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How Do I Tell My Family We’re Pregnant?

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Photo © Sprinkled Joy Fun Ideas to Share the Pregnancy News The pregnancy test is positive and you’re excited to share the news, but you want to do it in a memorable and exciting way. Whether you serve a cake with pink and blue swirls on the inside or send out a formal announcement, there are many fun ways to share with your family and friends that you will be welcoming a new addition to the family. Throw a “Small” Party Invite everyone over for a party, but serve everything in tiny portions – sliders instead of burgers, baby carrots, and everything else in mini, bite-sized portions. For dessert you can serve mini-cheesecakes, some with raspberries on top and some with blueberries.  Hang a banner that reads something such as “Thank you for coming to our small party – because we have BIG news to share with you!” Decorate with…

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Is it Normal to Have Cramping in the First 3 Weeks of Pregnancy?

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What are implantation cramps? The cramping you experience during the first three weeks of pregnancy is known as implantation cramping. This is an indication that the fertilized egg is attaching itself to the wall of the uterus. These cramps are usually accompanied by light bleeding, which may make a woman mistake them for menstrual cramps and assume she isn’t pregnant. Is implantation cramping common? Approximately twenty to thirty percent of women will experience implantation cramps during early pregnancy. If you notice very light spotting before your menstrual cycle would typically begin, this may be a sign that you are pregnant. Implantation usually happens from six to12 days after ovulation. The majority of women have only a very few drops of bright red or brown spots to indicate that implantation is taking place. How do you describe what implantation cramps feel like? This kind of cramp is described as a dull…

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Sleeplessness

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Pregnancy can occasionally be troubled by insomnia or sleeplessness.  The three most common causes are: Snoring, secondary to nasal congestion Restless Legs, usually associated with iron deficiency and anemia, and General discomfort Add anxiety and nervousness about having a child and it is not uncommon to have a sleepless night now and then. If you are having insomnia, first you need to try and identify the cause.  If you have nasal congestion and you are snoring try wearing some nasal strips before you go to bed.  Also, if you wear support hose during the day you will prevent fluid accumulation in your legs.  When you lay flat at night, the fluid in your legs, comes back into your blood vascular system and swells your nasal passage way.  If there is less fluid in your legs, because of the support hose, there will be less nasal congestion.  So consider support hose,…

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Finding Out

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You know that moment you find out you’re pregnant and you think, I can’t wait to tell everyone! That thought is soon interrupted by several more thoughts along the lines of Who do I tell first? How long do I wait to tell everyone? If I tell one person, I have to tell everyone. Do I have to tell my boss? I need to call a doctor. My doctor’s office isn’t even open right now. Those thoughts soon become overwhelming so you decide to pause and start thinking about what this means for yourself and most importantly…your baby. Now those thoughts start rushing through your brain. What can’t I eat? What am I supposed to eat? How much do I need to eat? When do I get to start eating a lot? Can I work out? Should I work out? What does this mean for my job? I need to…

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Pregnancy Mask

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Pregnancy hormones bring many changes to your body, including changes to skin appearance.  A combination of hormonal influences and changes in your body’s immune system can darken certain areas of your skin.  Your breast nipple and the aureola surrounding it become darker.  You can get a line of pigmented skin extending from your belly button to your pubic area that becomes dark.  This is called “linea nigra”.  You can also develop what is termed the “Pregnancy Mask”.   This is almost a butterfly darkening of the skin in your cheeks and across the nose.  We are not sure why this occurs, but some women also experience it on the birth control pill.  So it is clearly related to the hormones.  It is not unattractive, merely a sign of your fertility.  Enjoy your new appearance.

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“I’m feeling Sad” Is this normal?

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At what should be one of the happiest times in a woman’s life, many pregnant women experience fatigue, irritability, sadness and mood changes.  When these feelings also include trouble sleeping, inappropriate guilt or hopelessness, and a sense that nothing is enjoyable anymore, this is characteristic of depression.  If you are experiencing these mood disturbances and behavior changes, make an appointment with your doctor immediately. The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) estimate that 14-23% of pregnant women experience depression at some point in their pregnancy. Given the hormone surges during pregnancy, women often feel “highs and lows”. Even so, if these hormonal fluctuations cause dramatic changes in mood and behavior, such that you are having thoughts of harming yourself or your baby, immediate action should be taken by seeking medical help. When symptoms of depression are mild, such as intermittent fatigue and sadness, women might misinterpret these as normal…

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Pregnancy Regrets

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While I don’t live with many regrets (I love planning for the future; hate reminiscing about the past – mostly because I get depressed thinking about how quickly life goes), there are a few things I regret not doing while I was pregnant with Charlotte.  I always stress how different your first pregnancy is in comparison to the rest of your pregnancies because it’s all about you the first time around.  It’s so easy to plan your day/week/life when you have no other little human whose life depends on you.  While I was pregnant with Jack, I kept a journal of how I was feeling, had professional maternity photos taken*, and was religious about taking weekly bump pictures.  I didn’t do any of these things during my pregnancy with Charlotte.  It’s just so much harder to remember/schedule/be awake for those minor details. Minor details I really wish I had paid…

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Can My Baby Hear?

