Archive for category Pregnancy

NeilMed Sinus Rinse: Effective, Drug Free Solution for Nasal Congestion

NeilMed Sinus Rinse

NeilMed Sinus Rinse

If you suffer from any form of nasal congestion (hayfever, nasal symptoms from flu and colds, nasal irritation from pollen or dust mites), this simple, yet very effective, American product will help to clear the nasal congestion and improve breathing.

What I like about it:
1) Simple: an easy-squeeze bottle with a specially designed rounded top that allows deep flushing of the sinuses and nasal passages. You only need some warm, previously boiled (or distilled) water and the pre-mixed sachets (mainly sodium chloride and sodium bicarbonate). The idea of nasal washes may sound uncomfortable or even painful but it is not. Watch this video to see how it works.
2) Completely drug free and safe to use during pregnancy (or daily).
3) Painless: it does not sting nor burn your nose.
4) Immediate relief: you can enjoy immediate relief after the first use and the results improve will regular use.

In the UK you can find it on Amazon. Price-wise you can buy the starter kit with 15 sachets for GBP 10, the kit with 60 sachets for GBP 14, and 150 sachets (without the rest of the kit) for GBP 16.
I have suffered from sinusitis since I was 15 and of all of the different products and solutions I tried, this is by far the best. I do not use any more nasal sprays and I noticed that by doing my nasal rinses with NeilMed Sinus Rinse as soon as I am getting a cold or a flu, the cold/flu lasts less long.

Things to be aware of:
1) It is available in isotonic, pediatric and hypertonic (extra-strong) concentrations but I have only used the isotonic ones that are easier to find in the UK.
2) Not to be used if you have an ear infection or blocked ears.
3) You should never use tap water to mix with the sachets but only previously boiled or distilled water.
4) Try to replace the bottle regularly (the company suggests to replace the bottle after 3 months of use).
5) Don’t use too much pressure as it may cause some fluid to drain into the ears through the Eustacian tube. If this happens the fluid in the ear should disappear within a short period of time.
6) It is recommended to do the nasal rinsing an hour before going out or going to bed. ‘Some solution can pool in the sinuses, especially if you have had sinus surgery. This normally drains out in the first 15 to 20 minutes after rinsing. Sometimes it does not drain until hours later when you bend over’.

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When Your Lovely Bump Needs a Lift: Nexcare Maternity Support Belt

Nexcare Maternity Support Belt

Nexcare Maternity Support Belt

If you are still working during your last weeks of pregnancy, if you have to be on your feet for several hours in a row, if you are expecting twins or just a heavy child, if you are suffering from back aches or pelvis pains or if you are suffering from Pelvic Girdle Disfunction (also known as SPD), the Nexcare Maternity belt can make a big difference. The belt works very simply by lifting your bump up and taking the weight off the pelvis. Although it can be used throughout pregnancy, it tends to be particularly effective in the third trimester or with twins. I started using it when I was about 8 months pregnant.
It comes in two sizes: Medium (fits pre-pregnancy dress size 10 – 18 UK) and Large (fits pre-pregnancy dress size 18 – 28 UK). I understand size Large is very big, so I would still go for Medium if you are size 18 UK. Note also that if you are a small 8 UK, size Medium might be too big.
Nexcare Maternity Support is one of the most expensive pregnancy support belts on the market, but it DOES work. Considering the difference it made to the last couple of months of my pregnancies I think it’s definitely worth it. It helped me to keep mobile up till the end even when the discomfort/pain would have otherwise stopped me from doing things.

Online I have seen a pretty big range of prices but I think you should be able to find it just below GBP 30.00. Here is the link to Amazon. This is where I found the best price (GBP 27.00 including delivery) when I did the analysis.
What I like about it:
1) It’s fully adjustable, so you will be able to use it till the very end of the pregnancy, even with twins. You can change tension and support easily by stretching the belt a little more or less and adjusting the fastening position.
2) It supports both the lower back and the pelvis.
3) It makes a difference immediately, the moment you wear it. I was very surprised by the level of support of this belt. Take it off after a couple of hours of wearing it and you will notice the difference.
4) Good quality. I used it for my two pregnancies and passed it to at least 4 of my friends (one with twins) and only now it is too old/loose to be used.
5) It does not move or “roll up” once the pregnancy advances, as some of the cheaper ones. As I mentioned before, it will fit well till the very end.

Negatives:
1) It is ugly and will show under work clothes but, when/if you will need it you are unlikely to care.
2) A bit fiddly to fit at the beginning. There are 3 parts/belts: one goes under the bump, one around the lower back and the third belt goes from side to side above the bump. You just need to look at the fitting instructions and you will get quickly the hang of it. If you think it is not working, you are probably not fitting it properly.
3) The velcro can be a bit itchy, so it’s best worn over a top otherwise it might rub on your skin.

Other things to know:
1) If you feel it gets in the way of sitting try not to put it too low. I took it off when I had to sit for a long time.
2) I am very tall, but I read some reviews by shorter women that did not seem to find it as effective.
3) It has been on the market for a long time. It is produced by 3M, a serious, “global science-based company” (their words) with USD bn of revenues. You can be sure you are not harming your baby.
4) Hand wash only (in cold or warm water with mild detergent).

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