April 23, 2024
Healthy Pregnancy Tips

77 Tips for a Healthy Pregnancy

Congratulations! You’ve just received the most important news of your life. Get ready for the beginning of nine months of amazing changes and some challenges along the way.

If you’re pregnant or planning to get pregnant, you should know that it’s important for you to take care of yourself and your future baby. If you’re like most women, you probably have a hundred questions about what you should do to make sure that you and your baby are healthy.

After all, pregnant women receive a lot of pregnancy tips—solicited and whatnot—from everyone around them, from complete strangers to their own family members. Although they may mean well, it’s important that you make sure you’re getting the right information. No mother is more confident than an informed mother.

You most likely have heard of some of the basics such as not smoking or drinking and getting lots of rest as well as the essentials like eating healthy foods and taking vitamins.

Your health is more vital now than ever before. What you put in your body before, after, and during your pregnancy can have an effect on your baby’s health. Women who have proper nutrition and regular exercise and who follow all the prenatal care necessities have a lower risk of experiencing complications during pregnancy. They also tend to give birth to a healthy baby.

As to be expected, your body will experience a lot of changes as your baby grows within you. You may notice some differences in your body, your lifestyle, and your emotions. This is why you need as much information about what’s happening as possible.

You probably feel unsure about some of the things you’ve heard so far (like ‘what are compression socks?’ and ‘why shouldn’t you change the cat litter?’). And don’t worry!

You are not alone…

Many moms-to-be are understandably overwhelmed by everything they have to know and they all seem to come at once, which is why we’ve compiled this list of everything we think you should know so you don’t have to go everywhere to find what you want.

In this list, you’ll find valuable advice and tips from mothers, experts, and staunch supporters of a healthy pregnancy for women everywhere. You will find answers for your questions about the right foods to eat, techniques to sleep better, and even the best products to buy to make the next nine months a little bit easier for you and your baby.

So go right ahead and dive in.

Chapter 1: Pregnancy Food Tips

During pregnancy, a woman’s macronutrient and micronutrient requirements increase. She needs as much energy and good nutrition as she can get. In general, a pregnant woman requires 2,200 to 2,900 calories per day, according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Not much needs to change during the first trimester, but when the second trimester rolls in, she has to eat an extra 340 calories a day and an additional 450 calories in her last trimester.

This means that a pregnant woman has to eat more, but in order to manage her weight and ensure optimum health for her baby, she needs to have a healthy balanced diet. This actually goes way back to her pre-conception days.

If you’re planning to conceive, you should make sure that you’re eating the right kind of food as early as now. But what actually should you eat? Do you need to take supplements too? What kinds of food should you eat? What kinds of food are bad for you and for baby? How is diet linked to your baby’s development?

For answers to these questions and more advice, check out the resources below.

Weight Gain During Pregnancy

With a baby growing inside you, it’s safe to expect that you’ll be gaining weight. Just how much weight you gain depends on many factors such as your weight before pregnancy.

Weight gain varies among pregnant women. You may know someone who gained merely 25 pounds, and you’re worried that you’re gaining more than what’s usual. Although it’s not healthy to compare your weight to that of others, it’s best that you know exactly how much weight is safe for you to gain by consulting your doctor.

Make it about your health and that of your baby. People may have an opinion on your weight but don’t let it be the yardstick for what’s healthy for your pregnancy. Remember that weight gain during pregnancy is normal and healthy as your body makes room for your growing uterus, placenta, amniotic fluid, and of course your baby.

The links below will give you more ideas on weight gain during pregnancy.

Coffee During Pregnancy

As soon as you found out you’re pregnant, you knew your life has changed. No more late nights, no more eating whatever you want, and no more coffee—or maybe not.

A lot of new mothers think that being pregnant means that they cannot have their daily dose of coffee. This is partly true and false. Yes, you shouldn’t overdo your caffeine intake as it does get across the placenta and has been linked to low birth weight, but you can still drink some coffee as long as it doesn’t exceed the 300mg daily limit.

To give you an idea, drip coffee contains the most caffeine with up to 240 mg of caffeine per 240 mL. Brewed and instant rank second and third, respectively. If you’re a Starbucks lover, one Grande brewed coffee is equivalent to 473 mL. That’s 330 mg of caffeine—30 mg over the daily limit. As a general rule, pregnant women can have up to two small cups of brewed coffee per day.

The caffeine limit includes other sources of caffeine like soda drinks and chocolate, so be careful when combining drinks. If you’ve reached the limit but craving for more, it’s advisable to drink decaffeinated coffee instead.

The following links will give your more information on the effects of coffee during pregnancy.

Alcohol and Pregnancy

Drinking alcohol during pregnancy is widely believed to be harmful to an unborn child. Expectant mothers are advised to avoid alcoholic drinks throughout their pregnancies.

Some recent studies reveal that drinking alcohol in the first trimester does not seem to affect the baby negatively, which suggests that minimal alcohol intake early in the pregnancy may be okay. This, of course, doesn’t speak for the second and third trimesters when most of the baby’s development takes place.

There are in fact mothers who occasionally drink while pregnant. Still, there is not enough evidence to show that occasional drinks cause little to no harm. Experts agree that with the absence of really conclusive research we cannot set a safe level of drinking for pregnant women. At the same time, the threat of fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) is very real. This syndrome is associated with physical and cognitive abnormalities in children of mothers who drank while they were pregnant.

This is why the best thing to do is still to abstain from alcohol consumption during pregnancy to be on the safe side.

To give you a balanced view on the issue, we’ve included resources from both sides—those who advise against drinking alcohol and those who are okay with a drink or two.

Pregnancy Supplements

Even if you’re eating a healthy balanced diet, you may not be getting all the nutrients you need to develop a healthy baby. This is where supplements come in. Prenatal vitamins, in particular, can fill any nutritional gaps in your daily diet.

Take note that pregnant women are advised to take prenatal vitamins and not just regular vitamins. For one, prenatal vitamins are loaded with more folic acid, which is important in preventing brain and spinal defects in your baby. They also contain iron and other essential nutrients for your baby like vitamin D and calcium.

