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Try something new in the bedroom

Whilst many people enjoy trying new things with their partner such as role playing or experimenting with different positions, for those who are unfamiliar with sex toys they can seem a little daunting. The image of someone shackled to a bed with a ball gag in their mouth being whipped with a cat o’ nine tails may be the one which comes to mind when you think about sex toys, but the truth is far less intimidating. Sex toys come in all shapes and sizes, literally, which means that there is the perfect one out there to suit anyone’s idea of a good time

Explore your fantasies
If you think that your love life could benefit from the addition of a sex toy or two, then the first thing to consider is whether you are looking for something to use with your partner, or something to enjoy when you’re on your own. If it’s just you to think about then all you need to think about is what really turns you on and you can start with something simple or just dive in at the deep end depending on how you feel. However, if you are considering embarking on something different with a partner then it is important to be sure that you both feel comfortable with what you are proposing. Exploring your fantasies together could help you to find some common ground between you which you can explore together and learn about the things which get you both hot under the collar. There might be things which you have both considered in the past but haven’t tried which you could experiment with together and so long as you are clear about your boundaries and set some ground rules you should have lots of fun finding out what you both like.

Don’t be embarrassed
Everyone understands that it can be difficult to just walk into a shop and start asking questions about the most intimate items they have on sale, even if you are fairly confident about your sexuality. Being unsure about what you want can make you feel unwilling to try something new, so if you are really keen on the idea of trying out some sex toys then don’t let the awkwardness of a face-to-face conversation about them with a stranger put you off. The world of online shopping means that there are plenty of places where you can browse the different items available, do some research into the various uses for them and you can even find people with real-life experience who write about their favourite items too. With online shops like http://www.allureoutlet.co.uk which stock such a wide variety of items, you can be sure there will be something to tickle your fancy and liven things up between the sheets.

Janey Baker is a self-confessed fan of all things erotic and writes about the various options for couples who want to add a little spice to their lives. She loves checking out http://www.allureoutlet.co.uk for their wide range of toys, clothing and accessories.

The J-Pouch: Improving the Quality of Life for Thousands

The J-pouch is an interesting medical technique that has aided thousands of people suffering from diseases of the colon. The following describes everything one might want to know about the J-pouch and how it works.

What is Ulcerative Colitis?

Colitis refers to a disease of the colon or large intestine. Ulcerative colitis, also known as inflammatory bowel disease, is when a person’s large intestines are covered in ulcers. These ulcers, or sores, cause bloody stool and frequent diarrhea. Recurring diarrhea is very uncomfortable and necessitates immediate bathroom accessibility.

However, ulcerative colitis is not the only reason for getting a J-pouch. People with colon cancer or familial polyposis may also consider the pouch as a suitable treatment option.

How the J-Pouch Works

J-pouch surgery usually works in two steps. However, some surgery options involve one or three steps. The common method begins by removing the rectum lining and the large bowel. Using the bottom portion of the small intestine, a pouch is made and then stitched to the muscles surrounding the anus. The pouch will allow waste to collect and form a solid stool before excretion. Next, a small opening is made that connects the upper small intestine to the skin of the abdomen. During this period, stool is excreted through this opening, called a stoma, into an external temporary waste bag. Interested individuals can find more information about stoma care through companies such as Coloplast, Salts and Securicare Medical Stoma Care (and, as a J Pouch is not suitable for everybody, this may be a longer term option). A two to three month period before the next operation allows the J-pouch to heal.

The second step involves reconnecting the upper small intestine to the J-pouch. After this surgery, patients will begin to have semi-normal bowel movements within a few months.

How Does It Feel?

Most people feel much better after their J-pouch is fully functional. There is significantly less need for sudden trips to the bathroom. Individuals also experience an increase in bowel muscle control. On average, patients find that they will pass bowel movements about five times during the day after the J-pouch is functioning. Over time, the amount of movements should decrease. Ultimately, the actual recovery time depends on the person. However, most patients find it takes about one year to return to a normal schedule.

