Staying healthy during pregnancy is good for the mom and the child. Most people know the basic rule of not consuming alcohol and dangerous substances. However, there are other steps you must take for your health and that of your growing child. Here are steps to remain healthy when pregnant.
1. Take a Prenatal Vitamin
Doctors advise women to take prenatal vitamins two or three months before conceiving. But if you don’t, and you realise you are pregnant, think of taking them as soon as possible. Bear in mind that a baby’s neural tube will make the brain and spinal cord develop quickly within the first few weeks of pregnancy. So, it is crucial that you have enough essential nutrients like folic acid, iron, and calcium from the start. It may be helpful to ask your doctor for a nutrient blood test to determine if you have any deficiencies that may affect your baby’s development.
Although prenatal vitamins are available over the counter, we recommend you get a prescription from the doctor. Also, we should mention that some people feel queasy after taking them. In that case, consider taking them at night or with a light snack. Moreover, giving a stunning mothers ring to a soon-to-be mother is also a great idea to make her feel better.
2. Get Excellent Prenatal Care
Prenatal care is essential for the mom and the baby. You need to choose a good and understanding doctor or midwife. If you haven’t found one, ask for recommendations from your family or friends. You may also check https://osler-health.com/pregnancy.
Please note that many people delay their pregnancy clinics. But, experts recommend starting them as soon as you get a positive pregnancy test. Your caregiver will screen you for diseases and conditions that can lead to complications. Plus, they will review any medications you are taking and advise accordingly.
However, remember that most medicines are safe during pregnancy. But, please check with a doctor first. Your clinics can be after every four weeks in the first and second trimesters. But in the third, your doctor may need you to visit them after every two weeks. People with high-risk pregnancies will need frequent monitoring. Please go to all your prenatal clinics even if you feel okay.
3. Eat Well
Always eat a healthy diet whenever possible. Aim at having at least five portions of vegetables and fruits. At all times, please try to eat fresh fruits and vegetables, but you can also opt for frozen, canned, juiced, or dried.
Also, eat starchy foods like potatoes, cassava, yams, rice, pasta, etc. These need to make up about 1/3 of the food you eat. Opt for wholegrain that will supply fibre in plenty. Additionally, make sure you get daily servings of protein like nuts, beans, pulses, lean meat, etc.
Remember that you don’t need to eat for two when pregnant. You don’t need extra calories in the first six months. Also, drink plenty of water to allow you to produce more blood and amniotic fluid. Water also prevents constipation and tiredness, which are frequently associated with pregnancy.
Being active supports your overall health. It reduces stress, improves circulation, and boosts your overall mood. Plus, it is also crucial for better sleep. Aim to walk for 15-20 minutes daily at a moderate pace. Please ensure you walk in a cool and shaded area.
You can also enrol in a pregnancy exercise class and try practising yoga, Pilates, swimming, or walking. Aim for at least 30 minutes of exercise several days of the week.
5. Get Vaccinated
Vaccines are recommended for everyone, but particular ones are advised for pregnant women. For instance, the flu shot is recommended to reduce your risk of being hospitalised from the flu when pregnant. Doctors also advise the Tdap vaccine to protect the mother and child from tetanus, pertussis, and diphtheria. The Covid-19 vaccine might also be recommended to prevent you from passing the antibodies to the baby.
You can also get enough rest, reduce caffeine intake, have a birth plan, practice excellent food hygiene, and avoid alcohol, cigarettes, and illicit drugs.