Below are some articles on the important supplements that you should be taking in the duration of your pregnancy.

Foods to Avoid During Pregnancy

Overall, the best foods for pregnant women are freshly cooked and made with natural ingredients. But have you ever stopped to think about the kinds of food you should not be eating while carrying your baby?

There is definitely a wide array of foods that you should watch out for when you’re pregnant, foods that may harm you or your baby. For instance, it’s widely known that raw or undercooked foods like sushi and raw meat and seafood are possible breeding grounds for bacteria and parasites, but does this precaution apply to all types of sushi and raw meat?

Are there new recommendations that should be considered? The following articles will shed some light on the foods you should totally avoid and some well-known beliefs that may need some clarifications.

Healthy Pregnancy Recipes

Aside from knowing the foods to avoid, it’s important to choose your everyday meals wisely. It can be hard to do this sometimes because of the pregnancy cravings, but keep in mind that being careful about your diet is not just about you now.

Pregnancy is the best time to adopt the healthiest diet possible because whatever you eat and drink affects your growing baby. He needs specific vitamins and minerals for his growth and development.

Thankfully, there are mamas everywhere who are ready to share the meals and beverages that satisfied both their cravings and nutritional needs. Check out the links below for more than 70 recipes that will keep you fit and your baby healthy.

Pregnancy Snacks

Pregnant women often find themselves hungry. In times like this, you probably wish you have a delicious snack nearby.

Even when you’re hungry all the time, eating for two isn’t about eating a lot of the same foods you’re used to; it’s about eating nutritious, high-quality foods. The nutrients you give her today through your diet will impact your baby’s current and future health.

Contrary to what some people think, healthy snacks don’t have to taste boring. They can have the same flavor, color, and sweetness as our favorite junk foods—without the empty calories.

Below, you’ll find articles that will give you some brilliant ideas for your next snack, brunch, or breakfast. They’re all healthy and, most importantly, delicious.

Morning Sickness Diet

Many pregnant mommies complain that what everyone knows as “morning sickness” isn’t really “morning” sickness. The kind of nausea, vomiting, and unease brought about by pregnancy is not confined to just the early hours of the day. For a lot of women, it actually lasts throughout the day.

This intense feeling of being sick usually happens during the first trimester, but in some extreme cases, known as “hyperemesis gravidarum,” it can be really intense and can even last up to the third trimester for some.

During periods of “morning” sickness, it can be hard to keep food down, which can become a problem when you’re at a stage where you’re trying to get extra calories to sustain your growing belly.

Luckily, there are tons of advice from mothers who’ve gone through the same thing and experts who’ve written on the subject of morning sickness. Below are some articles with tips on what to eat to ease this often uncomfortable side effect of child-bearing.

Chapter 2: Smoking During Pregnancy

It’s common knowledge that smoking is bad for one’s health. It’s been proven to cause lung cancer, heart disease, and many other health issues. For pregnant women, there are additional risks involved, namely birth defects, premature delivery, and infant mortality.

A lot of mothers do quit smoking after finding out they’re pregnant. However, recent research revealed that 1 in 14 women continue smoking during their pregnancy. This is of course bad news for the baby’s health as nicotine, carbon monoxide, and other poisonous substances get to the baby through the placenta.

If you have a smoking habit and just found out you’re pregnant, it’s best for you and your baby if you quit as soon as possible. Your baby will thank you for it later.

For more information on how smoking affects you and your baby, see the articles below.

How to Quit Smoking While Pregnant

Pregnancy is the perfect time to quit smoking. It’s one of the most important decisions you can make to ensure that your baby is healthy during and after your pregnancy.

While quitting is definitely beneficial, this is not to say it’s easy. The nicotine in cigarettes is addictive and it can sometimes be a habit that’s hard to break.

Pregnant mothers who successfully kick the habit use different methods. Some use nicotine patches and sprays, which are considered safe for pregnant women if done under the supervision of a doctor. There are also others who ditch the chemicals and try counselling instead, while there are those who quit cold turkey.

A different method may work for you, but the important thing is to develop the determination to quit smoking for your baby.

Fortunately, you don’t have to do this on your own. Here is some advice on how to successfully kick the habit:

How to Pressure Your Partner to Stop Smoking

Many women quit smoking during pregnancy, but most of the time they are still exposed to second-hand smoke from friends and family who smoke around them. This puts the mother and baby at risk of miscarriage, premature birth, learning disorders in the child, and even Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). This is why it’s important for you and your partner to quit smoking during your pregnancy.

If you have a partner who’s trying to quit smoking, try your best to encourage him without being aggressive about it. Studies show that nagging does not do much to make someone give up smoking.

Remember that quitting can be a stressful time for your partner because of the symptoms of withdrawal. The best you can do is ease the burden by being encouraging and supportive.

Here are some ways that you can help your partner quit.

Chapter 3: Medication During Pregnancy

Many pregnancies are unplanned. This is why some women may be taking medications without knowing they’re pregnant.

Although there are medicines that are approved for use during pregnancy, the effects of most medications have not been adequately studied, so it’s important to be vigilant about the medications you’re taking, especially in the first three months of pregnancy.

In fact, you should talk to your healthcare provider before taking any medicines. Your doctor will help you consider whether the benefits of taking a particular medicine outweigh the risks. Read the following articles for more information on medications during pregnancy.

Medications to Avoid During Pregnancy

When you’re expecting, you’re probably wondering about the types of medication that you should not be taking while pregnant. Before your pregnancy, you’re probably used to buying over-the-counter drugs for headaches and colds. This is something that you should avoid doing when you get pregnant—especially during the first 8 weeks.

Particularly, avoid taking painkillers and antihistamine as they can adversely affect the development of your baby’s heart, lungs, and brain. As the months progress, the number of prohibited medicines can get higher.

See the links below for more details on specific medications to avoid while you’re pregnant.

Chapter 4: Morning Sickness Tips During Pregnancy

For most women, the realization of their pregnancy begins with bouts of nausea and vomiting. Around 75% of pregnant women experience some nausea or vomiting during the first trimester, which usually stops at 12 weeks.

