Tracking Your Cycle: More than Taking Your Temperature

photo credit to www.nanaymiriam.wordpress.com

photo credit to www.nanaymiriam.wordpress.com

One very popular method of determining your fertile times of the month is the Basal Body Temperature (BBT) method.  Specifically, your BBT is the temperature you have first thing in the morning when you are freshly awakened from three to five hours sleep.  Ideally, you will take this reading before you get out of bed or engage in any activity beyond shutting off your alarm clock, and write it down in a chart.

Over time, the chart you keep will show you how your BBT changes throughout the month.  Prior to ovulation, estrogen is the primary hormone flowing through your body.  However, when ovulation occurs, your body experiences a surge of progesterone, which increases your body temperature.  In the big picture, this should mean that your BBT is at its lowest point just prior to ovulation, and will increase approximately half a degree once ovulation occurs.

Unfortunately, while a BBT chart does tell you when you have ovulated, it will not necessarily help you predict your future ovulation with accuracy.  In fact, studies show that using the BBT method alone achieves accurate results only about 75% of the time.  Truly, a BBT chart serves as a good indicator of ovulation only if you are someone with a “perfect” 28 day cycle.  For the majority of women, such a cycle may as well be a myth.

If you are seeking the convenience of the BBT method with higher accuracy, Lady-Comp is an excellent choice for you.  Lady-Comp is a state of the art fertility monitor that can predict your fertile days with 99.3% accuracy, based on your BBT and information on your menstrual cycle which you provide.  Over a period of time, it will get to know your personal cycle and will remain accurate regardless of any irregularities in cycle length.  To learn more about choosing the version of Lady-Comp that is right for you, please visit https://www.lady-comp.com/en/fertility-computers/compare/.

Sources:

http://www.whattoexpect.com/preconception/fertility/five-ways-to-tell-you-are-ovulating.aspx

http://www.storknet.com/cubbies/preconception/bbt.htm

Reduce Your Stress

photo courtesy of www.bodyapplicators.com

photo courtesy of www.bodyapplicators.com

With so much competing for our daily time, stress is a well-established part of the lives of many Americans.  However, it is not something we should continue to accept.  Chronic stress can have a negative impact on your sleep, digestion, weight, memory, skin, and heart.  Not to mention that many people adopt unhealthy coping mechanisms to deal with stress, such as smoking, drinking alcohol to excess, overeating, or lashing out angrily at others.  If any of this sounds familiar to you, you are advised to take immediate steps to reduce stress in your life, as well as manage the stress you do have in a healthier manner.

The first step toward reducing your stress is to give your life an honest assessment, and move forward with the goal of avoiding any unnecessary stress.  In many cases, this comes down to simply being more assertive and remembering you can take control of your environment.  Does a certain coworker stress you out?  If so, it’s OK to not talk to them more than is necessary to get the job done.  Is there a topic of conversation that puts you on edge?  If so, you can refuse to discuss it.  Is someone putting more demands on your time than you can handle?  If so, know it is acceptable to tell them no.

Another positive step in the right direction to managing your stress is adopting a healthier lifestyle.  Avoid self-medicating with items such as alcohol and junk food.  Instead, it is very important to get enough sleep each night, as being tired exacerbates stressful feelings.  Completing at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise three times per week is excellent for releasing your body’s pent-up tension.  A well-balanced diet, starting with a healthy breakfast, is key to keeping your energy up and your mind clear as for many, just being hungry can cause stress.  Finally and most importantly, if stress has become a serious issue in your life, you are encouraged to schedule an appointment with your physician to discuss it further.

Sources:

http://www.healthywomen.org/content/article/how-beat-stress-and-boost-happiness

http://www.helpguide.org/mental/stress_management_relief_coping.htm

Spring Cleaning

photo credit to cachevalleyfamilymagazine.com

photo credit to cachevalleyfamilymagazine.com

Traditionally, the season of spring marks a time of renewal, making it excellent for taking care of those pesky household chores left dormant in the winter.  If you have found yourself procrastinating on getting your spring cleaning done, now is a great time to move forward with it.  Don’t let your spring cleaning carry over to the summer!  The following tips will help you get started.

