4 Ways To Maintain Your Brain

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This article is courtesy of PRWeb, please share your comments below…..

brainAerobic exercise, the Mediterranean diet, social connectedness, and undertaking challenges reduce the risk of dementia.

Many people want to build up some “insurance” against dementia and other memory problems. But there’s no need to invest in pricey brain-training programs. Instead, do-it-yourself lifestyle changes have been shown to help ward off memory loss and dementia, reports the February 2015 Harvard Women’s Health Watch. The following strategies lead the list:

Exercise. “The best evidence so far is for aerobic exercise and physical fitness,” says Dr. Bradford Dickerson, associate professor of neurology at Harvard Medical School. Scores of studies and clinical trials have linked regular aerobic exercise to a reduced risk of dementia. A few brain imaging studies have even shown that aerobic exercise increases brain mass and improves reasoning ability. The best exercise “dose” is 30 minutes or more per day, five times a week.

Eat well. The Mediterranean diet — high in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains; moderate in olive oil, unsaturated fats, lean protein (poultry, fish, beans, and nuts), cheese, yogurt, and wine; and low in red meat — has been a mainstay of cardiac prevention for almost 20 years. It has also been linked to a reduced risk of dementia. The closer people follow this type of heart-healthy diet, the lower the risk.

Stay connected. Being part of a social network also appears to reduce the risk of dementia. The variety in a person’s social network and the satisfaction he or she gets from social contacts is more important than the size of the network.

Keep mentally active. The “use it or lose it” principle appears to apply to brain health. Mental stimulation, like playing a musical instrument, learning another language, volunteering, or engaging in hobbies, offers greater benefits than repetitive exercises like crossword puzzles. Although “brain-training” programs are a multi-million-dollar industry, there is no conclusive evidence that any of them improves memory or reasoning ability. “We don’t know whether playing brain games is helpful,” Dr. Dickerson says. “Getting together with family and friends to play cards may be as good.”

Read the full-length article: “The 4 best ways to maintain your brain”

Also in the February 2015 Harvard Women’s Health Watch:

* Finding the right medications for asthma and COPD

* Simple solutions for dizziness

* Measures to prevent “dowager’s hump”

* Water exercise for strength, balance, and cardiovascular fitness

Harvard Women’s Health Watch is available from Harvard Health Publications, the publishing division of Harvard Medical School, for $20 per year. Subscribe at http://www.health.harvard.edu/newsletters/womens or by calling 877-649-9457 (toll-free).

Get Your Kids Hooked On Cycling

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By Haley Hobart

momdaugtherbikeCycling is great way to encourage your kids to become more active and live a healthier lifestyle. Tearing them away from their smart phone or the latest video game can often be challenging but cycling is great fun with endless health benefits. We’ve put together this guide explaining the advantages of cycling with some simple tips to get started.

Why cycle

Cycling is a popular form of cardiovascular exercise which can prevent heart complications in the future and reduce the likelihood of obesity. This low impact workout is gentle on the joints with a low chance of injury compared to other, more intense sports. It also increases the metabolism and burns calories, long after the ride is over.

Motor skills are improved as the body carries out the task of peddling and steering simultaneously whilst using body weight. This can improve co-ordination, a transferable skill which can improve sporting ability and day-to-day tasks. Studies have also linked cycling with improved mental health which may be a result of a healthier lifestyle combined with the fun that comes from exploring nature on two wheels. Still not convinced? It’s also great for the immune system which means less chance of picking up those nasty flu bugs and less time off school.

How to get started

Always do plenty of research before buying your kids bikes. There’s plenty of options to choose from but it doesn’t have to be stressful. Be sure to choose a bike which is appropriate for the terrain. One which includes off-road suspension and a titanium frame won’t be necessary for everyday use and will cost a hefty amount. Instead, choose a mid-way option which includes front suspension. Don’t be tempted by the cheap options which are often unreliable and can be more costly in the long term.

Once they’ve got their bike, you can encourage your kids to plan routes or little adventures. You can also find cycling routes online and there’s many dedicated groups catering for families and children which meet weekly. Here they can make new friends and enjoy the safety of a larger group.

