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The Blessings And Curses Of Pregnancy

(category: Pregnancy, Word count: 477)
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Pregnancy is one of the most amazing experiences that any woman can have in life. Women who have had the privilege of carrying and bearing children know exactly what I mean. The ability to become pregnant and carry a child in your womb as it develops into a fully functioning infant is one of life's biggest miracles. For all the blessings of pregnancy it is not, however, without its struggles.

The most obvious blessing of pregnancy is the promise of a new life that it means. There is nothing more special than seeing a new child added to the world, and women are the ones that get to provide the perfect atmosphere for the unborn child to grow in a safe and warm place. Pregnancy allows a woman to share months of intimacy with her baby before the baby gets to interact with any one else in the world. What a special time of bonding that the months of pregnancy are for mothers and babies. Even fathers must wait until babies are born to feel them or to fully experience them.

Some of the best blessings of pregnancy are less serious and yet really enjoyable. For example, pregnany woman seem to be adored and cared for wherever they go. Pregnancy makes everyone a woman's best friend. Suddenly doors are being opened, heavy things are being lifted, and great meals are being prepared for you. Few seasons in life will offer these kinds of blessings, so take full advantage of the attention people give you during your pregnancy.

For women who love to shop, pregnancy has its obvious benefits. Not only do you have an excuse to spend time and money creating the perfect nursery for your new baby, but you also have a real need to shop for new clothing for yourself. Pregnancy allows the shopper in you to come out and get lots of practice because we all know that mothers and babies need lots of new things. Enjoy the blessing of shopping while you can because you won't have such a great excuse for long!

While I have loved the experience of pregnancy very much, I would be lying if I said it was just a walk in the park. No, pregnancy definitely adds hard things to the life of a woman as well. Very few women make it through pregnancy without sickness or being frustrated over the obvious weight gain that happens. Sleep doesn't always come easily with a baby growing and moving inside of you nor is it always easy to keep up with the demands of life when all you want to do is rest.

Whatever hard things come with pregnancy, I guarentee you that nothing can outweigh the joy and privilege it is to be a part of bringing a new life into the world.

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Tips For A Healthy Pregnancy

(category: Pregnancy, Word count: 504)
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Giving birth will no doubt be one of the most magical moments of your life and to ensure that your child is strong and happy, it is important you do all you can to have a healthy pregnancy. To help you and your baby on your way, this article has compiled a number of tips that are guaranteed to make those nine pregnancy months the best they can be!

The first thing you must do when you find you are pregnant is to visit an obstetrician/gynecologist (OBGYN). They will give you an ultrasound to see how far along you are and whether your pregnancy appears to be normal. This stage is crucial and it is important not to leave this too late.

After this, you must begin to change your lifestyle. Remember, you are no longer eating and exercising for yourself but for two! Firstly, if you are a smoker or a drinker, you must quit. Cigarette smoke can lead to low birth weight in babies as well as miscarriages and tubal pregnancies so try to avoid second hand smoke as it is not conducive to a healthy pregnancy. The same can be said for alcohol and other toxic chemicals and substances such as paint fumes. These items are both damaging to the mother and to the pregnancy.

Another part of changing your lifestyle is your diet during pregnancy. Make sure to drink plenty of water - about 6 to 8 glasses a day. It is not healthy to be overweight or underweight during a pregnancy but do remember that you shouldn't diet during pregnancy. Pregnancy is not a time to be worrying about your weight! Don't skip meals as you and your baby need as much nutrition and calories as possible, although not the fattening kind so make sure you get a balance. Junk food is great to satisfy those crazy pregnancy cravings but try not to go overboard!

If you are worried about weight gain during pregnancy, a great alternative to dieting is light exercise. You may not have loved it before your pregnancy, but learn to love it now as it will definitely pay off in the long run by keeping your baby healthy and your body fit. Light exercises will not harm your pregnancy so try swimming, yoga and walking.

An additional healthy pregnancy tip that those with busy schedules tend to forget is the importance of sleep. Make sure to get plenty of rest so that you and your baby can recuperate and to ensure that your immune system is as strong as possible. It is advised that you rest on your side to reduce swelling and generate the best circulation to your baby.

