Nothing compares to the joy and excitement of the moment you test positive for pregnancy. If you’ve just received the news, congratulations! Now that you’re expecting, we can’t emphasize more on taking care of yourself, and the little version of you growing inside your womb throughout this nine months journey, and the best way to do that is to adopt healthy habits and prioritize self-care.
A healthy body and mind benefit you and your baby and also, prepare your body to deliver a healthy baby naturally and reduce the likelihood of complications, ensuring that your pregnancy’s progress stays on track in each trimester.
It’s all too natural for expecting mothers to be inspired to explore various healthy practices that can benefit both the mother and the baby right from the outset. If you’re looking for guidance, you’re at the right place! Continue reading to discover four healthy practices expecting mothers should adopt for a successful and healthy pregnancy.
Common Health Challenges During Pregnancy
Unhealthy habits and certain underlying medical conditions are among the most common challenges most expecting mothers face. Excessive use of alcohol and caffeine can impede your pregnancy’s progress. Moreover, medical conditions like hypertension, hormonal disorders, anorexia, infections, and physical trauma during pregnancy can pose serious challenges to both mother and baby.
Even if you have a healthy pregnancy, you may be unable to deliver a healthy child during labor, resulting in childbirth injuries. If your baby suffers from childbirth injuries, it may cause lifelong diseases, such as cerebral palsy, neurological disorders, etc.
However, the most common cause of childbirth injuries is medical negligence from the healthcare provider. You can consult cerebral palsy attorneys immediately if your child has suffered from childbirth injuries due to medical negligence on the part of the healthcare provider during labor and is later diagnosed with cerebral palsy.
Cerebral palsy attorneys will help you file a claim against the healthcare provider and get financial compensation to cover the expenses of medical treatments and occupational therapies. Timely diagnosis and early medical intervention can help relieve symptoms in children with cerebral palsy, promote better motor function, and improve their overall quality of life.
That being said, adopting healthy habits, managing chronic diseases effectively, and leaving behind unhealthy habits can drastically improve your chances of a successful pregnancy and help you deliver a healthy, happy child.
Healthy Practices for Expecting Mothers
Adopting healthy practices right from the day you receive the news of your pregnancy can help you avoid many pregnancy complications and developmental delays. Scroll down to discover four healthy habits to promote a healthy pregnancy and ensure safe and healthy childbirth:
1. Never Miss Your Prenatal Appointment
Now that you’ve tested positive for pregnancy, it’s time to visit your healthcare provider and create a complete follow-up plan for your prenatal appointments. Prenatal checkups ensure that your pregnancy and fetal growth are on track throughout the nine-month journey.
On your first appointment, your healthcare provider takes a closer look at your baby through screenings, conducts blood tests, and takes note of your complete medical history. This information will serve as a building block for your pregnancy and help your healthcare provider create a prenatal care plan tailored to your medical condition and unique needs. Moreover, your healthcare provider will guide you on your dietary requirements and risk factors and educate you on all the red flags during pregnancy that may require immediate medical intervention.
Each of your prenatal appointment is equally important throughout your pregnancy. Your healthcare provider can monitor fetal growth and detect any issues early to avoid further complications.
2. Maintain a Healthy Body-Mass Index (BMI)
A healthy weight increases the likelihood of a healthy pregnancy and a natural and healthy childbirth process. For this purpose, it’s important to closely check your weight throughout your pregnancy and maintain a healthy BMI. A BMI above or below the acceptable ranges can increase the risk of various complications in pregnancy.
Obesity is among the most prominent factors causing infertility in women, as it directly affects reproductive health. Similarly, obese or overweight women are highly likely to miscarry and have lower conception rates. Even if pregnant, they can develop diabetes, heart issues, hypo or hyperglycemia, and other pregnancy complications that can seriously hamper fetal development.
Conversely, being underweight can cause complications, including premature birth, miscarriage, and fetal growth restriction. Malnutrition during pregnancy can lead to complications in the baby’s development and affect their stomach, heart, lungs, gut health, and diaphragm once they’re born.
If you have a BMI over or under the acceptable range, consult your gynecologist or obstetrician to plan your diet and supplements accordingly.
3. Your Diet Fuels Your Pregnancy and Nourishes Your Baby
If you’re on a calorie-restricting or low-carb-high-fat (LCHF) diet, it’s time to return to a normal diet that includes all macronutrients, carbs, proteins, and healthy fats. A healthy and balanced diet during pregnancy ensures that your baby gets all the nutrients they need to grow and thrive and that you stay healthy during pregnancy and after childbirth.
Fresh fruits and vegetables are particularly beneficial for you and your baby as they contain the essential vitamins and antioxidants your baby needs. Include plenty of fruits and vegetables in your diet, and make sure you consume adequate portions of other food groups, including lean protein, whole grains, and healthy fats. Be sure to take your diet supplements and an additional dose of folic acid as per your doctor’s prescription.
Eating a balanced diet will help you maintain a healthy BMI and support fetal development. Avoid overeating and consuming sugary and oily foods, alcohol, and excessive caffeine. Limit your caffeine intake to under 200 milligrams a day. At the same time, make sure you consume 1500-1800 calories a day during your first trimester and gradually increase it to 2400 calories by the end of the pregnancy.
4. Incorporate Exercise Into Your Daily Routine
Your journey to motherhood is not just about developing a baby inside your womb but also preparing you for a healthy delivery and strengthening your immune system, bones, and supporting muscles to take on the responsibility of caring for your baby. However, a sedentary lifestyle can wreak havoc on your body and negatively affect your overall health and pregnancy.
Conversely, regular exercise improves your immunity and strengthens your bones and muscles. When you exercise, your heart pumps more blood to your body, meaning each cell receives essential nutrients, oxygen, and water to support bodily functions. Moreover, regular physical activity improves your body’s flexibility, which helps you during labor and gives you the strength to recover quickly after your child is born. Research pregnancy-friendly exercises and incorporate a lighter physical activity such as brisk walking into your daily routine.
As an expecting mother, nurturing your developing baby’s well-being is paramount. The healthy habits mentioned above can help you maintain a healthy pregnancy and give birth to a healthy and happy child. Remember to discuss all your concerns with your healthcare provider and consult them before making any changes to your lifestyle, particularly your diet and exercise routine.