Pregnancy Diet For Vegetarian Moms-To-Be
Citrus fruits are rich in nutrients like glucose, fructose, and sucrose, as well as citric acid which provides the much-needed additional energy to expecting mothers. Fruits like orange, lemon, and grapefruit contain a dietary fiber known as pectin which helps relieves digestive issues, maintains blood sugar, controls cholesterol levels, helping to prevent gestational diabetes.
Also, the high content of Vitamin C in citrus fruit provides collagen for the formation and maintenance of strong ligaments, tendons, dentin, skin, blood vessels and bones during pregnancy.
During pregnancy, it is safe to use products that don’t contain ingredients such as Retin-A, retinol, retinyl palmitate, benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, formaldehyde, parabens, and hair dyes. Avoid potentially harmful ingredients such as lead. It is most commonly found in 60% of lipsticks, foundation, nail polish, and even whitening toothpaste. Lead is a developmental neurotoxin and should be avoided.
Due to the hormonal changes during pregnancy, it is normal to have unusual food cravings. You might crave odd food combinations or foods that you’ve never wanted to eat before.
According to research presented in “Frontiers in Psychology”, about 50 to 90 percent of women have some type of specific food craving during pregnancy. But doctors don’t know exactly why pregnant women get the urge for specific tastes, textures, or flavor combinations. While it is normal to have food cravings, it is equally normal to not have any cravings as well.
Diapers are safe if they are used as per the guidelines, such as size, frequency of change, and stretching capacity. If your baby uses a diaper all night long which needs to be changed every 4 hours, then it is definitely not hygienic. Keep a diaper rash cream enriched with Aloe Vera, Zinc Oxide, and Almond Oil handy, which is advised to prevent rashes or skin irritation along with changing baby’s diapers regularly and ensuring cleanliness.
The regular use of sunscreen can help prevent pregnancy-related dark spots. But, you have to avoid certain ingredients in sunscreen during pregnancy. The chemicals in certain sunscreens can enter the bloodstream and may affect the baby. It is advisable to avoid using products with ingredients like oxybenzone, homosalate, 4-methylbenzylidene camphor, octocrylene, and para-aminobenzoic acid. These chemicals may cause skin irritation and trigger allergic reactions.
You can opt for physical or mineral sunblocks made with either titanium dioxide or zinc oxide. Avoid micronized or nano-sized particles of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, which are smaller than a lot of chemical molecules and might be easily be absorbed into the body.
There is no connection between diabetes and fertility. But, while you can conceive even if you have diabetes, the challenge is to maintain a healthy pregnancy. Diabetes can trigger serious complications like higher than normal glucose levels which can prevent the embryo from implanting in the uterus, causing an increased risk of miscarriage. So, diabetes doesn’t prevent conception but can cause complications during pregnancy.
Try not to have too many caffeinated drinks when you’re breastfeeding. This can be tough, especially when you’re exhausted from breastfeeding around the clock. It is recommended you keep your caffeine intake to below 200 mg a day. Since it is hard to estimate how much caffeine is in a cappuccino or latte, it may be safer to stick with decaffeinated coffee or herbal tea when you’re out and about. Keep in mind that there is caffeine in cola, energy drinks, and chocolate too. If your baby seems very unsettled, restless, or finds it difficult to sleep, try cutting back on caffeine, or not having any at all. This may help your baby settle down since the food you consume directly affects your baby.
Unless your baby has allergies or very sensitive skin, it shouldn’t a problem for her, no matter how young she is. If you decide to try regular detergent, choose a liquid as it tends to rinse out more thoroughly, especially if you have “hard” water. Powders have a tendency to leave flakes on fabric, which can irritate your baby’s skin. If you are worried about whether your baby’s skin is too sensitive for regular detergent, do a test by laundering one or two articles of baby’s clothing along with the rest of your family clothes. If your baby’s skin seems fine when she wears those items, go ahead and toss in all her clothes.
For a normal delivery, one of the babies needs to be in the head down position during the time of delivery. If the second baby is breech, the doctor may flip the baby and deliver. But vaginal delivery is possible only if you have had a healthy pregnancy without any issues of high blood pressure, placenta previa, or fetal distress. In twin babies, even if one of the babies becomes stressed, doctors will recommend a Cesarean section delivery.
Some people might feel like remembering this special time in their life by getting a tattoo. But, there are some risks of infection, such as Hepatitis B and HIV. Also, the dyes used for tattooing contain chemicals that may affect the development of the baby during the first 12 weeks. Even temporary tattoos with black henna can be dangerous since they contain para-phenylenediamine (PPD), which can cause burns, blisters, and various reactions that may last for months.
Post pregnancy healthy weight loss is possible if you follow an appropriate diet and exercise regularly. Make sure you have your meals on time and don’t skip meals, especially breakfast. If you skip meals, you won’t lose weight but will experience low energy levels.
Stretch marks usually become considerably less noticeable about 6 to 12 months after childbirth. The pigmentation fades, and it generally becomes lighter than the surrounding skin (the color will vary depending on your skin tone), but the texture of the stretched skin will remain the same.
The weight doesn’t directly interfere with pregnancy. However, a normal menstrual cycle is more important.
If your weight is not affecting your ovulation cycles and you are getting your period every 28 days or so, then your weight is not hindering your chances of getting pregnant.
Overweight and obese women can sometimes experience hormonal imbalances that can affect their menstrual cycles and prevent ovulation, making it harder to conceive. For instance, overweight women may develop a condition
called polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). PCOS affects the ovaries’ ability to produce enough of the hormones that stimulate the egg to mature and be released.
