How To Take Care Of Yourself As a Pregnant Woman

Pregnancy is a beautiful process but most pregnant women rarely take good care of themselves and underestimate the importance of self-care. In this article, we’ll be looking at how to take care of yourself as a pregnant woman and why it’s important.

Eat a lot of fruits and vegetables.

Fruits and vegetables are rich in vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that help your body function properly. They’re also low in calories, fat, sodium, and cholesterol.

The more fruits and vegetables you eat the better off you’ll be!

Drink more water to stay hydrated.

As a pregnant woman, it’s important to stay hydrated. Drinking water is one of the most effective ways to keep your body healthy during pregnancy. You should drink at least 8 glasses or cups of water each day. Your body needs more fluids when you’re pregnant because you have extra blood volume and other changes in your body that makes it harder for your kidneys to remove waste products and excess fluids from your blood.

If you exercise or do physical labor, don’t wait until thirst sets in before drinking something—this could lead to dehydration which can be dangerous for both mother and fetus alike. Be sure to drink plenty of water before, during, and after any activity that makes you feel thirsty (for example: walking with the stroller). Don’t forget about those times when we don’t always know if we’re thirsty! Keep a glass nearby so that when hunger strikes or boredom hits hard there’ll always be something available besides sugary snacks—and make sure that “something” includes H2O!

Exercise to reduce stress and stay healthy.

Exercise to reduce stress and stay healthy.

If you’re feeling stressed out by being pregnant, try exercising to help relieve the tension. When you exercise, your body releases endorphins—chemicals that make you feel good and keep your mood positive. Plus, regular exercise can help reduce stress in other ways: it makes you sleep better at night and keeps your heart healthy, which reduces the amount of stress on your body while also boosting its ability to fight off illnesses such as colds or flus (which are both highly contagious when pregnant).

Go for prenatal checkups and ultrasound frequently.

You should go to your prenatal check-ups and ultrasounds as often as you can. This is the best way to ensure that everything is going smoothly with your pregnancy and that you and baby are healthy. Your doctor or midwife will perform several tests, which usually take around 45 minutes. During this appointment, they will check your weight gain and blood pressure. You might have questions about nutrition and activity levels during pregnancy, so make sure to bring them up at this time!

The ultrasound technician will also perform a vaginal ultrasound if possible (which is more likely if it’s early in the first trimester). If not, they’ll do an abdominal ultrasound instead—but don’t worry: both types of scans are safe! The test can last anywhere from 10 minutes to over an hour depending on how long it takes for the technician to get good images of all parts of your uterus (which usually occur around 20 weeks into pregnancy). Once the test is complete, make sure to ask any questions that came up during its performance because there may be something wrong if nothing shows up on screen when viewing either type of scan; however unlikely this scenario might seem given how common ultrasounds are these days thanks largely due their safety record compared against other medical procedures such as x-rays which aren’t recommended unless absolutely necessary due their potential risks (mainly radiation exposure).”

Get eight hours of sleep daily.

It’s a well-known fact that sleep is important for the health of both you and your baby. However, how much sleep will you need depends on various factors such as age, health, and pregnancy complications. Taking care of yourself during pregnancy means finding out what’s best for you when it comes to this crucial part of your life.

Here are some tips for getting eight hours of sleep each night:

  • Try to go to bed at the same time every night. This will help regulate your body’s biological clock so that it doesn’t feel like night all day long or vice versa!
  • Sleep in a cool room with no light coming in through the windows (or use blackout curtains). This will keep both of you asleep longer while letting nature wake up gradually outside instead of being woken up by sunlight flooding into our eyes early morning every day!

Be positive and happy.

  • Stay positive and happy.
  • If you’re not a naturally upbeat person, it might be helpful to think of the things that make you happy. When those moments come along, do something to enjoy them! Make sure they’re waiting for you at home when your day is over.
  • Try meditation if nothing else seems to work. It’s been shown time and time again that meditation has numerous health benefits for both mother and baby—and also can help keep stress levels down by helping people become aware of their thoughts and emotions.

Take medicines as prescribed by your doctor.

Don’t stop taking a prescribed medicine without talking to your doctor first. If you are not sure about a medicine, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

Some common medicines that pregnant women need to take include:

  • antibiotics, which are used to treat infections;
  • medicines for high blood pressure, such as ACE inhibitors and diuretics;
  • anticonvulsants (anti-seizure drugs), such as carbamazepine and gabapentin; and
  • tranquilizers for anxiety or depression, such as diazepam (Valium) or lorazepam (Ativan).

