13 First trimester tips you need to know

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Regardless of tips and tricks received from family or friends, there will still be some encounters you may not know what to do with. What works for others may not work for you, and some of the challenges you face might just be unique to you!
Here are some common, and uncommon, first trimester tips. Always remember to do what works for you and what’s safest for the baby and you

  1. Struggling to injest fruits and veggies? Try sticking to the ones with a higher fat content and less water content such as bananas, avocado, mango, nuts, and seeds. These nutrient dense power foods can help keep your calories up with minimal consumption if this is a struggle.
  2. Eating for two? Not necessarily, you only need about 300 extra calories per day, try to get them in nutrient rich foods.
  3. Avoid soft cheeses and any unpasteurised foods. Bacteria in such foods can harm the baby.
  4. Stay hydrated. Drink water in between meals if keeping foods down is an issue. Carbonated waters may also help with morning sickness.
  5. Eat hearty meals. as mentioned in the first tip, fat content and iron are important. Red meats, poultry and a large variety of beans, legumes, nuts, and seeds are essential to the diet.
  6. Its not too late to start exercising. Just make sure to check in with your doctor and start slowly with safe exercises for pregnancy. Check out this post on first trimester tips for more detail on safe, beneficial exercise in the first trimester.
  7. Get extra rest. First trimester fatigue can be battled with extra naps. But try to stick to the 90min interval rule or keep catnaps no longer than 30 minutes so that you don’t wake up groggy.
  8. Doctors’ appointments. Since the first trimester is the most vital for neurological development, having your checkups are important. Try to see your doctor as soon as possible if you are, or think you might be, pregnant.
  9. Prenatal vitamins.There are a lot of different brands out there, but one of the things to look for is the iron/heme level and type. Consumption of the vitamins may be challenging as they must be taken on an empty stomach, and the iron can cause nausea. You can ask your doctor for possible prescription vitamins that may be easier to digest.
  10. Maintain your other vitamins too. Blood work should be done once you discover you are pregnant. You can ask your doctor for regular bloodwork to make sure all your levels are up to par.
  11. Be aware of the heat. High body temperatures can have harmful effects on the baby, especially in this stage of pregnancy. Try to avoid saunas or hot tubs, or at least limit usage to less than 10 minutes.
  12. New poor memory? This is tricky one! Feeling sleep deprived, having an upset stomach, and nutrient profile changes take a huge toll on you. Staying rested, hydrated, and on a consistent daily schedule as much as possible, are your best go-to’s.
  13. Dizziness and/or blurry vision? This is a more uncommon and possibly dangerous symptom to watch out for in pregnancy, as they can be an indication of something more serious.

A few more feel-good tips

  • Stay connected. Try keep up with family and friends, even if no one knows about your news yet.This helps to keep up with the natural human need for social connection. Keeping up with loved ones during the pandemic was a large topic that started up in 2020 and remains relevant until now. Try not to let yourself feel isolated while you and your body are going through so many changes.
  • Be forgiving of yourself. Once again, so many changes are happening to your body, don’t think it’s odd for you to need to follow the majority of, or even all, the tips you come across.
  • Call in your supports – have someone cook you a meal you enjoy or handle any errands that are usually on your to-do list. this can be especially the case of you have a child(ren) needing your attention. Take advantage of close ones who can take them on a play date. Take advantage of scheduled childcare such as daycare or playgroups, to give yourself time to rest and practise self-care.
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