotions.

A sleeping baby may represent peace of mind, being happy and content with no worries in life and a clear conscience.

If you are trying to get pregnant in waking life then dreaming about a babies may be a continuation of your waking life thoughts; or wish fulfillment. It may also be a rehearsal dream, preparing you for when you do become pregnant in waking life.

Having baby dreams may also be due to a fear of being or getting pregnant, especially if you’ve recently had unprotected sex and don’t want to be pregnant.

Seeing baby animals in a dream may indicate you are recognizing a basic animal instinct or behavior within you that is beginning to emerge and grow stronger. Consider your associations to the animal and its characteristics and traits for further analysis.

Meanings of the Sex of the Baby in a dream

If you are a woman, a dream about a baby girl may represent your inner child or an aspect of yourself that needs to grow up or mature. A dream about a baby boy may represent an aspect of your Animus that needs to be nurtured and encouraged to mature.

If you are a man, a dream about a baby girl may represent an aspect of your Anima that needs to be nurtured and encouraged to mature. A dream about a baby boy may represent your inner child or an aspect of yourself that needs to grow up or mature.

Truth behind Annabelle (The Haunted Doll)

According to claims originating from Ed and Lorraine Warren, a student nurse was given the Raggedy Ann doll in 1970, but after the doll behaved strangely, a psychic medium told the student the doll was inhabited by the spirit of a dead girl named “Annabelle Higgins”. Supposedly, the student nurse and her roommate first tried to accept and nurture the spirit-possessed doll, but eventually became frightened by the doll’s malicious behavior and contacted the Warrens, who removed the doll to their museum after pronouncing it “demonically possessed”.

Texas State University assistant professor of religious studies Joseph Laycock says most skeptics have dismissed the Warrens’ museum as “full of off-the-shelf Halloween junk, dolls and toys, books you could buy at any bookstore”. Laycock calls the Annabelle legend an “interesting case study in the relationship between pop culture and paranormal folklore” and speculates that the demonic doll trope popularized by films such as Child’s Play and The Conjuring likely emerged from early legends surrounding Robert the Doll as well as a Twilight Zone episode entitled “Living Doll”. Laycock suggests that “the idea of demonically-possessed dolls allows modern demonologists to find supernatural evil in the most banal and domestic of places.”

Commenting on publicity for the Warrens’ occult museum coinciding with the film release of The Conjuring, science writer Sharon A. Hill said that many of the myths and legends surrounding the Warrens have “seemingly been of their own doing” and that many people may have difficulty “separating the Warrens from their Hollywood portrayal”. Hill criticized sensational press coverage of the Warrens’ occult museum and its Annabelle doll. She said, “Like real-life Ed Warren, real-life Annabelle is actually far less impressive.” Of the supernatural claims made about Annabelle by Ed Warren, Hill said, “We have nothing but Ed’s word for this, and also for the history and origins of the objects in the museum.”

Secrets behind baby’s unusual crying

The reality is, all babies cry: It’s the best (and only) way for them to communicate their needs at this tender age. And as parents, we’re biologically programmed to respond so those needs get met. But in babies with colic, the crying starts suddenly for no apparent reason and has no apparent cure.

Colic is not a disease or diagnosis but a combination of baffling behaviors. It’s really just a catch-all term for problem crying in otherwise healthy babies the problem being, there’s no solution to it besides the passing of time. And it’s common, occurring in one in five infants. Episodes can go on for hours at a time, sometimes late into the night. Worst of all, try as you might and try you will it’s extremely difficult to calm a colicky baby, which only compounds your own frustration, worry and exhaustion.

Doctors usually diagnose colic based on the “rules of three.” Your baby’s crying:

Lasts at least three hours at a stretch
Occurs at least three days a week
Persists for at least three weeks in a row
Of course, some babies are colic overachievers, wailing for far more hours, days and even weeks at a time.

The good news is that colic doesn’t last. Most bouts peak at around 6 weeks and then typically start to taper off by 10 to 12 weeks. By 3 months (typically a little later in preterm babies), most colicky infants seems to be miraculously cured. The colic may stop suddenly or end gradually, with some good and some bad days, until they are all good.

In the meantime, a little knowledge and a lot of patience will help you survive until the storm subsides.