Go for prenatal massage weekly to improve blood circulation and reduce fluid retention in your body.

Prenatal massage is a great way to relieve stress and improve your overall health. It helps reduce swelling in the body, which can cause pain. It also increases blood circulation, which can help you sleep better at night as well as with headaches during pregnancy. Prenatal massage helps increase lung capacity and makes it easier for you to breathe when you’re carrying around extra weight from being pregnant.

Finally, prenatal massage may help with reducing anxiety levels that arise from expecting a baby!

Taking good care of yourself as a pregnant woman is very important for the proper development of the unborn baby and your own health.

It’s important to remember that taking good care of yourself as a pregnant woman is very important for the proper development of the unborn baby and your own health. In order to do this, you need to eat well, exercise and get enough sleep; stay hydrated; go for prenatal checkups and ultrasound frequently; be positive and happy.

Conclusion

I am sure that you now understand how important it is for you to take good care of yourself during your pregnancy. It will improve your health and the health of the unborn baby so that you can both be safe and healthy after birth. Take my advice and follow all of the steps outlined in this article!

Weeks 6 to 10 of Your Pregnancy: Care Instructions

Embryo in uterus, with detail of development at 8 weeks pregnant

Overview

During the first 6 to 10 weeks of your pregnancy, your body goes through many changes. Your baby grows very quickly, even though you can’t feel it yet. You may start to feel different, both in your body and your emotions. Because each pregnancy is unique, there’s no right way to feel. You may feel the healthiest you’ve ever been, or you might feel tired or sick to your stomach (“morning sickness”).

These early weeks are a time to make healthy choices and to eat the best foods for you and your baby.

This is also a good time to think about birth defects testing. These are tests done during pregnancy to look for possible problems with the baby. First-trimester tests for birth defects can be done between 10 and 13 weeks of pregnancy, depending on the test. Talk with your doctor about what kinds of tests are available.

Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It’s also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.

How can you care for yourself at home?

Eat well

Go to Canada’s Food Guide at https://food-guide.canada.ca/en/ to make sure you are eating a variety of foods each day. In your second and third trimesters most women will need to eat more of these healthy foods for healthy weight gain. Talk to your doctor or midwife about what is right for you.

  • Eat at least 3 meals and 2 healthy snacks every day. Eat fresh, whole foods, including:
    • Vegetables and fruits. Be sure to include a variety of colours. Try pears, apples, berries, broccoli, cabbage, and leafy greens.
    • Whole grain foods. Enjoy a variety of whole grains including quinoa, whole grain pasta, whole grain bread, oatmeal, or brown rice.
    • Protein foods. Try protein foods like eggs, beans, fish, poultry, lean meat, peanut butter, milk, fortified soy beverages, yogurt, and cheese.
    • Healthy fats. Choose foods with healthy fats like nuts, seeds, avocado, fatty fish, and corn or olive oil.
  • Drink plenty of fluids. Make water your drink of choice. Avoid sodas and other sweetened drinks.
  • Choose foods that have important vitamins for your baby, such as calcium, iron, and folate.
    • Dairy products, tofu, canned fish with bones, almonds, broccoli, dark leafy greens, corn tortillas, and fortified orange juice are good sources of calcium.
    • Beef, poultry, liver, spinach, lentils, dried beans, fortified cereals, and dried fruits are rich in iron.
    • Dark leafy greens, broccoli, asparagus, liver, fortified cereals, orange juice, peanuts, and almonds are good sources of folate.
  • Choose fish that are lower in mercury. These include salmon, rainbow trout, pollock, herring, shrimp, mussels, clams, oysters, and canned “light” tuna.
  • Avoid foods that could harm your baby.
    • Do not eat raw or undercooked meat, chicken, or fish (such as sushi or raw oysters).
    • Do not eat raw eggs or foods that contain raw eggs, such as Caesar dressing.
    • Do not eat raw sprouts, especially alfalfa sprouts.
    • Do not eat soft cheeses and unpasteurized dairy foods, such as Brie, feta, or blue cheese.
    • Limit how much high-mercury fish you eat.
      • Do not eat more than 150 g (5.3 oz) of high-mercury fish in a month. These include fresh or frozen tuna (not canned “light” tuna), shark, swordfish, marlin, orange roughy, and escolar.
      • Do not eat more than 300 g (10.6 oz) of canned (white) albacore tuna each week.
    • Avoid caffeine, or limit your intake to 300 mg or about 2 cups of coffee or tea each day.

Protect yourself and your baby

  • Do not touch kitty litter or cat feces. They can cause an infection that could harm your baby.
  • High body temperature can be harmful to your baby. So if you want to use a sauna or hot tub, be sure to talk to your doctor or midwife about how to use it safely.

