Updated: Dec 14, 2020
50 things every Expectant Mum needs to know
Until you are pregnant and in the throws of morning sickness, sore boobs, swollen ankles, heartburn and tiredness - oh the tiredness! (well you are growing a small human) no one can really prepare you for what it is like. But we have put together 50 things we think you should know when pregnant.
1- There is no tiredness that you can compare to the tiredness you feel in the first trimester! You are growing a tiny person and it takes a lot out of you. Naps in the day are totally allowed.
2- Your due date worked out from your last menstrual period may be wrong. Your first ultrasound scan will give you a more accurate date.
3- There are certain foods you should avoid in pregnancy, find out what they are at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/foods-to-avoid-pregnant/
4- A book cannot prepare you – they are only guides
5- Morning sickness is not just in the morning! It can occur at any time of day and for some is the worst part of pregnancy!
6- The only supplements you need are folic acid and vitamin D. if you have a varied, balanced diet then you do not actually need anything else (unless advised by your midwife/GP)
7- Love your changing body and the beautiful miracle you are growing inside you.
8- In pregnancy you become a superhero with super sense of smell as your superpower. This is not always a good thing when you can no longer stand your favourite food because of its smell or your favourite perfume!
9- Do not clean out your cat’s litter tray. It will be filled with millions of bacteria and parasites we especially worry about one called Toxoplasmosis
10- Enjoy the shiny, thick hair and the strong nails, because once you have had the baby all that extra hair will fall out!
11- Be prepared for blood tests galore! By the time the pregnancy is over you won’t even flinch at a needle.
12- Hormonal changes in pregnancy means your gums are more susceptible to plaque on your teeth so make sure you get a dentist check-up in pregnancy
13- If you find out the sex of baby and it is not the one you were hoping for do not feel guilty. It is completely normal to feel that way.
14- Include your partner in conversations about the baby and being a parent. Get your partner to rub your belly, talk to the baby about their day, or read (a book, magazine, newspaper) anything to make the baby familiar with their voice.
15- Your 50 year old self will appreciate it if you do your pelvic floors exercises throughout pregnancy and after the birth properly (NOTE your pelvic floor is exercised when you walk and squat not just through Kegels).
16- Download an app to keep a track of the weeks and how your baby is developing.
17- Your baby’s movements are the way your baby is telling you they are ok so monitor them from 24 weeks and if you think they have changed or reduced then call your midwife / maternity unit.
18- Your baby will start to react different to voices from 29 weeks of pregnancy.
19- Babies get hiccups from around 25 weeks while they practice the movement that is needed to breath. They also swallow amniotic fluid and then pass urine back into it.
20- Your feet will swell a little or a lot! Elevate them when you can so your ankles are higher than your hips.
21- If you can try to plan it so you are not heavily pregnant in summer! It is no fun for anybody.
22- Pack your hospital bag early and make sure your partner packs it with you so they know where things are when you need them.
23- Download the Oliiki app and make the most of your baby’s first 1000 days (believe it or not your baby’s learning starts from conception)
24- At your Midwives appointment you will have your blood pressure tested and asked to produce a urine sample to test for protein to ensure you are not developing pre-eclampsia
25- Antenatal classes are invaluable to prepare you for your labour and birth. Knowledge is power! Look to book some after your 20 week scan.
26- Giving birth is the happiest and scariest day of your life.
27- Never compare your bump to someone else’s! Every woman and every baby is different and as long as your midwife is happy with your measurements your baby and bump is the right size for you.
28- If you develop itching of your hands or feet contact your midwife / maternity unit as this can be a sign of Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy (ICP)
29- The dark line you develop from your belly button to your bikini line is called your linea nigra and is completely normal – it may or may not go away after you have had the baby.
30- Your pelvis can take a battering in pregnancy so to help keep your knees together as much as possible (especially when getting in and out of bed, the car and the bath)
31- You do not need to eat for two! Just an extra 200 calories is all you need
32- Weight gain in pregnancy varies from women to women but most women 10-12.5kg (22-26lbs) in pregnancy.
33- Consider using complementary therapies to help ease some of the aches, pains and side effects of pregnancy. (For example, homeopathy, acupuncture, aromatherapy, reflexology)
34- When your baby is born, initially it will look like its father (there is a simple evolutionary explanation for this). It helps the bond between father and child and confirms paternity.
35- Other opinions and advice is exactly that! It might not apply to you and your family.
36- You will either get stretch marks or you won’t. No amount of moisturising will prevent them but may ease them.
37- ‘Dr’ Google does not have the qualifications to answer your pregnancy questions, instead go to NHS pregnancy pages
38- Sexual intercourse is safe to have in pregnancy (as long as your placenta is not low) and can often feel more intense.
39- The high heat environment in Jacuzzis, hot tubs and saunas means they should be avoided.
40- Two vaccines are recommended in pregnancy. The flu vaccine and a vaccine for whopping cough.
41- You travel an emotional roller coaster in pregnancy, you will be crying at Paul O’Grady’s For the Love of Dogs one day, feel amazing and full of energy the next, and spend all day in bed on another!
42- You can never have enough pregnant friends! Join groups, attend classes, and get as much chat and support going as you can.
43- Your baby is ‘fully cooked’ from 37 weeks and is classed as term.
44- If you plan to breastfeed you can prepare in pregnancy by hand expressing from 36 weeks.
45- Have your labour bags at the door and ready to go from 36 weeks.
46- Wash your baby’s clothes in a non-bio washing powder.
47- Take pictures of your pregnant bump (professional or just set up your own) they are a wonderful keepsake
48- Your parenting instinct should always be trusted! Do what feels right for you and your baby.
49- One of the most important things to do in pregnancy is to take care of is yourself. Prolonged, high levels of stress can cause complications during pregnancy, as well as premature labour and low birth weight babies.
50- It is OK to ask for help! There is so much support out there including PBB Events Emma & Debbie who are here to help and support so please message us at any time and join our free Facebook group Expecting a Baby in 2020/21