SYMPTOMS AND SIGNS OF COLIC IN YOUR BABY
How do you know for sure if your baby’s colicky? In addition to the rules of three, here are a few further colic signs and symptoms:

Crying occurs at the same time every day (usually in the late afternoon or early evening, but it can vary).
Crying seems to occur for no reason (not because baby has a dirty diaper or is hungry or tired).
Baby may pull up his legs, clench his fists and generally move his legs and arms more.
He also often will close his eyes or open them very wide, furrow his brow, even hold his breath briefly.
Bowel activity may increase, and he may pass gas or spit up.
Eating and sleeping are disrupted by the crying — baby frantically seeks a nipple only to reject it once sucking has begun, or dozes for a few moments only to wake up screaming.
WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN COLIC AND ORDINARY CRYING?
There isn’t a clear definition of exactly what colic is or how (and if) it differs from other types of crying. But doctors typically agree that the difference between colic and ordinary crying in that baby seems inconsolable, crying turns to screaming, and the ordeal lasts for at least three hours and sometimes much longer (occasionally nearly around the clock, much to the tired and fraught parents’ dismay). Most often, colicky periods recur daily, though some babies take an occasional night off.

WHAT CAUSES COLIC?
While the exact cause of colic is a mystery, experts do know it’s not the result of genetics or anything that happened during pregnancy or childbirth. Nor is it any reflection on parenting skills (or lack of them, in case you’re wondering). And it’s also not anyone’s fault.

That said, here are some theories on what’s behind colicky crying:

Overstimulated senses. One possible explanation: Newborns have a built-in mechanism for tuning out sights and sounds around them, which allows them to sleep and eat without being disturbed by their environment. Near the end of the first month, however, this mechanism disappears — leaving babies more sensitive to the stimuli in their surroundings. With so many new sensations coming at them, some infants become overwhelmed, often at the end of the day. To release that stress, they cry (and cry and cry). Colic ends, the theory goes, when baby learns how to filter out some environmental stimuli and, in doing so, avoids a sensory overload.
An immature digestive system. Digesting food is a big task for a baby’s brand new gastrointestinal system. As a result, food may pass through too quickly and not break down completely, resulting in pain from gas in the intestines.
Infant acid re-flux. Research has found that infant GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) is sometimes a colic trigger. Infant GERD is often the result of an underdeveloped lower esophageal sphincter, the muscle that keeps stomach acid from flowing back up into the throat and mouth, which can irritate the esophagus. Symptoms include frequent spitting up, poor eating and irritability during and after feedings. The good news is, most babies outgrow GERD by age 1 (and colic usually goes away long before then).
Food allergies or sensitivity. Some experts believe that colic is the result of an allergy to milk protein (or lactose intolerance) in formula-fed babies. More rarely, colic may be a reaction to specific foods in Mom’s diet in breastfed babies. Either way, these allergies or sensitivity can cause tummy pain that may set off colicky behavior.
Tobacco exposure. Several studies show that moms who smoke during or after pregnancy are more likely to have babies with colic; secondhand smoke may also be a culprit. Though the link exists, it’s unclear how cigarette smoke might be related to colic. The bottom line for many more significant health reasons: Don’t smoke or let anyone else smoke around your baby.

COLIC REMEDIES
In addition to frustration and exhaustion, you may experience feelings of inadequacy and guilt as you try in vain to soothe your baby. So while staying calm is easier said than done, these soothing strategies may help ease the strain until colic passes. Just give each a fair shot before you switch to another (and don’t pull out too many tricks at one time, or you’ll overload baby’s circuits and step up the crying you’re trying to stop).

If you suspect over-stimulation:
Crying is a baby’s only way of communicating her needs. But it’s also her only way of wielding any control at all over a vast and bewildering new environment: She cries, you come running to her side powerful stuff when you’re otherwise completely powerless. In fact, studies show that responding promptly to your baby’s cries will reduce her crying in the long run.
Excise excitement. Limit visitors and exposing your baby to new experiences in stimulating environments, particularly in the late afternoon and early evening. Watch how your baby responds to certain stimuli and steer clear of any that seem to offend.
Create calm. Trying to make her environment peaceful might help her relax. Dim the lights, speak or sing in soothing tones (or don’t speak at all) and keep other noise and distractions to a minimum.

Source: www.whattoexpect.com

Ear infection and its Remedies

Ear infection or earache in children is common amongst the age group of 0-3 years, causing babies much pain and discomfort. It has a tendency to get worse in the winter as the cold winds and the dry air start enveloping us. Being a parent, you would want to make earache go away immediately. But antibiotics may not be the best option if your baby is too little. Thankfully, there are some excellent home remedies that can help your baby feel better very quickly!

