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Getting Ready To Be A Parent: The Essentials

Getting Ready To Be A Parent: The Essentials

Congratulations! Life’s greatest adventure is coming your way and soon you’ll become a parent. You will be giving this world a new being, or perhaps a few of them and you’ll be taking care of this tiny creature while he/she grows and develops. Imagine that! What makes this whole event even more exciting is the fact that it is not only the birth of your child, but also the birth of your family and you as a parent. Amazing,

Still, some people get intimidated and they freak out during the preparation. You need a ton of stuff, you must take care of many things. Things might go a bit chaotic and messy if you don’t care.

There will be moments when you feel nervous or exhausted, discouraged or worried. However, if you intend to become the best parent there is, you will have to arm yourself with as much information as you can, so you can know what to expect and what you should do to make things last well.

The basics

While expecting a child, you’ll get countless tips on how to prepare a diaper, how to feed a baby, what clothing you’ll need, which feeding bottles are the best, which type of strollers fits your needs, etc. For the arrival of the baby, it’s simply impossible to get everything at the beginning primarily due to the limited amount of money, but also because it’s difficult to remember every little detail. We divided the basics into three most important categories from the start: feeding, clothing and transportation.

Let’s start from the beginning:

Feeding

getting ready to be a parent

    Feeding time is of the utmost importance. Many mothers bottle-feed their babies, whether it be their choice or they are prevented from breastfeeding. However, this way of feeding a newborn also can be turned into a bonding ritual for fathers as well.

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    When they get used to feeding, babies develop a strong sucking force which might put them in danger of colic.

    There are baby bottles that help with colic and mimic the movement, flow and natural feeling that helps wth transition to artificial breastfeeding. Do the research and decide which to choose, how many, what shape, etc. Also, in the transition from the breast to baby bottle, the father can be of great help which further strengthens the bond between him and the baby, so moms, let them enjoy it!

    Clothing

    getting ready to be a parent - clothing

      The choice of clothes for the baby is fun, especially for the first baby and many parents will agree that this is one of the most interesting parts of parenting. We all love to dress children according to our taste and often, parents dress style is also transmitted to their children later on.

      Be practical! While it is very exciting to buy clothes for the baby, do not overdo that. Having a baby means a lot of costs and additional expenses for parents. While some items may seem irresistible to you, try to choose what is best and safest for your child. Have the temperature, baby skin sensitivity and clothing quality into consideration besides the price and size. One thing is certain: babies grow fast and they quickly outgrow the clothes.

      Transportation

      Getting ready to be a parent - the stroller

        One of the biggest items required for babies is certainly a stroller. Without them, every longer walk, retention outside the house or going to a restaurant would be unthinkable. Therefore, choosing a right stroller can be a challenging task, in particular with those with a limited budget and especially if you have a situation like on the image; a young toddler and an infant.

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        Some moms & dads get double-lucky right from the start and a double stroller is a necessity for them. The market is currently filled with dozen models of strollers, so the first thing you should ask yourself is: What strollers are necessary for my baby? How and when will I use the stroller?

        How many children do I plan to ride in this stroller? The rule is simple: the longer you plan to use this stroller – the more investment is required. Once you have selected the type and model, go for a test ride, it’s important to try the stroller.

        Next, we’ll have special sections only for future moms and dads, to help you guys get over the period of anticipation and preparing.

        Future Moms

        getting ready to be a parent - pregnancy

          Dear future moms, congratulations on the fantastic news! Just the thought of holding your baby in your arms is incredibly overwhelming and exciting, isn’t it? Giving birth is the most important event in your life and at the same time, one of the most challenging.

          While motherhood is an incredible experience, it brings some tremendous changes and you must be prepared for many things to come.

          Remember, the most important aspect is that during the “sweet anticipation” you must take care of yourself and your health and by doing that you are taking care of your baby simultaneously. Here’s what you should pay special attention.

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          Visit a doctor

          The first thing you’ll need to do when you see a positive test is to see a doctor who will help you through the course of pregnancy. It would be wise to write everything that would be useful on paper: your blood type, when was your last cycle, history of chronic diseases, or anything else you think might be relevant.