Babies don’t get dirty until they start crawling. So, you don’t really need to give your baby a bath every day. Experts say that bathing babies two to three times a week is enough to keep them clean. However, many mothers and elders in the family prefer to bathe and massage their babies every day. It is important to remember that newborn babies can lose heat very quickly. Hence, your baby’s bath should be quick and thorough, no more than five to ten minutes. Keeping bath times brief will also help in protecting your baby’s delicate skin from drying out.
The duration changes as your baby grow. Some babies love massages right from the start, so you can take your time for a full-body massage. This can take anywhere between 20 and 30 minutes. If your baby doesn’t like massages, keep them short. Once your baby starts crawling or walking, she might not want to lie still for that long. Then, a five to ten-minute massage will do.
During the third trimester, pregnant women may suffer from an inflamed red rash that usually starts on the abdomen, often in stretch marks, and spreads to the bottoms and legs. You can reduce or relieve the itch with ingredients like Aloe Vera gel and Coconut Oil (emollient). Herb-based formulations are safer on the sensitive skin of pregnant women. Ingredients like Aloe Vera, Yashada Bhasma, Manjishtha, and Almond Oil effectively reduce itching and rashes, and gently soothe the skin.
The pain from your scar may make things a bit more challenging in the early days, but if you keep trying different positions, you should be able to find a comfortable one.
It will help to have someone else, such as a family member or a nurse, with you when you’re feeding. This way you can get into a comfortable position first and then have your baby handed to you. You may find that lying on your side is easier than sitting up. If you do sit up to feed, tuck your baby’s legs under your arm and use your other hand to guide his head towards your nipple. Make sure you move your baby to your breast, not your breast to your baby, or you’ll end up with shoulder and backache. Use plenty of pillows on your lap to lift your baby up to the right level and to cushion the stitched area from the weight of the baby. It may help to sit on a chair with a straight back, and make sure your lower back is well supported.
It is very common for a newborn’s head to have an odd shape. Babies’ skull bones are soft and easily molded to help them squeeze through the birth canal during vaginal delivery. This process is called molding. You can help your baby’s head return to a more rounded shape by altering his position while he’s asleep, feeding, and playing. Changing your baby’s position is called counter-positioning or repositioning. It encourages the flattened areas of your baby’s head to reshape naturally. For your baby’s safety, always put him on his back to sleep. Despite popular belief, there is no evidence to suggest that applying pressure on your baby’s head during a massage will make it round. This may, in effect, do more harm than good if too much pressure is applied.
If your baby’s skin seems irritated (especially if it’s marked by red spots) or she seems uncomfortable or itchy, she might be allergic to the detergent. It is advisable to try a detergent that free of fragrances and dyes. If you still notice a reaction, try double rinsing the clothing or use a baby detergent until your child is at least a year old. Allergies to fragrances in laundry cleaners are rare, but they do occur occasionally.
Most branded children’s products that are free from chemicals are often labeled as being so. For example, you may have seen labels indicating ‘BPA free’. Nevertheless, manufacturers are not obliged to mention on the packaging the chemicals that are present in their products. As a parent, the only way to be sure is to buy products from recognized brands recommended by doctors. Also, be sure to read the outer pack and label carefully.
If your baby is dehydrated, it means he’s losing too much fluid or not taking in enough. Babies are sensitive to fluid loss because they’re small. Dehydration can be a serious problem if it’s not rectified quickly. Any of these signs may indicate that your baby is dehydrated:
If you think your baby is dehydrated, call the doctor right away. Depending on your baby’s condition, you might have to take him to the clinic or hospital for a checkup and treatment.
You must wait at least two weeks after you have missed your period to conduct your pregnancy test.
The simplest way to test pregnancy is by using a home pregnancy test. This test detects the hormone human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) found only during pregnancy in your urine. The pregnancy sticks have a chemical that changes color when it comes into contact with this hormone. Waiting times will vary depending on the test, but most take about 10 minutes to deliver an accurate reading.
A more accurate way to test for pregnancy would be to get a clinical urine test. You may also opt for an hCG blood test to confirm pregnancy.
The first step to tightening stomach skin after a C-section is to eat healthy. Eat a healthy diet full of fresh produce, whole grains, low-fat dairy, and lean proteins. Avoid sugary drinks, high-fat foods, and empty calories. Start with a series of simple abdominal exercises to strengthen stretched abdominal muscles. Begin by doing simple breathing exercises and pelvic tilts. Once your abdominal muscles regain strength, perform crunches, including a bicycle crunch. Aim for at least 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise on most days of the week. Cardiovascular exercise burns body fat and calories while strengthening muscles and building stamina.
Once you start working, you will need to pump milk as often as used to nurse your baby. This would be every two to three hours. If you are at work for eight-hours in a day, this means pumping at mid-morning, at lunch, and at mid-afternoon. If you pump both breasts at the same time, allow a 15 to a 20-minute gap, and a 30-minute gap if you pump each breast separately.
Breast milk pumped at work should be refrigerated and carried home using an ice pack to ensure its freshness. Pumped breastmilk can stay fresh at room temperature for 3-4 hours. You can also pump milk in advance and freeze milk in small amounts that thaw more quickly. Thaw the milk by storing it overnight in the refrigerator. Any milk left in the refrigerator after 24 hours will have to be discarded. Do not use a microwave to thaw breast milk
You can improve breast milk production by eating food such as oats, fennel seeds, fenugreek seeds, unripe papaya, spinach, garlic, black sesame seeds, carrots, apricots, barley, or brown rice. Breast milk production increases when you nurse frequently and efficiently. The more the baby drinks the more milk will be produced. You can also massage your breast to open blocked ducts and loosen any hardened areas or lumps.
