Taking care of yourself during your pregnancy is of utmost importance. Your gynaecologist will give you general guidelines, but don't expect to be spoonfed. Here's what you need to know and do on your own.
Read up on what constitutes a good diet or speak with a nutritionist. Your doctor may not tell you to avoid eating outside, but if you have a sensitive stomach, use your own common sense and stay away from uncooked foods, salads, and avoid eating at places where the food is suspect. Don't eat outdoors in the summer when food gets spoiled easily. Be particular about eating a well-balanced meal and don't fill yourself up with empty calories.
How should you sleep at night? Sleeping on your back when pregnant may harm your back, as the added weight sits straight on your spinal cord. It's best if you sleep on your side, preferably on your left side. This position also ensures optimal oxygen flow to your baby.
Avoid smoking and drinking alcohol at this time. You may have heard or read at various places that wine is fairly safe during pregnancy. However, while the safety of downing a drink may be questionable, refusing it is unquestionably a safe bet. The choice is up to you. If you are craving for a drink, you may consider giving in and going for a small glass of red wine. But if the craving is not so strong and you can overcome it, consider opting for a juice! A cup of mild coffee a day is fine, but needless to say, a cup of juice is even better. The choice is yours.
A short walk everyday will suffice. You don't need to gear up for the marathon, but keeping your leg muscles strong will help in the delivery process. Always check with your doctor before beginning any exercise programme.
Spend some time reading everyday. This will not guarantee that your baby will grow up with a love of literature, but reading is definitely a relaxing activity. In fact, it is a good idea for you to stay away from depressing books, and read something light and interesting. "I read a lot of very funny books and joke books when I was pregnant. With the result that I laughed a lot, and my baby too is constantly smiling and laughing. I don't know if it is the result of all the books I read, but I believe a happy pregnancy leads to a happy baby," says Sunayana. So if you enjoy reading, pick up some lighthearted books at this time. If not, surely a joke a day should be achievable! Pregnancy in general can be a very stressful time, and this is a great way to just let loose and laugh. The effects of heartfelt laughter are bound to impact a foetus positively.
Listen to soothing music, and play the same music consistently at the same time. Continue when the baby is born, and watch your baby calm down as soon as you play the music!