This is a topic we rarely talk about, majority shy away from it because of mockery and the fear of being tagged as "unwell" or "in crisis". I experienced a very mild form of baby blues when I was about 11 days post partum, It was the most overwhelming feeling I have ever felt. Perhaps it was due to raging hormones coupled with the excitement joy and anxiety, but thanks to my husband i overcame it in less than no time. He was the greatest support system I had, with family and friends of course! unfortunately lots of women go through more severe forms of post partum mood disorder but do not know or do not want to talk about it, if you do not know something how would you solve it... so I will explain what PPMD is.
Post partum mood disorder (PPMD) is the depressive state a mother relapses in after childbirth. This in most cases arise due to hormonal change, fatigue and psychological adjustment to motherhood. There are different types of postpartum mood disorders. there is : baby blues, postpartum depression and postpartum psychosis. However, the most common type of post partum mood disorder we hear about today is the postpartum depression.
I will start with BABY BLUES (BB) which is mildest, in simple terms it is a feeling caused by sudden change of hormones, which leaves one in an emotional state where you have crying spells, mood swings, anxiety, self doubt, and insomnia. the exact cause of baby blues is unknown, however studies shows that baby blues affects up to 80% of all new mothers and in most cases last between 3-14 days after childbirth. while for some it starts immediately after childbirth. Out of this 80%, 20% further degenerate into postpartum depression. The duration of baby blues often depends on circumstances surrounding the new mother for example type of childbirth experience, changes in body from pregnancy, changes in work and social relationship, disruption of routine, sleep disturbance, etc
POSTPARTUM DEPRESSION (PPD): PPD occurs when baby blues refuse to fade away, it affects almost 25% of new mothers and it last for a year, Hormonal and non-hormonal factors come to play in PPD. women who have PPD feel like they can’t handle being a mother and often feel they are not caring for their baby enough, in most cases they don’t feel bonded with their baby. Women who experience PPD often have alternating days of happiness and sadness and its important they seek medical help at this stage. PPD may affect women under the age of 20 or did not plan for the pregnancy, who drink alcohol, smoke or take illegal substances, also women who had a stressful pregnancy or bad birth experience may have postpartum depression, poor relationship with significant other can also be the cause of PPD as well as having financial problems.
POSTPARTUM PSYCHOSIS (PPP): PPP is the most severe and the rarest form of postpartum mood disorders. According to research it occurs in 1 to 2 out of every 1000 pregnancies, it strikes normally between the second or third week after childbirth and the most severe ones may last up to 12 weeks while recovery takes 6months to a year. PPP is always sudden and very severe, medically it is seen as an emergency and treated immediately. women with PPP exhibit symptoms that includes rapid mood swing, hallucinations, thoughts of harming self or baby, bizarre behavior, hyperactivity, extreme fatigue, losing touch with reality and some even commit infanticide.
If you are experiencing any of this, dont get too hard on yourself, first of SPEAK OUT, ask for help where and when you need it, take a break, have a time out, give yourself a little pampering, go for a massage, a pedicure, or a threat, take care of YOU its really important because motherhood is meant to be enjoyed!!!
Since I became a mother, I have been more interested in parenting and the impact of parenting styles on children. From my interaction with older mummies, I can say that parenting is no joke! Hence, it shouldn't be taking unseriously. Especially because it goes a long way in moulding and shaping kids to be well rounded grown-ups.
With millennial parents, it is fair to say parents now adopts less authoritative and more of permissive style of parenting. This is why kids of nowadays are more confident, outspoken and intelligent. They are able to hold conversations with their parents and even relate with strangers! I remember the other day I was taking a walk, a young beautiful girl of about 5 years walked up to me, she specifically stated that she was interested in what I was eating, and even told me she thinks it will taste delicious. I was stunned and had no choice than to give her a bite!
This incident made me remember the kind of parenting style I evolved through. As kids we couldn’t just open our mouth to speak to our parents; especially fathers talk more of strangers. When you finally say something, you must have thought about it over a dozen times. Even when our parents are wrong and we are right, we dare not gloat about it in front of them.
Personally I think it’s a beautiful thing that kids are smarter and more intelligent these days. But, I feel as parents we should be careful of the things we do and say in front of a child. You know, these kids of social media-era they grab and process information faster and better, hence it behoves of us as parents to help them channel their energy and smartness to something productive, fruitful and creative. for example buying them books, this will make them inquisitive and open to conversations.
As much as we try to be permissive and less authoritative, I think we still have to keep them out of grown-ups conversation. This is because no matter how smart they are, they cannot be wise enough to understand the dos and don’ts of adult-talks such as; gossip and soft-lies. I mean like kids may not know where to say some things and who to say them to. Lest they end up embarrassing their parents, kids should be permitted to kids-talks and not adult-talks.
