Pregnancy Survival Tips
Time to Get comfortable!
While you’re pregnant, the last thing you think about is what you’ll want to wear after the birth. And while it might seem a little irrelevant at the moment, you’ll probably find that it increasingly concerns you as the days wear on (pardon the pun) after the birth of your child. It will only be a week or two before you have shrunk out of your maternity clothes but you may still be too large for your regular clothes. It’s worth investing in some cheap, stretchy items that will shrink with you and you feel comfortable in, both out and about, and while you’re at home looking after your new baby. It’s also worth thinking about the season – if it’s autumn when your baby is due, invest in a coat with a hood, while if you’re due in the summer, make sure you’ve got a stash of t-shirts and cardigans. Oh, and comfortable footwear is a must – it’s likely you’ll spend a lot of time pushing your baby around your neighbourhood – at least in the early days!
When you’re thinking about packing your Hospital maternity bag, it’s worth thinking about what you’re going to do while you’re in labour. The puffing and panting part of giving birth is only part of the time you’ll spend in hospital before your baby is born, and you may find yourself with several hours on your hands before your baby is ready to face the world. So make sure you pack something to do, whether it’s a pack of cards, a good book, a CD to listen to or a travel game to play with your birth partner while your labour progresses – as well as killing some time, it may help to take your mind off your contractions. If you have any tips to share on coping with pregnancy, birth and beyond, email us and we’ll feature them here. Another way to kill some time is a relaxing swim and the ranges of maternity swimwear are superb.
Are you Sick of it all?
Morning sickness affects most women at some point during pregnancy, with symptoms ranging from mild nausea through to full on sickness, which can be quite debilitating. It can also occur at any time, not as the name suggests, only in the morning. There are some things you can do to help yourself however. Try sipping peppermint tea when you feel nauseous, and eat little and often throughout the day. Ginger biscuits helped me so you may also find that eating something, such as a piece of dry toast or a plain biscuit before they get out of bed in the morning can help. Ginger is known to be an excellent antidote to sickness, so do try ginger tea or ginger nut biscuits as well.
You might be pregnant, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you want to compromise on style. If you’re into skirts, you’ll finding comfortable hosiery a real challenge. Now, there are some over-the-bump tights on the market, however, you may find that tights raise your temperature or make you uncomfortable. Hold-ups may be just the answer you’re looking for – available from all the usual suspects, they allow you to feel sexy without the restricting feeling tights can give you. What’s more, you don’t need to buy special maternity versions so you’ll be able to wear them after the birth. And, although it may not be sexy, it’s worth taking a look at pop-socks too. Remember you wont jump straight back into your favourite jeans immediately after the birth so pack your jeans
Get him to Plump them up
You’ve got your bag packed with all the items suggested by your hospital and you’re pretty sure you’ve got everything. But have you considered taking a pillow from home into hospital? Not only will you have something comforting from home with you while you deliver and afterwards on the ward, you may find that your hospital doesn’t give you enough pillows to make you feel comfortable. If you have a v-shaped pillow in preparation for breastfeeding so much the better, the midwives on your ward can help you feed your baby as you would at home, and they offer excellent support for your back when you’re sitting in your hospital bed.
So Hot and bothered?
There’s no two ways about it, most hospitals are hot places. Be sure to pack a suitable maternity nightdressor a few cool and lightweight cotton maternity dresses for your hospital stay. For pregnant women they can sometimes be uncomfortably hot, and while you’re in labour, the effort may raise your temperature another few degrees. A cooling water spray is the answer to this, and may just keep you from being hot and bothered while you’re waiting for your new arrival to announce him or herself.
You’re nearing the end of your pregnancy and you feel uncomfortable and fat. Your ankles are swollen, you get tired walking up the stairs and it’s difficult to have a bath because you’re afraid you won’t be able to get out of it when you’ve finished. The later stages of pregnancy can make many women feel unattractive and tired, so make sure you organise some treats for yourself in the weeks leading up to the birth, because you won’t have much time for yourself once the baby arrives. Why not book a spa day – making sure the venue you’ve chosen has a pregnancy specialist? Or create your own maternity spa-day at home with all your favourite products. Just make sure there’s someone around to hoist you out of the bath!
Unfortunately babies don’t often come along in time for dinner. With most babies born at night, most hospitals are ill-equipped for providing new mums with a well needed snack after they’ve given birth. So while you might have packed your bags – you’ve got your nightdress, some clothes for the baby and something to travel home in, have you thought about including a snack for after the big event? Hospitals vary in their policies on eating during labour but it’s also worth taking some cream crackers or dry biscuits in with you to keep you going – you might be awaiting your new arrival for some time.