In general, morning sickness is normal and not considered harmful to your baby. For some women, however, it can be severe. Excessive vomiting and nausea may cause expectant mothers to lose electrolytes and nutrients. If you experience nausea that’s accompanied by severe vomiting, you may have this condition. You should talk to your doctor about possible treatment options. Do not self-medicate.

For most pregnant moms, nausea or vomiting can occur at any time of the day and not just in the morning. For some, it may even last the entire day. Here is some advice on surviving morning sickness and its effects.

Chapter 5: Exercise Tips for Pregnant Women

Being pregnant does not mean that you have to stop all forms of exercise. Doing some form of physical activity brings benefits to your health throughout pregnancy and prepares your body for birth.

Still, it’s important to be wise about the kind of exercise regimen you will adopt. You should modify the level of exercise according to your pregnancy.

For women who have delicate pregnancies, make sure to consult your doctor about a suitable exercise program for you or your baby, especially if you have high blood pressure, preeclampsia, heart problems, or any pregnancy risks.

It’s best to follow a light to moderate exercise routine without straining yourself. As a rule of thumb, it’s a light exercise if you can talk to someone while doing it, but if you’re getting breathless doing the routine, then you could be exerting yourself too much.

Other than this, it should be okay to exercise while pregnant. The articles below will give you more tips and suggestions on how to work out during your pregnancy.

Kegel Exercises for Pregnancy

Pregnancy and childbirth put a lot of pressure on a woman’s body. A lot of first-time moms worry about what would happen to certain parts of their body after birth.

The pelvic floor, in particular, carries much of the baby’s weight, which in turn causes some organs in that area to feel loose. It’s not uncommon for pregnant women to lose a portion of their bladder control and experience incontinence.

For women who are preparing to give birth, there are certain forms of exercise that can help strengthen the muscles in the pelvic floor.

Kegels are simple exercises that pregnant women can do anytime, anywhere. They are specially designed to exercise the area around the genitals. It’s believed to improve bladder control even after giving birth.

Check the following for more on kegel exercises.

Stretching Exercises for Pregnancy

As you await the arrival of your little bundle of joy, you probably look forward to the day when all the pains of pregnancy go away.

Aches and pains are an undeniable part of pregnancy as your body undergoes many changes that help accommodate your growing baby. You may have accepted these pains as normal, but the truth is you really don’t have to. There are steps that can help minimize the aches.

Stretching exercises are low-impact activities that can help ease common pregnancy pains like backaches, constipation, swelling, and insomnia. They can also improve your emotional health by boosting your mood and energy. Not to mention that it helps tone your muscles and prepare your body for labor.

Exercises like these make it possible for pregnant women to be fit and healthy without risking their baby’s health. Read the articles below for instructions on how to do stretches at home.

Tailor Sitting Exercise

Aside from stretching exercises, pregnant women can practice tailor sitting, a posture named after the sitting position of tailors or dressmakers. This exercise thrusts the uterus forward, making it easier to push during labor.

Tailor sitting strengthens the muscles of the pelvis, back, and thighs. It also improves blood circulation, particularly in the lower body. It’s also very easy to do. See the articles below for more illustration.

Chapter 6: Writing a Birth Plan

One pregnancy trend that’s worth following is the creation of a birth plan. It’s especially crucial for moms who want to have a natural birth.

A birth plan is a detailed outline of the things you want and do not want for your delivery. It’s about having your preferences in writing, clearly spelled out. Preparing your birth plan also helps you become informed about the birthing process.

More importantly, it acts as a guide to your birth medical team as you let them know about your personal choices even before your baby arrives. This way, they can support you during labor in a way that doesn’t make you feel left out and voiceless about what happens to you and your baby. Here are some posts about birth plan writing. There’s even an example birth plan for you to see.

Chapter 7: Educating Yourself During Pregnancy

As we all know, knowledge is power. With the many questions that come up during pregnancy, it’s important for pregnant women to be informed about the things they will experience—things like pregnancy precautions, labor, and staying healthy after birth.

Educating yourself is the best way to empower yourself as a mother-to-be. Simple steps like reading a pregnancy book, enrolling in birth class, and watching videos are just a few of the things you can do to get started.

There’s a lot of unknowns surrounding pregnancy. One way to overcome your fears is by talking to other expecting moms and joining a birth community near you. The more you know, the more confident you are that you’ll deliver a healthy baby.

These articles will give you more ideas about the important things you should know while you’re pregnant.

Pregnancy Books

Being pregnant gives you a lot of free time. One good way to spend this is with you warmly tucked in a corner reading a pregnancy book.

Many books claim that they have all the answers to your questions, but which ones are really the best? This is actually not an easy question to answer as we all have different tastes in reading.

Many books are informative, focusing on the nitty-gritty of pregnancy and childbirth. Then there are those that fill you with warmth through inspirational stories and anecdotes. For the less serious types, there are books out there that can make you laugh and nod in agreement with a funnier portrayal of pregnancy.

Whatever your taste in books is, try to pick a book that gives you accurate information even while keeping you entertained. Here’s a roundup of the best maternity books in the market as reviewed by avid readers and certified mothers.

Childbirth Classes

There’s a class for everything, even childbirth. First-time mothers can benefit from attending prenatal education classes with their partners, while seasoned parents can always learn something new about how to better take care of their next baby.

A 2016 study found that pregnant moms who took childbirth classes were able to deliver their babies naturally than moms who didn’t take any classes. Having a vaginal delivery is beneficial for women as it usually results in faster recovery.

So whether it’s your first or ‘nth’ time being pregnant, try to sign up for a childbirth class if you haven’t already. The following articles will give you more information about these classes.

Chapter 8: Doing Chores When You’re Pregnant

If you’re wondering whether you can continue doing chores around the house, it’s important to know that there are certain precautions you should take and certain tasks that you should try to avoid.

If you’re having a sensitive pregnancy, it’s best to limit your physical exertion. For instance, you shouldn’t be the one vacuuming and mopping, doing the laundry, or changing your kitty’s litter box (Check the articles below to find out why). Any pregnant woman, on the other hand, should generally avoid carrying really heavy loads like buckets of water and laundry baskets.

