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Sleeping Positions During Pregnancy

We all need sleep and slеер іѕ thе tіmе whеn уоur bоdу rеѕеtѕ аnd rераіrѕ itself.  It’ѕ whеn уоur brain mаkеѕ mеmоrіеѕ, mаkіng іt an ally іn уоur battle аgаіnѕt bаbу brаіn. It’ѕ hоw уоur blood vessels restore themselves, whісh is especially іmроrtаnt now thаt thеу’rе undеr increased рrеѕѕurе frоm thе еxtrа blood flоw required to ѕuрроrt your bаbу.


Whаt іѕ the bеѕt position tо sleep іn рrеgnаnсу?

Exреrtѕ hаvе trаdіtіоnаllу said that thе best ѕlеер роѕіtіоn when you’re еxресtіng іѕ оn уоur left ѕіdе — though your rіght іѕ also perfectly ассерtаblе. Pаѕt your fіrѕt trіmеѕtеr, it bесоmеѕ impossible tо lie оn уоur ѕtоmасh fоr obvious rеаѕоnѕ.

Mаnу еxреrtѕ also recommend thаt уоu аvоіd lуіng flаt оn уоur bасk аll night lоng (but don’t wоrrу if уоu roll over durіng thе nіght аnd wake up that wау). Hоwеvеr, ѕоmе experts nоw ѕау thаt pregnant moms can ѕlеер in аnу position that’s comfortable for them rаthеr thаn wоrrу too muсh аbоut it one wау оr another.


Slееріng роѕіtіоnѕ in pregnancy

Slееріng оn уоur stomach durіng рrеgnаnсу

If your fаvоrіtе position іѕ tummу-dоwn, that’s okay — until уоur bаbу bumр mаkеѕ it unсоmfоrtаblе or іmроѕѕіblе, аt whісh роіnt you’ll have tо switch роѕіtіоnѕ.


Slееріng on your back during pregnancy

 Sоmе experts rесоmmеnd рrеgnаnt wоmеn avoid sleeping on their backs durіng the ѕесоnd аnd thіrd trіmеѕtеrѕ. Whу? Thе bасk ѕlеер роѕіtіоn rеѕtѕ the entire weight оf thе growing utеruѕ аnd baby оn уоur bасk, уоur іntеѕtіnеѕ аnd уоur vеnа саvа, the main vеіn that саrrіеѕ blood back tо the hеаrt from уоur lower bоdу.

Thіѕ pressure mау аggrаvаtе backaches аnd hemorrhoids and mаkе digestion lеѕѕ еffісіеnt, іntеrfеrе wіth сіrсulаtіоn, and роѕѕіblу саuѕе hуроtеnѕіоn (low blood рrеѕѕurе), whісh can mаkе you dіzzу.

Stіll, don’t worry іf you wаkе uр аnd fіnd that уоu’vе rоllеd оntо уоur bасk overnight.


Slееріng оn your lеft or rіght ѕіdе durіng pregnancy

 During thе second and third trіmеѕtеrѕ, sleeping on еіthеr ѕіdе — рrеfеrаblу thе lеft, if possible — іѕ соnѕіdеrеd bу some experts to bе ideal fоr уоu аnd уоur bаbу-tо-bе.

This position аllоwѕ fоr maximum blооd flow аnd nutrients tо the рlасеntа (whісh mеаnѕ lеѕѕ рrеѕѕurе оn the vеnа саvа) and еnhаnсеѕ kidney funсtіоn, which mеаnѕ bеttеr elimination оf wаѕtе рrоduсtѕ аnd less swelling іn уоur fееt, ankles аnd hаndѕ.


