6 Ways to Reduce Stress During Pregnancy
Stress. No one likes it. No one wants to have it. With a whole cocktail of emotions, it is no surprise you will feel stressed while pregnant. It can be overwhelming. Follow these tips below to help reduce that stress, and be on the pathway to a healthy pregnancy.
Everyone knows that you cannot function without proper sleep. This is especially true when you are pregnant. According to Keith Eddleman, MD, Director of Obstetrics at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, “Sleeping allows your brain to restore neurotransmitters that become depleted during wake times.” This may seem a lot easier said than done, but if it comes down to staying up to watch a movie and going to bed, choose sleep. Your mind and your body will thank you. For more restful sleep, it may be beneficial to set your thermostat in the low 60s. Grab a hold of your favorite body pillow, and avoid eating two hours before bedtime. This will help you fall asleep faster and more efficiently.
After a long day, a bath can be calming and soothing. Plus, during pregnancy, it can reduce anxiety and help with muscle aches. It’s important not to keep the water too hot, especially in the first trimester when the baby is still developing. Keep it warm, and only use bath soaps and oils approved by your doctor. The more natural ingredients, the better.
Whether it’s a stroll in the park or prenatal yoga, exercise is essential when you are pregnant. Not only does it help you feel good, but it also reduces stress by releasing endorphins, which helps you get your mind off what’s bothering you. Talk with your doctor, and see what exercise is best for you. Don’t do anything too rigorous, as this might cause undue stress. Try a variety of exercises (if able), and utilize strength training to strengthen your postural muscles. These are particularly strained when you are holding the baby, so it is important to do some light strength training to help with the strain and pain.
It’s no secret that massages automatically release tension and stress upon getting one. Set up an appointment with a certified massage therapist who is experienced with pregnant clients. Unlike normal massages, you will not be placed on your back or your front. This is not a comfortable position while being pregnant. Instead, you may be placed on your side or on a table with a cut-out for your belly. Of course, it is crucial to get your doctor’s approval first.
Immersing yourself in an enjoyable book is a recipe for relaxation. Cozy up in your favorite comfy chair, and spend some time getting lost in the pages. This not only entertains you, but it also distracts you from issues that may be bothersome. Everyone loves a good book.
The feeling of weightlessness in the pool will make you feel fabulous. Throw on your favorite maternity swimwear, and swim a few laps or join a water aerobics class with low intensity. Swimming is a full-body work-out, and definitely releases those endorphins. Staying fit and healthy is critical when pregnant.