Don’t hesitate to ask for help around the house. Delegate tasks that require some heavy lifting. Read up to find out how you can stay safe while doing household chores.

Managing the Household During Pregnancy

Pregnancy, unfortunately, doesn’t exempt women from worrying about their families and the likely pileup of things to do around the house.

Even when you have a lot of things in mind though, try to take things slowly. With the struggles of first trimester morning sickness and the many changes going on in your body in later months, you have enough on your plate to worry about.

With the use of a few tips and tricks and support from your family, you will be able to manage your home without comprising your health and that of your baby.

Chapter 9: Weight Gain During Pregnancy

A lot of women are worried about the weight they’ll gain during pregnancy. It’s best to strike a balance in this department.

Too little weight gain could be harmful to your baby, but so could too much weight gain. Remember that you need at least 300 extra calories or around 2,000 total calories per day, so this is definitely not the time to go on a weight loss program.

Any weight you gain can be lost after you give birth, so worry about that later. For now, focus on gaining weight the healthy way. Get some helpful advice about weight gain from the sources below.

Chapter 10: Clothing Tips for Pregnancy

Being pregnant doesn’t have to mean that you should wear unattractive clothes. These days, pregnant women have a lot of fashionable options in clothing and they’re not all maternity dresses.

Remember that when you look good, you’ll most likely feel good, so don’t hesitate to experiment with the latest trends as well as timeworn tips on dressing well while pregnant, such as avoiding tight belts and girdles, finding a perfectly fitting bra, and wearing low-heeled shoes instead of high heels.

Check out these articles for additional tips on maternity clothing with style.

Dressing for Work

When you’re working and pregnant at the same time, it could be hard sometimes to decide on the best clothes to wear to work. Add to this the emotional rollercoaster that is your pregnancy hormones and it can be hard sometimes to dress well.

Even when you’re not feeling that great, keep on dressing up. Taking care of yourself helps improve your self-esteem.

When it comes to choosing the best work clothes, try to choose clothes that are one or two sizes bigger than your current size. This allows your body to grow into your clothes as the month goes by. Choose comfort before fashion. See the articles below for more styling tips.

Proper Shoes for Pregnancy

Pregnancy changes our bodies in a lot of ways. One lesser known area of change is our legs and feet. Because of the swelling in these parts, it can be painful sometimes just to walk or stand around.

For some women, feet size even gets bigger, making it necessary not just to buy new clothes but new shoes too. Having excellent shoes also gives support to your feet as you gain weight in the months to come.

Here’s a guide on great, supportive shoes that you should consider buying.

Chapter 11: Beauty Tips for Pregnancy

Are you wary of the changes that your pregnancy will make on your looks? Pregnancy hormones affect women differently; some bloom during this period while others may feel dried up instead.

Again, these changes are natural. The best you can do is to embrace these changes while not forgetting to take care of yourself. For one, you don’t always have to buy beauty products to feel good. What’s important is to pamper yourself the natural way such as drinking lots of water and eating right.

Below is a list of beauty tips for pregnant mamas everywhere.

Wearing Sunscreen During Pregnancy

Now that you’re pregnant, protecting yourself against the sun’s rays is more important than ever. Even going outside of your house could pose some danger of getting sunburnt. The reason for this is that during pregnancy your skin’s melanocytes, or the cells that produce your skin color, easily react to ultraviolet rays, which can result in dark brown spots on your skin.

This makes you twice more vulnerable against the sun’s harmful rays. So it’s best to wear sunscreen whenever you venture outside of the house in broad daylight. It doesn’t matter if you’re just picking up some groceries or sunbathing in the beach—you need a sunscreen of at least SPF 30 to be protected.

Follow these tips to make sure you’re always safe under the sun.

Makeup Tips for Pregnant Women

Not everyone will experience that supposedly “natural” glow that pregnant women have. Still, it doesn’t mean that a mom-to-be can’t have fun with her look.

As an expecting mom, you deserve to feel beautiful. If this glow doesn’t come naturally, don’t be afraid to create it for yourself. With the right application of makeup, you’ll find that your pregnancy could become the most blooming point of your life.

Some essential tips like using eye cream and concealer to cover dark circles and adopting the natural look are just a few worth knowing.

To help you with more makeup tips, browse through these articles to help you create the look that you’ve always imagined for your pregnancy selfie.

Chapter 12: Travel Tips During Pregnancy

Planning to visit your family late in your pregnancy? Thinking of seeing the pyramids for the first time for your “babymoon”? With proper planning and preparation, we don’t see any reason not to go for it.

For women with low-risk pregnancies, travelling, even in the second or third trimester, is generally considered safe. Still, it’s safer to talk to your doctor first before booking that flight to Puerto Rico, especially if you have a high-risk pregnancy.

When you get the green light, don’t forget to do your due diligence and research your destination beforehand as traveling when pregnant can have a few travel requirements (e.g. Don’t go to countries with Zika virus).

For more travel tips, check out these articles from true-blooded travelling moms.

‘Babymoon’ Guide

A lot of couples these days go on little trips before the baby’s arrival. Aptly called a ‘babymoon,’ this trip may give you and your partner some precious time for your romance before all the attention shifts to the new addition to the family.

The destination may be big or small, in the country or overseas. What’s more important is to find a place where you can relax and spend a few romantic days with your partner. (Going solo is also an option).

Here are a few things you need to remember when you are planning your babymoon.

Chapter 13: Sleeping Tips During Pregnancy

You may be expecting to get little sleep after your baby is born, but you should also know that it can be hard to sleep even during pregnancy.

For one, you get extra surges of progesterone, which speed up your bodily functions in a way that can make sleeping difficult in your first trimester. In the next three months, things may ease up a little and sleep might get easier, but in the last leg of your pregnancy, it may get even harder to catch the ZZZs.