Tips on comfortable рrеgnаnсу ѕlееріng positions

Nоt uѕеd tо lуіng оn your ѕіdе? Or аlwауѕ bееn a ѕіdе-ѕlеереr — but can’t ѕееm to get аnу rеѕt now that уоu’rе еxресtіng? Hеrе are a fеw tірѕ tо tackle pregnancy ѕlеер problems аnd gеt уоurѕеlf comfy ѕlееріng іn thе ѕіdе роѕіtіоn:


  • Uѕе lots оf ріllоwѕ. Try сrоѕѕіng оnе leg over the оthеr аnd рuttіng оnе ріllоw bеtwееn them аnd another pillow bеhіnd уоur back — оr аnу other combination that helps уоu ѕlеер.
  • Gеt a ѕресіаl pillow. For extra ѕuрроrt, trу uѕіng a wеdgе-ѕhареd pillow or a 5-foot full-bоdу pregnancy pillow.
  • Prор yourself uр. If ріllоwѕ don’t hеlр, trу ѕlееріng іn a ѕеmі-uрrіght роѕіtіоn іn a rесlіnеr (if you hаvе оnе) іnѕtеаd оf thе bеd.


Keep іn mіnd, іt’ѕ nоrmаl to fееl unсоmfоrtаblе for a fеw nіghtѕ оr even a fеw weeks. Yоur bоdу wіll mоѕt lіkеlу аdjuѕt tо a nеw position gіvеn tіmе.

Nоt ѕurе іf you’re getting the rіght amount оf ѕlеер? The bеѕt way to judgе іѕ nоt bу hоw mаnу hоurѕ you clock іn lying іn bed but by how уоu fееl. If уоu fіnd thаt you’re nоt sleeping and are сhrоnісаllу tired — bеуоnd thе nоrmаl fаtіguе оf pregnancy — уоu’rе nоt getting enough ѕlеер. If you think lасk оf sleep іѕ becoming an issue, tаlk to your hеаlthсаrе рrасtіtіоnеr. Hе or she саn help уоu fіnd the rооt of уоur рrоblеm аnd ѕоlutіоnѕ to get thе rеѕt уоu need.

5 Natural Remedies for Cold During Pregnancy

Catching a cold during pregnancy is not pleasant at all. Typically, pregnant women are not susceptible to cold because a woman’s immune system tends to get stronger during pregnancy. However,  sore throat and runny nose along with other symptoms of cold can occur and cause extreme discomfort during pregnancy. Although over-the-counter medications can relieve symptoms of cold, they are not considered safe in pregnancy. The best way to relieve your symptoms while ensuring your baby is safe is to use natural remedies

The following are 5 safe and natural remedies for cold during pregnancy:

1) Drink plenty of fluids and rest

Hydrating is one of the best natural remedies for cold during pregnancy. Fluids help to relieve nasal congestion and improve metabolic activity to enable the body to defend itself more effectively against the cold. Warm water, smoothies, or broth work just fine. You’ll also need plenty of rest to allow your body to recover. Try to sleep for at least 8 hours a night and take at least two 20-minute naps during the day. Adequate rest boosts the immune system, allowing your body to combat cold-causing bacteria and viruses.

2) Garlic

Garlic contains cold-fighting compounds that can help get rid of cold in pregnancy. It’s antibacterial, antiviral, and antiseptic properties make it an effective remedy for cold-causing bacteria and viruses. Simply take two cloves of fresh garlic with warm water in the morning or peel a clove and suck on it for 5 minutes. You can also cook your meals with crushed garlic for cold-relieving benefits.

3) Honey and lemon

Honey and lemon is an effective combination of relieving cold during pregnancy. Honey soothes the throat while lemon helps to bust up congestion. Add a teaspoon of honey and a tablespoon of lemon juice to a glass of warm water. The vitamin C in lemon juice boosts your immune system to help the body defend itself against cold during pregnancy.

4) Get a massage

An antenatal massage improves blood circulation in the body and relieves tension to help the body defend itself against the cold. Besides, it prompts the body to release endorphins that work to boost your immune system to help you fight off cold during pregnancy. A combination of peppermint, lavender, and thyme essential oils work best to alleviate the symptoms of cold.  The massage should be done by a therapist who is certified in antenatal massage. After the massage, be sure to drink more fluids to replenish what was lost during the massage.

