Friday, June 03, 2005

Boxers, Briefs and Pregnancy Growth among other things.

You've got Pregnancy questions? I've got answers. Q. Am I more likely to get pregnant if my husband wears boxers rather than briefs? A. Yes, but you'll have an even better chance if he doesn't wear anything at all. Q. What is the easiest way to figure out exactly when I got pregnant? A. Have sex once a year. Q. What is the most common pregnancy craving? A. For men to be the ones who get pregnant. Q. My blood type is O-positive and my husband's is A-negative. What if my baby is born, say, type AB-positive? A. Then the jig is up. Q. My husband and I are very attractive. I'm sure our baby will be beautiful enough for commercials. Whom should I contact about this? A. Your therapist. Q. How will I know if my vomiting is morning sickness or the flu? A. If it's the flu, you'll get better. Q. My brother tells me that since my husband has a big nose, and genes for big noses are dominant, my baby will have a big nose as well. Is this true? A. The odds are greater that your brother will have a fat lip. Q. Since I became pregnant, My breasts, rear end, and even my feet have grown. Is there anything that gets smaller during pregnancy? A. Yes, your bladder. Q. Ever since I've been pregnant, I haven't been able to go to bed at night without onion rings. Is this a normal craving? A. Depends on what you're doing with them. Q. The more pregnant I get, the more often strangers smile at me. Why? A. Cause you're fatter then they are. Q. My wife is five months pregnant and so moody that sometimes she's borderline irrational. A. So what's your question, idiot? Q. Will I love my dog less when the baby is born? A. No, but your husband might get on your nerves. Q. My childbirth instructor says it's not pain I'll feel during labor, but pressure. Is she right? A. Yes, in the same way that a tornado might be called an air current. Q. I'm modest. Once I'm in the hospital to deliver, who will see me in that delicate position? A. Authorized personnel only -- doctors, nurses, oderlies, photographers, florists, cleaning crews, journalists, etc. Q. Does labor cause hemorrhoids? A. Labor causes anything you want to blame it for. Q. Where is the best place to store breast milk? A. In your breasts. Q. Is there a safe alternative to breast pumps? A. Yes, baby lips. Q. What does it mean when a baby is born with teeth? A. It means that the baby's mother may want to rethink her plans to nurse. Q. How does one sanitize nipples? A. Bathe daily and wear a clean bra. It beats boiling them in a saucepan. Q. What are the terrible twos? A. Your breasts after baby stops nursing cold turkey. Q. What is the best time to wean the baby from nursing? A. When you see teeth marks. Q. Can a mother get pregnant while nursing? A. Yes, but it's much easier if she removes the baby from her breast and puts him to sleep first. Q. What happens to disposable diapers after they're thrown away? A. They are stored in a silo in the Midwest, in the event of global chemical warfare. Q. Do I have to have a baby shower? A. Not if you change the baby's diaper very quickly. Q. What are night terrors? A. Frightening episodes in which the new mother dreams she's pregnant again.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Her name was Lola, she was a showgirl...

I just read that Denise Richards gave birth to a baby girl, Lola. 6 pounds, 10 ounces. So now she and Charlie Sheen are the proud parents of two daughters. I have to wonder though --- Lola is a popular baby name. I know of two girls in our neighborhood who are named Lola. Other famous parents have also used the name Lola, including: Jennie Garth & Peter Facinelli Annie Lennox Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelos Madonna (Lola is Lourdes' nickname) Makes me wonder --- what naming trends are you noticing in the schools or in your neighborhood or among your friends?