Possible Complications

As with all medical treatments, there are possible medical complications. Infections may occur inside of the reservoir pouch. One particular infection, called pouchitis, causes diarrhea and fever. Treatment options include antibiotics and probiotics. Unfortunately, patients that experience pouchitis once are more likely to get it again in the future. With bad cases, a recurring infection can cause the pouch to stop working.

Another relevant complication is the chance of women becoming infertile. However, this complication is not common. Furthermore, expectant mothers should not worry about J-pouch complications during the birthing procedure.

Benefits Outweigh Possible Side Effects

Overall, undergoing the operation to get a J-pouch is worth the outcome. People with ulcerative colitis are now able to maintain control of their bowel movements. Finally, J-pouch patients do not have to worry about their next occurrence of diarrhea.

Rosemarie Simson has been a stoma patient for a long time. She enjoys helping others cope with stoma surgery and aftercare by blogging online.

How to Stop Hating Vegetables

If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a hundred times—vegetables are good for you!  This nutritious truth isn’t going away, so if you struggle with eating vegetables, you are depriving your body of the valuable nutrients it needs to thrive.  Vegetables can also help ward away various illnesses and diseases.  Many people have discovered, however, that their veggies taste far more delicious when blended into a smoothie.  With a great-tasting smoothie, you might just learn to love all your vegetables!

Ginger Zinger

1 orange
1 pinch of orange zest
1 cup of carrot juice
1 pinch of ginger (adjust to taste)
½ a handful of ginger
1 cucumber slice to garnish

Make a smoothie with the zinging flavor of ginger.  This smoothie is loaded with beta-carotene, a powerful antioxidant that is known to protect cells and provide protection against various diseases including some cancers.  Moreover, ginger promotes good digestion and contains anti-inflammatory properties.  If you don’t like spinach, this is a great smoothie to mask its taste while still obtaining its benefits that include anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory properties.

Drink-Your-Salad Smoothie

2 handfuls of spinach
1 handful of romaine lettuce
5 baby carrots
1 large tomato
1 apple
2 tablespoons of lemon juice

Loaded with healthy vegetables, this drink is ideal for athletes or anyone who needs to gear up for a big day.  You can also tweak this drink to suit your taste.  Try adding all the vegetables from your favorite salad and experiment with different ingredients.  The romaine lettuce is loaded with nutrition and the tomato is a super food that contains phytonutrients and antioxidants.  Healthy carrots and the apple add sweetness to this smoothie while the hint of lemon wakes it all up for a great tasting drink.

Cherry Surprise

1 cup of cherries
½ cup of cabbage
1 stalk of celery
1 teaspoon of honey
1 pinch of cinnamon

This delicious and rather gorgeous-looking smoothie may hide its veggies behind the sweet taste of the cherries (sweetened with honey), but they’re in the mix nonetheless!  Celery contains nutritious phytosterols, flavones, flavonols, and phenolic acids while the cabbage contains many vitamins and minerals.  Cherries, of course, are also incredibly healthful and give this smoothie its delicious flavor.

Baja Smoothie

1 cup of tomato juice
2 tablespoons of salsa
1 pinch (or more) of cilantro
1 handful of romaine lettuce

Any other flavors of Mexico you love!
This great smoothie will remind you of a great Mexican vacation! This is a great smoothie that packs a wow factor.  The salsa wakes up the great taste of the tomato juice which is loaded with nutrition.  You can add anything you like in terms of veggies to make this Baja smoothie your own.  Black olives, green peppers, celery—be creative!  All the vegetables combine to make a smoothie that is packed with health benefits.

Many smoothie lovers often combine fruit and vegetables to create great-tasting drinks that suit their taste.  Moreover, once you fall in love with a few recipes, you can enjoy their healthful properties time and again.  Enjoy a smoothie everyday!  They’re a convenient way to get the nutrition you need!
Jennifer Fox is a gardner. She loves to share her passion for fresh fruits and vegetables on home and garden blogs. Click to learn more about Skinny Limits Juice Cleanse.