I feel there should be a part two to this topic. what do you think? Talking about parenting style which do you think is the best? Permissive or authoritarian. How do you think children should be kept busy? Like and Leave a comment in the comment section let us discuss!
As you almost get to the end of your pregnancy term, Here are things to do to get ready for your little one.
1. PACK YOUR LABOUR BAG:
By 36 weeks you should have your hospital bag packed. The bag must contain all what you will need for labour such as;
toiletries, baby clothing, maternity clothing, etc. Also, include your personal medical records as well as your antenatal record booklets.
2. WASH YOUR BABY'S CLOTHS AND BED:
Because a new born baby skin is still very sensitive and can easily be irritated, it is important to wash all the new clothes and bedding materials. This is to get rid of harsh chemicals used in the production and manufacturing of the clothes. After washing, air dry, fold neatly and store in a cool and clean place.
3. PREPARE THE NURSERY:
A nursery might be a little demarcated part of your bedroom, or a separate room close to yours where your baby crib, and nursery closet will be placed. The nursery will be like the baby's personal space, it should airy, neat and well ventilated.
4. COOK AND STOCK UP YOUR PANTRY:
You bet when your little one arrival, you will have your hands full, there will be little or no time for cooking or running to the store. It is better you fill up your freezer with your favorite dishes and soups. Stock up on foodstuffs, beverages. This is important because you need good food to revive your energy, you must avoid going out of the house till few weeks after having a baby.
5. KEEP TRACK OF YOUR BABY'S MOVEMENT:
Towards the end of your pregnancy term it is important you are observant, monitor your baby movement and connect with your baby frequently. You can do this by just simply rubbing your tummy, listening to rhythmic music, and meditating. You just have to pay attention! When you notice a less movement than usual, call your doctor for a check.
6. LEARN A THING OR TWO ABOUT DELIVERY:
It is important to read a bit and know even if it just a little about the birthing process. When you are in labor room, it is not everytime the doctor or medical attendants will be with you. They may be too busy to pay full attention to you. Meanwhile, things can go wrong in a split of seconds. When you are informed about the process, you will be able to call on the medical attendants to act in time. Don't forget, it is your body, it is your baby and it is your responsibility.
7. PREPARE YOUR OWN BODY AND MIND:
There is no need to be anxious or afraid of the D-day. Get your body and mind ready by exercising, sleeping and taking lots of water. As you get to the end of your third trimester, exercising becomes essential, it strengthens the muscle, opens the hips and pelvis, as well as giving you a good feeling. Walking, Swimming and Kegel exercise are good examples of exercise in the third trimester.
In addition, don't forget to groom yourself down there by waxing and shaving. Finally, brace yourself with positive thinking and expectation of your delivery.
3. BIO OIL
This product is really helpful not only for stretch marks but also other skin problems like scars, acne, burns, insect bites and uneven skin tone. The main ingredients in this product is the purCellin oil in combination with chamomile oil, lavender oil, rosemary oil and Vitamin E amidst other ingredients. Bio oil helps to keep the skin hydrated, relieves itching and boost skin elasticity. I particularly like the fact that it is safe to use for pregnant women and can be used all over the body. The manufacturers of bio oil recommends that it can be used from the second trimester twice a day till the end of pregnancy term. Pregnancy as we all know takes a great toll on the body, especially on the skin and hair. If there is one thing any pregnant woman dreads its the STRETCH MARKS! Pregnancy is the time when hormones are raging in your system, when the water volume increases, and the blood vessels multiplied in order to accommodate the growing foetus. All these changes increase the body weight and bring about stretching of the dermis in the stomach, buttocks, thighs, boobs and the upper arm.
In other words, stretch marks appear on pregnant women as a result of sudden weight gain. It is important to know that for some women, genetic predisposition increase chances of stretch marks occurrence and some go unscathed.
There are different remedies for stretch marks. we have the natural product and chemical-based products. however, I wont recommend chemical-based product for a pregnant woman. This is because it may cause certain birth defect in the growing foetus. Reason being that, This product is absorbed into the body. In this post i will focus mainly on natural products that can be used to prevent or reduce stretch marks.
1. OIL OIL OIL
Oils like coconut oil, olive oil and almond oil are basically the best remedy for stretch marks. This is because coconut oil is rich in antioxidant and vitamins that helps with cellular repair. Almond oil on the other hand is rich with vitamin E which is good for skin elasticity. In addition, Olive oil is packed with omega fatty acid that brings moisture to the skin. The combination of these three oils gives a rich blend of moisturizing oil. Massaging a generous amount into the skin for like 10-15 minutes, 2-3 times a day makes it more effective. Especially, the breast area, upper arm and thighs. For the stomach, i wont recommend massaging just a continuous circular rubbing will do.