Chill Out Girlfriend!
While it might not have been the best summer on record in terms of hours of sunshine, the temperature has definitely been rising, and for many pregnant women that can mean swollen, uncomfortable ankles and feet. If you’re in this predicament, why not try covering your lower legs and feet with a cooling leg gel? Found in major chemists and toiletry retailers, they feel doubly effective if kept in the fridge. And if you can get your partner to help you rub some gel into the affected areas, so much the better – you’ll be transported to a complete chill out zone
Make sure you take your folic acid daily!
Taken as a tablet and included in many cereals, folic acid is recommended by the Dept of Health from trying to conceive through to the 12th week of pregnancy and can prevent neural tube defects like spina bifida
La Fee Noire cannot stress enough the importance of good Maternity Support
Unless you are one of those exceptions with small expectant tummies, buying maternity clothing should be one of the best comforts you can provide for your stretching belly! If you think using elastic bands or adjustable buttons to adapt your non-maternity clothes to fit your expanding waistline will do the trick, you will soon realize that it doesn’t take you very far nor will it be very comfortable. You can start with a useful maternity support band or belly band to help bridge the gap between your trousers and top
Pregnancy is one of the most amazing experiences a woman can have. Knowing that your baby is growing each day inside you, that you are nourishing and protecting it and that your body is going through such an astonishing transformation can be truly magical.
However, pregnancy is not plain sailing for all women. Many women suffer morning sickness and nausea (which, contrary to it name, can strike at any time of the day and indeed last all day for at least the first trimester!), carpal tunnel syndrome, Pre-eclampsia, heartburn, swollen ankles, haemorrhoids, constipation, sciatica pain and Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD) also known as Pelvic Girdle Pain (PGP)
As you progress throughout your pregnancy, your body releases the hormone Relaxin. This is released throughout your body to help to soften the joints and ligaments. This is in preparation for the birth of your baby and the changes your body goes through as your baby grows and extra pressure and strain are put upon your body. However, sometimes the release of this hormone can have a detrimental effect upon the body. In these cases the joints can soften too much and you can suffer from SPD. The symphysis pubis joint naturally widens during pregnancy to accommodate your baby, but in SPD sufferers it widens too much. This can cause extreme pain and discomfort when walking, opening your legs, or turning your body. This condition may last up until over six weeks after giving birth.
If you experience pain and discomfort in your pelvic region during pregnancy you should see your GP immediately. You may be referred to a physiotherapist who can offer advice and help to treat your SPD. In addition to the recommended treatments by your doctor, you can help yourself by wearing a Maternity Support band. Often also known as a Maternity Support Belt
Maternity support bands come in many various designs, patterns, materials and colours. Maternity Support bands are designed to support your growing baby bump and you lower back. In addition to this maternity support bands help to take pressure off the pelvis, lumbar region and lower back area. Wearing a maternity support band can help women who are suffering from SPD and also women who are experiencing more general side, back and ligament pain that is often associated with pregnancy.
Maternity support bands are often purchased in your pre-pregnancy dress size and are made from breathable soft microfibres, making them comfortable to wear. They fit close and snug to the skin so can often be worn unnoticed under clothing.
In addition to wearing Maternity support bands, getting the right maternity underwear can go a long way towards making your pregnancy more comfortable. Specially designed maternity bras will support your growing breasts and maternity knickers should allow your bump to comfortably grow. You may also find that maternity underwear and even maternity support bands are now available in a range of styles and colours such as our coloured double-layered Belly band and our unique pregnancy innovation Hug-a-Bump®
Save yourself the hassle and the expense of purchasing accessories that will only adapt your regular clothes in the early months. Instead, purchase maternity clothing once you start showing so that you can get more wear out of them. At the very least, you will appreciate the comfort and ease of movement that well-designed maternity clothing brings.
Maternity clothes are designed to accommodate the areas that your body will see the most changes. Your bust will likely become one size larger, while your waistline can go from 26″ to 36″! Meanwhile, the rest of you will remain relatively the same. If you opt to buy larger sizes of your favourite non-maternity labels you will notice the sleeves become too long, the shoulder line is sloppy and the hip line is too low. Larger sized pants and skirts will not have the body depth necessary for comfort and expansion.
Your body will change throughout your pregnancy term and only well designed maternity wear will keep pace with your growing shape. When you buy the right size, style and even fabric it should last throughout your entire pregnancy with normal weight gain.