Keeping Safe: Things to Watch Out for Abroad

Going on holiday is an exciting prospect; travelling to a foreign land and having a break from the norm is an adventure, but when you’re on your jollies, it’s important to remember how to keep safe to avoid becoming the victim of crime, illness or other incident that could jeopardise your safety. Here is a list of some key things to watch out for when going abroad:

Water

A huge number of illnesses contracted abroad are caused by contaminated water. Whilst it’s important to stay hydrated, you should steer clear of drinking tap water or using it to brush your teeth. You should also avoid ice cubes, which are likely to be made from tap water. Instead, opt for bottled water or ensure that the tap water has been boiled before drinking it, to rid it of any harmful bacteria.

Food

When abroad, don’t eat salads, uncooked fruits or vegetables, unless you have washed and peeled them yourself. Food that has been kept at room temperature should also be avoided, as this is more likely to contain bacteria. In countries with poor sanitation, it’s also best to avoid unpasteurised milk, cheese, ice cream or undercooked seafood.

Insect bites

Many infectious diseases are spread through insect bites, meaning they can lead to much more serious problems than the initial itchy red lumps. Ensure you spray yourself with repellent that contains Deet, particularly at night. Mosquitos can bite through tight clothing, so if you’re visiting an area in which malaria is a problem, wear long-sleeved, loose clothing.

Sun protection

As one of the most common cancers in the UK, skin cancer is something we should all be taking precautionary measures to avoid and those with fair skin or freckles are particularly at risk. Try and stay out of the sun between 11am and 3pm, which is when the sun’s at its hottest. You should also ensure that you always wear factor 15 or above. Young children and babies should stay out of the sun altogether if possible, as sunburn can be particularly harmful to young children.

First Aid

It might be a good idea to bring along your own first aid kit, particularly if good quality healthcare isn’t readily available in the country you plan to visit. In some countries, you’re entitled to free or reduced-cost healthcare if you have an EHIC card, but in others, you can be charged ridiculous prices to be treated by a doctor. The components for a basic first aid kit shouldn’t be hard to get hold of. You may also want to include pain killers, anti-diarrhoea tablets, insect repellent, cold and flu sachets, Cymalon 4g Granules for Oral Solution (containing sodium citrate) for cystitis relief, antihistamine cream and whatever else you think you’ll need. Always read the label on any medication before consumption.

Swimming

It’s difficult for us to know what lies within foreign waters, particularly in the sea. If in doubt as to whether the sea is safe to swim in, it’s probably best to stick to swimming pools. If you have children, it’s particularly important that they are supervised at all times when they are in or around the water, even if there is a lifeguard on duty. Armbands can slip off in an instant and it only takes a matter of minutes to get into trouble, regardless of how deep or shallow the water is.

Sources:

Avoiding certain foods/water: http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/travelhealth/Pages/Food-and-water-abroad.aspx

Food at room temperature: http://www.nhsdirect.wales.nhs.uk/encyclopaedia/f/article/foodpoisoning/

Mosquitos: http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/travelhealth/Pages/Travellersillnesses.aspx#insect

Sun protection: http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/skin/Pages/Sunsafe.aspx

EHIC card: http://www.nhs.uk/NHSEngland/Healthcareabroad/EHIC/Pages/about-the-ehic.aspx

Swimming: http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/Summerhealth/Pages/Childsafety.aspx

Surgeons Take a Second Look at Skyrocketing Knee Replacement Surgeries

In recent years, there has been an explosion in the number of knee replacement surgeries. The number of knee replacement surgeries carried out by the NHS in England and Wales has risen to more than 70,000 per year, which is a massive increase over the number of operations that used to be carried out.

There are many good reasons for the dramatic rise in the number of knee replacement operations. A greater proportion of the population than ever before is now over 65, and other risk factors such as obesity are also on the rise. However, an increasing number or doctors and researchers are making the controversial suggestion that some patients would be better off if the skyrocketing knee replacement surgery rate were kept in check.

