Pregnancy is tough, 280 days of change!
Oh, pregnancy is a body and mind changing experience like no other. For 40 weeks your body sometimes just does not feel like it belongs to you anymore, while your mind is trying to come to terms with it. Growing life within your body is no easy task, although many women make it look like a walk in the park.
Let’s start with the most common complaint of pregnancy, Morning Sickness and Nausea. Most moms will tell you Morning Sickness is not always in the morning; many say it was worse in the evening and some will even tell you it last through out the day for months. Most moms get an ease from this at the end of the first trimester. During pregnancy your sense of smell is heighten and makes you more sensitive to things around you.
• Tip: Ginger tea
Heartburn/Acid reflux can last for the entire pregnancy, some moms say it lets up in the second trimester but returns worse than before in the final trimester. There are reasons for this, during pregnancy the body produces more of the hormone progesterone, this hormone relaxes muscles, allowing stomach acid to rise up and as your baby grows within you, your uterus expands putting pressure on your stomach.
• Tip: Tums
Gas, it is embarrassing, happens at some of the most unexpected times and cannot be helped. As mentioned before, as muscles relax within your body, this includes the muscles of your intestines, it slows the digestive process allowing gas to build up.
• Tip: Go easy on the beans, broccoli and cabbage
Fatigue takes over, you can sleep a full 10 hours and still wake up tired. The formation of a baby is hard work, the blood flowing through your body increases by 45%, that is a lot of extra work for your vessels and organs. Every day your baby grows a little bit more, you deserve rest.
• Tip: Take a nap in the day, if possible.
Sleeping positions, no more sleeping on your back.
Frequent urination, from the moment you step out of your house, you are planning your route with washrooms in mind. As the uterus and baby grows, this puts pressure on your bladder. It is inconvenient and awkward, but it is a part of the process that we cannot bypass.
• Tip: Disposable underwear or sanitary napkins help with leakage
Stretchmarks there really is no getting away from this, some moms have less than others but at some point, during or after pregnancy you will notice these marks. Some call them ‘tiger stripes,’ ‘love marks’ and ‘scars of strength’ to remind us of the journey, but the truth is many of us are still very self-conscious of these marks and choose to keep them covered. We even spend so much money and time trying lotions and procedures to remove them.
• Tip: Homemade coconut oil (get the real stuff)
Constipation, maybe it’s from the iron in your vitamins or just the pressure on your intestines, but your bowel movements become a challenge. We all know just how uncomfortable this makes you, now you have to look for Hemorrhoids, while most will disappear after birth, raise it with you doctor to be sure. If you never had haemorrhoids before, now would be a good time look it up if you are pregnant.
• Tip: Paraffin oil
Nothing fits, it makes you feel awful and it takes so much time to get dressed now. Some women can wear regular clothes up to 5 or even 7 months into their pregnancy, after that you can live in your husband’s clothing or anything big you find. It’s costly to upgrade your wardrobe, so be smart when shopping and remember your size drastically increase in last trimester, so save some shopping for when you really need it.
• Tip: Buy stuff you can use after, maternity work pants and jeans, some cute tops and dresses, nursing bras and underwear a size up.
Pregnancy Brain & Clumsiness, many women complain of forgetfulness during pregnancy, they are still debating whether this is real or not. As for the clumsiness, in pregnancy you are now carrying additional weight to the front of your body, you bump into things and your balance is off.
• Tip: Simply take your time, and write things down to remember
Swollen feet, it’s normal, what is not normal is finding a shoe to fit. The rapid weight gain and constant pressure on your feet increase the chances of swelling, while they say raise and rest those feet, moms are busy people and it is not always possible. Note that your feet stay swollen for a week or two even after delivery.
• Tip: when possible elevate feet and some warm water with Epsom salts is also helpful
Hope you found this useful, be sure to share your comments and feedback with us.
A story from the 10 things to know series by Dear Mumma.
Disclaimer: This is not intended to replace the advice of an expert or medical profession, these are written by moms who have experienced it or researched these areas.