Could You Be Sabotaging Your Own Pregnancy Health?
Every pregnant woman would surely want to be in the best of health throughout her pregnancy. Still, have you ever wondered why you seem to feel poorly at times? Find out how you might be responsible for some of the times when you’re not feeling your best, and what can you do about it.
Don’t take “Eating for two” literally
It’s not likely that a tiny fetus growing inside you is going to need that much in terms of calories. Hence, eating for two is a mere reminder to eat for your health and that of your baby’s as well, and not double the portions you normally have! What matters to your baby is adequate nutrition to help the little one grow and develop. The rule of thumb here is that, you need about 300 calories more than your normal calorie intake.
Keep in mind too, that excess weight during pregnancy can put you at risk of conditions like preeclampsia, gestational diabetes and could even necessitate a C-section during your delivery.
So, if you have literally been eating for two all this while, it’s high time to check your diet. Stick to three portions of fruits, fill up on greens and raw vegetables and chomp on nuts and eggs for the right kind of proteins. About six small balanced meals throughout the day accompanied by lots of fluids should set you back on the right track.
Self medicating, are we?
Many pregnant women are unaware that they’re not supposed to be using antacids, paracetamol or even certain acne creams! Self medication can be dangerous for your pregnancy as are some types of beauty treatments. Take care that they do not give way to congenital abnormalities in your unborn baby.
Don’t ditch your prescribed meds!
If you’re on prescribed meds or supplements which you feel are responsible for some unfavourable changes in your well-being, talk to your doctor for a change of brand. These supplements may be necessary for your health and you shouldn’t go without them. If acidity, headache and acne is troubling, talk to your doctor for advice on safe and effective solutions.
Not getting enough rest
The hormonal and physical changes that happen within your body during pregnancy demand that you get more rest so this is certainly no time to be too busy to catch enough sleep!
The less sleep you get, the more tired and worn out you’re bound to feel. Instead of sacrificing sleep, you should try to make up for any deficit whenever you can. Sleep also helps reserve your energy and strength for the rigours of labour and childbirth to come.
If you think you’re lacking of sleep, try going to bed an hour earlier and waking up an hour later. Too much housework? Hire a maid or ask help from family members!
There is a fine line between getting enough rest and oversleeping.
One keeps you feeling energized and refreshed while the other tends to make your body tired, worn out and even crave more sleep!
No prizes for guessing which is which!
Giving in too much to cravings
Well, what can we say? Pregnancy has always been linked to cravings for something sweet, fatty or fried! While it’s no harm indulging now and then, it will be wiser to limit your sweet intake after the second trimester to prevent the chances of suffering from gestational diabetes and other health problems.
It’s not that we’re implying you stay away completely from your favourite bar of chocolate, but rather, we’re advising you to practice some moderation when it comes to pregnancy cravings.
Being too sedentary
Being in a state of inactivity during pregnancy can harm your body and do more damage to your well being than you imagine. Exercise on the other hand helps to combat stress hormones, boosts circulation, prepare the body for the rigours of labour and delivery while contributing to fetal growth and development.
So, do make a conscious effort to move that body as much as you can. Ideally, start exercising from the initial days of your pregnancy. If you are a beginner, discuss your plan with your doctor and how you should go about it and start making some time for it. A quick stroll in the park, walks after dinner or in the morning or even joining a pregnancy yoga class – it doesn’t matter which you choose, just get moving for better pregnancy health.
No birth plan?
- Are you comfortable with your doctor?
- Are the hospital staff helpful so far in answering all your inquiries regarding your birthing day?
If you have answered ‘no’ to either or both, you may be stressing out over these matters and this, Mama, is definitely not good for you. It’s time to make a few changes now, and you can start by making yourself a neat and clear-cut birthing plan with everything you have decided on clearly stated in it. Hand a copy over to everyone who is directly involved with your pregnancy journey and your delivery.
Let’s Not Underestimate the values of ante-natal classes!
The ultimate aim of an ante-natal class is to prepare a new mum-to-be for her birthing experience and early motherhood. Most maternity hospitals provide birth education classes and there is likely to be a range of private classes locally available. There are even some online courses available.
Ante natal classes should include some of the following:
- Biological info about the process of labour and childbirth
- Important info on medical procedures and interventions
- Tips and advice on relaxation techniques
- The opportunity to learn about and experiment with different birth positions
- Info on pain relief choices
- Relevant tips on caring for your newborn baby and also some idea of what to expect after the birth and in early parenting
Enroll yourself in a class during your first trimester so that you will have a lot of time to learn and do the right things for you and your baby. If you have missed out then look for a crash course in an antenatal program.