Knee surgery is one option for treating conditions that affect the knee joints, such as osteoarthritis, but it is not the only option. A new study carried out in Seattle showed that giving patients information about the pros and cons of knee replacement surgery, including case studies of people who chose knee surgery as well as those who chose other treatment options, led to far fewer people choosing to undergo knee replacement surgery.

The results of this study are interesting because they challenge the idea that patients should simply follow the treatment recommendations of their doctors. Arming patients with information about the treatments on offer for osteoarthritis and other knee problems leads to greater patient satisfaction with the chosen course of action, and also leads to a reduced demand for knee replacement surgery.

The informative materials that the Seattle researchers gave to patients were carefully designed to help the patient make the decision that was right for them. The materials that the patients received, which were referred to as decision aids by the researchers, included interviews with two sets of patients: those who had had the knee surgery, and those who had decided to defer surgery in favour of alternative treatments, such as pain-relieving medication or injections of cortisone. Feedback from people who received the decision aids suggested that these interviews were extremely useful in helping each person come to a decision that he or she was satisfied with.

Although knee replacement surgery is an effective treatment for osteoarthritis and other chronic knee problems, it has some major disadvantages. One primary concern is that recovery from knee surgery is painful and can take several months. The recovery period is especially difficult for very elderly people, who have slower rates of healing. The risk of complications arising from the surgery, although reduced by improvements in surgical techniques, remains present. Patients can be harmed by post-surgical infections, damage to the nerves around the knee, and unexpected bleeding.

Every case of osteoarthritis is different, which is why there can be no one-size-fits-all approach to treating this condition. The decision over whether to have knee replacement surgery is one that should be made by the patient in consultation with their doctor, taking into account factors such as the patient’s age, lifestyle and overall health. Giving patients as much information as possible about the possible risks and benefits of each treatment option is essential to help them make good decisions.

Andrew Huang is a retired teacher who underwent knee replacement surgery five years ago. He likes to spend his time blogging about the latest treatments for knee pain and injuries.

Soak Away Your Arthritis Pain: Four Effective Hot Tub Exercises


Arthritis pains can be debilitating, and many sufferers get relief from sitting in a hot tub. The warmth helps improve circulation and ease pain, and the environment is perfect for doing gentle exercises to promote your range of motion or improve your strength and flexibility. Exercising on dry land might be too painful otherwise, but underwater exercise is often accessible even to those with advanced arthritis.

According to Arctic Spas, Jeannie Kidd Trout was a doctor in the 1870s who was instrumental in popularizing the use of spas for rheumatoid arthritis. Now , there are a few things to know before you use a hot tub for therapeutic reasons however. You should check with your doctor to ensure that it is safe, especially if you have high blood pressure, any heart conditions, diabetes, or other medical conditions. These can interfere with the safe use of hot tubs, and your doctor may be able to present suitable cool-water exercises to do in a regular pool instead. If your doctor approves them, here are four effective exercises you can do to help with your arthritis pain.

Forward Arm Reach

This exercise helps with your arms and shoulders, and can be performed while sitting in a hot tub. Simply sit with your arms to your sides, then raise them as high as possible over your head, then lower them again. If your arms are too weak or if this hurts, do one arm at a time and support it with your other arm. Start off gently with just a few repetitions.

Side Arm Reach

Similar to the forward arm reach, you can perform this while sitting anywhere except a corner of a hot tub. Keep your palms facing down as you raise your arms from the starting position, with your arms at your sides, to water level or shoulder level, then lower them again.



Knee Bends

This type of hot tub exercise is good for those who have knee pain, though it takes getting used to. The muscles worked are the quadriceps. Sit straight up with your legs bent, then gently extend one leg in front of you as far as it will go. Hold this for three seconds, then lower the leg again. If the jets make this difficult, turn them down slightly.



