When you become pregnant for the first or fifth time, you’ll know it’s important you stay as healthy as you can. The next 9 months are going to be emotional and they’re going to have an impact on your physical health. This is now the right time to try to stay healthy so you can have a pregnancy that’s free from problems and a baby who is lovely and healthy.
Just found out?
If you’ve just found out you’re pregnant, congratulations! Although it is a time to celebrate, it’s also a time to make sure you have as much care as you need. Get in touch with your doctor or your midwife as soon as you can so you can start sorting out antenatal care. You will also need to get ultrasound scans organized too, but your midwife can help you do this. The sooner you contact your doctor or midwife, the sooner they can help you deal with any concerns you may have.
Now really is the time to be healthy, and you need to make sure your diet is a good and a balanced one. Try to eat at least 5 portions of fruit and veg everyday so your baby gets the nourishment it needs. You should also ensure you get a lot of fibre in your diet too, so try to eat wholegrains. Up your intake of oily fish as these are crammed full of proteins, vitamin D and omega 3 oils that are essential at helping your little one’s nervous system to develop.
Have some folic acid
This will probably have to come in the form of supplements, but that’s ok. Folic acid is essential as it can help to protect your baby from a range of neural tube defects such as spina bifida. You will only need to take this supplement during the first trimester.
Avoid some foods
You need to make sure that your baby is protected from harmful bacteria, this can may found in the following foods:
Ready meals that haven’t been cooked properly (Make sure you always heat them properly)
Take up exercise
The more you exercise when you’re pregnant, the easier labour may be. What’s more is it will also be easier for you to carry your baby too. You don’t have to exercise a lot, just try to boost your strength and your endurance too. Take up Pilates, yoga, swimming, and even brisk walking to help you get stronger and fitter.
Pelvic floor exercises
These exercises are essential at helping your baby to have a smoother birth. These muscles have an effect on your vagina, bladder and your anus. If you strengthen your pelvic floor muscles you’ll feel the effects especially if you have had a little incontinence each time you sneeze.
All you need to do is squeeze the muscle that you use to stop yourself from urinating. Do this at least three times each day, and do 8 squeezes each time.
Reduce your alcohol intake
Remember that any alcohol you drink will enter your baby’s blood stream. It’s advisable for you to cut out alcohol during at least the first trimester, but preferably through-out the duration of your pregnancy.
Reduce your caffeine intake
Any type of caffeine can increase the risk of miscarriage. Caffeine can be found in tea, coffee, cola drinks and energy drinks too. You don’t have to cut out caffeine all together, but you should ideally have no more than 200 mg’s each day, which is about 2 cups of instant coffee.
You need to quit smoking as soon as you can as your baby can be seriously affected. If you continue to smoke through-out your pregnancy your baby could suffer from a premature birth, a low birth weight, sudden infant death syndrome (Cot death) and you may even miscarry.
Get a lot of rest
Getting rest is essential, and it’s something you’re likely to need during the first 2-3 months of pregnancy. This is perfectly natural and it’s caused by your pregnancy hormones. This extra bout of fatigue is your body telling you to slow things down. Try to take a nap during the day so you can catch up on sleep. If your back hurts when you sleep, bend your knees, lie on your left side and place a pregnancy pillow under your bump. If sleeping during the day is not something you can do, put your feet up and rest for about half an hour.
The healthier your pregnancy is, the better your pregnancy will be and healthier your baby is likely to be too. If you are concerned at any time, please do not hesitate to talk to your doctor or midwife.