Learning each and every day

My quest to edify myself a bit every day

Archive for the category “Science”

Day 77 – March 8

I was browing around on thebabywearer.com today, and bumped into a thread about uterine fibroids and pregnancy. I remembered that a few years back, a family member had had fibroids during her pregnancy, and so I was curious to find out more about the fibroids. The thread itself wasn’t all that informative . . . a mom was asking for tips on how to deal with the discomfort. Unfortunately for her, she didn’t get many responses. A quick Google search popped up a bunch of websites, and here’s what I gleaned.

Fibroids happen to as many as 1 in 5 women. They are growths on the uterus that are benign. They can either be inside the uterine wall, or outside the uterine wall. Some of the symptoms of fibroids are heavy menstrual flow, discomfort during sex, back ache, urinary frequency, and infertility. Of course, the smaller fibroids can be present for quite some time as they often don’t present with any symptoms.

As they relate to pregnancy, fibroids can cause all sorts of problems, especially if they are located close to the cervix, or if they are crowding out the fetus. They can also be present during a pregnancy and not really cause any problems. In my research, I read that a midwife once delivered a baby, and the woman had a fibroid that was the same size as her child! That poor woman must have been HUGE and VERY uncomfortable! In any case, it’s possible to carry a baby to full term and have no complications. But sometimes, a C-section is necessary (when the fibroid is too close to the cervix), and fibroids can be the cause of preterm labor.

All of the sites I saw stated that fibroids are not treated during pregnancy, as the risk of treating them is greater than the risk of leaving them intact. If I recall correctly, the family member that had fibroids had them removed, but maybe it was after delivery? I don’t remember.

Again, I’m amazed at the things that are totally new to me in relation to my body. I’d heard of fibroids before, but had no idea they were so common. Makes me wonder what other things I’ll be learning about the human body!

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Day 3 – January 3

Today’s lesson was quite fun, it involved fire.  I’m not really a pyro.  Although after the events of tonight, you might beg to differ.  (I forgot about a pot of berry syrup until the 3yo said “it stinks” and DH headed to the kitchen to discover, boiled over syrup and  . . .small flames!  Ooops!  Maybe it runs in the family, though.  Apparently, my FIL was melting lead on the stove as a child, left the pot, and came bac to not only melted lead, but a melted pot.  Said meltage subsequently drained into the stove vent pipe and ended up in a puddle in the oven! )

But, I digress.  So I was working on making some wool pants today.  I had some fabric that I was quite sure was wool, but  Iwanted to be sure.  What to do?  What to do?  A burn test, of course.  I grabbed one of my sewing reference books, matches, a roasting pan and the fabric, then called the kids to the dining room for a little science lesson.

Apparently, you can determine if something is a natural fiber by the way it burns.  Specifically, wool will smell like burned hair (duh!), it’s fibers will curl away from the flame, it’s self-extinguishing (flame goes out when the flame source is removed) and will leave a pile of crushable ash.  Three of the four fibers were very definitely wool.  The last one, which I was pretty sure was wool, or at least I thought I remembered the tag saying 100% wool, burned differently.  It produced black smoke, bubbled when it burned and stunk!  So I’m gonna say that one is NOT wool.

A fun little project, but it left a major stink in the house for a few hours.

Holding the fabric with tweezers

Using a candle stick so as to not spill wax

The resulting ash

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