Knee Lifts

If the backs of your legs ache, working your hamstrings can help. Sit up straight as usual, then pull one knee up to your chest as high as you can. The water buoyancy should help a little with this, but ensure that you stay balanced as you do it. Then, lower the leg to the starting position before switching to the other leg. If you need help with this exercise, you can place your hands under your knees or thighs to help lift and lower them.

Arthritis sufferers can benefit not just from sitting in the hot tub, but from performing gentle exercises. Next time the public hot tub is quiet or you use a backyard tub, try one or more of these exercises to see if they help with your aches and pains. These exercises, performed regularly and gently, can gradually build your muscles and help make stiff muscles more flexible. Just ensure you check with your doctor before you start any exercise routine to help arthritis pain.

Lauren Burton is an interior designer. She enjoys blogging on ways homeowners can get the most out of the features of their home.

Smart Eating: Natural Sources of Caprylic Acid

Candida species, or yeasts, cause a variety of irritating fungal infections that range from the common athlete’s foot condition to oral thrush.  From itching and redness to more severe complications, candida infections are not safe to leave untreated; symptoms can worsen and suffering can increase.  Studies have demonstrated, however, that caprylic acid is effective at treating various fungal and bacterial infections.   Moreover, since it is contained naturally in various sources, caprylic acid is easily incorporated into the diet where it may help combat Candida.

How Caprylic Acid Fights Candida

Caprylic acid is a saturated fatty acid that is generally regarded as safe and containing no known toxins.  This acid has the ability to destroy Candida cells.  As an antifungal agent, caprylic acid interrupts the cell walls of the Candida.  In addition, the caprylic acid enhances the stomach by promoting a natural restoration of its acidity.  This balanced acidity supports the body’s immune system which enables it to ward off an overgrowth of Candida.  Caprylic acid can also be taken to fight Candida with other helpful Candida-fighters like grapefruit seed extract or even garlic.

Natural Sources of Caprylic Acid

Luckily, there are some good natural sources of caprylic acid.  The following sources are easy to procure and can easily be incorporated into your diet for enhanced Candida-fighting benefits.

Milk

Milk from cows and goats (as well as humans) contains caprylic acid.  Moreover, dairy products like butter also contain caprylic acid.  Experts advise, however, to use caution when increasing dairy consumption during a bout of Candida.  Although the milk contains helpful caprylic acid, it also has the ability to irritate a yeast infection.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is an excellent source of caprylic acid.  Though many alternative health providers recommend coconut oil to treat various conditions, it is also high in saturated fat.  Many opinions conflict about whether coconut oil with its significant saturated fat content can increase risks to heart health.  One thing is certain, if you do cook with coconut oil, be sure it is excellent quality oil as not all are created alike.

Palm Oil

Like coconut oil, palm oil is also rich in saturated fat.  However, it contains valuable stores of caprylic acid.  Some people who can’t digest dairy supplement their diets with some palm oil.  Also like coconut oil, studies and opinion among healthcare providers conflict about its saturated fat risks.  Palm oil is also associated with many nutritional properties so it, too, is worth considering for dietary purposes.

Many believe that caprylic acid supplements are more reliable ways to combat an incidence of Candida.  Too much butter or oils like palm and coconut that are high in saturated fats is not good for the body, so increasing the intake of these items isn’t suggested.  On the other hand, a dairy-rich diet with plenty of milk may keep Candida at bay, preventing a full-blown infection from occurring.  While no one recommends going overboard with these natural sources of caprylic acid, it does make sense to vary their use in your diet.  If you are still uncertain or want to learn more, discuss caprylic acid sources with your healthcare provider.

Lisa Richards experienced poor health with vague symptoms for a very long time before she learned she had a Candida overgrowth. Now completely healthy, she shares what she has learned in an effort to help others in the same situation. Visit the Candida treatment link for more information.

An Investment for the Future: How to Choose the Best Cord Blood Bank

The collection of umbilical cord blood from your newborn has numerous benefits and is considered by many to be a sensible precaution and also a good investment for potentially safeguarding the future health of your child. One of the decisions that you will have to make prior to the birth is which cord blood bank to choose.
Here are some points to consider so that you can choose the best one for your circumstances and requirements.