It’s very unlikely that babies are lactose intolerant. Babies make the enzyme lactase so that they can digest breastmilk. Lactose intolerance is much more common in older children and adults. Babies who are born prematurely may not be able to produce adequate amounts of lactase for some time. A baby’s lactase level normally increases during the end of the last trimester of pregnancy. But, most premature babies can drink breastmilk and formula milk.
Your baby may sprout his first teeth with no problems, but it could be a long, painful process. If your baby’s teeth are on their way, you will notice the following signs of teething:
Your baby might also develop a temperature or diarrhea just before a tooth breaks through, However, never assume that these symptoms are caused by teething. If you’re worried, see your doctor immediately.
You can monitor the risk of gestational diabetes by keeping a tab on your blood sugar levels. Doctors recommend taking control of your own health by monitoring blood sugar level several times a day using a diabetic kit. Consult a dietician to figure out a well-balanced diet that best fits your body’s requirement. Keep track of all that you eat, and after each meal write down everything you ate along with your blood glucose level. This will help you avoid foods that spike glucose levels.
During pregnancy, hormone levels fluctuate and can cause weight gain and other changes in the body. Yoga enhances strength and makes your muscles limber. Certain yoga postures can improve core strength and increase your endurance for the physical requirements of labor and childbirth. Yoga postures are helpful in enabling easier labor by strengthening the pelvic floor, the back, and the lower body muscles. Meditation and breathing techniques help ease mood swings and stress related to pregnancy. Also, meditation helps focus your mind on your body and the baby which helps you bond with your little one.
It is best to give your baby nothing but breastmilk until she is six months old. The Ministry of Health, India, recommends breastfeeding exclusively for the first six months to give your baby a healthy start in life. They also suggest continuing to breastfeed even as you introduce solids in your baby’s diet. In fact, if you’re enjoying breastfeeding, then you and your baby can continue for as long as you both want to. You can breastfeed your little one until she is at least one or two years old. It is important that you don’t stop before both of you are ready.
Usually, the umbilical stumps fall off between 5 and 15 days after birth. The average is about 7 days if it is kept dry. The stump will change color from yellowish-green to brown or black and fall off on its own. A small wound will be left on your baby’s tummy, which will heal and become the belly button. Be sure to let the stump come away naturally. Don’t pull or put anything into the stump.
A newborn can have as many as eight to ten bowel movements a day. However, as long as he is having at least one, he’s probably all right. One day without a bowel movement is usually not a cause for concern. If your baby is feeding well and wetting his diaper five or six times a day, then he’s most likely getting enough to eat. If he starts becoming uncomfortable or has a persistently swollen abdomen, then he may need some help with passing a bowel movement. Speak to your pediatrician about helping baby pass a bowel movement.
When you are breastfeeding, the body needs a good amount of water for the production of breast milk, and hence you have to drink enough water to keep your body hydrated at all times. Drinking enough water can also reduce cravings by keeping you full and increasing your metabolism. Drink at least 8-10 glasses of water per day and go up to 15 glasses if needed.
Every baby is different, and it’s difficult to say exactly how much milk your baby will need. Just like us, babies too have different appetites. Most health organizations and medical experts recommend feeding your baby as soon as he starts to show signs that he is hungry. This is known as “baby-led feeding” or “demand feeding”. Allowing your baby to control when and for how long he feeds helps in regulating your milk supply as per his needs. This makes it easier to establish a breastfeeding routine. If your baby’s hunger cues are slight or non-existent, you can feed your baby at least every three to four hours or within four hours, sometimes every two hours, even if that means waking your baby from a deep sleep or nap. This is called “feeding on schedule” and especially recommended for term babies, sick babies, or babies with low birth weight.
You should change your baby’s nappies regularly. Your baby’s urine, combined with the bacteria in his stools, if left on your baby’s delicate skin for too long, can make it sore and lead to a nappy rash. Try to change your baby’s nappy before or after every feed, or whenever he’s had a bowel movement. Though changing your baby’s nappy at night may disrupt his sleep, try making it a routine by changing it when he wakes up for a feed.
There is no reason for concern in traveling during pregnancy as long as there are no identified complications or concerns. The second trimester is the ideal time to travel during pregnancy as this is when you are past the morning sickness of the first trimester and several weeks from the third stage of pregnancy when you may get tired more easily.
