Pregnancy and looking after a newborn baby can cause stress and anxiety. For the most part this is unavoidable. You want to keep your baby as happy as possible but in those early days when they have no way of communicating with you it can be hard to know exactly what they want. Negative feelings can contribute to problems along the way, so it’s best to find ways to counter them. The best way to remain stress free in pregnancy is to remember to take care of mama! Focus some attention on your mind and body and not just that precious baby you’re carrying or caring for.
Here are some tips to help you through so you can make the most of this exciting part of your life.
You may be tempted to just rest and sleep for most of the day when you’re pregnant, but the Huffington Post advises that it’s actually better to get up and do some exercises. However, these should only be gentle exercises and movements to avoid putting more pressure on your sensitive body.
Yoga and stretching are the best methods, as they promote muscle relaxation and teach you breathing exercises. I did Yoga all the way through my first pregnancy with Rosalie but unfortunately I haven’t found the time to do it during this pregnancy!
Once you have given birth, you will find exercise will help you recover faster. Just make sure that your doctor has given you the green light before proceeding. You can do simple exercises which will help you get back in shape.
The games referred to here are mostly indoor and not sports or other games that require heavy physical or mental activity. When all the family is together, you can play board games like Monopoly or Cluedo. You could also participate in social games like Bingo with family, friends or neighbours.
There are the trending games like Words with Friends which gives you the chance to compete with, either people you know, or strangers. According to Fit Pregnancy, there have been studies which show that a woman’s brain shrinks in size whilst she is pregnant. This has lead some to believe that certain cognitive skills like memory retention are affected. The aforementioned title and other similar games are great ways to exercise your brain.
Alternatively, you may wish to use other means to play such as through social platforms or mobile apps. The reach of social media effectively widened the audience of classic games such as slots, which now have ported versions playable on mobile devices distributed through entertainment portals. The digital platform Slingo, for one, blended various designs and social media accessibility to allow players to retain their interaction with loved ones while playing. It’s extensive lineup of colourful slot titles includes themes taken from today’s hottest TV shows which are popular among stay-at-home (soon to be) mums.
Using social media or mobile devices is great when playing with family or friends who live in different locations. Especially if you’re all mums who can’t immediately get together in one place. All of these provide simple entertainment. This can help take away, or at the least reduce, the stress of pregnancy or caring for infants.
Playing games, including video games and board games has been confirmed to relieve stress. Parenting.com even listed video games as one of their super stress relievers. One life hacker even tried playing while in labour. The story of Rebecca Pollard became viral – the lady who immersed herself in smartphone games as a distraction while she was giving birth, and the method effectively eased her pain.
Taking in fresh air and sunshine during a morning stroll can do you the world of good. It helps you when you’re still carrying, or both you and your baby once he/she makes their way into the world. A breath of fresh air promotes a good mood and the natural vitamins from sunshine are important for overall health.
Another natural way for pregnant women to relax is called a ‘babymoon’. We had one ourselves a few weeks ago. It’s similar to a honeymoon, except that there’s already an addition to your family on the way. This is best done during second trimester, considering that you’re through the morning sickness period and not yet into the final homestretch.
Pick a destination that’s private and secluded so you can have as much quiet time with your loved ones as you need. The end goal of course, is for your whole (soon to be) family to unwind, relax and enjoy themselves.
In case you’d rather do it after your baby’s out and you’re both cleared to go by your doctors, there are several posts in our Parenting archive on how to pack for a trip away with your family.
Do you have any other tips to share for stressed out expectant mothers? Please do let me know in the comments.
*This is a collaborative post