First off, if you are reading this- my guess is you are pregnant or trying to conceive- CONGRATULATIONS! Pregnancy, birth and parenthood are amazing, difficult, beautiful, and challenging journeys. Now, I know you probably want the low-down on everything to expect. I can’t give you all of that, because every pregnancy, birth and child are different. But, I can give you some insider tips and advice based off of my experiences. You may be aware that the first trimester tends to be pretty rough for some. Between being fatigued and vomiting, the first trimester can rock you. But, there are ways to make it easier. So, here are ten tips to survive the first trimester of pregnancy.
1. Have a snack, and then take your prenatal vitamins before bed.
Eating is the cardinal rule before taking many medications, because they upset your stomach. Prenatals are no different. Having substance in your tummy, and taking your vitamin right before bed can avoid that icky nauseous feeling that you may experience when you take your vitamins during the day.
2. Eat small meals, frequently throughout the day.
Your digestive track slows down when your pregnant, thanks to progesterone. So, that means you don’t want to be too full. Instead of overstuffing yourself, eat small meals and snacks frequently throughout the day. It will keep your belly just the right amount of full, so you’re not sick from being hungry or sick from being too full!
3. Drink 10 cups of water a day!
Sounds unrealistic, right? It’s tough, but frequent sips are key. You definitely don’t want to chug water [out of dire thirst]. That will upset your stomach, and you may end up puking (think about the last time you had a stomach bug). Try to drink a sip every 15 minutes or if you want another way to keep track- aim for 124 sips in a day.
4. Leave crackers, mints (or nausea drops), and water by your bedside.
Nausea tends to hit first thing in the morning, because you are hungry. Eat a few crackers, sip some water, and pop a mint to keep you from getting sick when you stand up. These queasy drops have been recommended for those going through chemo, and work pretty well when you have morning sickness. Make sure to leave some next to your bedside!
5. Always be prepared to barf.
You’re driving down the road, and it’s pull over and puke or throw up in your purse/hands. Sometimes you get a warning, and sometimes you don’t. Instead of losing your cookies all over the place, be prepared! Keep a grocery bag or barf bags in your purse and car. By the way, the barf bags above are sealable, waterproof and you can click the picture to order them from Amazon!
6. Go to bed an hour earlier than normal.
During pregnancy, especially during the first trimester, you need more sleep. Since most of us can’t sleep in an hour later, switch up your bed time. Try going to bed an hour earlier to try to combat the fatigue you might have the next day. If you have difficulty sleeping like me, check out these ways to fall asleep fast when you have insomnia.
7. Walk (as permitted by your physician!)
Walking might be the last thing you want to do, especially if you are fatigued, nauseous or get light-headed when moving. It may sound counter-intuitive, but taking a brisk walk can actually boost your energy. If you take a walk outside, the fresh air may also help alleviate nausea. Also, maintaining an active pregnancy can help make you more comfortable as the pregnancy progresses. It’s also good to get your blood flowing, because you don’t want to risk blood clots! It’s also very important to know your limits, and to slow down, so please keep this in mind!
8. Watch what you eat!
While you may already have cravings, sometimes it’s best not to give in. This is because certain foods, such as those that are spicy, greasy, fatty, or with strong smells can leave you with your head in the toilet or with a really upset tummy! If you had food sensitivities before, these may worsen during pregnancy, so it’s also important to avoid anything that may trigger you, even though you may be craving them. In the same respect, don’t worry about counting calories! While you should be eating the rainbow, don’t be too hard on yourself.
9. Take extra B6 (as permitted by your physician!)
If you have nausea, you can take 25 mg up to three times a day. This helps relieve nausea, which means no morning sickness! I know it can be hard to find B6 alone (usually you find B complex or B12, but no B6- WHAT IS UP WITH THAT?!), so the picture above is clickable and you can order B6 from Amazon (for $5!).
10. Eat your protein!!
Protein not only will help with nausea, but it will also help with fatigue. If you have anemia, all of these will help boost your iron- see my note below to see which food works best!
What foods are high in protein?
- Greek yogurt
- Cottage cheese
- BEEF (Eat more red meats, if your iron is low!)
Here are some things I’ve found to be helpful in the first trimester of pregnancy:
What are some tips you wish you would have known during your first trimester of pregnancy?
Like this post? Read Ten Pregnancy Secrets No One Tells You About.
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