Keep your baby clean and dry by changing his diaper frequently. Give your baby some diaper-free time to allow the air to keep him dry. Lay him on a clean towel while he takes a nap. Clean your baby’s bottom. You can do this by using water or wipes free from fragrance and alcohol. You can also use a small amount of mild liquid baby cleanser. Then, rinse his bottom with water and gently pat his skin dry. Apply a layer of a diaper rash cream containing zinc oxide or petroleum jelly before putting on a clean diaper. The cream acts as a protective layer between your baby’s skin and any urine or feces
A baby’s skin is very delicate with dry skin being a common problem. In winter, the cold and dry weather can rob your baby’s skin of its natural moisture. In summer, dry heat, exposure to the sun and air conditioning can also easily dry the skin. Here are a few tips to treat dry skin in babies:
The easiest way to keep your baby’s nails short is to just peel the ends off with your fingers. His fingernails are so soft that the excess will come away easily. You can also keep your baby’s nails short by filing them with a nail file, or an emery board. Filing is the safest way to trim nails in the early weeks before the nails harden. An emery board can neaten off any jagged edges after cutting. Another option is to use baby nail scissors that have specially rounded ends, or baby nail clippers. Be careful to press the finger pad away from the nail before cutting it to avoid pinching or cutting his skin. Also, keep a firm hold on his hand as you clip or cut. When you’re shortening your baby’s fingernails, trim around the curve of his finger. Trim his toenails straight across without cutting them too short. Never cut down the side of his toenail, as this can cause ingrown nails. Don’t probe into the sides of his nails as this can cause an infection.
Use plain water to clean the nipple area. Avoid using soaps and other washes to clean the area. The nipple skin is sensitive and might get irritated from the chemicals in cleansers. While travelling, you could use nursing wipes free from mineral oil, which contain the goodness of 100% edible grade Coconut Oil. After breastfeeding, rub a small amount of breastmilk into your nipples. If you use breast pads, change them when wet and do not use pads with plastic on the back. Also, wear clothes that are loose and allows easy air circulation.
If you’re a new mom who is expected to be full of joy, it can be confusing and upsetting when you’re feeling the opposite. Please realize that you’re not alone. Anywhere from 40 to 80 percent of new mothers experience the “baby blues”, an emotional state of tearfulness, unhappiness, worry self-doubt, and fatigue. The baby blues are so common that they are considered to be normal. It typically begins a few days after delivery and goes away within a week or two on its own. The baby blues are linked to hormonal changes that happen during the week after giving birth. Your body has some major adjustments to make, which include coming down from the adrenaline high that you felt when your baby was born.
Water births are just as safe as babies born in a typical environment with oxygen and air. As long as you are healthy and there are no medical complications, you may consider a water birth. There is no evidence to suggest that babies born to mothers who labored in water are less healthy than babies born to mums who labored in a more traditional air environment.
Some may be worried that the baby might inhale water if he is born in a birthing pool. But, the baby’s breathing reflex is not activated until his face, nose, and mouth have been stimulated by the exposure to air.
It is generally safe to get an x-ray during pregnancy. It is quite unlikely that a diagnostic x-ray might cause harm to the developing baby.
Most x-ray exams, including those of the arms, legs, head, teeth or chest, don’t really expose the reproductive organs to radiation. You could also wear a leaded apron and collar to block any scattered radiation.
It is quite natural to feel bloated especially during the first trimester of pregnancy due to fluctuating hormones. During the first weeks, progesterone works on relaxing the ligaments and joints in the body. This hormone also loosens up the smooth muscles in your digestive system. This includes relaxing the gastrointestinal tract. The body works on slowing down digestion to allow nutrients from food to enter the bloodstream and reach your baby. The slowing down of the digestion process when you’re pregnant can cause you to feel bloated and may also cause cramps.
Traditionally, babies are massaged just before their bath. This is usually done in the morning. You can finish the massage session with a nice, warm bath. A massage and bath just before bedtime will help your baby wind down after the stimulation of the day and become calm, ready for sleep. When you have finished, put on her nappy and cuddle or breastfeed her. She’ll probably doze off!
Milk is a much-needed supplement during pregnancy. It provides significant nutrients such as calcium, protein and Vitamin D. Drinking milk during pregnancy helps control calcium loss from your bones to meet your baby’s needs. Drinking three cups of milk each day can help you meet most of your daily calcium requirement during pregnancy.
It is normal for your baby’s eyes to wander or cross now and then during the first month or so. But by the time she’s two to three months old, she would have learned to focus both eyes and will be able to track a moving object. If your baby’s eyes appear crossed for a short period of time when she is focusing on something very close to her face, then it is fine. It is crucial to get your baby screened for vision problems regularly, starting at birth and continuing at every checkup. In most cases, if detected early, these eye problems can be treated successfully.
Reflux, also known as posseting or spitting up, happens when the milk swallowed by your baby comes back up into his food pipe (esophagus).
The full medical term for this is gastro-esophageal reflux (GOR). Your baby’s stomach contains acid that helps him to break down the milk. This mixture of milk and acid can come up and make your baby uncomfortable. If you have ever had acidity or heartburn, you’ll know the burning feeling that acid reflux can cause. Reflux is messy and can be frustrating, but it’s normal for babies and is not a sign of illness. Reflux is a temporary problem that usually gets better as your baby’s digestive system develops.
Sore nipples are so common to new breastfeeding moms that you may think that the discomfort is normal and you just have to adjust to the pain. But that’s not true. In the first week or so, it’s normal to have some pain or tenderness that lasts for a few seconds when the baby first latches on to the breast. However, it’s not normal or necessary for the pain to last throughout most or all of the feeding session. Soreness may occur every now and then, especially if you are on painkillers during the days or weeks after delivery. If you ignore the pain, your nipples may start to crack and bleed, and breastfeeding may become too painful to bear. You can use a nipple care butter enriched with the goodness of Kokum Butter and Coconut Oil, which will help prevent and manage sore, cracked nipples. Try paying attention to how you’re feeling and see a lactation consultant at the first sign.