          Vitamins intake

          If you have not already taken prenatal vitamins, now it’s time to start. This especially refers to folic acid, which is crucial while trying to get pregnant and during the first period of pregnancy.

          During the first quarter, avoid vitamin A and retinol since they are not safe for the baby. Also, a lack of vitamin C and omega three fatty acids can reflect badly on your teeth and gums. Therefore, you must ensure that you get enough of these nutrients through food.

          Food variety

            Most people claim that pregnant women should eat for two, which is, according to nutritionists, far from the truth. The fact is, the quality of food that you consume is much more important than the quantity. Avoid big fish, inadequately cooked meat, raw sprouts, soft cheeses. That way you’ll reduce the risk of food poisoning. It doesn’t always hurt to have healthy snacks in the house, such as various fruit, nuts, yogurt, etc.

            Future dads, don’t panic

              Even though men do not want to admit, the period of adaptation to the fact that they will become parents, is perhaps even harder for them than for women. In addition to visible changes, hiding behind a facade of confidence is sensitive, sometimes timid, to a guy who is preparing for a new role.

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              We are all familiar with the symptoms that bother future moms: insomnia, mood swings, morning sickness, but according to some studies, as many as 90 percent of future fathers also experience maternity torment. They have an overwhelming desire for a particular food, sometimes overwhelming emotions, changeable desire for sex, etc.

              Mood swings

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                During a woman’s pregnancy, many men are also experiencing an emotional rollercoaster. Just the thought of being a father totally changes their life, so if you are thinking intensely about the tasks that are ahead of you, it is not surprising that you will be balancing between sadness, happiness and nervousness or at the times overwhelming gentleness. Future dads can have hormonal disbalances just like future moms, which might seem unnatural and strange.

                The stress can overwhelm you, but in these moments, you need to calm down and start thinking about your life in general. Think about the good things in your life and the amazing period that you’re having right now.

                Your purpose in this period is to ease the mom’s life as much as possible by doing house chores, making her feel comfortable and helping her go through the mood swings. During the second trimester, you might experience a huge growth of your lady’s libido or a total indifferentness. Regardless of the outcome, do your role responsibly and help her. You’ll have a babymoon or a dry season.

                Enjoy yourself

                  The miracle of life is getting close and you’re getting a new family member. Rejoice, and enjoy the fact that you’ll soon become a proud parent. Everything will sort itself out. It always does.

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                  Dejan Kvrgic

                  Blogger, Writer

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                  12 Best Brain Foods that Improve Memory

                  12 Best Brain Foods that Improve Memory

                  Nutrition plays a vital role in brain function and staying sharp into the golden years. Personally, my husband is going through medical school, which is like a daily mental marathon. Like any good wife, I am always looking for things that will boost his memory fortitude so he does his best in school.

                  But you don’t have to be a med student to appreciate better brainiac brilliance. If you combine certain foods with good hydration, proper sleep and exercise, you may just rival Einstein and have a great memory in no time.

                  I’m going to reveal the list of foods coming out of the kitchen that can improve your memory and make you smarter.

                  Here are 12 best brain foods that improve memory:

                  1. Nuts

                  The American Journal of Epidemiology published a study linking higher intakes of vitamin E with the prevention on cognitive decline.[1]

                  Nuts like walnuts and almonds (along with other great foods like avocados) are a great source of vitamin E.

                  Cashews and sunflower seeds also contain an amino acid that reduces stress by boosting serotonin levels.

                  Walnuts even resemble the brain, just in case you forget the correlation, and are a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, which also improve your mental magnitude.

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                  2. Blueberries

                  Shown in studies at Tuffs University to benefit both short-term memory and coordination, blueberries pack quite a punch in a tiny blue package.[2]

                  When compared to other fruits and veggies, blueberries were found to have the highest amount of antioxidants (especially flavonoids), but strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries are also full of brain benefits.

                  3. Tomatoes

                  Tomatoes are packed full of the antioxidant lycopene, which has shown to help protect against free-radical damage most notably seen in dementia patients.

