Expert advice to help you navigate through those crucial nine months of pregnancy and beyond
Get essential guidance for expectant mothers during the first trimester of pregnancy. Learn about various signs and symptoms to be aware of, and the importance of consulting a healthcare provider when these symptoms occur.
The period in which a foetus develops inside a woman’s womb is referred to as pregnancy. It lasts for about nine months.
Human pregnancy lasts for about 40 weeks i.e. nine months. It is divided into three stages, corresponding to the fetal growth. The first twelve weeks comprise the first trimester, letting the foetus conceive and take shape through the embryonic stages. The second trimester (week 13-28) involves the growth of organs and the last trimester (week 29 -40) promotes the swift growth of the baby.
The easiest way to find out if you’re pregnant is by taking a pregnancy test. These kits are easily available at any pharmacy store. The test instructions will be provided with the kit. You’re required to pee on the pregnancy stick to know the results. These depend on the levels of a hormone called hCG (human chorionic gonadotropin) present in your pee. A higher level of hCG indicates a higher chance of pregnancy.
Missed periods, nausea, vomiting or morning sickness, food cravings, breathlessness, fatigue, sensitive breasts, backache and frequent urination are some of the common pregnancy symptoms.
The key to having a healthy pregnancy is following a healthy diet and ensuring a daily exercise routine. Apart from this, it is important to go for your weekly medical check-ups, get immunised with the necessary vaccine shots and just do everything you can to maintain a happy mental health.
A balanced diet that consists of whole grains, green veggies, protein and healthy carbohydrates is the way to go. Veggies like spinach, peppers, sweet potato, cabbage, okra etc are excellent for the foetus’ growth. Proteins from egg, tempeh, tofu, and cottage cheese are required to make you feel full and healthy carbs in limited proportions from potatoes, cheese etc are great to be utilised as energy.
In general, it's fine to begin or continue exercising while pregnant, but before starting any fitness program, make sure it's appropriate for your particular situation by speaking with your healthcare professional. Based on your current health and medical history, they can offer advice.
This can be done by utilising the date of conception. You may determine your trimester by working backwards from the precise date of conception. Take the date of conception and subtract it from the present. To find your trimester, divide the total number of weeks by 13; the remaining number of weeks corresponds to the particular week in that trimester.
Iron is crucial during pregnancy to prevent anaemia, calcium for the healthy bone formation of the baby, vitamin D for the mother’s bone health, iodine for the baby’s brain development, and vitamins B12 and B2, especially for vegan mothers. Lastly, folic acid and choline for the overall health of both mother and baby.
During your pregnancy, it is important that you sleep in a comfortable position that allows your body to rest peacefully. Having said that, it’s best that you sleep on your side from the second trimester onwards as any other position may result in body ache and discomfort. Lying flat on your back for too long is not advisable, hence you may keep alternating between these two positions.