The first thing you should do is stock up on cleaning supplies. This will prevent you from having to stop in the middle of cleaning to run to the store for an item, only to lose your momentum when you return.  Good items to have on hand are rubber gloves, a large bucket, a scrub brush, microfiber cleaning cloths, paper towels, a mop, a vacuum cleaner, a broom with dustpan, and cleaning products.  If you are interested in creating your own cleaners out of all-natural ingredients, click here for recipes for an all-purpose cleaner, a window cleaner, a floor cleaner, and a mold and mildew cleaner you can create right in your kitchen.

Your next step is to create a plan.  This means actually writing down what needs to be done in each room of the house.  For example, “Kitchen: Mop floor, wash drapes, dust ceiling fan, clean windows, and clean out the cabinet under the sink.”  Once you have a task list, recruit other members of your household for some help with the chores.  Providing others in your house with incentives definitely helps.  For example, you could offer to treat everyone to a movie when the chores are done, or a gift card for their favorite store.  Finally, think about ways you can make cleaning fun for everyone.  This could be as simple as playing some upbeat music or creating a contest to see who can complete their chores the fastest.

Time Management for the Busy Mom

photo credit to sheknows.com

photo credit to sheknows.com

As a mom on the go, you may feel like there is just not enough time in the day to get everything done.  Are you so tired from housework, running your kids to various practices, and social obligations that you aren’t taking any time out to take care of yourself? If that is the case, read on for some tips for saving time in your day.

  • Put down your phone.  Between social media pages and online games, a quick glance at your phone can easily turn into an hour frittered away.  One way to minimize phone distraction is to turn off all of the alerts in your applications.  This way, your phone won’t buzz every time one of your friends posts a Tweet.  You can also consider using a tool such as HootSuite, which will consolidate all of your social media postings in one place for quick, easy catch-up.  Finally, set aside a specific, limited, designated time each day to spend on social media or gaming.
  • Consider efficiency.  Are you being as efficient as possible when running errands?  If you find yourself running to the grocery store several times each week, the answer is likely no.  Try planning your meals for the entire week out in advance, making a grocery list, and shopping for everything at once.  Not only will you save time on trips to the store, but you will no longer have to think about what to make for dinner each day during the week.  Another alternative for saving time is ordering groceries online.  Many supermarkets are now delivering food right to your doorstep and/or doing the shopping for you so you can just pay, put the groceries in your car, and go.
  • Examine your organization.  If you often find yourself searching for missing items, you are wasting valuable time in your day.  Think about things that are frequently misplaced, such as keys, eyeglasses, or shoes, and set up designated spots to place them in daily, so you will always know where they are.

Is There a Safe Way to Tan?

photo courtesy of shape.com

photo courtesy of shape.com

Summer is upon us, and as the weather warms, we start to bare more skin.  Many people love to have the bronzed look of tanned skin, yet at the same time, we know that tans can come at a steep cost.  For example, it is common knowledge that basking in the sun without sunscreen can result in major skin damage, including wrinkles and sunspots at best, and at worst, cancer.  For many years, people believed that tanning beds provided a safe alternative to lying out in the sun.  However, that has proven to be untrue over time.  In June 2014, the United States Food and Drug Administration ordered tanning bed manufacturers to place warnings on their products used by children under 18, due to concerns about skin burns and increased risks of deadly melanoma skin cancer.  Additionally, it’s been discovered that use of tanning beds can lead to Vitamin D toxicity, which can damage your bones, joint tissue, and kidneys.

So, does a safe way to tan exist?  According to an article recently published in U.S. News & World Report, the answer is no.  In this article, Jerry Brewer, the chair of dermatologic surgery at the Mayo Clinic, bluntly states, “Asking what’s a safe amount of tan is kind of like asking how much cyanide do you want in your breakfast.”  The article goes on to say the only way to tan safely is to use bottled skin tanner.  Luckily, self-tanning lotion has come a long way from its day-glow orange origins, and with minimal research you are bound to find one by a company you know and trust that works for you.