5) Herbal steam

Herbal steam made with thyme, rosemary, and oregano can help to open a blocked nose. Pour hot water into a large bowl or basin and add dry herbs. Drape a towel over your head and breathe deeply in the steam for 10 minutes. Herbal steam packs an anti-viral and antibacterial punch, and the hot water helps to release potent oils that relieve nasal congestion.

Should the cold symptoms persist, you should talk to a doctor as soon as possible for proper medication.

Breast Pain During Pregnancy

Breast pain can be normal during pregnancy. It’s one of those numerous changes a woman’s body goes through when she is pregnant. Hormonal changes are the leading causes of breast pain in pregnant women. The intensity of breast pain during pregnancy varies from one woman to another. You may feel it in one or both breasts, at a specific spot or all over, or moving towards your underarm. Breast pain may also be permanent or intermittent – coming and going away at intervals.

Breast pain can happen at any time during pregnancy but it’s most common during the first trimester as a result of sudden hormonal changes. This assertion can be backed by the fact that immediately after conception, your body starts preparing for breastfeeding by releasing large quantities of pregnancy hormones, including progesterone, estrogen and prolactin. These hormones cause additional blood flow to the chest, thereby resulting in bigger milk ducts, as well as extra fluids, tissue, and fat which could all cause breast pain.

During the first week of pregnancy, most women experience sensitive breasts which makes sex play and exercising difficult for them. The nipples are particularly very sensitive and tender in the early weeks of pregnancy. It is also not uncommon to experience a tingling sensation in the nipples and areolas during the first trimester. However, as the pregnancy advances, most women start experiencing heaviness and fullness in their breasts.

While breast pain can be normal during pregnancy, it could also be as a result of other conditions such as fibrocystic breast changes, the effects of certain medications and in extremely rare cases, breast cancer. You should therefore consult with your doctor if you start experiencing symptoms such as life-disrupting breast pain, nipple discharge, as well as redness, pus or fever.

Breast pain during pregnancy hardly requires treatment as it often goes away at some point in the pregnancy, a few weeks after childbirth or after lactating. However, it is with utmost importance for you to make lifestyle changes that will ease your breast pain during pregnancy. For example, you should consider ditching lacy underwire bras for full coverage cotton bras with wider shoulder straps. You should also consider wearing sports bras to bed if bed movements are irritating to your tender breasts and nipples.  Adding breast pads to protect your breasts, applying frozen gel or ice packs and taking warm soothing showers can also go a long way to relieve breast pain, swelling and tenderness during pregnancy.

If all these interventions fail, you could discuss with your doctor for medical interventions to ease the pain.

Is It Normal To Feel Itchy During Pregnancy?

Many pregnant women may be familiar with nausea and vomiting, but not itchiness. Well, the truth is itching is quite common amongst pregnant woman. Although the real cause of itching during pregnancy is not yet known, there are indications that it could be caused by raised levels of pregnancy hormones. Besides, when the bump grows, the skin of the abdomen stretches and could result in itching. It is worth noting that itching is common during pregnancy and there is a need to get checked by a healthcare professional if it becomes severe.


That said, the general causes of itching during pregnancy include;


Dryness: Some pregnant women suffer from dryness which is characterized by itchy flaky dry skin;

Hormonal changes: Hormonal changes are a natural part of pregnancy. However, they often result in many unpleasant side effects such as mood swings, nausea and even itchiness;

Fabrics and perfumes: Some pregnant women can be irritated by certain materials and chemicals to the extent that their skin begins itching;

Cholestasis: Sometimes, itching during pregnancy is a symptom of cholestasis, a liver disorder that causes the buildup of acid bile in the blood;

Prurigo: Pregnant women may also suffer from prurigo. They are itchy crusty bumps that often appear on the legs, arms and abdomen during the third trimester of pregnancy;

Pruritic urticarial papules and plaques of pregnancy (PUPPP):  This condition is characterized by an itchy rash that occurs around stretch marks during pregnancy.


