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Pregnancy Best Practices
by Rebecca Garland

Pregnancy is a wonderful time. The joy of creating life surpasses all of the little (and big) irksome aspects of morning sickness, body changes and general discomfort. You can make pregnancy even more enjoyable by following the advice of countless doctors and experienced moms.

Rest As Much As Possible
You’ve heard it time and time again, but throughout pregnancy, when your body is tired, you should let it rest. Go to bed early and sleep as late as possible. When your feet or hips feel tired, recline for a bit with your feet up. Your body is working to create another life while keeping your own systems relatively normal as well – it takes a lot of rest and relaxation to do that job well.

Eat Wisely and Well
If there was ever a time to not diet – it’s pregnancy. Sure, the thought of gaining so much weight is frightening to many mothers, but it is a necessary weight gain. To gain

the weight in a healthy way, you should be eating wholesome, nutritious foods in five or six small meals a day. This will also help ward off heartburn. Go sparingly on the desserts as your metabolism is likely slower than you’d expect, but don’t make yourself feel deprived. Enjoy your meals and make your focus providing valuable nutrition for your growing baby rather than counting calories to help control the number on the scale.

Exercise Daily
Unless you are on strict bedrest, you should exercise every day of your pregnancy. Exercise can be a long hike through the hills or it can be a simple fast-paced stroll through the air conditioned mall checking out the fashions you’ll be wearing in a few more months. Moving your body helps to circulate oxygen and also keeps your muscles active. The more conditioned your body is, the faster you’ll likely recover from labor and delivery. Exercise will also help to control your stress and anxiety and possibly help reduce swelling as well.

Take Your Time
Pregnancy takes some getting used to and so does motherhood. There is no reason to rush through any of it. Your baby will be growing for the next eight months or so, so take your time picking out the new furniture for the nursery. Linger over your choice of names and make it fun to work putting together the baby’s layette one piece at a time. If someone tries to rush you, simply inform her that you are working to enjoy your pregnancy and you’ll be rushing around after toddlers soon enough. You’ll just take your time now.

Include Your Partner
As connected as you may feel with your baby, your partner might be feeling left out of that new closeness. Work hard to include him in the pregnancy. Let him feel the baby and make choices about baby clothing, nursery items and baby names. Some fathers are more hesitant than others about getting involved in pregnancy. Be sure to bring him to see the ultrasounds on those special appointments, and also to hear your little one’s heartbeat at every check-up as well.

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