One reason why pregnant women have sleeping difficulty is due to the rapid growth of the fetus. As your belly grows, you’ll most likely find it hard to sleep on your back. Other possible causes are the constant urge to pee while sleeping, shortness of breath, leg cramps, and other aches that make sleeping almost impossible.

Good thing there are certain products and techniques that can help you sleep better even while pregnant.

Insomnia During Pregnancy

Insomnia is defined as a habitual inability to sleep. Just as mentioned earlier, there are several possible causes for this problem. Here’s a few: frequent bathroom trips, hormones, and anxiety over giving birth.

This condition is pretty common for pregnant women though as it appears that an estimated three quarters (75%) of pregnant mothers report having insomnia while pregnant. This means you’re not alone in this experience.

Here are a few tips on how to overcome insomnia during pregnancy.

Chapter 14: Pain in Pregnancy

Pregnancy comes with all sorts of aches and pains. At the very least, you might be suffering from stomach pains, heartburn, or swollen feet, which are common conditions for pregnant women.

Note that your growing belly is putting pressure on your joints and ligaments, producing pain in different parts of your body like your back, pelvis, and feet. As you get closer to your due date, these pains may become more distinct.

It’s important to manage the pain by finding pain relief that’s safe for you and your baby. Doctors don’t usually recommend using medication to handle the pain. Less invasive methods like massage and relaxation techniques are the usual initial treatment.

If they don’t work, certain drugs like acetaminophen or Tylenol may be recommended when necessary. It’s best to talk to your doctor about the best treatment method to use.

Here are some tips and explanations on the kinds of pain that pregnant women experience during pregnancy.

Water Therapy for Aching Joints

We know the benefits of water to our overall health such as how it supports our kidney function and keeps our skin hydrated. But did you know that joint pains can be caused by dehydration?

It’s especially important for pregnant women to drink lots of water as they are prone to aching joints. There are also other forms of water therapy that could be beneficial for pregnancy.

Immersion is one form of exercise that pregnant women can safely do, and it’s recommended by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). The buoyancy of water helps relieve the pressure on your joints by letting the belly float. It also helps promote your heart’s health by lowering blood pressure and heart rate, which speeds up when we’re under stress.

So don’t forget to have some water therapy by drinking lots of water and enjoying a swim or two. Here are other benefits of water for pregnant women.

Consulting a Chiropractor

It’s necessary for pregnant mothers to visit their doctors or gynecologists, but did you know that it’s also beneficial to visit a chiropractor? A chiropractor is a medical professional trained to treat pain and injury. They are also trained to work with pregnant women.

With a chiropractor, you can correct and align your spine, which can help with back pain. You can also have them balance your pelvis. This makes for an easier labor later on. Both of these treatments will be done gently and will not harm you or your baby.

See the articles below for more information about the benefits of seeing a chiropractor.

Back Pain Relief

Back pain is a common symptom during pregnancy with an estimated 70 percent of pregnant women complaining of backaches.

With the ever-changing shifts in a pregnant woman’s center of gravity, it’s understandable for her to experience discomfort in the back area. This doesn’t mean, however, that you should just accept this as a reality for nine months.

Even without medication, there are tons of natural remedies that your doctor or doula can recommend to ease and even totally eliminate your back pain.

Here are some tips about back pain relief that can make your pregnancy as comfortable as possible.

Abdominal Pain When Pregnant

Aside from back pain, it’s possible that you might experience some abdominal pain too. It could be mild or, in some cases, sharp.

This can be caused by increased blood flow to the uterus during the first trimester or Braxton-Hicks (false labor) symptoms in the second and third trimesters. It could also be a sign of more serious health conditions like a miscarriage or preeclampsia.

What’s challenging sometimes is knowing when to shrug off abdominal pain as normal and when to seek medical attention. To be safe of course, it’s always a good idea to call your doctor if you experience any kind of pain that causes you discomfort.

But to keep you informed, here are some guidelines on the kind of abdominal pain you’ll encounter in pregnancy and some natural remedies to counteract abdominal pain.

Chapter 15: Work Tips for Pregnant Women

If you’re pregnant and working, you might be wondering how you can handle work with all the seemingly unpredictable demands of pregnancy. Yes, it’s perfectly okay to continue working (unless you do manual labor, which can be hard for your growing fetus), but it sure comes with its own challenges.

For one, you might worry about making that fateful announcement to the office. It’s a good idea to delay this announcement a little bit, however, until the first trimester passes, given how around 50% of pregnancies end up as a miscarriage.

When you do decide to tell people at work, your boss should be the first person to know as a courtesy. Here are some tips on how to tell your boss without risking losing your job.

Productivity Tips

Staying productive at work is a challenge. But when you’re pregnant, it gets more and more challenging because of the changes your body is experiencing. Often, work is the last thing you want to think about.

Still, being pregnant doesn’t have to mean that you can’t be an effective employee. With efficient work management, it’s possible to stay productive on the job.

To show you, here are some tips on handling common issues like morning sickness and stress at work. There are also some recommendations on viable working opportunities for pregnant women.

Know Your Rights

Even with the existence of laws that protect pregnant women, discrimination still happens in the workplace. There are still women who face discrimination or even fired from their jobs after they reveal their pregnancy.

That’s why it’s important for you to know your rights as an employee. Under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, companies with 15 employees or more must treat female applicants and employees the same way they treat others. Being fired or not hired because you’re pregnant is against the law.

Know more about your rights from the resources below.

Chapter 16: Pregnancy Safety Tips

Pregnant women get a lot of unsolicited advice from people around them. You probably heard tons of do’s and don’ts about pregnancy.

It’s important that you’re able to separate fact from fiction and focus more on the most essential things to know about keeping you and your baby safe.

The following articles can help shed light on important safety tips for everyday things that you do such as driving a car and cleaning your house.

Chapter 17: Environmental Risks During Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a sensitive time for any mother. It’s normal to feel vulnerable against the many threats that surround you, especially as the hazards are not just in the things you eat or do but it can also be in the environment you live in.

Many doctors do not warn against threats in the environment like chemicals and pesticides nor the potential hazards inside your home. Exposure to these substances can adversely affect your growing baby, possibly causing low birth weight, premature birth, and other birth defects.