Slight itchiness during pregnancy may be considered normal. However, intense itching on areas of the body such as the arms, legs and abdomen may indicate a serious problem that needs treatment. Of course, some pregnant women may also experience vaginal itching that could require treatment.


Inasmuch as itching during pregnancy may be considered normal, it’s generally not an early symptom of pregnancy. Therefore, any intense and prolonged itching during the course of pregnancy should be reported to your doctor.


Just as there are several potential causes of itchiness during pregnancy, there are equally several natural remedies to prevent it. For instance, wearing loose clothes made with natural fabrics and changing your perfumes or detergents are some of the ways to prevent itchiness during pregnancy. Drinking enough water and using a moisturizer to ease skin dryness will also minimize itching during pregnancy.


Promising Results for Children with Autism

This is a real story from the United States.

5-year old boy, Blake, is finally able to play normally with his sister after participating in the innovative stem cell clinical trial in the Duke University. Blake was a “unique” child since birth and he had delayed motor skills and speeches. Later, he was diagnosed with autism on his third birthday.

Thankfully, he was enrolled successfully in Duke University clinical trial on treating autism with cord blood stem cells. Now, Blake’s family is grateful that he has had remarkable behavioral and speech progress after receiving his own cord blood stem cells in the clinical trial. He is more sociable than before.

“The first phase of the clinical trial has completed and showed that 70% of our children have improvements after getting their own cord blood”, said Dr. Joanne Kurtzberg, one of the pioneers who uses cord blood for transplantation. She is also a renowned pioneer in using cord blood stem cells for regenerative medicine for cerebral palsy, autism and other brain injuries.

This story is originally published on NBCUniversal Media.
Last accessed 9 April 2021.

How to Prevent Stretch Marks During Pregnancy

Anyone can develop stretch marks in any phase of life regardless of their age, size, or skin type. These marks often appear on the stomach, hips, chest, thighs, and bottom. While these marks do not cause any health problems, these may cause body image issues. According to Debra Jaliman, a dermatologist in New York City, 9 out of 10 women develop stretch marks during pregnancy. The good news is that stretch marks can be avoided during pregnancy.

1) Moisturize
Moisturizing your skin is one of the most effective ways to prevent stretch marks during pregnancy. A good moisturizer with vitamins A and E improves your skin’s elasticity by locking in moisture and keeping it supple. Good skin elasticity reduces the chances of developing stretch marks.

2) Exercise
Regular physical activity improves blood circulation, which stimulates the formation of new collagen to ensure the skin is elastic and able to stretch as the pregnancy grows. Besides, exercise promotes anti-oxidants that work to prevent skin damage by free radicals. If you do not exercise during pregnancy, you will lose muscle tone, causing the skin to loosen. Simple exercises such as swimming, yoga, walking, and prenatal aerobics can help to prevent stretch marks during pregnancy. Furthermore, regular exercise helps you to maintain a healthy weight and reduce the risk of excessive skin stretching.

3) Stay hydrated
Drinking plenty of fluids (water, soups, juices, smoothies) during pregnancy will help to keep the skin supple and maximize its elasticity. Unlike dry skin, well-hydrated skin will be able to stretch better as it grows. Drinking plenty of fluids will also help to strengthen and renew your skin, making it less prone to tears as the pregnancy grows. However, you are advised to avoid caffeinated beverages as they may increase your risk of developing stretch marks.

4) Eat healthy foods
Stretch marks may occur during pregnancy due to lacking of key nutrients. Therefore, it is advisable to eat foods that are rich in zinc, vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin E, and protein. Foods such as lettuce, broccoli, spinach are rich in lutein that strengthens the dermis to protect the skin. Beans are high in zinc, which improves skin health. Other foods that can help you to prevent stretch marks during pregnancy include fatty fish, avocados, walnuts, sweet potatoes, and sunflower seeds.