Bike safety

Keeping your children safe on a bike is simple and only requires a few precautions. Firstly, be sure to choose an appropriate size bike which your child feels fully in control of. If they’re still in the learning stage, they must be able to place both feet on the floor which should avoid any nasty falls.

familybikeridetogetherHelmets are essential, whilst knee and elbow pads are an optional extra. These can provide added peace of mind for off road cycling. Purchasing hi-visibility clothing, lights and reflectors for evening bike rides is also a must. Finally, there’s plenty of certified training courses testing cycling proficiency, highlighting the dangers of traffic and the importance of safe riding on the road. This can be a great introduction for your children, developing a skill which will keep them safe for years to come.

Cycling is an exercise that your children will love and if you’re lucky they’ll spend less time on social media and slouched in front of the TV.

– Haley Hobart has been a mom and a writer for 10 years and frequently contributes to mommy sites and DIY sites with her expertise. She lives in London with her partner and kids of three.

What’s Causing Your Back Pain?

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Thank you to PRWeb for providing this article. What are your thoughts? Please share in the comments section…..

doctorAccording to Dr. Kaliq Chang with Atlantic Spine Center, back conditions can be complex, so patients would benefit from being aware of the details of their symptoms and be ready to communicate them to practitioners.

Getting relief for chronic back pain – estimated to affect 80% of American adults at some point in their lives – isn’t as easy as showing up at a doctor’s office and saying your back hurts. In fact, patients should be prepared to answer as many questions as they ask in order to receive an accurate diagnosis, according to Kaliq Chang, MD, of Atlantic Spine Center.

“Back conditions can be complex, so patients would benefit from being aware of the details of their symptoms and be ready to communicate them to practitioners,” says Dr. Chang, an interventional pain management specialist. “Low back pain isn’t a specific diagnosis in itself, and receiving an accurate diagnosis is absolutely crucial to addressing the problem correctly. Indeed, we’re hard-pressed to fix a patient’s back problem if we can’t pinpoint what’s causing it.”

Initially, a variety of non-invasive measures – including medication and physical therapy – are used to treat lingering back pain that stems from injuries, aging, genetics or any other cause. Interventions such as steroid injections, nerve ablation procedures, and spinal cord stimulators are employed when those modalities do not provide adequate relief. Finally, surgery is considered a last resort only after these less invasive treatments have failed.

Fruitful Q&A between doctors and patients

When patients come to Dr. Chang complaining of back pain, his first step is to obtain a complete history of symptoms. Here are some of the most important questions he says patients should be prepared to answer to receive a precise diagnosis:

* Where is your pain? Neck, mid-back or lower back?

* When did your pain begin? Was it related to an activity or injury?

* Have you had a prior episode of back pain?

* How would you describe your pain? Stabbing, sharp, burning, aching, cramping, throbbing or otherwise?

* Does your pain radiate into your legs? From your buttocks into the upper leg? Past the knee to the ankles or feet? Down one leg or both?

* Does your pain get worse after activity?

* What triggers your pain? Sitting, standing, walking, laying down, bending forward, bending backward?

* What improves your pain? Sitting, standing, walking, laying down, bending forward, bending backward?

* What pain treatments have you already undergone? Chiropractic treatment, physical therapy, acupuncture, spinal injections? Surgeries such as open spine decompression or spinal fusion?

* Do you have any other health problems?

* What medications do you take?

Testing can help pinpoint a diagnosis

After a detailed question-and-answer session between patients and doctors and a physical exam, certain diagnostic tests may be ordered to shed further light on the problem. These tests, which include electromyography (EMG) and nerve conduction studies, x-rays or MRI images, are used to confirm any abnormality or disease in the spine that may cause pain, such as bulging or herniated discs, spinal stenosis or other back conditions.

“Tests can’t determine what’s actually causing a patient’s back pain,” he says. “That’s why it’s so important that patients provide detailed information about the history and course of their symptoms to their doctor. Tests can only enhance what the patient is able to convey about their situation.”

Dr. Chang encourages people to be patient when attempting to figure out exactly why their back hurts, as difficult as that may seem at the time.

“A lot of back pain can be short-lived,” Dr. Chang says. “Different diagnoses will require very different treatment approaches, so accurately diagnosing back pain is critical. The sooner a precise diagnosis is made, the sooner patients can access the right treatment to achieve pain relief and boost their enjoyment of everyday activities.”

Kaliq Chang, MD, is an interventional pain management specialist board-certified in anesthesiology at Atlantic Spine Center.

