Walking

Move at a regular pace by lifting and setting down each foot in turn, never having both feet off the ground at once.

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10 Ways to Encourage Your Baby to Walk

Babies typically take their first steps around the time of their first birthday, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't help them out as much as you can. Encouraging a child to take their first steps is an exciting developmental milestone and an emotional triumph. Set your camera to video mode and try out some of these tricks to help your little one get going. 1. Hold Her Hands The most common trick to help your baby practice putting weight on her feet is to walk behind her while holding both of her hands. Give her enough support that she doesn't topple over, but not so much that you're straining her elbows or shoulders. Hold her arms high enough to make sure she doesn't have a big fall, but not so much that she can't make full contact with the soles of her feet. 2. Use Peer Models Go somewhere you know toddlers close to your baby's age will be—the playground, the library, or the local mall play area are usually good options. Keep an eye out for the smallest mobile babies you can find. When you see a tiny walker, point them out, praise their skill, and be encouraging. A little friendly competition and an innate desire to do what everyone else is doing can be powerful motivation. 3. Take a Dance Class Mommy and Me classes are a great way to get some exercise for yourself, with the added bonus of encouraging your baby to wiggle, shake, and groove. Being in an environment that is all about movement will help your baby to explore everything his body can do. It doesn't hurt that most classes will be held on soft gym mats, so any falls will be less traumatic, too. 4. Get Squeaky Shoes If you make walking really fun, your baby is going to want to do it as often as possible. Shoes with removable squeakers can be a great way to amp up the enjoyment your baby gets from walking. Babies are inquisitive scientists, so figuring out that each step causes noise to come from her feet can be an amazing discovery. As stated, the squeakers are removable, so if the noise starts to drive you batty, pull the squeaker out for a bit. 5. Introduce a Push Toy There are many options to choose from--a toy shopping cart, a ride-on toy with a push handle, or an adjustable activity toy with a walker option can all make great walking aids. Having something fun for your child to play with that also assists them with cruising around is a win-win. 6. Spend Time in the Pool Encouraging your little guy to use his legs in new ways will help to strengthen and condition his muscles. If you have access to a pool, it's time to get swimming. Teach him to kick his legs—the resistance from the water is a good exercise that isn't too strenuous. If there is a section of the pool that is shallow enough for him to reach the bottom, help him to "walk" in the pool, too. 7. Have an Active Pet Kids love animals. Having an active pet is a great way to inspire your little one to be on the move. If your dog's temperament is calm and he's good on a leash, let your child try walking the dog. Involve your child in feeding your pet—carrying a bowl takes two hands, so walking is a must for this job. 8. Put Her Down You've gotten into the routine of carrying her from point A to point B. Stop. Leave for appointments and errands 10 minutes earlier than usual so that you can take your time getting there. Letting her be slightly more independent by getting places on her own two feet will help her become more confident and trusting of her abilities. 9. Play Tug-of-War You can't play this one to win, but leading your little guy around the house by holding onto a rope, or letting him tug while you sit in place, is a fun way to get him on his feet. You don't have to use a rope. A pool noodle, a stick, or a stuffed animal can work, too. boot. 10. Offer a Reward Holding a preferred object or a treat for your child to come to is a fast way to get results. Of course, babies love their parents and family so enthusiastically at this age that just offering cheer and a hug can be enough to drive him to run into your arms. Enjoy this stage—it's cliché but true when we tell you it really does go by too fast. Content Source

How to deal with hemorrhoids and varicose veins during pregnancy

Hemorrhoids and varicose veins might seem to be two different, unrelated problems, but they are actually quite similar. And, many women, especially those in the third trimester of pregnancy, have them. Both hemorrhoids and varicose veins can be defined as swollen, twisted veins. These veins can often be spotted in the legs, but they also can form in other parts of your body. When they form in the rectum, they are called hemorrhoids. What causes hemorrhoids and varicose veins in pregnancy? Normally, veins have one-way valves to help keep blood flowing toward the heart. Pressure or weakening of these valves allows blood to back up and pool in the veins. This causes them to enlarge and swell. Hemorrhoids result when rectal veins enlarge. Varicose veins occur when veins of the legs swell. Many changes in pregnancy can increase the risk of hemorrhoids and varicose veins, such as: Increased blood volume, which enlarges the veins The heavy weight of the growing baby, which presses on the large blood vessels in the pelvis, altering blood flow Hormone changes affecting blood vessels, which can slow the return of blood to the heart and cause the smaller veins in the pelvis and legs to swell Hemorrhoids can get worse with pushing or straining, especially with constipation. Being overweight and having hemorrhoids before pregnancy can also make them worse. Pushing during delivery tends to worsen hemorrhoids, too. Varicose veins tend to run in families. Sitting or standing in one position for a long time may force the veins to work harder to pump blood to the heart. This can result in swollen, varicose veins and can also worsen existing hemorrhoids. How are hemorrhoids and varicose veins in pregnancy treated? Hemorrhoids in pregnancy are a short-term problem, and they get better after your baby is born. Still, there are some things you can do to relieve the discomfort: To relieve pain, sit in a tub or take bath several times a day in plain, warm water for about 10 minutes each time. Use ice packs or cold compresses to reduce swelling. Ask your healthcare provider about creams or other medicines, such as stool softeners, that are safe to use during pregnancy. It’s important to prevent constipation by including lots of fiber and fluids in your diet. Also, try not to strain with bowel movements, and avoid sitting for a long time. Regular exercises, which involve squeezing and relaxing the muscles in your vaginal and rectal area, can help improve muscle tone. Most varicose veins that develop during pregnancy get better within the first year after birth. But for now, limit your standing or sitting for a long time without a break, and try not to cross your legs. Also try to raise your legs and feet whenever you’re sitting or lying down. Avoid tight clothing around your waist, thighs, and legs, as it can worsen varicose veins. Be sure to check with your healthcare provider if your symptoms worsen or you have excessive bleeding from hemorrhoids. And, remember that these problems are usually short-term and get better after delivery with time and treatment. Content source Featured image source