This is one skin routine I took serious when i was pregnant. In fact, I didn't use any cream or body lotions, it was the combination of these oils i used from my head to toe. I literarily was always bathing myself with it. It really helped keep my skin supple (i have a dry skin) and moisturized. Let me be honest, I won't pretend as if I never had one single stretch mark on my stomach, but my marks are almost invisible. Thanks to this natural oils.
2. BODY BUTTERS
Body butters are nutrients packed cream that helps to keep the skin supple and hydrated. They are thicker and when whipped, creamier than lotions and oils. There are various types of body butters but i will recommend two for any Preggos: SHEA BUTTER and COCOA BUTTER.
Shea butter is a very versatile beauty product, not only does it helps prevent stretch marks, it also reduces joint and muscle pain in arthritis and rheumatism, protect the skin from UV radiation, repairs blemished skin, restores damaged hair and many other numerous uses.It contains 5 different types of fatty acids, it is considerably rich in vitamin A, E, and F. Also, for a better result it can be applied 2-3 times daily. If you have a dry skin like mine, Shea butter is one cream you dont want to underrate.
Raw cocoa butter comes highly recommended from me to you. Palmers cocoa butter is a very good brand you can try out. This body butters are gotten from the cocoa beans through some kind of extraction process. They are rich in polyphenols that help skin elasticity and increase collagen production. Also, it contains important vitamins like vitamin E, C, A, B1, B2, and B3 that heals and produce new skin cells. Applying a reasonable amount 2-3 times everyday is just fine!
3. BIO OIL
This product is really helpful not only for stretch marks but also other skin problems like scars, acne, burns, insect bites and uneven skin tone. The main ingredients in this product is the purCellin oil in combination with chamomile oil, lavender oil, rosemary oil and Vitamin E amidst other ingredients. Bio oil helps to keep the skin hydrated, relieves itching and boost skin elasticity. I particularly like the fact that it is safe to use for pregnant women and can be used all over the body. The manufacturers of bio oil recommends that it can be used from the second trimester twice a day till the end of pregnancy term.
One of the things I enjoyed during my pregnancy journey was packing my hospital bag. It was one activity I did not get over till my DD. I kept packing and unpacking over and over again especially my babys clothings, just out of sheer joy and excitement. I got my hospital bag ready when I was about 35 weeks gone or thereabout. I think I packed more than necessary because i ended up bringing a lot of stuffs back without touching them, so in this post I will concentrate on the essentials.
The first thing I packed in my bag was the PAPER WORKS, my medical records and that of my little one. Now if you are not residing in your birth country you also want to include your international passports, and other necessary documents for your baby's birth certificate.
The next things I tossed into my bag was my TOILETRIES-bathing lotion, bathing sponge, floss, toothpaste, toothbrush, cotton wool, towels (both face and body),bio oil, hand sanitizers and my lip balm(cant do without it). Basically, take the things you use on a daily basis for your personal cleaning.
In my hospital bag I had another small bag I put my BABY THINGS into. It included 3 pcs of socks, 3 pcs of mittens, a boot, 3 onesies, 2 pacifiers, 3 pajamas, some new born diapers, baby wipes, a hat/head warmer, a going home outfit, a swaddle cloth, a blanket, baby towel, a special outfit for the newborn pictures. Unfortunately, all this clothing I couldn't use for the baby because the hospital provided clothing throughout our stay, which was just a night (I had my baby in the evening and was discharged the next day). Only the going home outfit, swaddle cloth, head warmer, diapers, socks and mittens proved useful at the hospital. however, situations may differ.
Lastly, in my bag I had MY CLOTHING and OTHER PERSONAL RANDOM STUFFS I felt I might need. My clothing included 2 maternity gowns, socks and sweater(it is very very important because you dont wanna catch cold), a go home outfit, disposable maternity pants, a pair of tights, nursing bra, breast pads, maternity pads, postpartum belly wrap (it is very important to start the snap back process as early as possible), a slippers, a novel (i am a novel addict), your phone and charger, laptop and charger, your earpiece and lastly a hot water flask.
what else do you think should be in an hospital bag? leave your comment in the comment section.
Photo Credits: Google Images
Baby bump photo shoot has become a tradition in recent times. What used to be a private personal experience has now become introduced to the camera. One of the most common attributes of the pregnancy bump is the dark or sometimes brown vertical line. This line is known as the “LINEA NIGRA” (LN), it’s a Latin term which means black line.
My linea nigra experience was somewhat funny. I think i saw it sometime in my second trimester. it was funny in the sense that I wasn’t expecting any black line or whatnot. Infact, I didn’t know what it was, I only woke up in the morning and there it was. I was literally shaken by the mere sight of it. Lol like I was taken aback and I had to calm my nerves and take another look at it and then I was like oh!!! I do see this line on pregnant women tummy. And then I read to know more about it.