Is your little kid pulling her ear constantly? Is she not sleeping well, crying, or desires to be held more than usual? Babies find it hard to communicate and explain the exact cause of their discomfort. But these signs could indicate, especially in cold weather, a problem you need to guard against: earache. Ear pain is a common illness among kids. Symptoms may vary from child to child, but the one unifying theme is their relentless discomfort. Typically, a cold or respiratory infection is the harbinger of ear pain in your child, but there are other factors that can cause earaches in children too.

Causes of Ear Pain:

Fluid Build Up: The Eustachian tube is shorter in younger kids than compared to adults. Hence, fluid is likely to build up more in the eardrum and cause ear pain in kids.

Blocked Ear Canal: Your child’s ear canal may be injured due to poking or blockages from ear wax.

Overuse of Pacifiers: Sucking pacifiers constantly pulls fluid from nose and throat to the middle of the ear, hence causing ear pain.

Bacterial Infection: Bacteria from milk, being fed through a bottle, external factors like environmental irritants, or hereditary reasons can also cause an ear infection, leading to discomfort or pain.

Know the Symptoms:

Your child has a fever ranging from 100°F – 104°F

There’s a discharge of yellow, brown, or white fluid from your child’s ears

Your kid is cranky

He constantly pokes his ears with his fingers

Your baby shakes his head frequently

Your little bundle of joy suddenly becomes hard to deal with

Your baby has very disturbed sleep

Natural Home Remedies for Ear Pain Relief:

Onion – Whole or Juiced:

The warmth of an onion along with its antiseptic properties works well in healing earaches in children. Crush an onion and wrap it in a cloth and place on the ear. You may also grate the onion to extract its juice and heat it over low heat. Put 2-3 drops into the ears and keep it for a few minutes.

Ginger Juice:

Ginger has a natural agent that serves as an excellent painkiller. Crush the ginger to extract its juice and put it directly into the ears. This should reduce the pain and also the inflammation. Keep it for 5-10 minutes and repeat twice a day.

Juice of Neem/Basil Leaves:

Both these leaves contain anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, and anti-bacterial properties and are considered good home remedies for ear pain in kids. Crush a few leaves to extract the juice and put a few drops into your kid’s ears. Let it stay for a while and drain out by turning the head on the other side.

Essential Oils of Mustard/Olive:

Mustard and olive oil help get rid of infection quickly, thus making this is a fast remedy for ear pain in kids. Lukewarm any of these oils and put 3-4 drops into the ears, twice a day. This should also help to stop the buzzing sound your baby suffers from.

Warm Compresses:

Place a warm cloth soaked in hot water, or a hot water bag wrapped in a towel, against the aching ear. Keep repeating this to lessen your child’s ear pain.

Hair Dryer:

Doesn’t sound familiar? But it’s a great way to provide relief from earaches in children! Set your dryer on warm and hold it a little away from the ears. The heat will dry the accumulated fluid in the ear and soothe your child’s ear pain. Do not use it for more than five minutes.

These remedies prove to be very effective in managing earache in young children. However, consult a pediatrician if the pain aggravates or if the body temperature rises. Ear pain in kids can be a distressing experience both for you and your child. It is thus important to give this condition immediate attention.

 

Source: World of moms

Why do we celebrate Valentine’s Day?

Every year on February 14th, people all around the world share candies, flowers and gifts with their loved ones, all in the name of St. Valentine. But who is this mysterious saint, and where did these traditions come from? So let’s find out about the history of this centuries old day of romance – Valentine’s Day.

The history of Valentine’s Day and the story of its patron saint are shrouded in mystery. We do know that February has long been celebrated as a month of romance, and that St. Valentine’s Day, as we know it today, contains vestiges of both Christian and ancient Roman tradition. But who was Saint Valentine, and how did he become associated with this ancient rite?

The Catholic Church recognizes at least three different saints named Valentine or Valentinus, all of whom were martyred. One legend contends that Valentine was a priest who served during the third century in Rome. When Emperor Claudius II decided that single men made better soldiers than those with wives and families, he outlawed marriage for young men. Valentine, realizing the injustice of the decree, defied Claudius and continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret. When Valentine’s actions were discovered, Claudius ordered that he be put to death.

Other stories suggest that Valentine may have been killed for attempting to help Christians escape harsh Roman prisons, where they were often beaten and tortured. According to one legend, an imprisoned Valentine actually sent the first “valentine” greeting himself after he fell in love with a young girl–possibly his jailor’s daughter–who visited him during his confinement. Before his death, it is alleged that he wrote her a letter signed “From your Valentine,” an expression that is still in use today. Although the truth behind the Valentine legends is murky, the stories all emphasize his appeal as a sympathetic, heroic and most importantly romantic figure.