Atlantic Spine Center is a nationally recognized leader for endoscopic spine surgery with three locations in New Jersey in West Orange, Edison and North Bergen. http://www.atlanticspinecenter.com

Your Guide To Cutting Down On Fats, Salt And Sugar – Part 2

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By Kac Young PhD, ND, DCH

Continued from part 1 of this article…..

saltshakerYou can reduce your sodium intake if you:

1. Cook at home from scratch and reduce the amount of salt you add to dishes.

2. Check labels for sodium in all its forms. Table salt is mainly sodium chloride, but canned or packaged foods can contain other forms of sodium.

3. In the kitchen and at the dinner table, substitute spices, herbs, and salt-free blends for salt.

4. When you do opt for packaged foods, choose products that are sodium free or low in sodium. A typical cup of miso soup, for instance, contains 700 to 900 milligrams of sodium, so look for canned soups with “low sodium” or “reduced sodium” on the label. Bread and cereals carry loads of sodium. Buy the lowest sodium kind you can find and avoid white flour brands.

5. Watch out for salad dressings, ready- made pasta sauces, cup-o-soup products, canned vegetables, frozen pizzas, sausages, pepperoni, canned tuna, and pretty much any food that requires preservation or shelf life.

6. In a restaurant, ask your waiter which dishes are the lowest in sodium and ask of the chef can prepare yours without adding salt.

The overall best approach is to scan the ingredient list before eating or drinking anything. Any ingredient with “sodium” or “Na” — the chemical name for sodium — in its name contains the substance. Sodium might also be labeled as baking soda, baking powder, monosodium glutamate (MSG), disodium phosphate or salt.

Sugar

Astonishingly, Americans consume an estimated 130 pounds of added sugar per capita annually. That’s about 22 teaspoons daily for adults; roughly 32 teaspoons children (almost three-fourths of a cup). Topping the added-sugar intake list are soft drinks, accounting for 33 percent of added sugar consumed daily.

Overconsumption of added sugar and high-glycemic carbohydrates (like those found in breads, pizza, cold cereals and other baked goods) has been linked to obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

One of the most effective things you can do to improve your health is to cut back radically on sugar consumption; in particular, avoid sugared beverages entirely. If this seems overwhelming, taper off slowly – add slightly less sugar to your coffee or tea every day and start by drinking fewer soft drinks per week, etc. You will quickly discover that the craving for sugar dissipates. Foods that once seemed pleasantly sweet begin to taste sickly sweet .

Steer clear of artificial sweeteners – they have chemical components and adverse long term health consequences and the best solution is to choose natural sweeteners like organic raw sugar, maple syrup, or fruit sauces (apple or pear) and cut way back on quantity and portion size.

If you reduce your consumption of Bad saturated fats, salt and sugar you will be on your way to a healthier body, a leaner frame, more energy and you will reduce your risk for heart disease, stroke, obesity and diabetes.

Kac Young has earned three doctorate degrees: a Ph.D in Natural Health, a Doctorate in Naturopathy and a Doctorate in Clinical Hypnotherapy. She is a spiritual counselor, a teacher, and a licensed Religious Science minister. Her books: “21 Days to the Love of Your Life”; “Discover Your Spiritual Genius”; “Dancing With the Moon,” “Feng Shui the Easy Way,” “Gold Mind,” “Heart Easy,” “The Path to Fabulous,” “Cheese Dome Power,” “The Quick Guide to Bach Flower Remedies,” and “Supreme Healing,” are designed to give the reader tools for self improvement.

[1] Conducted by an international team led by Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian of Harvard University’s School of Public Health, was published Aug. 13, 2014 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Your Guide To Cutting Down On Fats, Salt And Sugar – Part 1

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By Kac Young PhD, ND, DCH

Fats:

healthychoiceThere are two kinds of fats: Good and Bad.

The good guys are unsaturated fats: monounsaturateds (MUFAs), found in foods like olive oil and avocados, and polyunsaturateds (PUFAs), found in sunflower and corn oils, among others, and in the omega-3s in salmon and walnuts. Both types the “good ” title because they’ve been shown to lower blood cholesterol and the risk for heart disease.

The villain, we’ve long been told, is saturated fat. The conventional wisdom, which dates to the 1950s, is that saturated fat, which is present in meat, dairy, and some plant products, increases our total cholesterol and chance for heart disease and stroke. Trans fat, the staple fat that dominates packaged goods and fast food, is another very bad guy: It not only gooses up our LDL cholesterol but also lowers our HDL cholesterol (the kind that helps sweep bad cholesterol out of the body). The American Heart Association recommends limiting your intake of saturated fat to less than 7 percent of your total calories (if you eat 2,000 calories a day, that’s 16 grams, roughly the amount in a chocolate milk shake) and of trans fats to no more than two grams a day. Safest idea is to have NO trans fats per day.