The body undergoes many hormonal changes in the first trimester of pregnancy which can cause fatigue. There is increased production of blood in the body to facilitate the transmission of nutrients for the healthy growth of the fetus. The body may experience low blood pressure and blood sugar levels. You are may feel sleepy due to the increased production of hormones, especially progesterone. Along with physical changes, you may experience certain emotional changes that could contribute to decreased energy.
During pregnancy, there is increased discharge as the cervix (neck of the womb) and vaginal walls get softer to prevent infections from spreading from the vagina to the womb. So, it is normal to experience increased vaginal discharge when you are pregnant. But, do consult your doctor if you feel any pain, itching or soreness in the vaginal area. You may have an infection such as thrush, which can be easily treated.
When your pregnancy hormones signal your pelvic muscles to relax to prepare your body for childbirth, this may make you more prone to little leaks known as urinary incontinence. Also during the second trimester, your growing baby starts to put pressure on your bladder, which resides right in front of your uterus. This pressure may also cause urine to leak from your bladder.
There are no serious side effects from a daily hair and make-up routine. But, avoid using any harsh chemicals directly on your skin as the chemicals can be absorbed into your bloodstream. Facials are safe as long as they are all-natural. Refrain from getting a facial with a retinoid. It is also a wise idea to ask your beautician to test the product on a small patch on your skin before using the product in a larger area.
If you are getting a manicure or pedicure, ensure you are in a well-ventilated room so that you are not affected by the smell of the chemicals used. Ensure that all tools used are cleaned and sterilized properly to avoid the risk of infection
Yes, it is safe to get a massage after a C-section if you take certain precautions. Like all massages, a post-pregnancy massage has many benefits, irrespective of how you gave birth to your baby. It soothes aches, relaxes tense muscles, and rejuvenates you both physically and emotionally. But, it is important to choose a masseuse who has experience in giving post-pregnancy massages. If you have just had a C-section, there are certain points to keep in mind. Your body has just been through major surgery. You may be in pain, especially in the area around your cut. Most doctors will ask you to wait a couple of weeks before getting a massage. This is because of any complication that might crop up, like infections and fevers, usually occur in the first two weeks after birth. It is also better to allow the Caesarean cut to heal completely before getting a massage.
No. Experts advise against giving honey (shahad or madhu) to a baby until she is a year old. Traditionally, honey is believed to provide relief from teething pain or a cough. However, honey might contain a spore or spores of the bacterium, called “Clostridium botulinum”. This can cause a rare but serious form of food poisoning known as botulism.
The traditional jhoola is basically a cloth hammock created from cotton fabric, sarees, rope or cane attached to a spring and strung up on ceiling beams or the bars of a staircase. Some are set up on plastic, wooden, or metal frames. Experts recommend that it is safest for your baby to sleep on his back, on a firm surface. It is best to put your baby in a separate cot or baby bed with railings, in the same room as you for the first six months. However, many parents often choose to use a traditional baby hammock (jhoola) or rocking cradle (palna) instead of a cot. These have been used for generations, and even though their design doesn’t strictly conform to safe sleep guidelines, they are popular with parents. Most Indian experts and doctors consider them safe, provided you take the necessary precautions and don’t leave your baby unsupervised when he’s sleeping in the hammock.
Certain fragrances can aggravate pregnancy problems such as sensitivity to smells, headaches dizziness, nausea, and vomiting. It is ideal to use a fragrance with botanical extracts such as citrus and floral essential oils. They are safer and have additional aromatherapy benefits such as mood-lifting and calming.
SLS is rarely used in baby products. Baby products often use a closely related but milder detergent instead, called sodium laureth sulfate (SLES). Since the names of these two chemicals are very similar, it’s easy to confuse them. Most baby products don’t contain SLS, so it should be easy to protect your baby. However, due to consumer concerns, an increasing number of products are specifically advertised as being SLS-free.
Walking is one of the simplest and easiest ways to maintain your fitness levels during pregnancy. Getting some fresh air while walking is not only good for your body but also helps uplift mood. Especially if you did not have a fitness routine prior to pregnancy, walking is an easy and safe exercise all throughout your nine months of pregnancy.
After ruling out any health concerns and making sure that she’s fed, warm, and comfortable, if your baby is still crying, try not to worry too much. She won’t do herself lasting harm, and it’s perfectly normal for healthy babies to cry persistently. However, it will most likely cause you, your husband, and other family members a great deal of stress and worry. If your baby is unhappy and resists every effort to calm her down, you may feel rejected and frustrated. But you are not the reason for her to cry, so don’t blame yourself.
Many mothers wonder whether to use a cloth or disposable nappies. Although disposable nappies are favorable, cloth nappies are believed to be less hot for the baby, especially during the summer and the monsoons. Many mothers settle for a combination of both, using disposable nappies at night or while going out, and cloth nappies when at home during the day. However, disposable diapers are more hygienic and convenient to use than cloth nappies.
In the first few days of life, almost all healthy babies develop a yellowish tinge to their skin. If your baby also does, don’t panic. Your doctor will monitor your baby in the first few days, especially if your baby’s stomach or legs look yellow. If your baby is born full-term, he will surely look like a healthy baby within a week. It may take a little longer for his skin to take on a rosy glow if he is born prematurely.