The Five Foods Every Pregnant Woman Should Eat

As a pregnant woman, I read about a hundred articles a day on nutrition and what I should be eating to help my baby grow and be healthy. It is sometimes hard, however, to get the whole food pyramid into my diet and/or eat a variety of foods everyday. Luckily, there are some foods where it makes sense to eat them everyday and still get an assortment of essential nutrients. Here are the foods I aim to eat every day: 1.) Yogurt: I go for the low fat kind with active cultures. The active cultures are good bacteria which help to fight off the bad bacteria and promote good intestinal health. They can also help to prevent yeast infections. A cup of yogurt also has tons of calcium and helps to boost the immune system, as well as fight off cancer. Also, if you are lactose intolerant, yogurt is a great way to get your dairy because the live cultures help to break down the lactose. Here are some ways to enjoy it: - Mix in some granola, Grape Nuts, or almonds for some crunch. - Use it in smoothies for extra creaminess (and nutrients) - Substitute plain yogurt for mayo or sour cream 2.) Dark, leafy greens: Spinach, kale, turnip greens, and collard greens are all great sources of anti-cancer compounds, vitamins, and minerals. These include folic acid to prevent neural tube defects (EXTREMELY important during pregnancy), antioxidants beta-carotene and vitamin C, and fiber. For the highest amounts of nutrients, eat raw or slightly cooked. Some ways to try them: - In salads: I love to mix spinach with Craisins, pecans, orange slices, and raspberry vinaigrette. Experiment around with anything in your kitchen! - Mix any of these into stir fry - Steam and add garlic, parmesan cheese, and/or butter 3.) Bran cereal: Tons of fiber to prevent constipation, prevents polyps, and has anti-cancer compounds. In addition, bran can help to lower blood cholesterol levels and prevent heart disease. Bran also helps to fill you up, which is a great tool to losing some of that weight after pregnancy. Be wary, however, because some have more sugar than a can of coke. There are many ways to enjoy it other than with milk: - Mix some into yogurt for crunch. My favorite is All Bran (although it comes in not-so-appetizing little sticks) - Mix some into other cereals for added nutrition and taste - Make bran muffins, pancakes, and breads - Use to make crunchy topping on your casseroles 4.) Oranges: This citrus fruit is one of my favorites because they are extremely portable and so healthy. They are a great source of folic acid (again, great for the baby), antioxidants beta carotene and vitamin C, and anti-cancer compounds flavonoids and carotenes. Drink fresh orange juice, eat oranges as a snack, or try these other ways to get your oranges: - Top salads with oranges for extra color and flavor - Make fruit salad with orange slices - Use in smoothies or squeeze some into seltzer water 5.) Soy: Soy is a great source of phytoestrogens, which help to relieve symptoms of menopause. It also helps to ward off breast cancer and fight heart disease. Soy is a great source of high-quality protein, and is rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals, and omega-3 fatty acids (good for your heart and help to make you happy!). Great ways to get your 15 grams a day: - Eat edamame at your favorite Asian restaurant. It is a low fat way to get lots of soy. (Beware: it is VERY salty) - Put soy nuts on your salads or eat them right out of the bag - Mix tofu into stir fry - Use soymilk instead of other milk on top of cereal (or even in your Starbuck’s) There are so many ways to enjoy these foods, experiment around with them or check out the recipes on these sites:

Important follow-up: A couple of links to Google search results regarding soy and pregnancy:

Thanks for the helpful comments...

What's my Due Date?

To be honest, figuring out my due date wasn't easy the first time I was pregnant. It was somewhat confusing to me! But now I've got it all figured out. I ask my doctor. :) Believe it or not, it's not you and your partner but your caregiver who decides when your date of conception was. They rely on you only to tell them the date of the first day of your last period. They then add two weeks to that date and call it the date of conception. You probably assume that the day your baby was conceived was the day you became pregnant. Pregnancy is a full forty weeks, it starts on the first day of your last period, and includes the two weeks before egg meets sperm. To figure out when your baby is due, your caregiver simply adds forty weeks to the first day of your last period. If your menstrual cycle occupies more or less than 28 days, you caregiver will account for that in their calculation. What they come up with is an EDD, estimated due date, also known as the estimated date of confinement or EDC. Your due date is only an educated guess, and your chances of delivering on that very day are nothing to bet on. How useful is a due date you can't circle in pen and count on? Quite useful, actually. It's an important point of reference for both you and your doctor or midwife in tracking your baby's development, and your progress and symptoms throughout your pregnancy.

What's your Pregnancy Quote? How about Britney Spears?

