Planning For Pregnancy: Proactive Things You Can Do

Pregnancy is an exciting and magical time, but it’s a huge strain on the body. While lots of happy, healthy babies are born each year without any planning at all, if you are in a position to plan then it’s never going to be a bad thing. Here are some of the things you can do in preparation.

Improve your diet

One of the most proactive things you can do to prepare for pregnancy and improve your health in general is improve your diet. Not only will it provide you with the nutrition you need, but eating the right amount will help you to get to your ideal BMI. This puts you in the best position for conception and a healthy pregnancy. Aim for plenty of fresh produce, whole grains, lean protein and dairy. If it helps, use a fitness tracker like MyFitnessPal to make sure you’re getting everything you need.

Take folic acid

As well as a healthy diet, it’s recommended that all women of child bearing age take folic acid. This is because a deficiency can cause spinal tube issues in a developing fetus, it’s rare but since it can be avoided with a simple pill it’s worth just taking it.

Quit your dangerous vices

Smoking, binge drinking, illicit drugs, binge eating - they’re all things that will affect your health as well as an unborn baby if you fall pregnant. Focus on your health, do what you can to quit these bad habits, seek help if you need to. Ask your GP for a referral if you’re not sure where to start.

Start BBT tracking

Before attempting to fall pregnant, it can be really useful to start basal body temperature tracking. You do this by taking your temperature first thing in the morning after at least three hours of sleep (this gives you your basal or ‘at rest’ temperature). After ovulation, your body temperature rises and from tracking your charts month to month you can tell exactly how long your cycles are, if you’re ovulating every month and if there are any potential issues. If you struggle conceiving then you can show your chart to fertility specialists and they can pinpoint the issues easier than invasive tests. If all is well, it gives you an idea of when you ovulate each month so you can time intercourse giving you the best chance of conception,

Know what to expect

Educating yourself and going into things knowing what to expect can help to reduce stress and give you some control. From preconception to potential issues in pregnancy such as how amniocentesis can affect miscarriage, it’s worth knowing. Don’t scare yourself into thinking the worst will happen, but be aware and you can go into things with your eyes wide open.

Consider your partners health

As well as your own health, it’s worth considering your partners health too. Quitting smoking, start eating healthy and get a health screening if needed could be worth doing. 

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