Monday, January 30, 2017

Improving Your Parental Posture - Tips from a Chiropractor

We don't realize that sometimes simply feeding and lifting our young ones can in fact hurt our posture, and in turn our backs, necks and shoulders.

I didn't really realize this myself, until I had Ray...I was cluster feeding her always, and she became very used to being in my arms. So I spent a lot of time with her cradled, and didn't pay attention to posture, admittedly. I noticed, a few times, some pinching or knotted pain in my lower back occassionally. At one point, I even was in pain picking her up from her crib. I ignored it for a while, thinking I am in good health, so it shouldn't be an issue. Eventually, Vick told me I need to go to his chiropractor.

I never had seen a chiropractor before, ever. 

Well going was a great idea for me. I felt great, and was told that it would be a good idea to go in a few more times. Me, ignoring my posture, sleeping awkwardly, could do some long-term damage to a normally healthy spine and neck. So I paid better attention to posture, and I'm thankful Vick made that appointment for me. I have notably a lot less back pain (then and now).

Turning Mommy - Parental Mom Posture Tips from Dr. Remy

So, needless to say, I think it's important to share some tips on improving your posture, or being conscious of it, for all moms with babies.

Here are some tips provided by Dr. Nekessa Remy, a Top Canadian Chiropractor. Dr. Remy works in health and wellness, and helps parents to prevent sore muscles and back. She offers up these key tips to moms with babies. 

Improve your Parental Posture

When Feeding the Baby

Sufficient support on your elbows is key in making sure that your arms and shoulders can relax. Whether you are breastfeeding or bottle feeding, make sure you sit tall, preferably in an armchair – a feeding pillow under your baby can help to prevent you from bending forward to reach your baby.

When Carrying or Holding Your Child

Keep him or her close to your body and balanced in the center of your body instead of holding your child in one arm and balanced on your hip. This will lessen the strain and will evenly distribute the weight. When using a child carrier, keep your back straight and your shoulders relaxed to avoid straining your back and neck.

When Lifting Your Child Out of the Crib

Make sure you keep your feet shoulder-width apart and knees slightly bent when lifting your child out of the crib. Feel the lift coming from the core of your body as you engage your abdominal muscles, while keeping your head up and hips slightly bent. Make sure to use both arms to lift your child as you closely hold him or her close to your body. Straighten your hips, making sure that you are in an upright position with your knees returning to a full stand. To return your child to the crib, use the same technique.

When Lifting Your Child From the Floor

Use a half-kneel lift and work your way up slowly. First, stand close to him or her on the floor and while keeping your back straight. With one foot slightly forward than the other, bend your hips and knees to lower yourself onto one knee. From the half-kneeling position, hold your child close to your body, tighten your abdominal muscles and push with your legs to slowly return to the standing position. To place your child back onto the floor, use the same half-kneel technique.

When Pushing a Stroller

Stay as close to the stroller as possible – this will allow your back to remain straight and your shoulders back. Push with the force coming from your entire body instead of exerting energy just from the arms. Avoid pushing the stroller too far ahead as this will cause you to hunch your back.

Turning Mommy - Parental Mom Posture Tips from Dr. Remy

For more information, please visit Dr. Remy's website and Facebook page. 

These tips and all images are courtesy of UpLevel Solutions and Dr. Remy's practice.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Meal Planning Tips

With a new year comes a set of resolutions. The most common one being in and around getting healthier, which includes healthy eating.

It is true that not only new moms sometimes struggle to plan meals to eat healthier for themselves, but often have the added pressure of creating a daily meal, 3 times a day for their entire family. Time and options can contribute to the stress of trying to figure out what to create every single day.

That is why meal planning is growing in popularity. It is a tool aimed to serve to plan for the week, each week, for all your meals and snacks.

Turning Mommy - Meal Planning Tips

I have put together some tips that I personally found useful around meal planning for myself, and my family:
  • Identify your biggest challenge: Is it breakfast, is it dinner, is it feeding the kids, or is it snack options?  It is ok to have multiple challenges, but identifying and taking the time to find out what the struggle is, is half the battle. Once you have that figured out can you start to create a plan to tackle that challenge.
  • Always create a shopping list: Trying to wing it at the grocery store often results in guesswork later in the week when trying to create the actual meals. If you have some meals in mind that you want to make that week, put together an ingredient list so you are prepared.
  • Ensure you have fresh options stocked: Perishable items need to be replenished, which can be work, but it is doable. If you have it available and in a visible area (such as a fruit bowl on the kitchen counter), you are more likely to grab it and do something with it. 
  • Eat what you like: Don't be extreme if that isn't your style. Meal planning won't work, and won't stick if you are choosing what you think you should eat vs. what you actually will eat. There are healthy alternatives to almost anything, talk to someone to find out what some alternatives may be. 
  • Do not forget to include hydration as a part of your daily consumption: Food is vital, but so is water or hydrating drinks. Often thirst is confused for hunger, ensuring you have hydration options through the day will help in major ways. 
These are some key elements, of course I can go on and on...but I hope you can take something away here that will make it a bit easier to start tackling those healthy eating goals.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

5 Super Cool Parenting Tips

Parenting advice is abundant, and can sometimes be overwhelming for the new mom. Having said that, it's comforting to often hear advice directly from people that have actually gone through it and giving you personal experiences. Relate-able advice is easier to take, and I know that personally, I referred to it often when learning the ropes.

As a mom blogger, I am fortunate to have found some great bloggers with great advice out there.  Tips that I found useful to all moms alike when just trying to do our best.

I wanted to share some advice that I personally asked for, how to be an effective parent, how to keep the kids busy without always resorting to TV and movies, what advice to try and instill into kids as they get older, and my own guilt of letting my toddler sleep with us from time to time. I consistently found myself referring to other parent bloggers, and found it such an invaluable source. Mom bloggers, really are friends that are there for moms, looking to help moms and form this impeccable community. I am so thankful to have linked up and found this awesome group of strong and informative women.

So fellow moms, here is a round-up of just a few great parenting tips from mom bloggers, direct from the source, from moms just like you.

Why I Started Letting My 2-Year Old Sleep In Our Bed

5 Tips to Surviving Parenthood as an Introvert

15 Stress Busting Activities for Kids

Need 20 Minutes? Here's 5 Ways to Keep Your Kids Busy Without TV

Why You Need to Talk about Dalai Lama With Your Kids

I hope you can relate as much as I did to these posts.

Much love.