It’s important to be informed on the environmental risks that pose a threat to your pregnancy. Read the following for more information.

Chapter 18: Pet Tips When Pregnant

Some expectant parents who are also pet owners sometimes worry about how their dog or cat will respond to a new baby.

The amazing thing about our pets is that they do sense when a woman is pregnant. They’ve got an excellent sense of smell and hearing that allow them to know this. Of course, they also sense that there’s a change in their owner’s behavior.

Even if you’re having a new addition to the family, you don’t have to get rid of your pet in the process. With proper management and some preparation, you’ll see that it’s possible to prepare your first “babies” for the arrival of a newborn. Here are some articles to help you handle this new situation.

Chapter 19: Your Emotional Health During Pregnancy

Pregnancy can be an emotional rollercoaster. Aside from looking after your physical condition, you need to watch your overall emotional health. When you feel happy, your baby will be happy too.

This also allows you to manage stress better and maintain healthy relationships with your partner and family. This is especially important if you feel overwhelmed by the changes that your pregnancy brings. Statistics, in fact, shows that one in ten pregnant women do experience depression at some point during their pregnancy.

Checking on your emotions helps you deal with issues like stress and anxiety early on and instead foster a calm, loving environment for your baby.

Learn more about how you can manage your emotions during this important phase in your life.

Stress During Pregnancy

Along with the news of your pregnancy comes worries and concerns about the future. It’s definitely normal for pregnant women to feel stressed during this period. Some do fine managing stress during pregnancy but there are those who are overwhelmed by it and end up having physical manifestations like insomnia and headaches.

If it continues for a long period of time, stress can lead to long-term health problems like heart disease and high blood pressure. It’s also been linked to low birth weight in babies and giving birth too early.

This is why doctors recommend stress reduction techniques to help manage pregnancy stress. The articles below should give you more details on the causes and effects of stress and, more importantly, ways to manage it.

Relaxation Tips for Pregnancy

Feeling tense and anxious can prevent you from getting a good night’s sleep. Studies found that close to 10% of pregnant women develop anxiety disorders; a higher percentage suffers from symptoms of stress.

This can’t be good for you or your baby. Instead of thinking about all the things that could go wrong, cherish the things that are right—including the fact that you’re expecting your own baby. So breathe in and out and relax.

To help you, here are several relaxation tips to put your mind and body at ease and make sleep possible throughout your pregnancy.

Abusive Relationship During Pregnancy

Unfortunately, pregnancy isn’t always a pleasant time for everyone. Statistically, there is one in six women who reports being abused while pregnant. The abuse can come in many forms, particularly physical and emotional abuse.

An abusive partner may try to control a pregnant woman by preventing her from seeing her family or friends. Such a relationship causes strain on an expectant mother’s psyche and may lead to depression and anxiety. In a lot of cases, the abuse doesn’t stop there.

An abusive partner may exhibit jealousy towards the unborn child and try to harm the mother and her baby. This leads to physically abusive patterns like pushing, slapping, choking, or even hitting the belly.

Staying in an unhealthy, abusive relationship puts both the mother and her child in grave danger. It’s important to know that there are organizations who are ready to help women leave this kind of situation. You can check out the following articles for more helpful advice.

Tips to Ease Your Fears

Pregnant women worry about a lot of things. It doesn’t help sometimes that their hormones are at an all-time high during this time, with the surge of hormones like estrogen and progesterone.

As a pregnant woman, you probably worry about certain issues like finances and healthcare. You also probably fear that you’ll develop pregnancy complications later on. But the truth is these complications are unlikely if you don’t have them already and if you’re a healthy person.

Nonetheless, pregnancy is the perfect time to develop life skills that will last you a lifetime. Learning relaxation techniques like stretching and deep breathing is one way to keep yourself calm and manage the stress. Remember that most of the things you worry about are likely not that urgent, so take a deep breath and push the negative thoughts away.

Here are other ways you can ease your fears and worries about pregnancy.

Chapter 20: Planning Your Baby’s Arrival

There are so many things to do when preparing for your baby’s arrival, from buying baby supplies to planning parenting styles and schedules.

These advance plans can make your hectic post-birth life a little bit easier. For instance, you need to make decisions on which healthcare providers you’d like to care for you and your baby. Which hospital is it? Would you like your partner beside you or just your doula? Are you going to write a birth plan? These are just some questions to consider.

Here are some important tips on how to prepare for your baby’s arrival.

Packing Your Birth Bag

We know you’re excited to finally meet your baby. You’ve probably amassed a lot of baby stuff for the nursery and prepared many of the things your baby will need on a daily basis.

There’s only one more thing left to do: Pack your hospital bag for the day you’ll deliver your baby. As you get closer to your due date, your baby could come any day. It’s important to start packing once you hit 34 weeks.

Prepare items that you’ll need for labor and items for your needs after giving birth, such as a change of clothes. Read on for more on what to pack and what to leave behind.

Baby Registry Checklist

Another important step when preparing for your baby’s arrival is to put together a baby registry. You’re not the only one excited to meet your baby; your family and friends are eager to pitch in and pick presents for your baby.

You can make it easier for them by sharing your baby registry, which is a list of all the things you need or want for your baby. Small products like lovies and bigger essentials like cribs and strollers can be included in this list.

Just the vast array of selections can be overwhelming, so you should make a list beforehand and decide whether you want to go minimalist or all out. Hope the following tips can help.

Decorating Ideas for Baby’s Nursery

There are so many decisions to make before your baby arrives, one of them being your baby’s nursery and its decoration. Should you buy a fancy crib? Do you need a big room? What color should you paint it? There are a thousand questions going through your mind.

If there’s any advice we can give you now, it’s to keep everything simple. Your baby will grow fast, and before you know it he or she is climbing out of the crib and crawling on the floor. Your baby will probably not remember much about the nursery’s decoration. But of course, your child is only a baby once, so if you’re dreaming of making this stage a very special time for your family, then, by all means, do it.

Read on for ideas on decorating the nursery—big, small, or gender neutral.