7 Strategies to make labour easier

Labour is the hardest physical task that a woman experiences. Since a normal delivery takes less time to heal and doesn’t leave any visible scars on a woman’s body, most women aim to deliver vaginally. In order to do so, the mother needs to prepare her body accordingly. Although labour is a long and painful task, there are some things that you can definitely do to make it easier and smoother for you. 1. Do Squats Daily Squats is the most beneficial exercise for every woman looking forward to delivery close to their due date. Due to its role in facilitating smoother deliveries, squats are considered to be the best exercise for easy labour. The best way to do squats is using a medicine ball, keeping it between the lower back and the wall and rotating the toes and knees as wide apart as possible. It is recommended to do 15 squats daily in this position for expecting mothers to have a great delivery experience. 2. Practice Yoga After consulting your gynecologist, practice yoga during pregnancy regularly. Not only does it help to relax the body and make it flexible but also improves your breathing and prepares the body for labour. Various yoga asanas help to make the pelvic muscles more flexible to ease labour. It helps to get rid of stress and also provides relief from the aches and pains of pregnancy. Women who practice yoga during pregnancy suffer from fewer health problems. 3. Sleep Adequately and Regularly Among all the tips on how to make labour easier and faster, this is the easiest to follow and is the most effective. As discussed earlier, such a stressful and important event like labour requires calmness from the mother’s end. Only a well and adequately rested person can adapt to such a scenario seamlessly. An expecting mother should sleep at least seven hours or more every day for a faster and smoother labour experience. The sleeping experience should be enhanced with soft, skin-friendly pillows and recliner beds for the comfort of the mother and the child. 4. Massage Regular massage of the stomach along with perineal massage towards the end of the pregnancy helps to decrease discomfort and relax the muscles of the stomach and the vagina. Perineal massage helps to stretch the tissues of the vagina and this reduces the chances of vaginal tearing during birth. Massage also helps to increase the blood circulation in the perineal tissues and this in turn speeds up the process of healing after childbirth. Massaging of the thighs may also be done during labour to release tension between the contractions and to encourage the labour to progress. 5. Practice Breathing Techniques Labour is an extremely painful experience for any woman. Breathing helps the woman in labour to adapt to the pain better and also helps in relaxing her. Breathing also helps in setting rhythmic contractions and helping the woman to push better and more efficiently. Breathing also ensures that the body has enough oxygen and the mother does not pass out due to the astronomical labour pain and cramps due to her contractions. 6. Take a Childbirth Class Pregnancy is a mentally and physically taxing period for expecting parents where there is a lot of new things to be learnt and a lot of responsibilities to be understood as well as the do’s and don’ts of parenting. Hence, it is always good to be prepared for the moment of childbirth well in advance to make sure everything goes perfectly and according to plan. A childbirth class also relieves pressure that can be faced by dealing with the unknown and helps the partners be prepared for everything from the water-breaking to the cutting of the umbilical cord. A childbirth class can also be beneficial in providing easy labour tips to make the whole process simpler and faster. 7. Stay Upright during Labour Rather than lying down and trying to push, it is considered to be better to stay upright on the bed and push. This is because gravity plays to the advantage of the mother and child as the child’s head pressing against the cervix due to gravity helps it in dilating faster and more easily. A variety of positions can also be tried out, like kneeling, squatting and standing to see what gives the best results during labour. Movement of the body also helps widen the pelvis helping the baby’s head to pass through easily. Hope the above strategies help to make your labour shorter and easier!   Content Source Featured Image Source

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