The joy of bringing a new human being into the world that you have created with someone you love, is an experience that is probably impossible to surpass, which is why preparing for such a special event is so important.
Child birth can sometimes unfortunately be a traumatic or difficult experience and there are even a small percentage of parents who have to learn about their options for making a compensation claim when things go wrong, but thankfully for many of us, it is a case of preparing for pregnancy so that you are physically and mentally up for the challenge.
In simplistic terms, the healthier you are when planning a pregnancy, the greater the chances that you will safely deliver a healthy baby.
Your baby’s organs begin to form within the very first few weeks of your pregnancy and this development can be going on without you even knowing that you are pregnant.
If you trying to conceive, then hopefully you will be preparing for the news that you have become pregnant, but as these vital early weeks are critical to the baby’s development, it does underline the need to maintain a healthy lifestyle and diet if you are planning to get pregnant.
Before You Conceive
Planning your pregnancy starts before you conceive and if you can take a methodical approach to such a life-changing event, you will improve the odds of having a healthier pregnancy and reduce the prospects of any complications, although it is impossible to eliminate all risks completely.
General medical advice suggests that you should ideally start preparing for pregnancy up to three months before trying to conceive. There are many good books to help prepare you for the journey if you are lucky enough to be able to prepare ahead of time! I personally recommend reading Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth.
It will help if you can learn about how to cease your contraception and also how to prepare your body and any special issues to be aware of if you are aged over 35. In addition to seeking any medical advice you consider necessary, you may also want to pay a visit to your dentist ahead of time as it is quite important to have good oral health during your pregnancy. It is suggested that you pay a visit to the dentist in order to address any dental health issues you have before getting pregnant, as the health of your teeth and gums can affect the growth and development of your baby.
It is always a good idea to try and enjoy a healthy diet anyway, but pregnancy brings more demands on your body so you need to ready yourself for this.
An extra intake of vitamins is considered advisable and in particular, you should aim to make sure that you get plenty of foods that contain folic acid. Folic acid is a type of vitamin B and it helps to prevent birth defects in the brain and spinal cord, if it is taken before pregnancy and also in the early stages.
The sort of food that contains folic acid are leafy green vegetables and oranges, plus you can also get a prenatal multi-vitamin which contain folic acid. I personally use and recommend Rainbow Light Prenatal Organic Multivitamin. You do have to exercise caution with the amount of vitamins you take, so get some advice on the right quantity to get the best possible benefit at the safest levels of intake.
Staying In Shape
Obviously, you are going to gain weight during your pregnancy. It is recommend to gain between 20-35 lbs during your 9 months of pregnancy if you are already within a healthy weight range. You might not have much energy in your first trimester, but staying active will benefit you and your growing baby a lot more than you realize so it’s important to power through the morning sickness and stay as active as possible. Check out Knocked-Up Fitness for books and dvds to help you stay in shape.
No longer subjected to wearing a giant mumu, there are many fashionable maternity clothes available on the market now both in stores and online. When choosing pregnancy and maternity clothes, purchase your normal size for the first 2 trimesters, but consider going up one size for the third trimester. Thankfully there are many fashionable nursing breastfeeding tops and dresses available now that will make nursing your newborn a little bit easier!
Giving birth is an amazing life-changing event, so it makes sense to prepare yourself so that you are in the best possible shape for the journey ahead.