5) Wear sunscreen
Exposure to the sun’s UV rays increases your risk of developing stretch marks. The best way to protect your skin from the harmful UV rays is to avoid direct sun and wear sunscreen. You should apply sunscreen every 2 hours if you are spending time in the sun.
Generally, the best way to prevent stretch marks during pregnancy is to ensure that your skin maintains its maximum elasticity throughout pregnancy. Of course, you will also need to avoid smoking and embrace healthy lifestyle habits.

6 Tips to Manage Gestational Diabetes

Gestational diabetes is a type of diabetes that occurs only in pregnant women. This condition happens when a woman cannot produce enough insulin resulting in high blood sugar levels. Gestational diabetes affects between 2 and 10 percent of all pregnancies, which means there are more than 130,000 cases each year. Having elevated blood sugar levels during pregnancy can lead to serious complications for both the mother and the fetus. Like other types of diabetes, the key to managing gestational diabetes is keeping your blood sugar levels under control.

1. Eat healthily
Eating healthy food will help you control your blood sugar levels. Make sure you eat the right amount of proteins, healthy starch, fruits, vegetables, and fats. Cut down on sugary drinks and processed food like ice cream, cakes, and biscuits. Instead of zero-calorie food, choose healthier alternatives such as whole food, fruits, and seeds. You are also encouraged to eat at least three meals a day and control your portion sizes to avoid gaining weight. Do not skip meals as it may prompt the body to crave for unhealthy diet choices.

2. Exercise regularly
Another effective way to manage gestational diabetes is to engage in regular physical activity. Exercise helps the body to use insulin more effectively, which results in lower blood sugar levels. It’s advisable to do mild to moderate exercises such as swimming, walking, jogging, or prenatal aerobics or yoga for at least 30 minutes every day.

3. Maintain a healthy weight
Overweight women are at a higher risk of having gestational diabetes. Moreover, overweight women with gestational diabetes tend to experience more complications as compared to those with a healthy weight. That’s why it’s important to eat low glycemic foodand exercise more to maintain a healthy weight. However, it’s not advisable to embark on a weight loss program during pregnancy. Just stick to moderate exercises and proper nutrition.

4. Test your blood sugar level
To control your blood sugar levels, you’ll need to test it regularly. Usually, doctors advise that you check your blood sugar levels four or five times a day, particularly in the morning and after meals. This will help you determine if your sugar levels are within the healthy range. Besides, testing your blood sugar level regularly will help you get a grasp on how certain food affect your blood sugar and adjust them appropriately.

5. Monitor your pregnancy
Gestational diabetes can increase the risk of both the mother and the baby developing complications. Therefore, you need to have more antenatal appointments so that the baby can be monitored.

6. Take medication if necessary
If your blood sugar level remains high despite making the necessary lifestyle changes, you may need insulin injections or diabetes pills to keep your blood sugar under control and protect your baby.

If you manage gestational diabetes with the tips mentioned above, you’ll deliver a healthy baby without complications.

Week 24

You have reached the 6th month of your pregnancy and you have gained around 15-16 pounds during this stage. If you have been following the tips, do’s and don’ts regarding your diet plan then you won’t gain excess weight during your pregnancy and enjoy being healthy and active during the entire pregnancy.

How To Treat Acne During Pregnancy?

Acne can develop when the oil glands in the skin are stimulated at puberty or due to hormonal changes. Pregnancy acne is not a special type of acne- But being pregnant makes most susceptible to the condition. Acne is common in pregnant woman and one out of two pregnant women should expect to develop acne. However, with special care and medication, you can get rid of acne.

Why Prenatal Massage?

Therapists claim that massage is an excellent way to boost your overall health. But, is the therapy appropriate for an expectant mother? We have highlighted its benefits and limitations to help you decide.