Top tips to get you through your pregnancy

Our midwife passes on her pearls of wisdom to help make your pregnancy more comfortable

Make sure you get enough rest

Pregnancy sleep tips

  • Add four drops of lavender oil (after 28 weeks of pregnancy only) to your evening bath to relax you.
  • Don’t use mobile phones, watch the telly or use a computer an hour before you want to go to sleep.
  • Taking regular daily exercisewill help you drop off nicely at bedtime.
  • Placing a pillow between your kneesor under your bump as support can make you more comfortable at night.
  • A gentle massage from your partner will not only soothe you, but will help him bond with the bump, too. Remember, only use light stokes on the bump!

Tips to beat nausea

  • Eat little and often. Nausea is worse when your blood sugar level drops.
  • Travel bands worn on your wrists can help.
  • Ice lollies will keep you hydrated even if you’re not eating.
  • Peppermint tea or even just sucking on a mint can help you overcome a wave of sickness.
  • Prenatal massage will calm you down if it’s nerves that are making you feel sick with worry.

Ways to cope with stress in pregnancy

  • Talk about how you feel. Your midwife may want to monitor how you’re feeling during your visits.
  • Exercise makes the body release endorphins – ‘feel good’ chemicals. Even a walk can lift your mood.
  • Switch off and enjoy time with yourself.  It can be as simple as candlelit bath with a favourite mag.
  • Massage can be soothing – but some techniques should be avoided, so see a pregnancy therapist.
  • Relaxing music can really calm you down. Make sure your MP3 player is full of chill-out tunes for those busy commutes.

Getting the rest you need in pregnancy

  • Disconnect. Set your answerphone, or better still, unplug the phone and put your mobile on silent.
  • Timetable. For example, have visitors between 2pm and 4pm only, so you don’t get too tired.
  • Preserve privacy. Put a sign on the bedroom door saying ‘sleeping’, so your partner knows to stay quiet if he comes home.
  • Resist the couch. A bed is the best place to get your head down.
  • De-electrify. Take the TV out of the bedroom – and in fact any electrical items that will tempt you to do anything other than rest.

Sharing pregnancy with your man

  • Ante-natal together. Going to classes together means he can share his concerns with your midwife.
  • Let him listen in to see if he can hear your baby’s heartbeat using a toilet roll tube against your belly.
  • Scan with your man. Ask for pre-work appointments if you need to so he can be at your scans.
  • Get dad chatting. Encourage him to watch and feel the baby move as well as talking to your belly.
  • Share the moments. A text when something happens, like a kick, can brighten his day and make it his experience too.

Pregnancy-safe exercise options

  • Swimming using front stroke will encourage your baby to get into a good position for the birth.
  • Walking helps improve circulation and boosts energy levels.
  • Yoga is a great way to practise breathing exercises for b-day and promotes relaxation and good posture.
  • Aquanatal exercises will improve your stamina for labour.
  • Pelvic floor squeezes will help to keep good muscle tone down below and prevent bladder problems later on.

Coping with tiredness

  • Two drops of citrus oil, such as lemon, on a handkerchief can help to make you feel more alert but don’t use until after 12 weeks of pregnancy.
  • A 10-minute power nap will keep you going through the rest of the day.
  • Eat little and often, and keep snacks such as fruit or crackers handy for when your energy levels start to drop.
  • Go for a brisk walk. Yes, exercise will make you feel less tired.
  • Pace yourself. Don’t try and do jobs when you’re exhausted. If you need to rest, listen to your body and relax.

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