                  4. Broccoli

                  While all green veggies are important and rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, broccoli is a superfood even among these healthy choices.

                  Since your brain uses so much fuel (it’s only 3% of your body weight but uses up to 17% of your energy), it is more vulnerable to free-radical damage and antioxidants help eliminate this threat.

                  Broccoli is packed full of antioxidants, is well-known as a powerful cancer fighter and is also full of vitamin K, which is known to enhance cognitive function.

                  5. Foods Rich in Essential Fatty Acids

                  Your brain is the fattest organ (not counting the skin) in the human body, and is composed of 60% fat. That means that your brain needs essential fatty acids like DHA and EPA to repair and build up synapses associated with memory.

                  The body does not naturally produce essential fatty acids so we must get them in our diet.

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                  Eggs, flax, and oily fish like salmon, sardines, mackerel and herring are great natural sources of these powerful fatty acids. Eggs also contain choline, which is a necessary building block for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, to help you recall information and concentrate.

                  6. Soy

                  Soy, along with many other whole foods mentioned here, are full of proteins that trigger neurotransmitters associated with memory.

                  Soy protein isolate is a concentrated form of the protein that can be found in powder, liquid, or supplement form.

                  Soy is valuable for improving memory and mental flexibility, so pour soy milk over your cereal and enjoy the benefits.

                  7. Dark chocolate

                  When it comes to chocolate, the darker the better. Try to aim for at least 70% cocoa. This yummy desert is rich in flavanol antioxidants which increase blood flow to the brain and shield brain cells from aging.

                  Take a look at this article if you want to know more benefits of dark chocolate:

                  15 Surprising and Science-Backed Health Effects of Dark Chocolate

                  8. Foods Rich in Vitamins: B vitamins, Folic Acid, Iron

                  Some great foods to obtain brain-boosting B vitamins, folic acid and iron are kale, chard, spinach and other dark leafy greens.

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                  B6, B12 and folic acid can reduce levels of homocysteine in the blood. Homocysteine increases are found in patients with cognitive impairment like Alzheimer’s, and high risk of stroke.

                  Studies showed when a group of elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment were given high doses of B6, B12, and folic acid, there was significant reduction in brain shrinkage compared to a similar placebo group.[3]

                  Other sources of B vitamins are liver, eggs, soybeans, lentils and green beans. Iron also helps accelerate brain function by carrying oxygen. If your brain doesn’t get enough oxygen, it can slow down and people can experience difficulty concentrating, diminished intellect, and a shorter attention span.

                  To get more iron in your diet, eat lean meats, beans, and iron-fortified cereals. Vitamin C helps in iron absorption, so don’t forget the fruits!

                  9. Foods Rich in Zinc

                  Zinc has constantly demonstrated its importance as a powerful nutrient in memory building and thinking. This mineral regulates communications between neurons and the hippocampus.

                  Zinc is deposited within nerve cells, with the highest concentrations found in the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for higher learning function and memory.

                  Some great sources of zinc are pumpkin seeds, liver, nuts, and peas.

                  10. Gingko biloba

                  This herb has been utilized for centuries in eastern culture and is best known for its memory boosting brawn.

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                  It can increase blood flow in the brain by dilating vessels, increasing oxygen supply and removing free radicals.

                  However, don’t expect results overnight: this may take a few weeks to build up in your system before you see improvements.

                  11. Green and black tea

                  Studies have shown that both green and black tea prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine—a key chemical involved in memory and lacking in Alzheimer’s patients.

                  Both teas appear to have the same affect on Alzheimer’s disease as many drugs utilized to combat the illness, but green tea wins out as its affects last a full week versus black tea which only lasts the day.

                  Find out more about green tea here:

                  11 Health Benefits of Green Tea (+ How to Drink It for Maximum Benefits)

                  12. Sage and Rosemary

                  Both of these powerful herbs have been shown to increase memory and mental clarity, and alleviate mental fatigue in studies.

                  Try to enjoy these savory herbs in your favorite dishes.

                  When it comes to mental magnitude, eating smart can really make you smarter. Try to implement more of these readily available nutrients and see just how brainy you can be!

                  Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

                  Reference

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