Self-Care During Pregnancy
You’re pregnant! Which means your body is doing the miraculous work of growing a human. Your body works incredibly hard during pregnancy taking care of not one, but two people (more if you're having multiples). You grow an entirely new organ--a placenta. The volume of blood in your body increases by up to 50% to support your uterus. Just to name a few. Sounds exhausting, right? You need, and deserve lots of rest and relaxation during pregnancy, and here are a few of our favorite ways to prioritize it.
I have never napped more in my life than when I was pregnant. Why are we so tired? Besides the obvious fact that we are growing a human, we are producing more hormones which act as a natural sedative. Our bodies are changing not only in the belly area, but joints are also loosening, you have to pee all the time. You are exhausted and rightfully so. If you can’t take a nap, then get to bed earlier. Make rest a priority!
Now pretend we aren’t in the middle of a pandemic and you can treat yourself to a spa day. Since that’s pretty difficult nowadays, try giving yourself plenty of spa-like experiences at home. There are lots of massage therapists making house calls, so maybe see if you can find one in your area. Or enlist your partner for a lovely foot massage. Invest in a foot bath that vibrates or take a nice bath. Enjoy some herbal tea. Grab a fun face mask from the store. Do whatever makes you feel relaxed and in a state of spa-induced zen. But avoid the hot tub, these aren’t safe during pregnancy.
Exercising is something that you should talk to your doctor about, but generally speaking leisurely walks are recommended and good for your body, and mind. Being in nature, moving your body…. Those things will help your physical and mental health in more ways than one. See if you can’t muster the energy for a walk around the block. You’ll be glad you did. And if you are able to walk longer distances or do another form of exercise approved by your doctor, then do that!
Yoga is, of course, another one of those good for the body and mind activities. Especially during pregnancy. As your body goes through so many changes, yoga can be particularly helpful in increasing strength and flexibility--both needed for labor. In addition, the breathing and relaxing techniques are not only great for in-the-moment, but also help to prepare you for… you guessed it, labor. Furthermore, studies have found there is a relationship between prenatal yoga and the reduction of hypertension-related complications, as well as, improvement of fetal outcome. Be sure you are doing prenatal yoga, as there are some regular yoga poses that aren’t safe for pregnancy. Namaste!
Pregnancy is an overwhelming time, for both your body and your mind. Finding the things that help you to take the very best care of yourself--whether that’s reading a book, or shopping for baby clothes--are important. Prioritizing your self-care is always important as mama, but especially so during pregnancy. Now off you go to get some rest.
Meet Our KeaMommy Contributor: Amanda
Amanda Dixon is a mother of three young children and has her master’s degree in early childhood education. She spends her days homeschooling her kiddos, freelance writing and teaching college. Her favorite things are a good cuppa tea, chocolate chip cookies, books, and her 3 dachshunds.