Cope with morning sickness

  • Sip small amounts of water, juices, or shakes. Try drinking between meals, not with meals.
  • Eat 5 or 6 small meals a day. Try dry toast or crackers when you first get up, and eat breakfast a little later.
  • Avoid spicy, greasy, and fatty foods.
  • When you feel sick, open your windows or go for a short walk to get fresh air.
  • Try nausea wristbands. These help some people.
  • Tell your doctor or midwife if you think your prenatal vitamins make you sick.

Importance Of Self Care During Pregnancy

Getting into a good routine during pregnancy can help ensure both you and bub are safe and healthy before, during and after birth. Try to establish your pregnancy routines as early as possible and keep them up throughout the pregnancy.

pregnant woman eating healthy food

Eat a variety of colours every day

Your baby needs a range of vitamins and minerals as it grows and develops. One way to ensure that your bub is getting a good variety of nutrients is to make eating a broad colour spectrum of fresh vegetables part of your daily routine. Set a goal to eat a range of colours each day – think green, gold, purple and red.

As well as including plenty of vegetables, your diet should be high in protein and healthy fats and low in carbohydrates, sugars and trans fats. To make sure you’re eating the right amounts and right types of foods, it may help to follow a meal plan. Talk to your obstetrician for diet recommendations that are right for you.

There are certain foods that you need to avoid while pregnant. Soft cheeses, raw seafood, pre-prepared foods, deli meats or anything that contains raw egg may harbour strains of bacteria that can cause miscarriage, stillbirth or premature labour. Basically, if you think bacteria could thrive on the food, it’s best to avoid it while you’re pregnant.

Your preferred frequency and size of meals may change during pregnancy. For some women, spacing out smaller meals throughout the day can feel better than eating three large meals, particularly if you’re suffering from morning sickness. And remember, you’re not actually ‘eating for two’ – stick to similar portion sizes to what you would normally eat.

Get active on most days

Talk to your obstetrician about exercising during pregnancy – they can give you advice on what’s best for you. For most pregnant women with no health complications, you should try to be physically active on most days of the week. Generally this means incorporating half an hour to an hour of moderate-intensity exercise (like walking, swimming or riding a stationary bike) into your daily routine.

How you can keep active during pregnancy will depend on your pre-pregnancy fitness and how far along you are. Most types of exercise are feasible in your first trimester but as your bump grows, you’re likely to find activities such as swimming, walking or using a spin bike preferable.

Being active during pregnancy will improve your energy levels, alleviate pain and discomfort, and lower your risk of pregnancy complications. And if that’s not motivation enough, staying fit during pregnancy also prepares your body for giving birth.

Drink plenty of water

As part of your pregnancy routine, it’s important to stay hydrated. Generally, this means aiming to drink at least two litres of water each day. Dehydration can have serious consequences for your baby so must be avoided. This can be a particular problem if you’re suffering from severe morning sickness. Drinking plenty of water also helps with constipation and tiredness, and reduces the risk of developing a urinary tract infection (UTI).

If you’re not used to drinking much water, it may help to buy a big water bottle and carry it with you so you can track how much you’re getting through. Sip steadily throughout the day – don’t wait until you feel thirsty, as this means you’re already dehydrated. Frequent trips to the bathroom and pale or colourless urine are signs that you are hydrated. It’s especially important to stay hydrated when exercising or if it’s hot outside, so drink more in these conditions.

Schedule some you time every day

Building a routine that helps you maintain good mental health during your pregnancy will benefit both you and your baby.

What works will be different for everyone. For some, doing regular exercise can be great for mental health. For others, a yoga or meditation practice is effective. Or it might just mean scheduling some time to rest each day. If you are struggling with anxiety or depression during pregnancy, talk to your doctor or call the Pregnancy, Birth and Baby helpline.

Get a good night’s rest

Considering how physically and emotionally demanding pregnancy can be, it’s no wonder a good sleep can make all the difference. Unfortunately, having difficulty sleeping is a common problem during pregnancy because of hormonal changes, pain and discomfort.

Prioritise having a good night’s rest by establishing a pre-bed routine that gives you the best chance of falling asleep and having good-quality sleep. Your exercise and relaxation routines will both contribute to you having a good sleep. It might also help to have a warm bath or shower, read a book or do stretches before bed. And talk to your doctor if you’re suffering from restless leg syndrome or pelvic pain, as some supplements can help relieve these symptoms.