During pregnancy, it is quite common for women to feel nauseous due to increased estrogen levels, low blood sugar, and greater susceptibility to some smells. Some tips to ease morning sickness are:
Due to the growing size of your belly, sleeping peacefully during pregnancy may be difficult. Your oversized stomach, nighttime kicking, midnight bathroom breaks, and raging hormones may get in the way of deep, sound sleep. Rather than sleeping on a bed, try to get your body in a comfortable position in a recliner with you back slightly rested, feet up, and arms and hands elevated with pillows. When you lie on your side, tuck a pillow between your knees. This will align your legs and spine, potentially easing pressure on the sciatic nerve, which often troubles expecting mothers. Stay hydrated, but to avoid bathroom breaks at night, stay away from liquids about three hours before bed.
After a meal, wait before you lie down. Sit up straight for at least an hour after a meal before lying down.
Your mindset and emotional state are one of the most important aspects of labor and child birthing. Your body will be able to respond to labor if you are strong mentally. If you get scared, stressed, or feel rushed and pressured, this could disturb the progression of labor. If you can focus on your body and are able to labor at your own pace, you will be able to allow your body and baby to do what it needs to do. You need to focus on your breathing patterns which will help you better manage sensations of pain and concentrate on your body’s moment. Breathing also helps in relaxing the core and pelvic floor muscles.
Around the sixth week of pregnancy, you may start experiencing symptoms of nausea and vomiting. Due to the increased hormone fluctuation in the body, you may experience morning sickness or a nauseous feeling resulting from the increased hormones in the first trimester. You may feel nauseous, with or without vomiting, at any time during the day or night. Morning sickness usually starts to ease as you reach the end of the first trimester, although about one woman in ten still feels sick after week 20.
The exact cause of morning sickness is unknown, but it’s thought to be connected to the rise in pregnancy hormones: human chorionic gonadotrophin (hCG) and estrogen.
There is also a theory that thyroid hormones may cause morning sickness. If the body produces too many thyroid hormones during the early stages of pregnancy when the embryo is developing, morning sickness may result.
During the first week after delivery when milk first starts coming in, your breast tissue can swell as lymphatic fluid and milk collect in the ducts. It’s normal—though painful—for your breasts to become larger, heavier, and sore. Engorgement can also result from missed feedings, clogged ducts, a change in how often your baby nurses, or a change in how often you pump. Many women also experience engorgement when they start the weaning process. While you ideally want to wean over the course of a few weeks to minimize engorgement as much as possible, some babies stop nursing abruptly.
It means that there is an infestation of worms in your baby’s intestine. Your baby could have caught it from someone else, while walking around barefoot on infected soil, playing in contaminated water, or eating unclean food. Worm infections are extremely common and spread very easily. However, it is difficult to know how prevalent these infections are because they don’t have symptoms and often aren’t reported. If the presence of worms is detected in the baby, the entire family should get treated for it.
The postnatal massage is a full-body massage that is given to a mom every day for 40 days after delivery. There are masseuses who specialize in postnatal and newborn massages. They either come home once a day to give you a massage, or move in with you for the first 40 days to help with baby care chores along with giving daily massages. They usually start the massage with your feet and move upwards until they finish off with a head massage.
Sometimes, it can be difficult to tell the difference between clinical depression and the normal stress and exhaustion of new parenthood. But, if your feelings of sadness or despair are so strong that they prevent you from doing your daily tasks – such as caring for yourself and others – you could have postpartum depression (PPD). Approximately 10 percent of new mothers develop PPD, but experts believe the number is even higher because many women don’t seek treatment. If you’re struggling, see your doctor right away for a mental health screening. Postpartum depression can begin in the weeks after pregnancy or even before. About half of the women with PPD have symptoms during pregnancy. If your doctor thinks you have depression, she may refer you to a counselor and prescribe antidepressant medication, or refer you to a psychiatrist for treatment. Whether you are diagnosed with PPD before, during, or after pregnancy, getting treatment is crucial.
There can be difficulties in conceiving if you are overweight or underweight. Being underweight can cause difficulties in getting pregnancy by affecting your menstrual cycle. If a woman is too thin, then her body fat produces only a small amount of estrogen, and this can lead to the egg and follicles not functioning optimally, making it harder to get pregnant. Also, being underweight puts the mother at risk of delivering a baby with low birth weight. The ideal weight to get pregnant can be confusing since every woman has a different BMI (Body Mass Index). On average, doctors recommend women to maintain a BMI between 19 and 25 for the best possibilities of conceiving.
If you have blood pressure during pregnancy, it is important to maintain a healthy weight in order to lower your blood pressure. Your diet should include lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, and prenatal vitamins. You must eat a well-balanced meal packed with nutrients such as magnesium, folic acid, antioxidants (Vitamins C and E), fish or algal oils, and garlic.
The first trimester is the most crucial stage of pregnancy. Practice low-impact aerobic exercises. If you are taking dance or movement classes, keep your feet on the floor and avoid jumping and bouncing. Choose exercises like swimming or brisk walking that are low impact and less risky. Practicing yoga is beneficial to improve flexibility. Take extra time to warm up and properly stretch your muscles before exercising. Try simple breathing exercises like lying down on your side and breathing deeply. Isolate individual muscle groups, tense them, and release as you exhale.
Excessive sweat and heat can easily cause skin irritation and infection. Baby’s skin is soft and sensitive. It needs to be kept cool and protected throughout the day. To avoid rashes and infections, make sure baby is wearing comfortable clothes. Use a gentle pricky heat baby powder every day after bathing your baby. A prickly heat powder packed with the goodness of herbs like Neem and Khus Grass will keep baby’s cool and free from infections. Remember to apply the powder every time you change your baby’s nappy and before bedtime.