What you can do immediately is swap animal fats for vegetable oils — for instance, using soybean oil or olive oil instead of butter because studies have shown these lower LDL cholesterol levels and disease risk. “Be careful not to replace saturated fats with refined carbs or your triglycerides can go up and your good HDL cholesterol can go down,” explains Alice H. Lichtenstein, the director of the Cardiovascular Nutrition Laboratory at Tufts University. High triglycerides and low HDL are risk factors for cardiovascular disease and criteria of metabolic syndrome, a cluster of health problems linked to heart disease and diabetes.

Salt:

Across the world, the excessive consumption of sodium–hiding in breads, soups and snack foods and beckoning from salt shakers everywhere–is the cause of some 1.65 million deaths by heart disease and strokes yearly, including roughly 667,000 “premature” deaths–those before the age of 70–says a comprehensive new study [1].

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention state: ” We all need a small amount (e.g., between about 180 mg and 500 mg per day) of sodium to keep our bodies working properly. But the average daily sodium intake for Americans age 2 years and older is 3,436 mg.”

High sodium consumption raises blood pressure and high blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke, the nation’s first and third leading causes of death, respectively.

Research shows when salt intake is reduced, blood pressure begins decreasing for most people within a few days to weeks. Populations who consume diets low in salt do not experience the increase in blood pressure with age that is seen in most Western countries.

Stay tuned for part 2 of this article shortly…..

Kac Young has earned three doctorate degrees: a Ph.D in Natural Health, a Doctorate in Naturopathy and a Doctorate in Clinical Hypnotherapy. She is a spiritual counselor, a teacher, and a licensed Religious Science minister. Her books: “21 Days to the Love of Your Life”; “Discover Your Spiritual Genius”; “Dancing With the Moon,” “Feng Shui the Easy Way,” “Gold Mind,” “Heart Easy,” “The Path to Fabulous,” “Cheese Dome Power,” “The Quick Guide to Bach Flower Remedies,” and “Supreme Healing,” are designed to give the reader tools for self improvement.

Improving Your Alexa Ranking

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alexalogoAlexa rank is measurement based on the traffic to a website. The lower the number, the better. Highly visited websites get lower numbers. Every website in the world is included so the Alexa rank of a site varies constantly in relation to other website on the Internet. Anything below 100,000 is considered very good. Just recently, it appears Alexa has created a new algorithm, as things have appeared to change with regards to improving your score.

Alexa is one of the leading internet statistics engines. It keeps a “top billion” chart, where every webpage on the planet has its place. Beginning with Google and Facebook, it goes all the way down to the gazillionth site no one knows about.

Why Improve Alexa Ranking?

You may want to increase your Alexa rank because advertisers, ad networkers use it as a gauge to determine the popularity of your blog. So if you are someone who is making money from advertising, you would definitely want to increase your alexa rank as it helps you bargain for an ad price. Alexa rating determines your blog’s status. The higher the ranking of a blog, a growing number of “jobs / tasks” that you will receive, and the more money that flows to your account.

How To Improve Alexa Ranking?

1. Install Alexa Toolbar: It may seem to you as a tried-and-tested tactic to increase your ranking, however, it isn’t. Installing Alexa Toolbar would only track my visits, as the tool bar is installed on my browsers not on my visitor’s browser and it would even make my browsing speed slower. So, logically it doesn’t make sense.

2. Write About Alexa: Write a post related to Alexa. Many bloggers love to learn the tips for improving Alexa rank. They’ll link to you and send you targeted traffic. It will not only help the bloggers who are looking for ways to increase Alexa rank but also it alerts Alexa and their bots will crawl your content as the keyword “Alexa” will repeat up in your blog.

3. Use Alexa Rank Widget: Many blog owners found this tip useful. Placing Alexa Rank Widget in your blog helps a lot as the javascript in the widget should be able to track your visitors, page views etc.

4. Update Your Blog Regularly: Alexa rank automatically improves if you update your blog frequently with good contents. But always remember, it’s not only about quantity, what matters is the quality of the posts you put up on your blog.

