There are a lot of things you need, or you think you need, during pregnancy. Due to a higher hormonal level, you go through physical and emotional changes like increased need to urinate, decreased lung capacity, lower back pain, trouble sleeping, tiredness, anxiety, forgetfulness, mood swings etc. These changes can make you feel uncomfortable and moody.
Because every pregnant woman confronts with all or some of these physical and mental changes, I thought a list with pregnancy must-haves (with essential tested items) will make your pregnancy easier. Although, this is a list based on personal preferences, I am certain you will find it useful.
1. Body pillow
I personally loved Leachco Snoogle Total Body Pillow because of its natural shape which fitted perfectly on my pregnant body. The pillow has a custom cover made from a breathable fabric. The cover can be removed for washing (it can be washed in the washing machine). It offers total back, head, knees and tummy support. I started using it in my 4th month. In my latest months of pregnancy, however, I used Leachco Snoogle Total Body Pillow together with Pregnancy Pillow Wedge for Maternity and it turned out to be the perfect solution to end the annoying pregnancy sleeping discomfort once and for all.
2. Belly band
Belly bands are extremely useful during the last trimester, especially for larger bumps. I recommend Ingrid & Isabel Women’s Maternity Everyday Bellaband. The band is designed to hold up unbuttoned pants and loose maternity wear, featuring a stay-put silicone strip. It is soft and plush and can be used for complete belly coverage if necessary.
3.Natural oils and moisturizers
I am pretty sure all of you, pregnant ladies, fear of stretch marks. Well, it is a justified fear. Most pregnant women (more than 90%) will get stretch marks on their body during pregnancy in either one or more areas: abdomen, back, breasts or thighs. Fortunately, I got only two of them, on my thighs and they eventually faded altogether. Although stretch marks are a matter of genetics, there is a way you can prevent them.The secret is to keep your body and skin very well hydrated (more about stretch marks and the way you can prevent them: here). I tried a lot of oils and moisturizers, but Viva Naturals Sweet Almond Oil was, by far, my favorite, along with Burt’s Bees Mama Bee Belly Butter. They are both made from natural ingredients and, used daily, they significantly soften and smooth your skin, increasing its elasticity.
4. Safe beauty & hygiene products
Always read very carefully the label of all beauty and hygiene products you intend to use during pregnancy. There is a long list of ingredients you should avoid (like retinoids, phthalates, formaldehyde, ammonia – more details about these in a future article) because they are absorbed in your skin and then in your bloodstream increasing risk of birth defects for your developing baby. My favorite cosmetic product during pregnancy was KYPRIS – 100% Natural / Vegan Clearing Facial Serum. I warmly recommend it! It is natural, suited for all skin types and it leaves your skin soft, smooth and glowing.
5. Comfortable shoes (one of the most important pregnancy must-haves)
Appropriate shoes represent a key factor of comfort in pregnancy. During my pregnancy I successfully wore 3 types of shoes: ballet flats, sneakers and ankle boots. I felt really comfortable in each one of them (Yosi Samra Women’s Samara 2.0 Ballet Flat, Converse Unisex Chuck Taylor All Star Ox Low Top Sneakers, Lucky Women’s Darbie Boot), even if I wore the shoes for eight hours in a row.
6. Comfortable bra and underwear
Lingerie is as important as shoes during pregnancy. It should be supportive, comfortable, made of a breathable fabric (preferably cotton). In spite of all these characteristics, pregnancy lingerie may not necessarily be a turn off. Uniwit 4 PCS Cotton Maternity Pregnant Mother Panties Lingerie Briefs Underpants and Hot Milk Women’s Show-Off Nursing and Maternity Bra are all (the above) in one.
7. Sickness remedies
A good remedy for pregnancy nausea and morning sickness is the common and natural ginger. I used it in the form of tea: Pink Stork Tea – Morning Sickness Relief Pregnancy Tea, Organic Ginger Peach – but there are other ways you can use ginger to relieve your symptoms: grated fresh ginger in hot water, ginger lemonade, ginger syrup, or ginger capsules (just make sure they are regulated by the FDA and are not mixed with other substances that may harm your baby). So, these are definitely pregnancy must-haves, if you have morning sickness.
8. Heartburn remedies
Heartburn is a common problem during pregnancy. Its cause is the progesterone. The hormone relaxes the stomach valve that keeps acid out of the esophagus. This one was a priority on my pregnancy must-haves list because I, personally, started to feel severe heartburn very frequently (almost every day) as soon as I reached month 4 of pregnancy. The remedy I used was Rennie Tablets. I preferred this remedy because it was safe. It works naturally within the stomach and esophagus system only and does not enter into the mother’s and baby’s bloodstream and harm the unborn baby. However, because every pregnancy is unique, you should always consult your gynecologist or physician before taking any kind of pills.
9. Water Filtration Pitcher
It is recommended to drink 8 to 12 glasses (about 3 liters) of water daily during pregnancy. By giving your body enough fluids you prevent dehydration and ease pregnancy symptoms as morning sickness, acidity or heartburn, indigestion, constipation, hemorrhoids and edema. A simple and effective way to drink the recommended amount of water during pregnancy is to use a water filtration pitcher. This is what I recommend: Brita 10 Cup Everyday Water Pitcher. You can effortless benefit of fresh, clean water without spending a lot of time, money and energy (buying and carrying hundreds of water bottles).
10. Tooth care
Good oral hygiene in pregnancy is a must. As you probably know, a great number of pregnant women (almost 50%) have pregnancy gingivitis. This translates to bleeding gums when brushing teeth. One solution to avoid pregnancy gingivitis is to choose the right toothbrush. It has to be ultra soft, with fine bristles (preferably with rounded tips). I use an Oral-B Pro 1000 Electric Rechargeable Toothbrush with sensitive gum care replacement brush head and I am more than pleased. I too had pregnancy gingivitis, but I managed to keep it under control. The toothpaste I used also helped: Parodontax Clean Mint Toothpaste for Bleeding Gums. Although it has a distinct taste, you usually get used to it after a couple of weeks.
11. Pregnancy books
Pregnant women, especially those expecting their first baby, confront themselves with numerous questions about their new condition. What to Expect When You’re Expecting by Heidi Murkoff has all the answers. The book covers everything you want to know about life’s most amazing journey, from preconception planning to birth to those first miraculous weeks with a new baby. How can I eat for two?, How about my monthly wax?, Can I stick to my normal workout routine while I’m expecting? or What’s safe when it comes to sex? are just a few questions provided with accurate, relevant and comforting answers. It’s all here.
12. Pregnancy journal
Every mom to be wishes to be able to remember all that she is experiencing throughout her pregnancy. The best way to capture all the moments, emotions and feelings is to keep a pregnancy journal. Bump for Joy helps you put in one special place all your pregnancy moments, creating a unique keepsake of your whole pregnancy. Arranged by trimesters, the journal features thoughtful prompts, checklists and fill-in-the-blanks to help you plan for baby’s arrival, all of these surrounded by a delightfully whimsical artwork.
What are your pregnancy must-haves? Do you have one or more items to add to the list?