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Making Waves: Radiation

10 Tips to help you cut down on wireless radiation during pregnancy.

Making Waves: Radiation

Usually we hate hearing the old “When I was pregnant….” from our moms or mother-in-laws, but when it comes to microwave radiation, we kind of wish we lived back then. From cell phones to ipads to wireless routers, radiation is everywhere. And it’s bad for us...and our babies.

During pregnancy, it’s particularly dangerous. Wireless radiation can interfere with normal fetal brain development, and implications include impaired communication skills, learning deficits and behavioral problems. Your cellphone, tablet and laptop probably even have legal warnings (usually 20 cm for laptops or tablets and about ½ inch for cellphones) about how close to hold them to your body -- if it’s in your pocket or handbag, close to that growing baby, know your facts.

“Pregnancy is a time when people are quite apprehensive about everything, yet they’re not thinking about the impact of a wireless device,” says Dr. Devra Lee Davis, author of numerous books on wireless radiation and human health, and founder of the Environmental Health Trust. “These devices can be very valuable in emergency but you’ve got to stop and think about the risk you’re taking by carrying it, especially if it’s on your body.”

Davis recently founded the BabySafe Project, a campaign devoted to encouraging women to limit their exposure to wireless radiation. Below are her top 10 tips for removing some of your risk while you’re pregnant.

  1. Avoid carrying your cell phone on your body (e.g. in a pocket or bra).
  2. Avoid holding any wireless device against your body when in use.
  3. Use your cell phone on speaker setting or with an “air tube” headset.
  4. Avoid using your wireless device in cars, trains or elevators.
  5. Avoid cordless phones, especially where you sleep.
  6. Whenever possible, connect to the internet with wired cables.
  7. When using Wi-Fi, connect only to download, then disconnect and disable Wi-Fi.
  8. Avoid prolonged or direct exposure to nearby Wi-Fi routers.
  9. Unplug your home Wi-Fi router when not in use (e.g. at bedtime).
  10. Sleep as far away from wireless utility meters (i.e. “smart” meters) as possible.
  11. BONUS TIP: Davis also suggests exploring radiation products with radiation shields--check out our giveaway this week for a Belly Armor Belly Band to get you started!

Image source.

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I never wanted to be a mom. It wasn't something I ever thought would happen until I fell madly in love with my husband—who knew very well he wanted children. While he was a natural at entertaining our nephews or our friends' kids, I would awkwardly try to interact with them, not really knowing what to say or do.

Our first pregnancy was a surprise, a much-wanted one but also a unicorn, "first try" kind of pregnancy. As my belly grew bigger, so did my insecurities. How do you even mom when you never saw motherhood in your future? I focused all my uncertainties on coming up with a plan for the delivery of my baby—which proved to be a terrible idea when my dreamed-of unmedicated vaginal birth turned into an emergency C-section. I couldn't even start motherhood the way I wanted, I thought. And that feeling happened again when I couldn't breastfeed and instead had to pump and bottle-feed. And once more, when all the stress from things not going my way turned into debilitating postpartum anxiety that left me not really enjoying my brand new baby.

As my baby grew, slowly so did my confidence that I could do this. When he would tumble to the ground while learning how to walk and only my hugs could calm him, I felt invincible. But on the nights he wouldn't sleep—whether because he was going through a regression, a leap, a teeth eruption or just a full moon—I would break down in tears to my husband telling him that he was a better parent than me.

Then I found out I was pregnant again, and that this time it was twins. I panicked. I really cannot do two babies at the same time. I kept repeating that to myself (and to my poor husband) at every single appointment we had because I was just terrified. He, of course, thought I could absolutely do it, and he got me through a very hard pregnancy.

When the twins were born at full term and just as big as singleton babies, I still felt inadequate, despite the monumental effort I had made to grow these healthy babies and go through a repeat C-section to make sure they were both okay. I still felt my skin crawl when they cried and thought, What if I can't calm them down? I still turned to my husband for diaper changes because I wasn't a good enough mom for twins.

My husband reminded me (and still does) that I am exactly what my babies need. That I am enough. A phrase that has now become my mantra, both in motherhood and beyond, because as my husband likes to say, I'm the queen of selling myself short on everything.

So when my babies start crying, I tell myself that I am enough to calm them down.

When my toddler has a tantrum, I remind myself that I am enough to get through to him.

When I go out with the three kids by myself and start sweating about everything that could go wrong (poop explosions times three), I remind myself that I am enough to handle it all, even with a little humor.


And then one day I found this bracelet. Initially, I thought how cheesy it'd be to wear a reminder like this on my wrist, but I bought it anyway because something about it was calling my name. I'm so glad I did because since day one I haven't stopped wearing it.

Every time I look down, there it is, shining back at me. I am enough.

I Am Enough bracelet 

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