To recap: avoid damaging substances such as nicotine and alcohol, don't diet during pregnancy, drink plenty of water, practice as much exercise as safely possible, and get plenty of sleep! Following these pregnancy tips will make certain that you have a healthy pregnancy and have a happy and fit child.

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A New Family Planning Alternative

(category: Pregnancy, Word count: 351)
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Deciding when their family is the right size-or how to make sure it stays that size-is a personal decision that many women may find easier to make in the years to come.

For women who have decided that they do not want any more children and feel ready for a permanent form of birth control, "getting your tubes tied," or tubal ligation, is no longer the only option.

A new office-based procedure known as the Essure procedure is quickly replacing the old operation and is covered by most insurance plans.

During the procedure, a tiny, soft spring, called a micro-insert, is placed into each fallopian tube. The body's natural response causes tissue to grow into the micro-inserts, blocking sperm from reaching the egg. This tissue growth takes about three months and additional birth control must be used during this time.

After three months, a special X-ray test verifies that the system is working.

Choosing this advanced procedure offers many benefits. There are no incisions, it does not contain hormones, it can be performed in a doctor's office with minimal anesthesia and it's permanent. The procedure takes about 15 minutes to complete and most women return to normal activities within a day or two.

More than 63,000 women worldwide have already had the procedure and clinical studies have reported high safety and patient satisfaction. After many years of clinical study, no pregnancies have been reported when the micro-insert is placed correctly. While no method of birth control is 100 percent effective, the procedure's effectiveness rate is 99.80 percent with four years of clinical data.

"We finally have a technique for a woman that is comparable in simplicity, accessibility and safety to vasectomy in men," said Dr. Barbara Levy, a national expert in endoscopic surgery practicing in Seattle. "Although the complications of surgical tubal ligation are uncommon, when they occur they may be life threatening. The rare deaths associated with tubal ligation were unacceptable in my mind."

Another advantage for busy mothers is that the procedure eliminates the time spent recovering from surgery.

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Tips For A Smooth Start To Breast Feeding

(category: Pregnancy, Word count: 513)
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Many different sources were used while writing this article; I hope you find it informative and helpful.

There are many ways to plan to be a mother and to breast feed for the first time.

First find out as much as you can, this can involve reading about breastfeeding during your pregnancy, check out our web site there is a mass of information on it, so you will know what to do once your baby is in your arms, attending antenatal lessons and learning `about breast feeding there, or you can even join a support group and enjoy mingling with other mothers who can give you lots of tips and guidance.

During pregnancy, it is very important you take good care of yourself. This ensures when it comes to the time to have your baby, it is as stress free and healthy a birth as it can possibly be.

There are plenty of things you can do to prepare yourself for feeding your baby whilst you are still pregnant; these include ensuring your breasts are prepared for the feeding experience. It's always a good idea to tell your midwife or obstetrician of any breast surgery you may have had as this might influence your abilities to feed your baby. Also check your nipples to see if they have become inverted, this can present difficulties when the time comes for the baby to latch on,

Speak to your friends and family about their breastfeeding experiences, or go to a breastfeeding support group so you can meet and chat to other breastfeeding mothers.

Once your baby has been born, its important that the baby is put to the breast immediately. This is because the suckling instinct in a baby is very strong when they are first born. If you can get your baby to latch on inside those first few minutes of life, it is imprinted on them and subsequent breast-feeding experiences should become a lot easier.

Most maternity hospitals give you the opportunity to let your baby stay in the same room as you overnight. This is a good idea, so make certain you take advantage of it. It will give you that added time to both get to know one another and create the mother and baby bond that is so important.

If your baby does sleep in the nursery it's important that the nursery staff don't feed your baby formula whilst you are sleeping. Insist that when he awakens he is brought to you for feeding from your breast even if it is the middle of the night.

Don't be concerned that you are not producing much milk to start off with, this is normal. The thin liquid that is created just after your baby is born is rich in nutrients and antibodies. It is enough to keep your baby happy until your milk "comes in" a few of days after your baby is born.