Britney Spears is loving life as a pregnant woman — the cravings, watching sonograms and especially the sex. "I think it's better than it was before," Spears tells People magazine in the issue on newsstands Friday. "I think it's best. Sex is crazy good." The 23-year-old pop star, who's due this fall, says that she's been battling "horrible" morning sickness and been dealing with the hormone swings that have caused her to lose her temper, "like twice." But otherwise, Spears says she's in "nesting mode" and finds being pregnant "empowering." "I think it brings out a pure side of you," she says. After first seeing a sonogram of her baby, Spears was speechless. "You can't really say anything. I was emotional. I think it's the best feeling in the world." * Thanks to the AP for this excerpt of their article. I think if I were famous and being asked about my pregnancy, I wouldn't immediately say it's the best. I mean, it hurts, it's tiring and I feel like a whale. But then i'm not a celebrity. Thank goodness. If YOU were being asked about your pregnancy by let's say a roving reporter, what would you want to be quoted for saying?

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

What is the Height of Your Fundus?

When you think about what the body can do, it is truly amazing. Think about it. Carrying a baby. Altering your body to give life to a child. Did you ever see the movie Junior with Arnold Schwarzenegger? Where he carries a baby and gives birth? My husband always likes to reference that movie and tell me there is no way that he could possibly carry a baby. At the beginning of your pregnancy, your uterus is about the size of your fist. It begins to enlarge at 8-12 weeks. Your doctor or midwife will begin to measure your uterus at your three month prenatal appointment and will continue measuring its growth at every appointment after that one. The measurement your doctor or midwife is recording is the height of the fundus. The top of the uterus is called the fundus. The fundus is measured in relation to your pubic bone. Doctors and midwives use this measurement to make sure that your baby's growth is on target for your estimated due date. The height of the fundus also will tell a doctor or midwife if your baby is growing at a normal or adequate rate. About one in five expectant mothers have what is referred to as a tilted or retroverted uterus in which the fundus is tilted towards the back instead of the front. In most pregnancies the uterus will right itself by the end of the first trimester. In rare cases when it doesn't, and where it becomes lodged in the pelvis putting pressure on the bladder, a catheter may need to be inserted to drain the mother's urine and then the uterus is gently pushed back into the proper position.

Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Ultrasound Images

One of my favorite websites is the PregnancyWeekly Ultrasound 3d image gallery. Being able to see what is going on throughout the weeks is comforting and reassuring since I can't peek into my own belly. If it were me, I'd have a doctor's appointment weekly and have weekly ultrasounds. But that can be expensive. The 3d Gallery is quite impressive too...especially seeing how the 2nd and 3rd trimester evolve. The first trimester are pictures of impressive blobs but it is the 2nd and 3rd where you really start to see an actual baby forming. And that always takes my breath away.

Alternatives To Hospital Births

In the old days, women in labor were greeted with a shave and an enema, and given no choice but to spend the rest of their pre-delivery hours on their backs, hooked up to an IV and a fetal monitor. Walks, snacks, and visitors were not allowed. Today, expectant moms have a lot more options. In-hospital birthing centers combine the look and feel of an upscale hotel suite and the latest in hospital technology, in case it's needed. Not only husbands, but children, mothers-in-law, aunts, friends, and long-lost cousins are welcomed, and amenities like views and jacuzzis are available. Low-risk pregnancies can often come to fruition at home, with the help of an attending physician or a midwife. A lot of mothers prefer the privacy, comfort, and control going through labor in their home. Many mothers also love to share the intimate experience of childbirth with a midwife rather than a hospital staff. Midwives today are qualified to administer drugs, perform medical procedures, and provide their patients with the latest in medical technology when it is needed. Their approach remains more personal than technological though, and many mothers who do not suffer from heart disease, high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, fibroid tumors, or other conditions associated with high-risk births choose the support and encouragement a midwife offers. Free-standing birth centers are operated by obstetricians, midwives or both, and offer mothers who want to experience natural, low-tech childbirth an alternative to giving birth at home. Many of these birth centers offer the option of water birth, which many laboring mothers find a workable (and almost risk-free) alternative to epidural anesthesia, since water removes some discomforts of labor associated with weight, position, and support. Water also equalizes the pressure on the baby, allowing them to get optimal blood and oxygen flow to the placenta and sometimes allowing minor malpresentations, like (a misaligned head) to self-correct. Mothers love the lower blood pressure, decreased muscle tension, increased endorphins (a natural pain reliever), and reduced stress. Midwives can accompany you through your pregnancy and birth no matter where you decide to deliver, and water birth is an option at home as well as in birth centers. You have a lot more power than your mother did to decide how you want to experience and share your baby's birth. Don't forget to appreciate this and take advantage of it!