Chapter 21: Taking Photos of Your Belly

Pregnancy is a precious time in a woman’s life. What better way to keep the memories than to take endless photos of your growing belly.

Many mothers capture week-by-week or even daily photos of their baby bumps for sharing with their friends and family members or even with the whole world through their personal blogs. Even if you don’t have any intentions of publishing or sharing your photos, it’s still very much recommended that you take a few maternity photos of your belly. This is the best way for you to remember the changes your body had to go through and as a reminder that despite the pains, pregnancy is a happy and beautiful time in your life.

Here are a few tips for taking photos of your growing belly.

Chapter 22: Constipation During Pregnancy

Approximately half of pregnant women get constipated at some point during their pregnancy.

Stress, minimal physical activity, and a low-fiber diet can all cause constipation, but one of the main reasons for this is the rise of progesterone in the body, which makes your muscles relax and metabolize food slower and eventually leads to constipation.

Later on in your pregnancy, the problem may get worse when your growing baby pushes on your rectum. See the following articles for other possible causes of constipation and some natural remedies.

Chapter 23: Itchy Skin During Pregnancy

During pregnancy, women experience itchy skin. It could be mild for some and severe for others, but the urge to scratch your skin can drive you mad sometimes.

As soon as you get pregnant, your body prepares itself for your baby by producing lots and lots of hormones. Over time, this hormonal overdrive can leave your skin looking dry and itchy as your blood circulation slows down in the process. Combine this with your skin stretching as your belly grows and you have the perfect recipe for the type of itchy skin that you will want to scratch all day.

The good thing is you don’t have to put up with this for nine long months. There are solutions everywhere, so read about them here.

Chapter 24: Cord Blood Banking

Another trend worth noting is cord blood banking. Cord blood refers to the blood that remains in the umbilical cord and placenta after birth. This ‘magical’ blood contains lifesaving stem cells that can grow into brand-new blood vessels, tissues, and organs.

In the past, this blood is discarded, but there are cord blood banks now that have facilities to store a baby’s cord blood for future use. The stem cells in cord blood have the potential to cure many serious health conditions like autism, cancer, and brain injury.

It can potentially save your child’s life or that of another if you elect to donate it to public banks. There’s a lot more to know about cord blood banking, so we compiled some articles on the subject.

Chapter 25: Money Saving Tips for Moms

It’s easy to lose control of your finances once your baby is born. With the trips to the pediatrician and trips to the mall for some baby shopping, you really don’t have to wonder where all the money goes. According to one report, parents spend an estimated $12,000 just in the baby’s first year.

But this doesn’t have to be the case. Many parents had pulled off raising babies on a budget. There are a few suggestions below on how you can save money while you’re pregnant and even while you’re raising your baby. Simple steps like borrowing maternity clothes or buying secondhand baby items can make a huge difference in your family’s budget.

Read on for more money-saving tips from mothers and savvy savers.

Chapter 26: Insurance for Pregnancy

One important financial concern during pregnancy is your insurance coverage. It’s important to be informed about what the law says about the benefits you’re entitled to receive.

In the US, pregnancy coverage has greater coverage now. Under the Affordable Care Act, all qualified health plans can offer benefits to pregnant women. If you’ve previously purchased insurance, you will have to check if it’s “grandfathered” or not. Grandfathered plans are health plans purchased before March 23, 2010, some of which don’t cover prenatal and childbirth benefits.

For other ways to acquire insurance for pregnancy, see the articles below.

Chapter 27: Pregnancy Tips for Dads-to-be

Pregnancy of course is a woman’s work. However, it doesn’t have to be solo work. We’re pretty sure your partner wants to help too. They just don’t know how.

As you struggle through your pregnancy, you should let your partner support you all the way. If it seems that your partner hasn’t offered support, then it’s your turn to ask for it. You can always school your husband, partner, or boyfriend about the ways you want to be pampered and how you want them to listen whenever you want to vent about the pains and discomfort of pregnancy.

The least we can do is have them read these pregnancy tips for dads-to-be who want to understand how to better support their partners during pregnancy.

Chapter 28: Preventing Miscarriage

Miscarriages aren’t as unusual as people think. It’s estimated that 15-25 percent of all pregnancies end in miscarriage.

It’s common for women who experience this to blame themselves for the miscarriage, but the truth is most miscarriages are linked to genetic abnormalities, which cannot be prevented or fixed. There are a few instances though when a baby is lost for preventable reasons and not genetics.

While there aren’t many effective interventions, living a healthy lifestyle before and during pregnancy is one way to prevent miscarriage. See the articles here for more methods.

Chapter 29: Other Tips for Healthy Pregnancy

Rethinking Your Spa Treatment Style

With all the pains that go with it, pregnancy is possibly the best time to get a spa treatment. The good news is it’s generally okay to go to the spa, but there are certain precautions that you must know first.

For one, it’s not advisable to get inside a sauna and sweat it out because it’s easy for the womb to get overheated. It could be harmful to the fetus if your body temperature reaches above 102 degrees Fahrenheit. You can just try other spa activities that don’t involve getting your body too warm. To be safe, you should also talk to your doctor before heading to the spa.

If you’re planning to go hot tubbing or wondering if it’s okay to get a massage, check out the following articles to see what’s considered safe and unsafe for pregnant women.

Tanning While Pregnant

As soon as summer rolls in, your desire for a good tan comes up. You might be having second thoughts now that you’re pregnant.

Exposing yourself to the sun might be okay during pregnancy but it should be safely managed by wearing the proper sunscreen SPF level and putting a time limit on the exposure. Intentional tanning, on the other hand, should be shelved for now. While there’s no direct evidence yet that tanning harms the baby, there is enough evidence that overexposure to UV rays is harmful to full-grown humans. UV radiation, especially indoor tan beds, is a known cause of skin cancer or malignant melanoma. So this one’s a warning for mothers.

You need to take extra precautions before you even go out and enjoy the sun. Read the articles below for more advice on how to safely tan while pregnant:

Knowing When to Call the Doctor

Your body undergoes a lot of changes during pregnancy, and it could be hard sometimes to know which symptoms are normal and which symptoms are not.

