Experiencing pregnancy for the first time is something that no one can truly prepare for. Yes, there are measures you can take to make sure it goes as smoothly as possible (and we’ll cover them here), but there’s nothing that really compares to a mother’s first gestation period. It’s exciting, scary, thrilling, unfamiliar, and a whole bunch of emotions that are just about impossible to convey. However, we’ll do our best to ensure that first-time mothers know what they’re getting into –– at least on paper. Here then are three health tips to facilitate your first pregnancy:
Covering the Basics
First and foremost, there are certain limitations that most people already know about pregnancy, but it’s always worth reiterating them –– especially for young mothers to be. Most doctors will advise their patients to abstain from the following:
- Ingesting sushi, shellfish, or raw/cured meats.
- Consuming alcohol.
- Smoking or using tobacco products.
- Operating heavy machine.
- Exposing yourself to high heat (saunas, hot tubs).
This list is by no means comprehensive, but consider this a good starting point of “things to avoid” while pregnant. Note though, there’s nothing to stop you from continuing healthy eating habits during your pregnancy.
It’s not wise to try and push yourself to extreme conditions while pregnant. However, it’s also not healthy to sit and atrophy for nine months either. Setting a reasonable exercise regimen –– and practicing gentle yoga in particular –– will not only improve your mood, but can provide health benefits for you and your growing baby as well!
See Your Doctor Regularly
Most doctors will recommend that pregnant women schedule prenatal visits throughout their gestation period. (Anywhere from 12-16 visits in total might be considered “normal,” for reference.) At medical facilities, doctors can check on vital signs and monitor the fetus’s development –– as well as the health of the mother herself. In addition, it’s critical that expecting mothers visit a local testing center at least once to receive an STD test while pregnant. Many times, STDs can remain asymptomatic and a great deal of people don’t even know when they have one. As such, it’s important to note expecting mothers can unknowingly pass on an STD during childbirth –– or, the latent STD may cause further complications. Get tested even if you think you’re STD-free.
The Bottom Line
No two pregnancies are exactly alike. So even if you reach out to friends or relatives for a little advice, know that you’ll likely be in for a few surprises anyway. The good news is, making smart choices while pregnant basically comes down to employing common sense. And remember to try and enjoy the experience of starting a family as much as possible. It’ll all fly by faster than you realize!