Start your search early

You do not want to rush into such an important decision and therefore the earlier that you can start your search, the more you will be able to make an informed choice having asked all the relevant questions and maybe even visited the company. The Cord Blood Foundation hold a database of about 200 family cord banks worldwide, so you can search and compare services and also prices.

Local bank is not a requirement

You can talk to friends and also consider asking your doctor or local midwife to see if they have a company that they are happy to give a referral for, but without wishing to appear too cynical, you should remember that some private cord blood banks offer financial incentives to customers or professionals who refer new customers, so make that any advice is independent. Bear in mind that it is not always the best choice to enrol with the company that is nearest to your home or even in the same state, what is more important is the one that you choose offers you what you want and that you feel comfortable in your dealings with them.

Second trimester

Private cord blood banks often actively encourage expectant parents to sign up to their program at some point during the second trimester and you may find that some companies even offer their services at a slightly better rate as an incentive for making an early choice. You can still arrange to bank your baby’s cord blood even when you are close to the due date, but as you enter the third trimester you may even be asked to pay a late enrolment fee, so try to plan ahead and make your choice with plenty of time to spare.

Does the private bank meet federal requirements?

The FDA regulates and regularly inspects family cord blood banks on a national basis and all the companies registered to provide this valuable service have to remain compliant of all the prescribed regulations in order to continue operating. Check the licence details of the private bank you are interested in using and also confirm if they are out of state, that their licence covers them to collect blood from your area.

Clinical experience

A key aspect of your decision process should also be to confirm if the private bank has the relevant clinical experience to carry out the procedure of collecting the blood.  Ask them how many therapies have been performed using their clients cord blood and whether they participate in any clinical trials. A positive answer on both these points is usually a good indication that they are sufficiently skilled and diligent enough to successfully store and process your baby’s cord blood.

Courier service

An important point that is often overlooked is the arrangements that a private bank have in place for transporting the blood. Public cord blood banks set a maximum limit of 48 hours for delivery to the storage facility and the sooner they are processed and stored the better, as the blood cells and stem cells gradually begin to die of left for too long in transit. Check that the company have a reliable courier service and what guarantees they offer in this respect.

With advancement in medical science opening up new possibilities all the time, your baby’s cord blood is a valuable resource, so you need to make sure that you choose the right cord blood bank by asking all the right questions, allowing you the comfort of knowing that your one-time opportunity will be in good hands.

Alice Pettaway is a medical lab technician. She loves blogging about new scientific technologies. To learn more about Cord Blood Banking, click here.

3 Steps Toward Moving Past the Fear of Pain

There is a long term disorder that affects the muscles, tendons and other tissues which is called Fibromyalgia. The symptoms often shown by sufferers are widespread musculoskeletal pain together with deep fatigue, sleep and memory problems and potential mood swings. Managing the pain and the symptoms is possible as a result of several treatment options, so here are 3 positive steps to help sufferers move beyond the fear of pain that they experience.

Understanding the symptoms

It is perfectly reasonable to show an element of fear and distress when you are first diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and the first hurdle that you have to overcome is to gain a full understanding of what is happening to your body and the symptoms that you can expect to experience as a result. Pain is a deeply complex issue that affects the whole body, mind and spirit of a person and by gaining a solid understanding of the condition, a patient can become empowered so that they become a collaborative partner in their recovery process rather than feeling helpless.
There is currently no cure for this condition, so pain management is critical and many patients experience a better quality of life once their condition has been diagnosed and is being treated properly according to their specific difficulties.

