Maintaining a safe pregnancy is of the utmost importance for any expecting mom. While there will be multiple things that are out of your control during your pregnancy, there are several things you can do in order to ensure that your pregnancy goes as smoothly as possible and that you and your baby remain healthy. Here are some top tips for future moms on maintaining a safe pregnancy.
Go for Regular Doctor’s Visits
The most important thing you can do for a safe pregnancy is to attend regular check-ups with your doctor or midwife. This will help keep track of you and your baby’s health and allow the medical team to catch any potential problems early on. It’s advisable to see your doctor at least once a month during the first trimester and then every two weeks during the second and third trimesters.
Research shows that the number of pregnancy complications has reduced due to the regular prenatal clinic visits. Going for regular check-ups with your doctor or midwife makes you more likely to have a safe and healthy pregnancy. Make sure to schedule your appointments well in advance, and try not to miss any.
Find Health Meals and Supplements
Eating a healthy diet is essential for a safe pregnancy. You should include plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, and healthy fats in your diet. Since most doctors aren’t well versed in nutrition, it is also important to seek help from a nutritionist (like me!) so you know just what to eat.
On the other hand, you should also learn more about the foods to avoid while pregnant. Some foods can be harmful to you and your baby, so it’s essential to know which ones to avoid. Some foods you should keep off include unpasteurized milk and raw or undercooked meat, poultry, and fish.
You will also want to take a prenatal vitamin supplement to ensure that you’re getting all the nutrients you need, as well as eat certain vitamin-rich foods, or supplement these. Oily fish is one of these as they are a rich source of many nutrients that are important for a safe pregnancy, including omega-3 fatty acids, protein, and vitamin D. These nutrients support the health and development of both the mother and baby during pregnancy, helping to maintain strong bones, brain function, and overall health.
Eating oily fish may also help reduce your risk of developing preeclampsia, which can be dangerous for both mother and baby. Pregnant women should aim to eat two servings of oily fish per week. Some examples of oily fish include salmon, mackerel, herring, tuna, and sardines.
Get Plenty of Rest
Rest is essential for both the mother and baby during pregnancy. Pregnant women should get at least seven to eight hours of sleep per night. If you’re having trouble sleeping, try simple tips like drinking chamomile tea before bed, avoiding caffeine in the afternoon and evening, and establishing a regular sleep routine.
Massage sessions can be beneficial for pregnant women as they can help relieve stress and tension in the body, promote relaxation, and ease aches and pains. Some specific types of massage that may be particularly helpful for expectant mothers include prenatal massage, which is explicitly designed to support the needs of pregnant women.
Lymphatic drainage massage can help improve circulation and reduce swelling, and reflexology may be able to help alleviate symptoms like nausea, headaches, and back pain. Whether you choose to receive a massage from a professional or do it yourself at home, making time for regular massages during pregnancy can be a great way to support your health and wellbeing.
Staying physically active during pregnancy is also essential for maintaining a safe pregnancy. Aim to get at least 30 minutes of exercise, like walking or swimming, most days of the week. If you experience any discomfort or pain while exercising, talk to your doctor or midwife right away.
Seeking guidance from a fitness coach before starting workouts is vital to ensure a safe and effective workout routine. A good training coach will be able to assess your fitness level and help you develop a program that is tailored to your specific needs and goals. They can also provide expert advice on proper form, nutrition, recovery, and injury prevention. Additionally, having a coach on hand to offer support and guidance can be very motivating, helping you stay focused and committed to your workouts over the long term.
Managing stress is also key to maintaining a safe pregnancy. Pregnancy can be stressful, and high-stress levels have been linked to an increased risk of complications like preterm labor, low birth weight, and placental abruption.
Try relaxation techniques like deep breathing or meditation if you’re feeling stressed. You may also want to consider talking to a counselor or therapist who can help you healthily manage stress.
Pregnancy also requires increased hydration. Aim to drink at least half of your body weight in ounces of water every day and other hydrating beverages like herbal teas and coconut water. If you’re experiencing excessive thirst or an increase in trips to the bathroom, consult with your doctor right away.
It’s also good to eat succulent fruits like watermelon, pineapple, and grapefruit, as they contain a high amount of water and essential nutrients. Eating various fruits and vegetables during pregnancy is vital to getting your body’s nutrients.
Begin Doing Pelvic Floor Exercises
Kegels are essential for pregnant women and can help prevent incontinence, improve sexual function, and make delivery easier. To do a Kegel, tighten the muscles you would use to stop urinating. Hold the contraction for five seconds before releasing. Aim to do three sets of ten Kegels per day.
Avoid Alcohol and any Recreational Drugs
It’s vital to stop all alcohol and recreational drug use during pregnancy. Alcohol can increase the risk of miscarriage and stillbirth, and it can also cause fetal alcohol syndrome, which is a condition that leads to congenital disabilities and developmental delays. Recreational drugs like marijuana, cocaine, and methamphetamines can also be harmful to the developing fetus and should be avoided at all costs.
Also, caffeine is another substance to be limited during pregnancy. Caffeine can cross the placenta and increase the risk of miscarriage and low birth weight. It’s also vital to avoid energy drinks, as they often contain high levels of caffeine and other ingredients that can be harmful to the developing fetus.
Maintaining a safe pregnancy can be challenging, but you can take steps to ensure a healthier and happier pregnancy. By exercising regularly, avoiding stress, getting regular massages, eating a nutritious diet, doing pelvic floor exercises, and limiting your use of alcohol and recreational drugs, you can help ensure that you and your baby stay healthy throughout your pregnancy and beyond!