5. Get Reviewed On Alexa: Recently, Alexa ended their review section, so this actually no longer an important piece of the puzzle. So, if anyone tells you to get reviews, it will be impossible to accomplish. Below is what many people used to put on their sites to get reviews, but as stated, it no longer exists.

Review http://yourhealthjournal.com on alexa.com

6. Claim Your Blog: Create an Alexa account or use your existing Facebook account and claim your blog. It helps the Alexa guys to recognize your website and makes you a trusted source of information for the readers.

7. Write your own site reviews on the top 100 rated Alexa sites. The top 500 domains, according to Alexa can be found at: http://www.alexa.com/topsites

8. Take an inexpensive ad out on the ExactSeek search directory at ExactSeek. Search engine results are directly correlated with Alexa rankings. You’ll notice that if a website is highly ranked on ExactSeek, chances are that it will be highly ranked on Alexa.

9. Get listed on as many search engines as possible by placing a free listing in DMOZ. This is the largest human edited directory on the web and is co-branded among hundreds of thousands of sites. Be patient though, it often takes up to 5 months before you see your website listed after submission. Even though it takes longer than it should, you have little say in the matter because it’s so widely used across the Internet.

Your Energy Could Be Affecting Your Child – Part 2

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By Cindy Nolte

Continued from part 1 of this article…..

motherbabyyogaLet’s explore the connection between parent and child and why this phenomenon seems to exist. Almost from the moment your child is born they recognize you. They are drawn to you. You develop mom or dad ears that allow you to hear them from a sound sleep. You have a connection that lets you know if they are happy or sad and even if they need you before they tell you. You can feel the mood your child is in even before they tell you what is going on. All of this is possible from an energetic connection that is formed at conception. This connection does not just allow helpful information to be shared. It also creates a link in which energy is shared between child and parent.

Exploring this theory further, you can see synchronicities between disharmonies that appear different, but are in reality only appearing different due to the layer of the energetic field that they show themselves. A parent who feels stuck or unable to move forward in life may have a child with issues in their lower extremities (legs, feet, ect.). A parent unable to grasp life may have a child with arm, hand or finger disharmonies. At first glance this may seem unrelated, however we also must consider that the child’s life experiences affect their energetic field as well, thus their vulnerabilities can appear in different layers of their etheric field-each governing a different part of the whole person. (body/mind/spirit) Depending on the layer of the etheric field that is most vulnerable, the disharmony can show itself to be physical, mental or emotional.

The human energetic field is made up of layers that govern our being. Life experiences can strengthen or weaken these layers. As stated, our connection to others can affect your energy as well. Physical, mental, emotional and spiritual aspects are all represented within these layers. As vulnerabilities occur, if this energetic change is left unattended it can affect others we are connected to as well as other layers within our own energy.

We are human. We will get aches, pains and other mind/body/spirit disharmonies that are not in our control. Control what you can and focus on maintaining positive energy. If this energetic connection exists, what does this mean? Take care of yourself and you will also be caring for your child. Relieve your stress; have babies that sleep through the night. Do you want well-balanced grounded children? Exercise and be grounded yourself. The positive changes you make today may impact your child and even your grandchildren someday. You will be surprised at the balanced household you can create.

– Cindy Nolte is a television talk show host, lecturer, author, motivator and has a private practice. Cindy holds certifications (in): Reiki Master/Teacher, Animal Reiki Master/Teacher, Karuna Reiki ® Master /Teacher , Hypnosis, Hypnosis-Instructor certified by the National Guild of Hypnotists, Jin Shin Jyutsu ® Practitioner, Past Life Regression Hypnotist, the Life Transformation Method, Energy Releasement, IET ® ( Integrated Energy Therapy ®) Master-Instructor, Sound Therapy, Group Fitness Instructor, and Certified Medium. Cindy is the founder of Fresh Look on Life, Co-founder of Crazy Good Radio. Cindy resides in Augusta, NJ with her husband Jerry, where she has a private practice and offers: consultations, coaching, workshops, and lectures and certifications. For more information on Cindy Nolte please go to freshlookonlife.com

Your Energy Could Be Affecting Your Child – Part 1

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By Cindy Nolte

womantwistingEnergy makes up all things. If you are vibrating negative energy, it may be impacting your child without you even realizing it. Individuals are overworked, stressed and spread too thin at times. Everyone has heard stress is not good for your health, but did you know your stress could be affecting your child’s health too? The link between child and parent’s energy field does not stop with stress levels. They may take on physical, emotional, and/or even spiritual disharmonies all as a result of the energy you may not even know you are vibrating. For purposes of this article, we will refer to any “disease”, ache, pain, emotional distress, or “abnormality” as simply a “disharmony”.