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An unborn baby has many experiences in the womb based on the actions of the mother – the foods she eats, exercises she does, and medications she uses all impact her developing baby. The senses of an unborn baby are also developing and interacting with the environment. There is much research that shows that babies can feel, taste, dream, and react to stimuli such as sound long before birth. So – does this mean your baby can hear? Yes. An Unborn Baby’s Ears and Hearing In the first trimester, just around the 8th week, a baby’s ears are forming, and as early as 18 weeks they begin to perceive the sounds of the womb (blood pumping, fluid moving, etc.) as the tiny bones of the inner ear mature and the auditory portion of the brain more fully develops. Research shows that infants recognize their mothers’ voices long before birth and…

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How to Deal With Changing Hormones

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How do Hormones Change During Pregnancy? Levels of pregnancy hormones estrogen and progesterone dramatically increase. The production of estrogen is greater in pregnancy than during any other time in a woman’s life. This permits the uterus and placenta to develop blood vessels and transfer nutrients to the growing baby. Estrogen levels increase significantly during the first trimester and are believed to cause the nausea associated with pregnancy. During the second trimester, estrogen aids in the development of milk ducts. By the third trimester, estrogen level is at its highest. The increase in progesterone allows the ligaments and joints throughout the body to become more flexible preparing the birth canal for delivery. Progesterone is also responsible for enlarging the uterus from the size of a pear to an environment that can stretch to fit the needs of the growing baby. Keep in mind that these changes in hormone levels are typical…

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When Does Menstruation Return After Birth?

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Does the menstrual cycle return soon after giving birth? Menstruation does not continue immediately post partum. As your body slowly goes through natural changes and stages, preparing to give birth, it may seem as though it will never get back to “pre-pregnancy normal.” Many mothers-to-be find some pregnancy patterns enjoyable and rather convenient, such as not menstruating during pregnancy. Of course, the menstrual cycle will return soon after giving birth—but how should you define “soon”? How long does it take before my period resumes, after giving birth? Many women begin menstruating between three and ten weeks after giving birth and the average is 45 days after. However, it’s important to realize that the normal timetable for the return to menstruation differs greatly from woman to woman. The range considered normal may extend from one month up to a year or more, before you’ll need to put tampons on your shopping list once…

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I don’t want my baby to be autistic—what can I do?

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You’re not alone if you worry about having a baby with autism. It is one of the leading and fastest growing developmental disabilities in the U.S., affecting 1 in every 110 children—three times as many little boys as little girls. As a babyQ member, you will discover ways to reduce your baby’s risk of neurocognitive problems, like autism and ADHD. This is our mission and we are here to help.

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Anxiety

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Anxiety can be increased by the changes in hormones that effect your emotions.  It can also be influenced by your social circumstances.  Women with less social and partner support, tend to be more anxious about the future.  About 5% of women report anxiety during the pregnancy. The best ways to cope are exercise, talking with friends and loved ones, making sure you get restful sleep every night. Healthy diet also keeps you on an even keel.  Make sure you take adequate Vitamin D; we recommend 2,000 units a day during pregnancy.  DHA, a fatty acid in fish oil will help you stay calm and nourish your baby’s developing brain. Most prenatal vitamins now contain DHA.  If yours does not, look for one that does or take a high quality fish oil pill that states it has been molecularly distilled to remove impurities.

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How Do I Tell My Child We’re Having Another Baby?

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A new baby on the way is often a time of great joy and anticipation. For older siblings, however, it can be a time of jealousy, resentment, and even fear. If your only child is about to be joined by a new baby brother or sister and you are worried about how to share the news, there are a few tips and tricks you can use to make the announcement as joyful as possible. There are also many ways you can help your child feel important, valued, and excited about the adventure of being an older sibling. Tell Your Child He Is Going to Be a Big Brother or She a Big Sister Unless you are 100% certain, without a doubt confident, that your older child is more excited to bring home another baby than you are, don’t begin by asking your child what he or she thinks about the…

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Back To School Links

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I hope everyone enjoyed the last weekend of summer. I’m so excited for Jack to start preschool tomorrow. For all of you who sent kids back to school this morning, here are a few links to click while you enjoy a quiet cup of coffee. These have me so excited for fall So do these My best friend suggested I read this next.  Hoping for some quiet time soon Mike and I always talk about how true this is Great. Just great. I LOVE fresh figs! My sister and I used to love stealing my Dad’s New Yorker just to read the cartoons Love this website My thoughts exactly Number ten is way too true in our house The first page I read every month Will always remind me of my older brother SWEET!   You think Jack enjoyed his birthday? I can’t believe how quickly three years passed!  

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