Pregnancies are one such event that comes with many experiences – joy, thrill, pain, hope, etc. The idea of a whole human being growing inside you can be marvelous, and whether or not it is your first pregnancy, you need to be prepared before you go into labor to make the delivery less daunting. There are many things that you can do in the months that precede your due date, and this article highlights five activities that are essential to ensure you are ready to deliver your baby.
The use of a pregnancy calculator will help with the calculation of your due date. Knowing your due date will help you with preparation. Do all your tests, including the blood tests and ultrasound scans. These tests are done to help you have a safe pregnancy and to assess and monitor the development and wellness of you and your baby. Screen for conditions you may be at risk of. Always attend your monthly appointment and check on your baby. Your height and weight will be used to check your body mass index monthly. This is done to make sure you are not overweight or underweight. You will put on at least 10.5 kg more than your average weight. Do all your urine tests and your blood pressure tests. Check your blood group, genotype, and Rhesus factor. Screen for iron deficiency, and if present, you will be required to take more iron and folic acid tablets. Some women develop gestational diabetes, so that you will be tested for this too.
Some women go through pregnancy without taking prenatal vitamins. Medical care providers often recommend ant women take vitamins and other mineral supplements to enhance their regular diet. Folic acid, iron, and calcium are often prescribed for pregnant women, especially those who have trouble eating because of morning sickness. Your taste may change after your first trimester, so buy just enough vitamins to last three months. If you want to breastfeed your baby, you should continue taking your prenatal vitamins until you stop breastfeeding.
Almost every woman experiences light nausea in the first trimester. With pregnancy progression, discomforts like constipation and heartburn will come. No one knows when these discomforts will come, so you should get some remedies to keep yourself comfortable. Many women buy anti-nausea wristbands, lollipops, and tea. A good supply of plain crackers and pretzels also helps. Many over-the-counter drugs for heartburn and constipation are safe during pregnancy and help decrease discomfort. Sometimes the discomfort passes on its own. An excellent moisturizer to rub or massage into your belly as it expands is also great as it soothes dry patches of skin and alleviates itching. Ask your healthcare provider for the best products and the things to avoid. Some of the additives you should avoid are retinoids, benzoyl peroxides, salicylic acid, hydroquinone, and retinol. They are contraindicated for pregnant women. Use natural and chemical-free moisturizers or body creams.
With the growth of your belly comes back pain, joint pain, and soreness in the hip and abdomen. Many women find that a support belly band or belt makes life more comfortable. The stretchy bands keep your belly button in place and provide much-needed back support. It would help if you used the belly support bands as soon as your belly becomes noticeable. This is usually at the end of the second or the beginning of the third trimester. It protects you from pregnancy-related muscle injuries and helps you remain active for longer. Many women wear the band after the postpartum period to support their bodies as they heal. A belly support band can be used again when you want another baby.
It is often difficult to find a comfortable sleeping position. You should not sleep on your belly because there is a risk of constricting the arteries and blood vessels that supply blood to your baby. Most women sleep sideways, especially during the second and third trimesters. A pregnancy body pillow is a fantastic tool to provide extra support for your legs, back, and hips. It reduces the pressure on your joints. Many women sleep with a pillow between their legs to help realign their hip joints and absorb the pressure. Pregnancy body pillows come in different sizes, shapes, textures, and softness. Buy a few and see which one suits you best. You can use it for months and also for other pregnancies.
Related reading: Essential Tips on How to Keep Yourself Fit & Healthy During Pregnancy
Get comfortable clothing for your pregnancy period; get books to read to prepare your mind for the birth of your baby. Get new footwear often for your feet, as they will probably grow at least a size more prominent from the weight you gain. As you outgrow your clothing, focus on comfortable and stretched clothes. Your breasts, rib cage, waistline, and belly will expand, so buy clothes that prioritize your comfort over fashion. A week’s worth of pants and tops will do the trick, along with bigger brassieres.
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