As an energy worker, I receive calls from parents who decide to “give energy work a try” as a last ditch effort to solve their child’s concerns. Often, I find that these children are just simply in one way or another mirroring the disharmony of their own parents. Children sometimes take on pain similar to that of what a parent may be experiencing. I often suggest that both child and parent(s) undergo energy work to complement the child’s challenges if it is an acute concern for this reason.

It is interesting to speak with parents regarding the disharmonies of their children. While they describe the pain their child is feeling, they may be holding the very spot on themselves that is the child’s area of concern; soon divulging that they themselves developed the same issue as a child about their age. Perhaps, although you have always tried to hide your worry from your children, you find that your children are becoming worriers too. Maybe the economy has you developing issues with anxiety and now your son/daughter is showing signs of this disharmony as well. Phobias that you may have never discussed with your children may show themselves-like fear of heights, birds, closed in places. We call this hereditary most often, but what if it was in your energy rather than just your genes? Even within the philosophies of energy work we are brought back to the age old question of nature vs nurture. Nature, being dna-the child’s genetic makeup, while nurture, in this case being represented by the energy of their parents. If this statement holds true, this would also support why adopted children sometimes develop their adoptive parent’s “hereditary” conditions or traits.

What if leaving your negative emotions at the door when you get home allowed parents to positively impact their child’s health? There are countless studies that support that having a positive mindset can make the difference between surviving a serious illness and succumbing to it. Parents set the tone for the household. Positive parents have uplifting homes. Positive moods are said to build the immune system.

Stay tuned for part 2 of this article shortly…..

– Cindy Nolte is a television talk show host, lecturer, author, motivator and has a private practice. Cindy holds certifications (in): Reiki Master/Teacher, Animal Reiki Master/Teacher, Karuna Reiki ® Master /Teacher , Hypnosis, Hypnosis-Instructor certified by the National Guild of Hypnotists, Jin Shin Jyutsu ® Practitioner, Past Life Regression Hypnotist, the Life Transformation Method, Energy Releasement, IET ® ( Integrated Energy Therapy ®) Master-Instructor, Sound Therapy, Group Fitness Instructor, and Certified Medium. Cindy is the founder of Fresh Look on Life, Co-founder of Crazy Good Radio. Cindy resides in Augusta, NJ with her husband Jerry, where she has a private practice and offers: consultations, coaching, workshops, and lectures and certifications. For more information on Cindy Nolte please go to freshlookonlife.com

How To Wean Your Child Off A Pacifier

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babyIf your child never took to his pacifier, consider yourself lucky. You see, it is no easy task to break the pacifier habit. Pacifiers, or binkies as they are often called, appeal to a baby’s natural instinct to suckle for comfort. They serve many babies well, soothing them in their fussiest hours. The American Academy of Pediatrics even recommends them as a method of combating SIDS in very young infants. They do, however, have something of an acceptability shelf life. At a year old, many pediatricians recommend kicking the binky habit because using it past a year can lead to dental or speech difficulties down the road. What is now such a great help can become quite a hindrance, which means that you should put an end to pacifier dependence at some point. Of course, there is no way to explain this to your one year old. Instead, you’ll have to employ a method that allows you to wean your baby from his binky.

Cold Turkey

The first method you can try is cold turkey. Gather up all the pacifiers in the house, ensuring there are none stashed in toys or hidden behind crib bumpers, and see how it goes. Sometimes, believe it or not, this works without a hitch. The reason this can work is that children really have no need to suck once they turn a year old, so if they are not emotionally dependent on the pacifier they might just forget about it. It doesn’t happen often, but it’s worth a shot.

Three Day Method

If your baby was not receptive to kicking the paci habit cold turkey, try the three day method. This works particularly well for children who are a bit older. With this technique, you tell your child on the first day that you can see how big he is getting and how you know he wants to be a big kid. Then, you tell him that you want him to try to give up his binky in three days. Say this matter-of-factly and come across as happy and excited as you break this news. Then, on the second day, tell your child again that tomorrow is the “big day.” Tell him this twice on the second day. On the third and final day, engage your child in a scavenger hunt to collect all the binkies in the house and explain that they will be recycled and made into new toys. You might even want to go and get your child a toy after this so that he can feel like his binky is still with him in a new form. With this method you are supposed to stay positive and follow through, even if your child protests. The theory behind this is that your child will get used to the idea gradually and that it should not take longer than 48 hours for your child to get over his loss after the third day.