A women’s body undergoes many hormonal changes during pregnancy. An excessive vaginal discharge because of vaginal pH level imbalance is a common occurrence. It is important to maintain proper intimate hygiene to prevent irritation and infections in that area. Wash your intimate area thoroughly twice a day to keep it free of odor and discharge. Use an intimate wash with antifungal properties. You can even incorporate intimate wipes in your daily intimate hygiene. Remember, to clean the intimate area from front to back and to keep it dry at all times.
Choosing the right shampoo for your baby can be tricky. Remember to only use mild and gentle baby shampoo for your baby’s hair, and not a regular shampoo. Look for a shampoo with a soap-free formulation. Using a herb-based shampoo will help nourish and condition your baby’s locks. Always remember to read the label on the shampoo bottle for the list of ingredients before buying.
When you are pregnant talk to your doctor about the supplements that are right for you during pregnancy. You may be asked to take folic acid, Vitamins D and B, iron, calcium and omega-3 supplements based on your current levels.
Choose a time of day when you’re not expecting any interruptions and can devote time to your baby. Get familiar with your baby’s feeding and sleeping pattern. Find a time when she is well rested and fed. If all her other needs are met, your baby is more likely to enjoy her bath. Your newborn’s bathing time can also depend on the weather. You can bathe her at the warmest time of the day in winter, which is early afternoon. You can also make a bath part of your baby’s bedtime routine. A warm bath can be very soothing for your baby and will get her ready to sleep at night. During winters, bathing at night also has the advantage of your baby staying warm as you wrap her up for the night.
Consult your doctor about the vitamin supplements that may be required before and during pregnancy, such as folic acid and Vitamin B. Flaxseed and fish rich in Omega-3 fatty acids are important to your diet as they provide the much needed DHA nutrient. During pregnancy, your iron requirement doubles, so eat iron-rich food such as dark green leafy vegetables (e.g., spinach), red meat, poultry, beans, peas, and dried fruit. Also, eating food rich in Vitamin C improves the iron absorption of the body. But do not take vitamin C in doses greater than those found in basic multivitamins. High fiber foods packed with vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals that are essential for baby’s growth should be included in your daily diet. You have to meet the needs of a growing fetus by consuming dairy products for extra protein and calcium Legumes, Sweet potatoes, Salmon, Eggs, etc.
Ideally, the temperature should be between 36 and 40 degrees. It shouldn’t be too hot or cold. Make sure the bath water is comfortably warm but not hot before putting your baby in. Whether you use a geyser or an immersion rod to heat baby’s bath water, it is a good idea to check the temperature of the water. Do a “touch test” by dipping your elbow or the inside of your wrist in the bath water. Put cold water in the bath first, then hot. This will reduce the risk of scalding your baby. Never put your baby into a bath when the water is still running since the water temperature can change quickly.
The Ministry of Health, India, recommends starting solid food for your baby at the age of six months. Until then, babies should be exclusively breastfed. If your baby starts solid food after six months, there is a less likely chance of developing a food allergy or intolerance. By this age, your baby may also show signs that he is ready to have something else besides breastmilk.
Use a baby wash or very mild soap (that doesn’t lather up) to clean your baby for the first 12 months. Baby soaps that are enriched with ingredients such as Olive Oil, almond oil, Milk, Honey, Neem, and Aloe Vera are gentler and less likely to irritate the skin. Babies don’t need the deep lathering effects of regular soap. Until your baby is about a year old, use products designed for babies or a very mild soap only on the parts of his body that really need it. Once he starts eating solid food, you may have a few more areas to clean.
It depends on your baby’s preference and comfort. Below are five ways to help you decide if your baby can use pant-style diapers.
You may experience baby blues three or four days after giving birth. That’s the time when your milk is coming in and your hormones are also fluctuating. Your body is also undergoing chemical changes associated with childbirth, and you might feel exhausted and overwhelmed by the thought of new responsibilities.
Some mothers may even feel a sudden sense of disappointment that the excitement of the pregnancy and birth of the baby suddenly turns into a huge responsibility of caring for the baby.
Your baby’s memory will develop in stages. It is a gradual process, and there’s no specific age at which it will happen. From the third trimester, your baby will start recognizing your voice and other sounds that she hears regularly. Your baby will know and be reassured by your smell from birth. Your newborn will be able to tell your face from a stranger’s when she’s just four days old. She’ll also recognize her father soon if he has been closely involved throughout your pregnancy. Between 6 and 12 months, your baby’s memory skills will develop even more. Your baby may not remember details, but she might make emotional connections with people and places.
Some infants need more sleeping closeness in the early months, and others later on as they go through the normal stage of nighttime separation anxiety. But, besides getting a good night’s sleep, you should also help your child develop a healthy sleep attitude. For this reason, sharing a sleep environment, when done safely, can be a beneficial experience for both mother and child. This practice often called “room-sharing” or “co-sleeping”, is defined as a mother and her baby sleeping close enough so that the mother can easily comfort and nurse him, though not in the same bed. For optimal safety, it is recommended to use a co-sleeper, a bassinet that attaches securely to the side of the parents’ bed, allowing the mother and the baby to sleep near one another, yet on separate sleeping surfaces.
It is important to avoid certain foods during pregnancy to maintain your health and baby’s growth. Foods high in mercury should be avoided as mercury turns into methylmercury in the body. Methylmercury is a neurotoxin and is linked to brain damage and developmental delays in babies. Seafood such as shark, swordfish, king mackerel, salmon, and tilefish can have high mercury levels and must be avoided. Eliminate undercooked or soft-boiled eggs as they may contain harmful salmonella bacteria which can cause food poisoning. Stay away from sugar-rich and fatty foods.