Non-medication therapies

A key factor in the battle to take positive control of your pain management strategy is the regular use of non-medication therapies. You can achieve sustained pain relief that can be used in alliance with any prescribed medication by actively subscribing to a number of recommended therapies.
Physical therapy, massage, the use of acupuncture and biofeedback are all known to be effective in helping patients create a program designed to assist with long term pain management.
A positive outlook may sometimes seem a difficult task when you consider the prospect of long term pain, but taking a positive approach and getting on with your life plans does play a part in coming to terms with the symptoms of Fibromyalgia. There is no problem in having a Plan B if you have a difficult episode to content with, but proceeding with Plan A in the meantime is a good strategy.

Treatment options

It is always vitally important that a patient gets a full diagnosis of their condition and following that assessment by a medical professional, you can embark on a personalized schedule of treatment enhanced by accurate fibromyalgia pain management using medicine.
Some other treatments that are considered effective in pain management are trigger point injections, trigger points is the term used to describe a muscle knot or where the muscle fibers have become tangled, so targeting them will provide pain relief in other parts of the body as well.
Some patients also consider having a Botox injection and these can help patients who are suffering from headaches, myofascial pain and the general symptoms of Fibromyalgia.

Always take expert medical advice and try to have an open mind about the treatments available, so that you can maintain a positive outlook and deal with your pain in a controlled manner, so that you can get on with the rest of your life as best you can.

Lewis Mann cares for a family member with fibromyalgia. His articles mainly appear on health blogs where he shares findings.

Your Child’s Cough: From Dry Hacks to Fitful Barks

When your child starts coughing, does he (or she) need to be seen by a doctor, or are they just in need of some rest? Sometimes, a nagging cough can indicate a more serious problem. You don’t want to waste time going to the doctor’s office if it’s nothing. However, if your child’s situation isn’t getting any better after a few days, it could be something very serious.

The Long Cough

A long coughing fit can be indicative of pertussis – also called “whooping cough.” While Canadians are typically vaccinated against this one, it’s making a comeback in a very big way. If it’s been a while since your child has been vaccinated, you might be one of the unlucky parents that has to deal with this virus. You can go to the doctor’s office, but there’s not much he can do for a viral infection aside from easing any pain your child might be going through and bringing down any fever your child has.

Dry Cough

A dry cough can be very normal. A dry, scratchy, feeling at the back of your throat may just mean that your child needs to cough something up. This is the body’s normal reaction to foreign invaders. Push more fluids to ease any dryness and scratchiness. The cough isn’t anything to be concerned with. What you should watch out for is respiratory distress.

Any kind of nagging dry cough that doesn’t clear up within a few days should be looked at by your doctor.

‘Barky’ cough

If your child is coughing at night, particularly if it’s a “barky” cough, consider having it checked out. It could be croup or laryngitis. Basically, your child’s throat is inflamed (the larynx and trachea), which is usually brought on by a viral upper respiratory infection. In some cases, it’s caused by allergies.

Croup is accompanied by stridor, which is basically a wheezing sound when your child breathes. Pay close attention to whether your child is wheezing or not. Wheezing is indicative of respiratory distress.

Amplified Cough

If your child’s cough has gotten really loud, it might be due to a viral infection but check your child’s breathing first before you call the doctor. If it feels like a cat purring, your child is probably fine. A cough is often amplified due to the larynx (voice box). If your child’s appetite hasn’t suffered, still has some energy, and is sleeping through the night, you have little to worry about.

The Week-Long Wheezy or Whistling Cough

A seasonal virus can cause a cough to last weeks on end. The same kinds of secretions experience by non-asthmatic children can irritate the walls of your child’s bronchi. The muscles will go into spasm, and the bronchial tubes will tighten. Your child may get very tired, quickly. If you hear wheezing or whistling when the child breathes, take him to the doctor.

Cough With Vomit

Vomiting is usually a bad sign. If your child or baby has a cough and throws up afterwards, it doesn’t necessarily mean they have a serious infection, but it could. Sometimes, kids cough so hard, it triggers their gag reflex, and they vomit. If they’re doing it all the time, however, this is something to be worried about.

Alicia Bell is a mom of four who has had to nurse her share of coughs. She also like to blog about her parenting experiencing on various websites. To learn more about cough syrup for children, just visit this page.