So the question is when and why LN appears on the body? for majority it appears in the second trimester just like in my case. According to science it appears because there is a hyper pigmentation of the skin due to raging hormones, estrogen in particular is responsible for this. This pregnancy hormone increases melanin production which brings about the darkness. Apparently everybody has this line on the stomach but it is not visible. This pregnancy tattoo (that’s what I chose to call it) will fade away, usually within a year after childbirth. When next you see a bump, take a time out to appreciate the vertical black/brown line.
what else do you know about LINEA NIGRA, lets me know in the comment section.
Photos Credit: Google Images
Every society has its own unique culture. Every culture has its superstitious beliefs, these beliefs were passed on from one generation to another. be it in Europe, Asia or Africa. In Africa I think Nigeria has the highest number of superstitious belief, I can remember when I was a child my grandma do tell me not to do certain things and as I grew up this superstitious thoughts (I don’t know if I believed them or not, I was just vary of them) grew with me for example she forbade us from eating while standing or sitting at any entrance or even sweeping at night. The funniest thing is that there are different beliefs that are peculiar to every group of people children, men, women, the blind, the hunchback, albinos, and even for pregnant women) or to every situation (in the rain, while eating, while walking etc).
For the purpose of this article I will be focusing on the pregnant women because it’s a phase I completed some 2 months ago and I will more particular about the western part of Nigeria. because I am more conversant with the Yoruba belief, when I was pregnant there were some superstitious beliefs I adhered to, not because I believed it but because psychologically it gave me peace of mind, one of those beliefs is eating dodo (fried plantain), in the western part of Nigeria, we believe that dodo causes “OKA ORI” that is skull disease in English honestly speaking I don’t know how true this is, recently I read an article written by a medical doctor who claimed that scientifically there Is nothing like Oka Ori, from the article I got to understand that the oka ori of a thing is just the division of the skull in order to make child delivery easy and it closes up with time.
Another one of those superstitious beliefs I know about is the attachment of safety pin to ones cloth, the Yoruba’s believe that it wads off evil spirits. Personally I don’t see the connection between a tiny piece of metal and EVIL SPIRIT! And in addition its against my religious belief, so therefore it is a NO NO for me. I didn’t consciously put pin on my body thinking it will protect my child. Yet another belief that I didn’t go in tandem with is that pregnant women shouldn’t eat snail or okro, although here in Malaysia where I currently reside I didn’t have access to snails but I ate lots of okro, as in lots of okro and guess what u need to see the nutritional benefit okro has , its one of the essential foods for any preggie, aside from the fact that its packed with lots of vitamins it also supplements fiber and folic acid which prevents birth defects and helps constipation, it also has an anti-stress effect and helps lower cholesterol level. So what’s not to eat in okro? ....
Although some of these beliefs (not all) may have started as instructions be to protect the mother and child’s health and in order for these instructions to be taking seriously they attach serious consequences to them and convert it to beliefs. An example of such belief is that pregnant women shouldn’t walk in the sun or at night, if they do so evil spirit might take the place of the foetus. It might be that this belief was conjured in order to protect or prevent the woman from stress as we all know that stress isn’t good for a pregnant woman or perhaps to restrict her movement. Another example of such belief is that you shouldn’t cross over the leg of a pregnant woman because if you do the baby will look just like you. It sounds really funny to me and the explanation I can bring up for this belief is that perhaps they are trying to eliminate a fall occurrence because there is every possibility that the person crossing over might fall on the baby bump.
I had a very interesting experience with an elderly Malay woman-a friends mom, I must have been 7 months gone then, this incident happened at a trade fair where I was window shopping. Normally Malaysians are captivated just by the mere sight of you, especially when you are are foreigner they try to interact with you, so when this woman saw me she was all smiles and excitement was written all over her, oh I forgot to mention that they treat pregnant women special too, oh my... they show of love is amazing, before I knew it she was already touching my baby bump and the next thing she said is that it’s a boy, I was shocked ehn you can see surprise all over me, because she got it right,the ultrasound said it’s a boy. I asked her how she knew, she then explained to me that in malay culture there is a belief that if the tummy is tilted more forward then it’s a boy and if not so it’s a girl. I don’t know how accurate that his but it was in my case it turned out true…
What other pregnancy superstitious belief do you know about, either from your childhood, culture, country or state. please do let me in the comment section.
I am a proud wife and loving mum to my awesome little boy. I am a goal setter and a goalgetter. I love having happy people around me because i believe "those around you have a great influence on you". My hobbies are reading, trying out recipes, travelling, and meeting people. I would love to know and hear from you. Lets relate!!!