This is why it’s a good idea to set up some guidelines with your doctor for emergencies. You should ask your doctor about the kinds of symptoms that require immediate medical attention and those symptoms that shouldn’t send you speeding for the hospital.

Here’s some guidance to help you tell the difference between what’s dangerous and what’s not.

Chapter 30: Pregnancy Apps for You

Have you ever thought how great it would be if something you’re doing for your pregnancy, like say weekly updates on your baby’s development, could be done by an app? If you did, then you’re in luck because there are tons of pregnancy apps available for free or for a small fee that can really help you manage your pregnancy.

By downloading these apps, you have the necessary information at the tip of your fingers without spending dozens of hours searching online. These apps help you understand what’s going on in your body and keep you organized as you balance everyday responsibilities with the demands of pregnancy.

These apps have been used and reviewed for you.

Chapter 31: Pregnancy Products

Over the next nine months, you’re gonna need all the help you can have when it comes to navigating the joys and challenges of carrying your baby. While you probably have got your baby products covered, you might be missing out on products that will help you get through the pregnancy.

Many soon-to-be moms swear by certain products that make pregnancy a little bit calmer and easier, products like pregnancy pillows and compression socks. These items may seem non-essentials to outsiders but, to pregnant mamas, they’re life-savers.

Here are some tips on the best pregnancy products you’ll want to put your money in.

Pregnancy Books

One of the most essential products to have is a good pregnancy book. This can help answer most of your questions about the ins and outs of pregnancy and prepare you for your nine-month journey ahead.

Every mother has at least one pregnancy book to turn to. It could be one of the all-time favorites and classics or one of the more recently published books that are often humorous and cleverly written. The following is a list of book reviews on two classic pregnancy reads and two more recent ones.

Cameras

Every family needs a camera that will capture all the precious moments at home—moments like baby’s first steps and mama’s belly at its biggest.

With the advancements in phone cameras, it’s easy to just rely on smartphones to take your family or maternity photos. However, if you’re someone who wants the best quality, it doesn’t hurt to spend some cash on digital cameras and camcorders, which will be especially useful if you’re planning to announce your pregnancy in a potentially viral announcement video.

If you’re trying to decide which camera suits your needs best, whether you want to shoot an underwater maternity video or record your baby’s first smile, these review lists got you covered.

Pregnancy Pillows

It can be terribly hard to get a good night’s sleep when you’re pregnant, with the constant need to get up in the middle of the night to pee and the troubling back or hip pains.

The good news is that there are products like pregnancy pillows that are specially designed to help you sleep more comfortably. These pillows come in many styles and size and even more varied price tags. It’s best not to choose based on price, but to choose what feels the most comfortable for you.

Here are a few pregnancy pillows to choose from.

Maternity Bras

One thing that is inevitable with pregnancy is the fact that your breasts will grow. This is why you should choose a maternity bra that will see you through your varying needs during pregnancy. You need a trusty maternity bra for workouts, for socializing, and even for sleep.

You may need to look for a bra that has wider straps and three hooks or made of soft cups and cotton fabrics. You may even want to consider buying a nursing bra as early as now. This gets you ready for when your milk comes in before your baby.

To give you a better idea of what to look for, we put together a list of reviews of the best maternity bras in the market.

Belly Bands & Maternity Belts

Belly bands and maternity belts can help alleviate the pains brought on by your changing body. They give support to your baby bump as it grows.

Belly bands, for one, can help you fit in your clothes, while maternity belts help relieve back pain. Here are some 2018 reviews of the best maternity belts and belly bands out there.

Maternity Pants, Jeans, and Leggings

Finding the perfect pair of maternity jeans is one important step in making sure you have a comfortable pregnancy.

When your favorite pre-baby jeans’ zippers can no longer close, you know that you should start looking for maternity pants, jeans, or leggings, whichever is your preference.

You’ll find that these are the most comfortable pieces of clothing to wear as your belly grows. Note that there are always stylish options in the market. You don’t have to choose something you consider ugly. Check out these reviews to help you find the best pants or jeans for you.

Belly Lotions & Anti-Stretch Mark Creams

Another important concern during pregnancy is the emergence of stretch marks in the body. Combine this with other skin problems like itchy and dry skin and you have a serious need for a good pregnancy lotion.

An anti-stretch mark cream can help improve the appearance of stretch marks and provide much-needed moisture for your skin.

Check out these recommendations from mothers and experts alike.

Compression Socks & Stockings

Swelling is another mainstay of pregnancy, and its favorite spots are usually your feet and legs. One way to deal with the unsightly swelling is to buy a compression sock, which is a doctor-recommended non-evasive treatment for swelling. It can also be the answer to problems you have with varicose veins.

For working mothers, another amazing product is a compression stocking. It also helps lessen the swelling while looking fabulous at work.

All of the compression socks and stockings below will hopefully help you get healthier legs in spite of pregnancy.

Pregnancy Tips for A Healthy Pregnancy

We’ve come to the end of our list of pregnancy must-knows. Now, there’s nothing left to do but to remind you to enjoy this beautiful, one-of-a-kind time in your life.

You’ve prayed for this. You’re prepared for this. We hope that all the tips we’ve shared about important matters like medication and maternity diet and even lesser known topics like pregnancy selfies and constipation will become helpful in your very own pregnancy. Being informed about the things you should expect will help you understand the changes in your body and consciously prepare you for these changes.

All the pregnancy tips aside, what it really takes for your baby to grow healthily is for you to shower him with love and attention. In spite of all the pains and difficulties, do not lose sight of the end-goal: you holding that healthy baby in your arms. You’ll see that all the safety precautions you had to take and habits you had to give up in order to have a healthy pregnancy will be worth it in the end.

Helen

Helen is the founder and chief creative officer of ParentsList. Helen is a mom of three, two boys and a girl, her youngest. She’s a stay-at-home mom who just happens to love writing on the side. She loves spending time with her children, especially on warm, cozy Sunday afternoons when everyone’s just relaxed and enjoying each other’s company.

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