Self-care is an absolute must for everyone. But how do you do that when you’re caring for not one, but two lives? When it comes to advice available to expecting mothers, there’s a lot to consider. Between best-selling parenting books, multivitamins for women, well-meaning family and friends, and even strangers on the street, choosing what advice to follow is a lot. Just sifting through the sheer amount of information that comes your way can be a stressful task. Coupled with all the stress a pregnancy can bring, it’s paramount that expecting mothers also take care of themselves by practicing self-care.
That being said, developing a foundation for emotional self-management, conflict management, and communication has been shown to help reduce maternal stress and depression, among other long-term benefits.
Here, we unpack 10 self-care tips for expecting mothers.
Eating in bed is okay
Yes, you’re required to stay active and move around, but sometimes it’s okay to stay in bed. Morning sickness can be a nuisance to deal with and eating in bed can actually counteract that. Keep a stash of healthy snacks nearby that you can eat every time your blood sugar drops. You can also try ginger capsules for morning sickness. However, it’s best to have your doctor sign off on that.
Join a support group
Instead of going through the process alone, it’s always helpful to have a bunch of women around you who know exactly what you’re going through. Support groups are also useful to prepare you for the labour pains and what to do post-partum.
Take some time to be prepared emotionally
Even with prenatal classes and your doctor’s advice, going through labor is still an emotional rollercoaster. Slow down and still your mind, and find tools to cope with the emotional turmoil. Sounds, music, visualization techniques can all be helpful.
Your pregnancy may be a ticket for you to gain weight, but try to eat healthy as much as possible. Add 200 calories a day post second trimester and eat frequently. Make sure your food is rich in fiber and low in sugar and salt.
Don’t try to lose weight
It’s disconcerting to gain weight and see your body change, but it’s supposed to happen. Don’t starve yourselves or cut out calories in an attempt to stay the same.
Listen to your doctors and take all the vitamins they prescribe. Not only is this important for the baby, but it is also essential for you too. Pregnacare is one of the vitamins that you should take. It prevents low birth weight and pregnancy complications.
Move your body
Low impact activities like yoga and stretching can help you stay positive and release endorphins. However, before you attempt high-impact activities, you should consult your doctor. Contact sports should be avoided at all costs.
Take long baths
Nice, warm baths can help you feel better and soothe your mind and body. When you’re expecting, you will have to take baths frequently.
Indulge in a prenatal massage
Pamper yourself with a massage, whether at a local spa or in the comfort of your own home. Try and look for a masseuse that’s specially trained in prenatal massages.
Be kind to yourself
Pregnancy is different for everyone. If you don’t feel as cheery as you’re “supposed” to be, it’s okay. Not every expecting mother is going to be happy, glowing and full of joy. Sometimes it’s stressful, full of panic attacks and anxiety. So, don’t feel any undue pressure on yourselves for not being perfect.
In a nutshell, you should strive to be happy and surround yourself with your positive vibes when expecting to have a healthy pregnancy.