You’re pregnant! Now that you’ve started to feel tiny little kicks and punches in your belly, you want to do all the right things to ensure your baby’s health. But, at the same time, it can be tough to figure out what’s safe and what isn’t when you’re expecting. Being pregnant can be one of the most enjoyable times in a woman’s life, but it can also be full of challenges and frustrations.
You have to make significant changes to your daily habits, figure out ways to deal with all the changes your body is going through, and somehow find time to eat healthy meals and get some exercise. As an expecting mom, you’re worried about your health, your baby’s health, and, of course, just having enough energy to get through the day. These pregnancies do’s and don’ts will help keep your baby happy and healthy from the moment you find out you’re pregnant through the delivery room.
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Be cautious and educate yourself
The most natural and secure way of delivery, vaginal birth, can cause a mother to become fatigued. But the agony and sweat are worth it because the mother and child feel closer. Doctors advocate a normal delivery for mothers in good health, or health issues can be controlled during delivery. In the US, two out of every three births occur vaginally.
Abdominal surgery is required for the challenging medical procedure known as a cesarean.
Doctors advise a cesarean section when a mother carries twins or multiples or has blood pressure, diabetes, HIV, or genital herpes. A c-section is safe for mothers who have previously had a complicated vaginal delivery. It is necessary when the baby is big, the mother’s pelvis is tiny, or the baby isn’t in the normal position. As a result, many birth injuries may occur; as a mother, you can learn more about the other problems causing birth injuries in newborns by visiting childbirthinjuries.com. You need to know the risks to take preventative measures.
Don’t smoke or drink alcohol
Smoking, whether it’s cigarettes, pipes, or cigars, tobacco poses serious risks to your growing baby. Cigarettes contain more than 4,000 chemicals linked to heart defects, sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), cleft palate, and other congenital disabilities. Alcohol is a toxin that can disrupt fetal brain development. Studies show that no amount of alcohol is considered safe during pregnancy. If you’re trying to conceive, you should stop smoking and drinking.
It might seem basic, but proper nutrition is vital to a healthy pregnancy. That doesn’t mean you must overhaul your diet overnight; you need to watch your portion sizes and ensure you cover all your nutritional bases. Focus on increasing intake of fruits and vegetables while cutting down on sweets, fried foods, processed foods, and anything with trans fats (which has been linked to some developmental issues in babies). The Mayo Clinic lists eight powerhouse nutrients that are especially important during pregnancy: calcium, iron, folate/folic acid, fiber (especially soluble fiber), protein (found in meats like chicken), vitamins A & D, zinc, and omega-3 fatty acids.
Avoid Lifting Weights
Most doctors will tell you to avoid heavy weightlifting during pregnancy because of the risk of falling or damaging your abdomen. However, you may be tempted to pick up extra weights when you’re expecting—weight training can be a great way to combat aches and keep your body strong. But make sure to check with your doctor first before hitting up a barbell set. They’ll likely suggest that you stick to more moderate activities like walking, swimming, yoga, or Pilates during pregnancy. All these excellent choices will give your body what it needs while keeping your baby safe inside. And while it might seem strange, eating certain foods during pregnancy can boost energy levels in moms-to-be and their babies!
Suppose you’re planning on giving birth in a hospital or birthing center. In that case, an important part of your prenatal care will be ensuring you are active during your pregnancy. You must be up and moving to encourage good blood flow in your body, particularly to your baby. So doctors want pregnant women to walk around as often as they can get away with it—and if you can add additional weight training, so much the better. Researchers found that babies born after their mothers exercised were significantly less likely to have brain bleeds or soft tissue injuries than those whose moms didn’t work out while pregnant. So try to exercise; it doesn’t take long: Even one minute of daily walking was associated with a lower risk of brain bleeds in newborns.
Don’t sit in a hot tub or sauna
It’s tempting to relax in a hot tub or sauna while pregnant, but it can increase your risk of blood clots. Studies show that hot water raises your body temperature, which can cause dangerous blood clots. In addition, pregnant women who take hot baths or spend time in a sauna have significantly more miscarriages than those who do not heat their bodies with frequent baths or saunas. So instead, try spending some time in a warm shower or bath. It will help you relax without putting you at risk of clotting.
Monitor your baby’s movements
You must keep an eye on your baby’s movements. If you notice your baby has stopped moving in a way that concerns you, don’t hesitate to contact your doctor immediately. In many cases, decreased movement will signify something isn’t right, though typically, babies are fine and will return to normal soon after. But if something is wrong, early intervention can prevent any problems from becoming serious or even life-threatening. In addition, some medical conditions have specific guidelines about when it is okay to go to the hospital (in fact, some may require it), so check with your doctor about what is appropriate in your case.
Take care of your mental health
Make sure you’re taking good care of your mental health, too. Some studies have suggested a link between stress in pregnancy and low birth weight or an increased risk of preterm labor or other complications. But not all experts agree with that research. However, it is important to know how stress affects you during pregnancy. If you are feeling stressed, take some time out for yourself and try relaxation techniques such as yoga or meditation. You can also talk to your doctor about ways to relieve anxiety before it affects your physical well-being—or consider seeing a therapist if these methods don’t help. In addition, it might be helpful to keep track of what triggers feelings of anxiety so that they can be avoided when possible (like when you’re due at work). Your doctor may also be able to recommend resources like support groups or online forums where women discuss their experiences during pregnancy.
Go easy on the caffeine
Eliminating caffeine during pregnancy is a wise move and one of the pregnancy don’ts your doctor will probably advise you about. While it might not seem like a big concern, consuming coffee exposes your unborn child to caffeine, which enters their developing brain cells through your circulation. Not at all good! Additionally, consuming too much coffee can keep you up at night or make you nervous, which is bad for your energy levels.
Being pregnant can be one of the most enjoyable times in a woman’s life, but it can also be full of challenges and frustrations. You have to make significant changes to your daily habits, figure out ways to deal with all the changes your body is going through, and somehow find time to eat healthy meals and get some exercise — all while dealing with morning sickness, swollen feet, heartburn, and more! With so much going on, it can be hard to know what you need to do to stay safe and healthy during pregnancy. This helpful guide will give you the inside scoop on everything from choosing your prenatal care provider to handling common pregnancy symptoms.
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