It’s safe to sleep in whatever position you find comfortable until 26–28 weeks of pregnancy. After 28 weeks, there’s an increased risk of complications if you sleep flat on your back. With your growing bump, sleeping on your side is the best option. You don’t need to restrict side-sleeping to being on your left – sleeping on either side is safe, so opt for the one that helps you have the best sleep.

Set a routine that works for you

There’s a lot to manage and plan for during pregnancy. By establishing a good routine that helps you maintain a healthy diet, drink plenty of water, sleep well and keep an active body and a calm mind, you’ll be able to focus your energy on preparing to welcome your bub into the world.

How To Help a Pregnant Woman

Pregnancy phase doesn’t just include your wife and the unborn baby, your support and help is equally important

Support your wife mentally and physically to have a healthy pregnancy

As an involved and concerned husband, it is important for you to comfort your pregnant wife. Well, you certainly can’t carry the baby for her, or eat for her, or go through the discomforts of pregnancy on her behalf! But there are many things you can do to support her from the side-lines – and these little acts of thoughtfulness and concern can go a long way in easing her journey! Here are ways on how to support your pregnant wife.

10 Things You Must Do To Your Pregnant Wife

Here’s the list of ten things you can try to make your pregnant wife feel better:

1. Talk To Her

She might be overwhelmed, and scared and tired – and all she might want is an attentive ear, and someone to lean on. Be there for her. Similarly, you might also be apprehensive, and overwhelmed yourself with the realization that you are going to be a father. Talk to her, tell her how you feel. Both of you will feel better, and you’ll be secure in the knowledge that you are there for each other in this roller coaster journey. Keep the communication lines wide open – it always helps!

2. Understand That She Will Be Moody

Hormonal changes, combined with exhaustion, tiredness, and a general sense of discomfort, and the feeling of her life having changed irrevocably – all these combine to make many women moody during their pregnancy. One second she might be happy, the next, she might be crying – you have to understand that she cannot help it. All you have to do is offer her a shoulder to cry on, and a clean handkerchief!

(Also read: Is It Normal To Lose Weight During Pregnancy?)

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Tackle her mood swings sensitively

3. Accept Her Food Aversions And Cravings

If she enjoys dosas today, she might be throwing up tomorrow at their smell. Support her in her choices, and understand them.

4. Accompany Her To Doctor’s Visits And Ultrasound Scans

It might not always be feasible, but whenever you can, go with her to the doctor on her monthly check-ups. Hold her hand during ultrasound scans. Not only is it lovely to share the moment of hearing your child’s heartbeat, or seeing its image on screen, but these moments form great memories for you to look back on!

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5. Educate Yourself

Read books, browse websites that talk about pregnancy and birth. If you make it your business to know everything about pregnancy, you can take informed decisions on pregnancy and health along with your wife.

6. Make Sure She Is Getting Enough Nutrition

Ensure that there are always enough fruits, vegetables and nuts at home. You could find out what she prefers to eat now, and go out of your way to make it available for her. She might be too exhausted to monitor her own diet – it will be great if you can do it for her.

7. Let Her Get Rest And Sleep

Though it doesn’t look like it, her body is doing a lot of work even when your wife is at rest. So she’ll need lots of sleep and rest. Increase your quota of housework. Give her breaks. However, it doesn’t mean that your wife shouldn’t do any work around the house at all. Being active during pregnancy is one of the keys to an easy delivery. But she can get tired very quickly in the first trimester, in which case, it’ll be nice for her if you step in.

(Also read: A Guide For Healthy Eating During Pregnancy)

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Don’t forget about those affectionate hugs and kisses

8. Don’t Cut Down On Intimacy

The first trimester might not be too conducive for having sex. You wife might be too tired, and/or you might be too overwhelmed. No matter what the situation is between the two of you, it shouldn’t stop you from hugging, or cuddling. Touch is very important to feel loved, and so as much as possible, cuddle up with her. And she might not be feeling very comfortable with her body, and the attention you lavish upon her might help her feel loved and secure.

9. Help Her Get Exercise

Exercise and walking, on the advice of a doctor, are important for your wife’s health. If she herself isn’t motivated enough to do it, you could gently induce her to accompany you. Exercising together is always nicer, and there’s more motivation that way!

10. Answer All Her Calls

It might be an emergency – or it might not; she might just need to hear your voice. No matter what, answer all her phone calls, and be connected with her all the time.

Pregnancy is life-altering. You cannot expect your wife to be the same as she was before she was pregnant. She needs all the love and support possible, and the best person to give it to her is you. Remember, the more you support her, the happier and more comfortable she will be!

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