Using a toning massage oil enriched with Sesame Oil, Country Mallow, Winter Cherry, and Aloe Vera can be especially beneficial to new mothers. The postnatal massage is a wonderful traditional practice to help soothe new mothers. It can be very relaxing amid the chaos of bringing a newborn home. But, do arrange for some help because taking an entire hour for yourself with a newborn in the house might be difficult.
If your baby’s grandmother or other trusted family member can watch your baby while you get a massage, you might find it one of the nicest practices of the postnatal confinement period.
You can use a vegetable or plant-based baby oil to massage your baby. Some oils appear to be more easily absorbed by the skin than others. Using a baby massage oil enriched with Olive Oil and Winter Cherry is clinically proven to be mild enough to use on babies. Enriched with Vitamin E, Olive Oil nourishes, softens, and protects baby’s skin. It has antimicrobial properties, which ensures that baby’s skin is healthy and radiant.
During the first year of your baby’s life, he’s extremely vulnerable to illnesses. If bottles aren’t sterilized, bacteria, viruses, and parasites can make your baby ill. There are chances of your baby developing mild thrush to a more serious illness such as a bout of vomiting and diarrhea. It might not be possible to create a totally germ-free environment for your baby. But, by sterilizing your baby’s feeding equipment, you can help to keep him healthy.
During the early stages of pregnancy, the body produces high levels of hormones to relax the muscles throughout your body. Since the hormone relaxing improves the agility of your joints and connective tissue to prepare your body for delivery, the digestion process slows down. This means that food stays in your stomach longer and triggers more acid production. In addition, the growing fetus exerts pressure on both the stomach and the large intestine, increasing the chance that acid will be pushed up into the esophagus, causing heartburn.
During pregnancy, the body undergoes many chemical and biological changes, which can trigger skin problems. Preexisting conditions, like eczema, psoriasis or acne can get aggravated during this time. Atopic dermatitis and/or fungal infections may also affect pregnant women. The increased levels of estrogen and progesterone can cause skin problems like acne, skin tags, itching, dry skin, and stretch marks.
As your baby grows, the uterus expands along with hormonal changes in your body. The expansion of the uterus changes the body’s center of gravity and weakens your abdominal muscles as a result of stretching. This causes changes in your posture that can strain your lower back and lumbar muscles.
When your baby feeds, little bubbles of air can get trapped in her stomach. These bubbles can make her uncomfortable and fussy. By burping your baby, you help her free up some room in her tummy, so she can feed for longer. Burping can also help your baby if she often brings up a little of her milk after feeds (posseting), is colicky, and has reflux.
Your baby is dependent on you. You provide her with the food, comfort, and warmth that she needs. When she cries, it’s her way of communicating one or all of those needs to ensure a response from you. Hunger, a soiled nappy, feeling too hot or cold, wanting to be held, having colic, and feeling unwell are some reasons why your baby may cry. Sometimes, it might be hard to work out what your baby is trying to tell you. But, soon you will learn to recognize what your baby needs. As your baby grows, she’ll learn other ways of communicating. She’ll get better at making contact, noises, and smiling, all of which will reduce the need to cry for attention.
Babies can take as much as an hour to finish a feed or as little as five minutes, provided they are well latched on and sucking. If your baby has fallen asleep before finishing her feed, gently nudge her, tickle her feet, or blow on her face, so that she finishes feeding and then dozes off. The length of a feed depends on how long it takes for milk to go from your breast to your baby. For some mothers and babies, this process happens quickly. For others, it’s on the slow side. However, the amount of milk the baby gets in both cases is almost the same. As long as your baby is growing well, you can let her set the pace. She’ll develop good appetite control if you allow her to feed at her own pace. This will tell her she’s full when she has taken the calories she needs to grow.
A post pregnancy massage increases blood circulation and helps relieve muscle tension. A massage helps you relax by reducing stress and alleviating pain. The other additional health benefits include hormone regulation, reduced swelling, better sleep, and improved breastfeeding. Use a massage oil that has herbal ingredients, which helps moderate mood, stimulates the senses and leaves you rejuvenated and relaxed. Using an oil containing ingredients like Sesame Oil, Country Mallow, Winter Cherry, and Aloe Vera strengthens and firms the skin.
It is important to drink enough water to keep your body hydrated during pregnancy. Dehydration can lead to complications such as headaches, nausea, cramps, edema, and dizziness. Some women find that drinking water regularly helps relieve symptoms of morning sickness, acidity, and heartburn as well as indigestion. It also helps in maintaining body temperature and keeping the body cool. Water also helps prevent urinary infections, which are common during pregnancy.
Smoking during pregnancy is dangerous and can lead to a serious health problem for both the mother and the baby. The risks include premature birth (being born too early), certain birth defects, and in some cases even infant death. Smoking can cause early separation of the placenta (tube which supplies food to baby) from the womb. This can be fatal to both the fetus as well as the mother.
Studies show that a massage, particularly when done with oil, can help a premature baby gain weight. Massage stimulates a key nerve, called the vagus nerve, which connects the brain to the important parts of the body, including the stomach. Stimulating this nerve can help improve digestion and bowel movements. In India, it is traditionally believed that massages strengthen a baby’s bones. Although there is not much evidence to support this popular belief, one study suggests that massaging regularly can help in the formation of healthy bones, especially in premature babies.