When we are pregnant, we spend so much time making sure we are doing things right and keeping baby safe but an important part of that, which we often forget, is taking care of ourselves too! In order for baby to have an optimal environment to grow and thrive, we need to make sure we are feeling happy, healthy, and energized!
Pregnancy is exhausting and can be painful at times! Giving our bodies what they need will make for an easier pregnancy.
Here are some tips and parts of my pregnancy self care routine that help me feel my best self:
1. Get chiropractic adjustments regularly. I cannot stress this one enough. I started getting adjustments after Lucy was born and they helped me so much! Throughout this pregnancy so far, I have been getting adjusted every two weeks. This helps me sleep better, relieves any neck or back pain I have, and overall just makes me feel more balanced. For my local readers, I can’t recommend Dr. Braglia of True Health Chirporactic enough. He is truly amazing and is specialized in prenatal and pediatric care!
2. Practice yoga. Having a daily (or as often as possible) yoga practice helps keep my mind and body balanced. Yoga helps relieve tension, increases circulation, and helps prepare you for labor. By stretching your body and practicing breath work, you will be more prepared physically and emotionally for labor. Local friends, if you have some experience with yoga, I recommend taking classes with Kaila Addis from Sage Yoga in Shelton. While her classes are not prenatal specific, it is very easy to modify if you are familiar with some of the poses. For beginners, you can order prenatal yoga DVDs online and they will walk you through every modification you need depending on which trimester you are in!
3. Take vitamins. Even though this is obviously important for baby, I still consider it a part of self care. Your baby takes a lot of nutrition from you and if you are lacking in any vitamin or mineral, you will start to feel poorly. These are the vitamins I take during pregnancy: Naturelo Prenatal Whole Food Multivitamin, 365 Chelated Iron, Spectrum Vegetarian DHA, 365 B12 Spray (1-2 times per week).
4. Eat a healthy, plant-based diet. This goes along the lines of the previous one. Your baby is taking a lot of energy from you, so you need to make sure you’re putting plenty of healthy foods into your body. Incorporating a lot of fruits, greens, and smoothies into your diet will help you to feel energized and happy.
5. Incorporate essential oils into day. I do this whether pregnant or not but I especially make sure to diffuse relaxation oils before bed when pregnant to make sure my body is well rested. I diffuse lavender, cedar wood, and vetiver every night while winding down from the busy day. Be sure to use high quality oils and research them before using during pregnancy as some oils are contraindicated when pregnant! Feel free to reach out to me with questions about this!
6. Get a massage. This should be a part of everyone’s self care routine but sometimes we forget to prioritize ourselves. Getting a few prenatal massages during pregnancy (after the first trimester) will give you many of the benefits I mentioned with the chiropractic adjustments. Better sleep, reduced pain, and decreased stress are a few of the many benefits of massage. Local friends, I highly recommend Cheri Tabone for prenatal (or anytime) massages. She will even schedule at-home appointments and bring her massage table to you!
7. Visit a salt cave. Salt therapy is beneficial both during pregnancy and not. It promotes better breathing which can be a natural way to relieve any seasonal allergy symptoms. It also promotes healthy skin and positive overall well-being. It’s also nice to just have a peaceful quiet time to relax without interruption (especially as the parent of a toddler)! I go to Salt of the Earth Spa in Woodbury, CT.
8. Spend time in nature. We are meant to be in nature and there are proven benefits to spending time outside in the fresh air and connecting with the earth. Try to make this part of your daily routine no matter what time of year it is! While you may not want to go barefoot in the winter, you can still bundle up and go for a walk!
9. Meditate. Sometimes people are turned off by the idea of meditation because they think there is a certain regimen they need to follow or they're afraid they'll do it wrong. Well, the best part about meditation, is that you can't do it wrong. It is a learning process and you need to do what feels right for you. You can find many books on meditation or also download free guided meditation apps that will help you get started. I personally like the 1 Giant Mind and Calm Apps but there are many to choose from!
10. Get enough sleep. I know this can be a tricky one. Between pregnancy insomnia, all the things you need to do, and especially if you have any other children, finding time to sleep seems almost impossible. Creating a night time routine, and sticking with it each night, will help. I would rather leave my to-do list unfinished and get to bed at a reasonable time than try and finish everything when my mind is groggy and thoughts are boggled. Getting enough sleep will help you feel more energized and better able to tackle all the things you need to in your day. Following some of the tips above can help contribute to better sleep too!
To all you pregnant mamas out there, you are doing great! Take some time for yourself because you deserve it!