Essentials for a Healthy First Trimester: Even through adoption journey
One of the biggest differences between expected and unexpected pregnancies (apart from the surprise) is that when you have an expected pregnancy, usually there’s been a fair amount of research that’s gone into the process. Unexpected pregnancies may find you in a public bathroom, holding onto a pregnancy test for dear life while the woman in the stall next to you verbally regrets that second bag of popcorn. So you could say that you land on the less prepared side for a pregnancy. Whatever your adoption plan may be, you’ll definitely want to have a healthy pregnancy.
The trick to having a healthy first trimester is to make all of the decisions for yourself that you would if you were trying to be healthier. The catch is that your body is going to be fighting you along the way.
So, how is it possible to have a healthy first trimester? Here is a look at the essentials:
Stop Toxin Consumption
Toxins, like nicotine, alcohol and recreational drugs can have a devastating effect on the development of your baby. Everything from low fetal oxygen levels to poor neurological development are tied to drug and alcohol usage in birth mothers.
When you speak with your adoption specialist and medical provider, let them know about any toxins you are currently using or previously used from conception on. This lets them know how to best support you, and any additional tests that they’ll need to run as your pregnancy progresses. If you’re worried that you won't be able to quit, tell them that too. Their job is to get you and baby to the finish line as healthy as possible and they will have resources for you. It may help to remember that all pregnancies end.
Sleep and Exercise
Everyone can use more sleep and more exercise, but it’s highly important during pregnancy. Falling asleep during your first trimester probably isn’t an issue, but getting a good quality sleep or sleeping in appropriate times/places might be. At this stage, be ready to be tired all the time. All. The. Time. Your body is working overtime to get ready for the next two trimesters and grow your baby. All of that takes a lot of energy. So, whenever and wherever you can, sneak a nap in. Do it.
Exercise is also essential to have a healthy first trimester. In your first trimester, you’re not physically limited yet. For the most part, you’ll look and move the way that you’re used to, so there’s no need to change up your routine if you’re already exercising regularly. If you’re not, movement like walking can help with back pain and circulation, as well as regulate energy and mood, so taking a 30 minute walk daily pays off exponentially in your early and later pregnancy. Of course, talk to your medical provider about what your normal routine looks like and let them guide you if they think something may be harming to you or the baby.
Take Prenatal Vitamins
As your baby develops, it needs certain vitamins and minerals in order to do the very cool things it does while growing. Folic acid helps with the development of the neural tube, iron helps with blood production, calcium contributes to bone density, etc… The thing is, now that you’re pregnant, your needs are playing second fiddle to that baby. Your body is really, really good at giving your baby whatever it requires so when you eat, your baby gets first dibs. Prenatal vitamins aren’t just about making sure that baby has the essential vitamins and minerals to develop, it’s also making sure that you have them too.
Most of the time, over the counter prenatals work just fine. There are, however, situations where your medical provider may prescribe one to you or ask you to supplement. Adoption Choices can help you get access to prenatal vitamins.
Diet vs Nausea: The Cage Match
No one is 100 percent certain what causes food aversion and craving, but it’s most commonly thought to be linked to the pregnancy hormone, hCG. Food aversion is normally at its height during your first trimester, and you may find that your favorite foods now make you throw up (literally). The bad news is that your body really needs the nutrition and energy that food provides. The worst news is that you may throw all of that nutritious food up and resort to eating plain bean burritos for three days. It happens.
This is one of the reasons that prenatal vitamins are so important. Fruits and vegetables have so many of the essential vitamins and minerals to have a healthy first trimester, but you may have made strawberries a mortal enemy and no amount of willpower will keep that iron-rich broccoli down. That doesn’t mean you should give up, though. After the third day of burritos, try something else. There are products and home remedies out there that can help. Most women report that the nausea, food aversion and morning sickness get more manageable once the second trimester starts.
Establish Care with Medical Provider
Establishing care with your medical provider may be the most essential thing you can do to have a healthy first trimester after toxin elimination. Unless you’re high risk, most appointments to confirm a pregnancy and establish care take place after 10 weeks. At this appointment you’ll answer questions about your and your family's medical history, give urine and blood samples, be weighed, have your blood pressure taken and be given more information than you may be ready for. Make sure that if you have questions, you ask them. And remember, your adoption specialist can help you get to and from your appointments and be with you, by your side - if you want!
If you’ve already made the choice to place your baby for adoption, tell your provider so they can support you in your decision. No question is too small. If your nipples have changed color (yep, that happens) and it’s weirding you out, definitely ask about it. Your provider has seen hundreds of pregnancies and will be able to tell you what’s in the normal realm to set your mind at ease when you’ve been doing too much internet sleuthing.
Adoption and Surrogacy Choices of Reno has been providing adoption and surrogacy services across Nevada since 2012. You can call us to speak to someone now!