I hope you found the above helpful and you have a good experience breastfeeding your baby.

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Now S The Time To Reclaim Our Childbirth Skills

(category: Pregnancy, Word count: 309)
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Consider this. In the US, 3,680,000 women give birth each year, in the UK 700,000 do, Melbourne, Australia 58,000 and the same in New Zealand. Where Common Knowledge Trust is located 1,000 women give birth. New Zealand is unique. In 1995 midwives became autonomous, lead maternity carers. Direct entry 3 year educational programs were set up, they are paid by Government to provide antenatal, delivery and post-natal care within the concept of continuity of care. Women can choose to give birth at home or in hospital with the same midwife. There is no shared care. Over 85% of all pregnant New Zealand women have a continuity of care midwife. Women choosing to birth in hospital, even when referred to a specialist, will have team midwifery care. Ideal isn't it? Since 1995, the caesarean rate has doubled to over 27% nationally. What's wrong with the picture?

In modern societies where blame, shame and guilt are raging emotions often associated with birth, changing the system doesn't seem to have worked. It's so easy to ask 'so who is to blame?' Gotcha.

I want a new blue car to drive. I'm planning chicken, salad and apple pie for dinner. When my husband and I have sex this weekend, I want to have the most delicious orgasm. I'll breastfeed. These sentences have two elements. The most obvious are the choices. The less obvious are the skills. Driving is a learned skill, so is cooking, making love well and breast feeding. Within these skills are some that relate to natural physiological human urges: hunger, sex, breastfeeding. Somehow we know that we have, or haven't or need to develop skills around these natural physiological experiences. Birth is no different.

Common Knowledge Trust is located in New Zealand, yet all The Pink Kit Method for birthing better

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Pregnancy Ultrasound A Gateway To Your Baby

(category: Pregnancy, Word count: 362)
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Pregnancy ultrasound is an awesome technology. With ultrasound, you get to see your baby even before he is a baby. There is no known risk to you or your baby from ultrasound during pregnancy.

Ultrasound machines use high-pitched sound waves (250 times higher-pitched than can be heard by the human ear), transmitted through the abdominal wall to produce an echo image of your pelvis. By moving the transducer (the ultrasound transmitter) appropriately, different areas of anatomy, along with your baby, in the pelvis can be seen during pregnancy.

If it is very early in your pregnancy, the ultrasound technician may use a slender transducer in the vagina to visualize the uterus more easily. When you are further along in your pregnancy, ultrasound conducting gel will be placed on the lower abdomen for your ultrasound.

The amount of useful information gained from a pregnancy ultrasound examination depends on several factors. For instance, during fetal scans, the gestational age, maternal size and amount of amniotic fluid can limit the detail of an exam. During a pregnancy ultrasound examination, you can see if you are having twins or multiples, which way the baby is positioned in the uterus, the location of the placenta, fetal heart and limb motion, and the amount of amniotic fluid. In addition, measurement of various fetal parts can be made in order to estimate the age of your baby and to assure that fetal growth is normal.

The most amazing parts of the pregnancy ultrasound are seeing your little baby's heart beat, the individual hair on her head, her rapid movements or kicks, and her profile. If you want to know the sex of your baby, you can see that too, usually at 18-20 weeks.

Over the past few years, a new ultrasound technology has emerged. 3D ultrasound, often used in pregnancy, actually generates 3D pictures of your baby. Now, you can see exactly what he looks like before he's even born. Whether you know it or not, there is probably a 3D pregnancy ultrasound clinic near you. Your doctor may even view your pregnancy with 3D ultrasound in her office!

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Ovulation

(category: Pregnancy, Word count: 346)
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Childbirth is a momentous occasion, whether a first born or the seventh. The health and upbringing of a newborn is dependent on mother's preparedness on how she handles this delicate issue. We can read or watch videos of childbirth but it is experience that carries weight.