Cutting Down

If you prefer to remove the pacifier more slowly, you can utilize the cutting down method. First, make sure the pacifier is not available all the time. In fact, you should start keeping the binkies up in a high cabinet out of the child’s sight. When your child does not need the binky because he is not in any distress, keep it away from him. If he asks for it, see if you can distract him with something else. This is a great time to break out a new toy or play a new game. Try to only give the pacifier to your child in times of great distress and to sleep. Then, only provide it when it’s time for your little one to go to sleep. Your child will slowly get used to not having the pacifier using this method. If you switch up the daily routine when you start using the cutting down method, it makes it even easier for your child to accept. Because the child’s routine is different, he will not be associating certain times of the day with the binky – everything will be new. When it comes time to give up the binky at bedtime, you might want to introduce a new blanket or stuffed animal to sleep with, or a musical toy for his crib.

The “Who, Me?” Method

If you want an even sneakier method, you can try putting pin holes in your child’s binkies. Be sure the pin is sterile and that it is only the tiniest hole near the base of the rubber. If you put very tiny pinholes in the binkies, he won’t get the satisfaction from sucking since the bulb won’t be as full of air. Your child may then think it is broken or that he no longer likes it and simply stop using it on his own. You will get none of blame for the loss of the binky when you use this method.

In the end, while it is preferable for your baby to give up his pacifier before he makes an emotional connection to it, it should not be a cause for great stress. After all, most kids will willingly give it up by the age of three or four. Since children are developing new coping skills all the time, they could very well wind up giving up the binky on their own, naturally. Because your child has to give up so many other things around the same time, such as nursing and/or his bottle and his diapers, depriving him of his pacifier may just be too much for him if he is overly attached to it as a comfort object. If this is the case, expert pediatricians like Dr. Karen Breach of North Carolina say it is okay for the pacifier to be the last thing that falls to the wayside.

– Submitted by Anne Laurie of GoNannies.com

How To Improve Your Home’s Indoor Air Quality

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By Tom Lozano,
Executive Director of Air Scrubber Plus

homelivingroomIndoor Air Quality, also known as IAQ, refers to the quality of the air within your home. IAQ is an important, and often overlooked, area of home improvement. But the effects of improved IAQ are immediate for you and your family.

Health issues can be exacerbated by poor IAQ , especially for small children and seniors, since poor indoor air quality can damage developing or weakened immune systems. Those suffering from asthma and allergies are most at-risk, since breathing low-quality air will make those respiratory conditions even worse. According to the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, asthma cases could be reduced by up to 60 percent if dust mites and cat allergens were kept under control. Other areas of concern for today’s homeowners include: combustion sources, like oil, gas, wood and tobacco; building materials, like asbestos insulation and new carpet and paint; cleaning products; plug-in/portable humidifiers; outdoor sources, such as pesticides and outdoor air pollution; and poor ventilation.

Getting a handle on the sources of contaminants affecting your home’s IAQ is the first step.

Here are some tips to improve your home’s indoor air quality and the health of your family:

· If you smoke, don’t do it inside. The harmful chemicals in cigarettes can linger in the air, affecting your entire family.

· Make sure that you properly clean your home. Ridding your bathrooms and basements of harmful mold and mildew is essential. Use all-natural cleaning products whenever possible to cut down on further contaminating your home.

familytv· Repair all standing water issues and keep your home’s humidity under 50 percent. Any higher and you risk creating an environment where harmful bacteria, mold and mildew can thrive.

· Properly vent all fuel-burning appliances, like gas stoves, water heaters and fireplaces.

· Don’t store chemicals, paints or solvents within the home. Keep them in a garage or shed if at all possible.

· Air-freshening devices may make your air smell nice, but they do so with a mix of chemicals that can be toxic to your family and pets.

· A more permanent and effective solution for many families is to install an air cleaner in your home’s existing heating and cooling system. These types of systems are installed by a certified HVAC technician.

No matter how big or small, making steps towards improving your home’s indoor air quality will help you and your family breathe easier, particularly if anyone in your family suffers from a respiratory disorder or compromised immune system.