Friday, January 13, 2012

Are You Actually Hungry?

When your stomach growls, it's often hunger that's talking. Hunger is your body's way of saying it needs to be nourished.

But there are other things that may prompt you to seek a snack, even when you're not hungry. The American Academy of Family Physicians mentions these "false hunger" signals:
  •  Being thirsty. Satisfy this by simply drinking a glass of water.
  •  Craving or having an urge to eat a certain food.
  •  Feeling emotional, including angry, lonely or sad.
  •  Being at a social event.
  •  Noticing that it's your normal meal time.
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Thursday, January 12, 2012

Tips to Minimize Nightmares

While parents can't prevent nightmares altogether, they can take steps to help foster sweet dreams.

The Nemours Foundation offers these suggestions:
  • Keep a consistent bedtime and waking schedule.
  • Implement a calm, quiet, relaxing and consistent bedtime routine -- perhaps including a bath, book and some cuddle time.
  • Make sure your child's bed is comfortable and cozy. Allow a favorite stuffed animal or blanket in bed.
  • Don't let your child watch any frightening television shows before bed.
  • Explain to your child that nightmares are only dreams, and that he or she can't be hurt during a nightmare.
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Physical Problems May Cause Insomnia

If you often start your day exhausted because of a poor night's sleep, you may suffer from insomnia, a common sleep disorder.

The U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute lists these common symptoms of insomnia:
  •  Lying in bed awake for a long period of time before you're able to sleep.
  •  Only sleeping in short bouts before waking.
  •  Staying awake for most of the night.
  •  Feeling exhausted, as if you had no sleep.
  •  Waking very early in the morning.
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