The first step is to understand female anatomy and how it works during different phases of childbirth. Ovulation is one such phase of the menstrual cycle, when an egg or ovum is released from ovaries. If this ovum meets with male sperm in its journey down the fallopian tube conception takes place. It does sound simple, but Ovulation depends on the interplay of glands and hormones. This may be one reason why some women cannot conceive. The gland that affects Ovulation is the Hypothalamus, using its hormones for communication with the pituitary gland, referred to as the master gland of the endocrine system. In turn, the pituitary gland produces luteinizing hormone (LH) and FSH. High levels of LH cause Ovulation within two days. The cycle continues with mature follicles releasing ovum into the peritoneal cavity and then into the fallopian tube, and from there to the uterus. If the ovum does not encounter a sperm within 24 hours it dies.

Ovulation occurs two weeks before the onset of the menstrual period once every month till menopause, or break in between for child birth and pregnancy. Certain changes occur in the cervical mucus, which gets slippery and slick, accompanied by general or localized pain. Sometimes there is delay or deviation from 24 to 35 days in the menstrual cycle, or slight fever in women who follow natural family planning methods. This persuades them to mistake Ovulation for premenstrual symptoms, if accompanied by pain and changes in body. Instead of playing guessing games, Ovulation should be confirmed with kits available in market or through blood tests or pregnancy ultrasound. Once sure, it is advisable to take precautions to avoid miscarriage or bleeding. Motherhood is something nature intended us to enjoy, and we should welcome it in all its cycles.

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Childbirth And The Athletic Woman

(category: Pregnancy, Word count: 699)
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Athletic women come in all sizes and enjoy different sports or fitness programs. Athletic women enjoy being toned and fit. Through personal fitness, many women have developed determination, commitment to their task, and an ability to hit the wall and go beyond. Often they consider themselves tough and rigorous. Women who enjoy fitness as a way of Life rather than being 'athletic' also admire their shape, sense of being in 'tone', flexibility and strength. So why would an athletic woman (including women who just stay fit) need to know anything about childbirth? Isn't the goal of preparing for childbirth about 'getting in shape?'

One famous woman athlete made a public comment that if she had gone through labour before her competitive event she would have done better in the competitions. Obviously, childbirth gave her insights that would have improved her performance. Many athletic women may not know that you are more likely to have a caesarean than most women. We've all heard stories that dancers and horsewomen are more likely to have a caesarean; however, it's true for many athletic women. Yet, somehow this seems paradoxical. How can being in shape lead to more medically assisted births?

Childbirth at it's simplest is an exercise in plumbing.

An object (baby) has to come out of a container (woman). In order to do that the object must come through a tube (pelvis), open a diaphragm (cervix) and aperture (vagina). The container has a Mind and if the process of the object coming through is perceived of as painful, then the Mind can respond to those sensations by tensing up the body. Tension in the body can interfere with the need of the container to relax and open in order for the object to come out. Being 'toned' is a form of tension. This means that there is entirely different preparation for giving birth than staying in shape or being in training. One husband of an athletic woman said after her caesarean: 'I thought childbirth was about muscles pushing a baby out. Now I understand it's about creating space so the baby can move through her body.'

Each sport or fitness program uses different muscles, yet it is not just the muscles that can produce tension. Connective tissue or fascia can hold tension as well. In our plumbing analogy, the tube (pelvis) is surrounded by connective tissue which is part of our body's soft tissue. Soft tissue is anything other than bone. For example, tension in the connections between the bones in the pelvic girdle (tube) can prevent the bones from being mobile. Our baby's bones in their head are designed to mold and over lap; however, we can create more space inside this tube when we know how to keep our pelvis mobile. In childbirth, the sacrum is the bone that needs the most mobility. It's also the bone that is used to stabilize our bodies as we weight bear and tends to being immobile. We can also reduce 'back labour' by learning how to create sacral mobility. One ice skater said after 3 caesareans: 'Once I learned to mobilize my sacrum in labour, I had no trouble giving birth to my fourth child naturally. No one told me I had to do that. No one told me I had to do the Internal Work (birth canal or aperture) either.

