It is easy to put ourselves on the back burner. As women, we tend to be the ones taking care of everyone else. Self-care is always important. However, when you’re pregnant your body is literally giving up resources to grow another human. So show yourself some love with these simple pregnancy self-care tips.
A few of these are easily added into your days, some will take scheduling, and some will take some mindset shifts. But I found these things to help my pregnancy go more smoothly.
Who am I, a Seattle maternity and newborn photographer, to offer pregnancy self-care tips? I have personally been pregnant 10 times, and given birth 6 times. I have experienced pregnancy loss, and my last pregnancy I was considered “geriatric” (who came up with that term, seriously?). I’m no expert or doctor, so please consult your doctor on everything I suggest. However, I do have some experience with what helped me personally when pregnant.
Let’s start with the most challenging pregnancy self-care tip.
Practice pregnancy self-care by getting a workout in regularly.
I’m starting with the most challenging method of self-care, but I feel it’s also likely the most important. Again consult your doctor before starting anything crazy.
But by moving your body you are getting all of those feel-good endorphins. You’ll also help your body stay fit and strong as your belly grows in size. It will help you with those aches and pains of pregnancy and can even be beneficial for labor.
Again, it does not have to be strenuous, but stretching, doing some modified yoga, hopping on a peloton bike or going for a walk is a great way to practice pregnancy self-care.
Start using an oil on your baby bump.
As your baby grows, your skin will start to stretch. I found using a daily belly oil to not only help with any itchiness, but also provided me a moment of quiet to just take in and appreciate my baby and my body. It was a simple pregnancy self-care ritual that I looked forward to each evening. As I rubbed my growing baby bump, I would think of baby, who they will be, and how our family will change.
My favorite belly oil is by Tubby Todd. I first found their products when I was looking for a natural lotion for my babies’ dry skin and was delighted to find they had belly oil for expectant mamas, too. I have used it an entire pregnancy and loved how it makes my tummy feel (without feeling super oily either).
Another pregnancy self-care tip is drink more water.
This is probably the most difficult part for me. But whenever I’m dehydrated my body FEELS it. I like to use Liquid IV in my water to add extra flavor and it’s supposed to help hydrate you more. No idea if that’s true, but I do drink more in general when I’m drinking Liquid IV, so, that helps, right? My favorite flavors are tangerine and strawberry (which are both at my local Costco, so that’s a plus).
Treat yourself to good maternity clothes to take care of yourself.
I’m the first one to be like, I can manage, I’m only pregnant for so long, I don’t need to invest in anything. However, being pregnant is enough of a challenge without feeling uncomfortable in your clothes. Under the bump underwear, flowy maxi dresses, and a good pair of maternity leggings are all things worth investing in.
An extra tip (beyond pregnancy self-care) is to select clothing that could work well postpartum. I liked v-neck tops that were easier to nurse in once baby arrived.
While you’re shopping for maternity clothing, grab something for maternity photos. Discover my favorite places to find bump friendly dresses.
Take care of yourself when pregnant by visiting a chiropractor.
Again, talk to your doctor. But a chiropractor who specializes in pregnant women has been a life saver for me during my last three pregnancies. The back pain and aches, not to mention, I had a breech baby able to flip with a few adjustments.
A good chiropractor isn’t simply cracking your back, but gentle adjustments that help align your body that is being pushed out by that growing baby.
While I was fearful to try a chiropractor, especially when pregnant, I found myself several times hardly able to walk in low back pain, all to be solved with a few simple adjustments. These quick adjustments felt like complete pregnancy self-care.
Practice the ultimate pregnancy self-care by booking a prenatal massage.
A prenatal massage feels like the ultimate luxury, but is self-care that is totally worth it. Schedule a few massages in your third trimester. It not only can help with aches and pains, but gives you an hour to relax in the quiet, something that you may find hard to do as your due date approaches.
Let’s not forget, you can take care of yourself by booking a maternity photo session.
This is a special time, your body is doing something amazing. Celebrate this stage and document it with a maternity photo session.
I could go on with my list as self-care when pregnant is so important. Things like, take a long bath, kick your feet up, have your spouse massage your feet, and ask for help when you need it are all things you could do. But just ensure you’re taking care of yourself during this special time.
Looking for more tips during pregnancy, like what to wear for maternity photo sessions, where to find outfits and more are all available on the blog below.