If this is your first pregnancy, you’ll have lots and lots of questions and have about 9 months to get the answers you need to help guide your journey. Nine months seems like a long time, but it goes surprisingly fast when you’re pregnant.
Once the initial announcement is over, it is time to get down to business to ensure that your baby is on the road to a fantastic future, nurtured with loving care and the right foods/healthy lifestyles to nourish him/her during prenatal development.
Take the time to talk with your OB/GYN during the early stages of pregnancy to put you on the right path for a healthy baby. Be sure to sign up for your pregnancy classes.
What should you know?
- In a “normal” full-term pregnancy is 40 weeks but can range from 37 to 42 weeks according to com.
- It is divided into 3 trimesters. Each lasting about 12-14 weeks.
- Each comes with its own special hormonal and physiological changes according to Healthline.com, so it’s important to know how to prepare for a great pregnancy.
- The first trimester is vital for the development of the baby. Your little one is about the size of an orange seed.
- During the first trimester, the baby will develop all its organs by the end of the 3rd
- The risk of miscarriage can be significant during this time, so be sure to help lower the risk by taking prenatal vitamins and avoiding harmful substances.
- The second trimester is most often the most enjoyable and you may have a new sense of well-being according to a Mayo Clinic article.
- As your uterus makes room for the baby, your belly grows.
- Your breasts will gradually continue to increase in size.
- You may be able to feel the movement of your baby around the 20- week mark.
- The third trimester begins around the 28th-week mark until the birth of the baby. It can be a tiring and emotionally challenging during this time. Anxiety may set in as you are preparing both physically and mentally for the baby’s arrival. It’s important to remain positive during this time.
- You’ll see your provider more often during this time.
- The baby’s size and position may make it harder to get comfortable as he/she is moving around.
- You might feel mild irregular contractions called Braxton Hicks.
Why you should stay active during pregnancy?
Although you may want to become a couch potato, it’s important to keep going to give your baby the healthiest mom to be! Why does staying active help?
- Reduces stress
- Helps to control weight
- Improves circulation
- Mood booster
- Better sleep
Take a pregnancy exercise class or walk 15-20 minutes a day at a moderate pace, in a cool, shaded environment so as not to get overheated.
Should you track your weight?
The Institute of Medicine recommends the following guidelines for weight gain during pregnancy:
- Underweight before pregnancy: 28-40 lbs.
- Normal weight before pregnancy: 25-35 lbs.
- Overweight before pregnancy: 15-25 lbs.
- Obese before pregnancy: 11-20 lbs.,
Also, be sure to talk with your provider for his/her recommendations.
Why should you practice Kegel exercises?
Kegel exercises can be done virtually anywhere, and no one knows you are doing them. Why is it important to keep doing Kegels during pregnancy? They help to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles that support your bowels, bladder and uterus which may help for an easier delivery and prevent incontinence later.
During your pregnancy, remember to stay healthy, keep learning and asking questions from your health professionals, family, and friends.
Congratulations to all first-time moms-to-be! You’ve got this…
The information on this site is intended to raise awareness and understanding of specific health issues. It should not be used for diagnosis or a substitute for health care by your physician.