Pregnancy & Delivery | Pregnancy | For Mommy
For Pregnant Mommy
Someone recommended me to get a body pillow when I was pregnant with my first baby. The pillows can be expensive, ranging from $45 - $70 and it was probably one of the best purchases I made when I was pregnant. I loved using the body pillow from the first trimester to at least a month post partum. The Leachco Snoogle Total Body Pillow allowed me to sleep more comfortably on my side and the occasional time I ended up on my back I didn't have to worry because the pillow kept me elevated so I wasn't flat against my back.
Most women swear by a certain belly cream during pregnancy. My favorite with my second baby was Burt's Bees Mama Bee Belly Balm. I did not put the cream on religiously like most but I do think it does help. One thing I would note is you may want to put it on more places than just your belly. You may want to consider putting some on your breasts as well. Most women go up at least one breast size during pregnancy.
I also heard from a friend that in the final trimester she put the Lansinoh nipple cream on her nipples to prepare for breastfeeding. She said it worked well for her and she never had cracked nipples once she started breastfeeding her baby.
Many women use a maternity band which can be put over regular pants to extend the life of regular pants before moving to maternity pants. It can also be used to make sure you are covered if your regular shirt rides up some. I bought one for my second pregnancy as with my second baby, I was determined to wait to wear maternity clothes for as long as possible. Although, I admit I never really used it. I know some women that used it almost everyday and for some reason I just never seemed to need it. Although I did try to avoid wearing maternity clothes for awhile, I did prefer the comfort of maternity pants rather than regular pants when pregnant.
In addition to the maternity band for aesthetic reasons, you can get a maternity support band to help support your belly and/or a support band to help support your back if you are having back trouble. I've never used either of these but I know Babies R Us caries both types.
When you start to wear maternity clothes is definitely a very personal decision. With my first baby, I was so excited to be pregnant, I couldn't wait to start wearing maternity clothes and I believe I started at about 8 weeks pregnant. With my second baby, I was just as excited to be pregnant but I wasn't as excited about wearing maternity clothes and I tried to postpone the process as long as possible. I also gained a lot more weight with my first baby than I did with my second and thus I was also able to hold off on going full fledge maternity for awhile longer. Only you know when it is best for you to switch from regular clothes to maternity clothes. Wear what makes you feel the most comfortable and the most beautiful. Remember to cherish your beautiful body as it prepares for the birth of your baby.
Please try to make some time to document some memories of being pregnant. To be honest, I wasn't very good about this. I also didn't have any weird food cravings or too many things that changed while I was pregnant to make note of. I did write down some things in my pregnancy book and when I was pregnant with my second baby I enjoyed reading what I had written.
Some things you could document:
- When I suspected I was pregnant....Date I found out
- First doctor visit
- First thoughts
- Expected due date
- Who first told
- How celebrated
- Family and friends' reactions
- Things looking forward to
- Doctor's name, Office location, Things to remember at appointments
- Thoughts and feelings - you may want to document at least one thought each trimester
- Changes in lifestyle made
- When started to really show
- 1st time felt baby kick and when most active
- Favorite foods and foods craved
- Foods can't believe ate
- Foods couldn't eat
- Favorite things to do to relax
- Activities enjoy
- Color scheme of nursery
- Advice from friends and family
- At shower or before you know the sex of baby you could take a poll on whether it is a boy or a girl, the date of the birth, and the weight of the baby
- Name Ideas...history behind name chosen
- Shower's given (you may even want to save your invitation)
- Pregnancy classes attended
- After delivery....when, where, name of hospital, how long the labor was, the doctor, who helped during labor, the weight, height
- Keep a copy of first birth announcement, hospital identification band, footprints
Another fun way to document your pregnancy is to take a picture of your pregnant belly. We had professional pictures taken when I was pregnant with both my first and second baby. I enjoy getting pictures taken at JCPenny's as they are very reasonably priced with a coupon, only $3.99 per portrait sheet and a free sitting if you sign up for the annual membership which I believe is about $25 with a coupon. You may even want to take a picture of your pregnant belly each month to watch the amazing changes. I planned to do that with my second baby and then time slipped away and next thing I knew I was seven months pregnant and I hadn't taken the monthly pictures of my pregnant belly.
I also have my baby's first sonogram picture in a white frame and below the picture it says, "Love at first sight." I still love looking at that picture.
Take Care of Your Body
It is extremely important to remember to take care of your body for both you and your baby. Remember to take your prenatal vitamin. My doctor said any prenatal vitamin will work as long as it has the recommended amount of folic acid about 400 micrograms (mcg) per day. I primarily took the all natural prenatal vitamins I bought at Whole Foods. Although, I'll admit I dreaded taking the "horse" size pills daily. Later, I discovered vitafusion PreNatal Gummy Vitamins. The vitafusion vitamins are delicious, they taste like candy. They do have additional ingredients like glucose syrup, sucrose, gelatin, natural flavors, citric acid, natural colors, lactic acid, and fumaric acid. I was happy that the product provided DHA along with Folic Acid and other vitamins. Vitafusion uses "high qualified, purified fish oil that has been tested for mercury and PCBs." It also uses carrot and blueberry juices for coloring rather than unnatural dyes. You can buy Vitafusion PreNatal vitamins at Target. Confirm with your doctor what prenatal vitamin is right for you.
In addition to taking your daily vitamin it is a great time to eat better and rest more. That is easier said than done, I definitely understand that. I'm not one to rest often, I'm constantly on the go, but I did try to listen to my body and those few days where I really felt I needed to slow down and take a rest, I did. I also noticed a tremendous difference with my second pregnancy compared with my first which I believe was highly correlated to my diet.
With both pregnancies, I didn't change my eating habits much before or after I became pregnant, the main difference was the first time I was pregnant I was working full time outside of the home and my husband and I primarily ate out about five days a week. Even though we weren't eating fast food, we were still eating restaurant food, which I'm sure was fairly processed and had a higher salt content. With my first pregnancy I had severe swelling very early on in pregnancy and gained a lot of weight early on as well. With my second pregnancy, we primarily ate all meals at home made with 99% organic ingredients and very few processed food. I even made our bread and the occasional homemade treat at home from scratch. I had virtually no swelling the entire pregnancy and gained about 15 - 20 pounds less than the first time. For some snack ideas, please refer to the "Snack" article.
It was also easier for me to see the direct link between what I ate and what I was feeding my baby since I could look into my son's eye's and think would I give you this to eat and if the answer was no, why was I eating it and giving it to the baby inside me. I will admit, towards the end of pregnancy I did start to crave sweets and I did give into those cravings at times even though I tried to limit the amount of sweets I gave my son. I know it is hard to take care of ourselves at times but a happy, healthy mom makes a more happy, healthy family.
Please refer to the MOMMBY Amazon Store to find products like the Leachco Snoogle Total Body Pillow, Burt's Bees Mama Bee Belly Balm, the I'm Pregnant! book, and the Maternity Lace Bella Band. Please refer to the Pregnancy Items Category.
In addition, please refer to the "Preparing for Birth" article for more resources such as different Pregnancy Books you may be interested in reading. You may also want to refer to the "Baby Registry List" article.
Last Updated: August 2010; January 2011