For best results with self-tanner, experts recommend that prior to applying, you exfoliate the dead skin cells off of your body, and lightly apply a layer or moisturizer to those rough patches on your hands, feet, elbows and knees.  You’ll find more insider self-tanner application tips on the Shape magazine website.

Tips for Intensifying Your Love Life

photo courtesy of  hideawayinn.com

photo courtesy of hideawayinn.com

One of the wonderful things about pleasure is that it is boundless.  No matter how wonderful your sex life is, there will always be room for it to be even better!  Below are some very simple ideas that can intensify your sexual pleasure.

  • Boost your own sexual confidence.  To have the best sex life, you need to be truly comfortable with yourself, which will allow you to be free and uninhibited.  You can increase your self-confidence by purchasing a new nighty, dancing naked in front of a mirror, or experimenting with new toy; just do things that make you feel sexy.
  • Don’t ignore the importance of foreplay.  Sometimes the best part of sex can be the anticipation of it beforehand.  Start in the morning by giving your partner a hot kiss and a bit of groping before you head out the door.  Greet them with more stroking when they get home. To cap it off, light some candles and reward your mate with a long, gentle massage as a prelude to the main event.
  • Don’t be afraid to try new things.  If you feel like you sex life hasn’t had enough variety lately, investigate some new positions.  A quick internet search will yield, quite literally, hundreds of new positions you can try.  Additionally, think about trying a new location.  Something as simple as seducing your partner on the sofa rather than the bed can add some spice to your session.
  • Take care of yourself.  It’s important for you to take care of yourself so that you have the proper energy and stamina for a healthy sex life.  This starts with a balanced diet, regular exercise, and the proper amount of sleep.  If you need motivation to exercise, consider this: Research shows that people who exercise regularly experience increased blood flow through their entire bodies, including their genital area, which can mean more intense orgasms.

Signs your Partner My Be Violent

photo courtesy of capitaleap.com

photo courtesy of capitaleap.com

In March 2013, President Barak Obama signed the Violence Against Women Act into law.  This law provided 1.6 billion dollars toward investigating and prosecuting violent crimes against women. Unfortunately, domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women between the ages of 15 and 44 in the United States, and it is estimated that one in every four women will experience domestic violence in their lifetime.  As a woman, it is very important to know the signs that your relationship could potentially be abusive, as not every instance of abuse is as obvious as being physically struck.  You should be thinking twice about your relationship if any of the following are true.

  • Your partner is overly jealous, accusing you of flirting with every man that crosses your path.
  • He calls or texts you to the point where you feel he is tracking your every move, or worse, he is stalking you by checking in on you constantly at work, insisting on reading the text messages on your phone, or placing a GPS tracking system in your car.
  • He actively discourages you from seeing your friends and family, and from pursuing hobbies and activities you enjoy, and insists you spend all of your time with him instead.
  • You feel as if you cannot make a decision without his approval, or cannot go anywhere without him being present.
  • You find yourself feeling anxious before you see him because you can never be sure what he might be angry with you about.
  • After you fight, he tries to win you back in an over-the-top fashion, such as multiple passionate emails of apology and extravagant gifts.
  • He is prone to getting into fist fights with little provocation, or you have ever seen him be cruel to children or animals.
  • You discover he had a violent relationship with a previous girlfriend.

If you or someone you love is the victim of domestic violence, please reach out for help by calling the National Domestic Violence Hotline, which is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-800-799-7233.

 

Source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/liz-brody/tell-somebody_b_858950.html

Advantages of Married Sex

photo courtesy of moms.popsugar.com

photo courtesy of moms.popsugar.com

If you are engaged to be married, it’s not uncommon for people to make annoying comments about where your sex life is headed.  There is a pervasive myth that once you get married, sex becomes boring, or even nonexistent.  But it doesn’t have to be this way!  In fact, being married lends a certain freedom to your sex life that you may not have felt before.  Consider the following:

  • If you have ever felt uncomfortable initiating sex, you can kiss that goodbye, secure in the knowledge your partner certainly would not marry someone they did not find sexually attractive.
  • By the time you get married, you know your partner has seen you both at your most beautiful and at your worst, and they love you anyway.  It can be very freeing to know that you can have sex without worrying about looking perfect.
  • If you were uncertain about sharing your fantasies, curiosities, and desires before, you can feel more confident doing so now, knowing your partner isn’t going anywhere.  So give that dirty talk a try, and if it doesn’t work out, there is no need to feel self-conscious.  Similarly, if there is something your partner wants to try that you just aren’t into, you can feel more comfortable saying no.  You now have plenty of time for the two of you to figure out what works for you both.
  • If you weren’t already living together, getting married gives you a lot more access to each other than you had before.  This can mean more morning sex, more opportunities for quickies, and more time to flirt with each other throughout the day to make your evening sex that much hotter.
  • You’ve had plenty of time to get to know each other’s hot spots, and now you can try to find new ones.

 

Source: http://living.msn.com/love-relationships/love-sex/25-reasons-why-married-sex-is-better-1#1

Things that make you feel Tired or Sluggish

photo courtesy of madamenoire.com

photo courtesy of madamenoire.com

Fatigue is certainly a common symptom of pregnancy, but if you know you are not pregnant and are feeling unusually sluggish anyway, you may be uncertain what to do.  First and foremost, if you are not feeling well, it is important to contact your physician and schedule an appointment.  While discussing things with your doctor, he or she may bring up some of the following common causes of fatigue.

1)      Dehydration- The average adult human body is comprised of 50-65% water, and this liquid is vital to keeping things functioning as they should.  Moderate dehydration can actually result in a loss of three percent of your total body weight, which can make you feel lightheaded as well as impact your ability to concentrate.

2)      Cell Phones and Tablets- Technology has made it so simple for us to check our e-mail, perform a quick internet search, or watch a funny video anytime of the day or night. However, you should consider keeping your bedroom a gadget-free zone.  Using your cell phone or tablet before bed increases your brain activity, making it more difficult to fall asleep. Once you are asleep, these very same gadgets could wake you up again with their ringing and beeping.

3)      Medication- Be sure to bring a full list of the medications and herbal supplements you are taking, along with their dosages, to your appointment.  Your doctor can let you know if any of them have the side effect of decreasing your energy level.

4)      Gym Habits- Working out has the benefit of reducing the amount of cortisol, a stress-producing hormone, in your body.  However, if you perform aerobic exercise for too long, your body will actually ramp up cortisol production instead.

5)      Iron Intake- In order for oxygen to move around your body efficiently and eliminate waste from your cells, you need at least 18 milligrams of iron per day.  Without it, you can develop what is known as iron deficiency anemia, which manifests itself through fatigue.

What Women Want

photo courtesy of joshfults.com

photo courtesy of joshfults.com

Men may often find themselves asking what it is that women really want.  This is such a common topic that it was the subject of a 2000 comedy film in which Mel Gibson obtained the ability to hear what women were thinking.  But men, please know that you do not need to develop telepathic abilities to keep your wife or girlfriend happy. Fundamentally, women want the same things you do.

1)      Respect.  Women want to know that you respect their choices in life, including their careers, interests, friends, and yes, even wardrobe selections.  When you do disagree with a choice, do so with honesty tempered by fairness, kindness, and consideration of feelings.

2)      Time. Women value the time you spend together, as well as the time you invest in your relationship.  Modern couples often lead a hectic lifestyle, so taking a moment to put the dishes away or otherwise make a woman’s life easier will be greatly appreciated.

3)      Romance.  Women do understand that not every night you spend together will be as fun and exciting as when you first started to date, but at the same time, enjoy it when you don’t give up trying to add something special to your nights together.  So continue to open doors for her, buy her flowers for no reason, and light the candles on your dinner table every so often.

4)       Engagement.  Here, we don’t necessarily mean putting a ring on it, although that is usually appreciated.  Rather, we are referring to being fully mentally present when the two of you are together.  Essentially, when a woman is talking, she wants to know you are both listening and interested in what she has to say.

5)      Communication.  Not only do women want you to hear and understand them, they want to hear and understand you as well.  Don’t be afraid to share the details of your day, no matter how boring you think they are, as this type of sharing deepens intimacy.

 

Source: http://www.yourtango.com/200925879/10-simple-things-women-want