The soft tissue in our birth canal may also be quite tight. Many women are told to do 'pelvic floor' exercises. These certainly are good to strengthen our insides; however, they are not appropriate birth preparation exercises. Instead pregnant women need to learn how to relax inside the pelvis and the muscles of the birth canal.

For many athletic, relaxing is not in alignment with their personal self perception.

One competitive cyclist said: 'I considered myself very, very tough and I was. I had developed skills and management skills for my chosen event; however, without a whole new set of skills for the event of giving birth I didn't have a clue and ended up with a caesarean and sense of personal failure. When I discovered The Pink Kit Method for birthing better

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Expectations On Expecting

(category: Pregnancy, Word count: 777)
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Becoming pregnant can be one of the most special times in someone's life. There are, however, a lot of changes in your body during pregnancy that you should be aware of. Pregnancy care information will be readily available from your obstetrician and you should abide by the recommendations provided to ensure you have a comfortable pregnancy resulting in a healthy baby.

Changes in your body during pregnancy will occur during the different trimesters. The first and the last trimester are typically when women feel the most discomfort. The second trimester is usually a bit of a reprieve with many women getting over some of the changes, being more comfortable and enjoying this portion of the pregnancy. The first and third trimester, however, is when the most radical changes are occurring that are foreign to a non pregnant state. Thus, the woman carrying the child may be uncomfortable and ill during this time.

Morning sickness or for that matter a feeling of nausea any time of the day is a very common result of pregnancy and happens most frequently in the first trimester. There also may be an increased sensitivity to smells which will trigger nausea. Sometimes these smells are ones that are typically enjoyed when not pregnant. These should be avoided if possible. Eating bland food when a person is feeling nauseated also helps alleviate the symptoms.

Breasts may begin to enlarge very early in the pregnancy and will continue to throughout the pregnancy. You may also notice tenderness during this time and increased sensitivity. This is the time to invest in a few well fitting bras. Of course, as your breasts grow the size may change somewhat but it will be more comfortable for you if you have a bra that fits well and offers plenty of support.

Urinary frequency and thirst in prenatal care is another common side effect of pregnancy. Women tend to be more thirsty and need more nourishment including drinking plenty of water. Drinking more fluids coupled with the uterus growing and pressing on your bladder will cause most women to have to urinate a lot more frequently than they used to. This is common throughout the pregnancy but is most pronounced during the first and last trimesters. During the second trimester, this usually subsides a bit but most women will still have a sense of having to urinate more frequently than when not pregnant.

Stomach problems are another concern including upset stomach, indigestion, constipation and heartburn. There are changes in your uterus that slows the metabolism. Foods that may not normally trigger these problems may start to bother you. Eating foods that are high in fiber will help alleviate that and stay away from spicy foods or foods you find that trigger adverse reactions. If you exercise, wait for approximately two hours before partaking in any activity to allow the food to digest.

If you are having trouble sleeping while you are pregnant, try lying on your side and using pillows under your stomach and between your legs. This added cushion will often increase the comfort, allowing you to have a more restful sleep. Doing relaxation exercises, taking a warm bath and going to bed only when you are tired will also help with feelings of restlessness. If you are having trouble sleeping, it may be best to simply get up for awhile and go back to bed awhile later.

Skin, nails and hair are also affected when pregnant. You may find your skin excessively oily or dry and your hair may lose its luster or thin a bit. These changes will go back to normal after you give birth. The increased hormone levels will affect this significantly. It is usually recommended that you do not do anything drastic to your hair such as coloring it or getting a permanent. Your hair may not react the same to various chemicals so now is not the time to drastically change your hairstyle.

Swelling of the feet and limbs can be more pronounced. You may also get some varicose veins. Lying on a bed and propping your feet up will help with swelling. Staying off your feet and relaxing for awhile will also help. If you experience leg cramps, do some leg stretches to loosen up your muscles.

All of the conditions found in changes in your body during pregnancy will go away after you give birth. Having pregnancy care information from your obstetrician will help you to cope with these changes in your body. Also, remember that this I a temporary condition and even if you are uncomfortable, your body will go back to normal shortly after giving birth.

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