So you’re thinking of having a mini-you running around soon? Well, you’ve come to the right place!
Getting pregnant and nurturing a child in utero is in a woman’s nature. But as with any important task in life, it can get stressful and unpredictable. The best thing you can do if you’re thinking of getting pregnant is to plan ahead to ensure a healthy pregnancy.
Good for you future-mama, you’re already off to a great start because you’re about to read your ultimate guide to preparing for a healthy pregnancy!
The Ultimate Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy:
Get to Know Your Cycle
If you’re thinking of having a child, you’ve probably already stopped taking birth control pills or any other forms of birth control. Many women will get their first period two weeks after getting off the pill, which is good news because that’s when your cycle will start.
Keeping a record of your menstrual cycle is extremely important when trying to conceive a baby because you can get an indication of whether or not you’re getting pregnant. Timing is everything when trying to get pregnant! It’s useful to use an ovulation calendar to monitor your ovulation and pinpoint when exactly is the best time to conceive a baby to increase your chances of getting pregnant.
Start Taking Prenatal Vitamins
Many women think that they won’t need to take folic acid and prenatal vitamins until they get pregnant. But it is in fact important to take prenatal vitamins even before trying to conceive a baby, and consume folic acid at least one month prior to conception.
There are many benefits of prenatal vitamins that you’ll be able to take advantage of before and during pregnancy. They help provide calcium for your child’s development, reduce the risk of birth defects, prevent iron-deficiency anemia, and also gives you a peace of mind.
Schedule a Doctor’s Visit
You may want to schedule a preconception visit considering factors in your life such as age, previous fertility history, health problems, etc. Getting medical advice from your doctor will give you a peace of mind, and also a run down of the pregnancy do’s and don'ts which will set you up for a healthy pregnancy!
This gives you the chance to get some professional medical information, so it’s time to ask your burning questions! Talk about the things that you may be concerned about such as screening for sexually transmitted diseases to screening for pregnancy readiness.
Watch the diet
You’re going to be eating for two soon enough! What you put into your body is going to be the nutrient source for your growing baby, so it’s important to have good eating habits.
Be prepared to cater to your pregnancy cravings, and also adjust your consumption habits. One of the challenges you may face is avoiding certain foods before and during your pregnancy, so it’s a good idea to get started on this adjustment as soon as you can.
You’ll have to quit bad habits such as excessive caffeine, drinking, smoking, and start focusing on health and wellness such as eating organic foods, and limiting your exposure to toxins. Remember, balance is key and a healthy baby is a happy baby!
Practice stress relief and wellness
Even though pregnancy is a beautiful thing, it’s also a frustrating and stressful experience. Growing into a mother-to-be can be very overwhelming for you as you’re going through so many changes along the way, so it is extremely important to deal with your stress and adopt stress relief practices.
When things are getting tough, take a breath and try one of the following activities:
- Taking a walk
- Doing something you love!
Planning the birth
This is something that you’ll want to do the second you get pregnant! Although, you won’t actually have to make your final decision until your due date is coming to a close. It’s always good to plan ahead for your labor and delivery so that you can prepare for anything you need.
The toughest part of making a baby is childbirth. It’s important to consider all your options! Two of the main challenges that women face is if they want to have a home birth or hospital birth, and if they want an Obstetrician or midwife.
Talk to your partner and also your doctor about the best course of action to help you make your decision. Childbirth will be the most rewarding experience after your 40-week pregnancy -- holding your baby in your arms and calling them yours!
The Big Picture
Planning for pregnancy and parenthood may not come so easily, but it will come naturally! You won’t know all the answers along the way, but it’s going to be a period of learning and adapting to changes.
Embrace the journey every step of the way and take a breath to remember that you’re going to bring a miracle into this world! And all the struggles and bumps down the road will all have been worth it when you hold your little baby in your arms.