An Expectant Mom’s Guide to a Winter Pregnancy
Pregnancy always comes with big changes to routines and adjustments to expectations but that is never truer than when you’re pregnant in the winter time. You may already have some idea of the struggles and magic that awaits you, but just in case you didn’t get it all covered, here are a few tips and tricks for a winter pregnancy.
Take care of yourself
Being pregnant in the winter can be tricky enough without being sick too! Make sure you get your flu shot and any other needed vaccinations. What can be a manageable illness at any other time can have unexpected complications while pregnant.
Wash your hands regularly and try to steer clear of anyone who seems sick. Even a cold, while you’re pregnant, can be excessively uncomfortable. If you do get sick, remember that recovery can be slower, and get the needed rest. Don’t be wary about asking your doctor for help with symptoms. There are many remedies and comforts available to those who are pregnant who end up under the weather. No need to suffer when there are harmless medicines to take, just check with your doctor first.
Winter air can be drying, so make sure you’re getting enough water. Take care of your skin with lotion and get a good routine going to help combat the winter air and hand sanitizer discomforts of cold weather. Don’t forget to spend some time every day moving your body if you tolerate exercise, being active is key.
Be sure to keep up with your vitamins, in addition to a good prenatal vitamin talk to your doctor about your calcium and vitamin D needs, being indoors more often plus growing a baby might call for an adjustment to your regular dosages.
Double check seasonal foods to make sure you know the good, the bad, and the dangerous. Uncured meats and soft cheeses abound, but may not be recommended while pregnant. Do your research and then enjoy responsibly. Remember most traditional foods will be safe to eat, and you should! If you’re at a family dinner and they offer you a take-away plate of mashed potatoes, don’t feel guilty about taking them up on that. Midnight snacking of leftovers during the cold months is an eternal joy for everyone but doubly so when you have your own bun in the oven.
Make sure to map out a route to your hospital that is easily traveled in the worst of weather. If your city or town plows snow routes first or exclusively make sure you know which roads those are.
Get your car ready for winter by having a tune-up. Try to prepare the best you can for winter weather by anticipating struggles and getting plans in place now. Purchase roadside assistance for your car, pack a blanket and other needs in case you have a breakdown.
Buy a well-fitting winter coat, you may not be able to get by with the one from last season. No need to buy a maternity coat though! Just go up a size or two on a normal coat and you should be fine. Make sure you have good shoes to wear in ice and snow, consider buying a set of crampons that strap onto shoes for extra protection.
Make sure you have regular winter necessities too. Thermal underwear, a good pair of maternity jeans and a few sweaters for layering will take you far. Be sure to dress in layers though, being pregnant can turn up your internal thermostat, which means you might be perfectly fine outside while others are freezing but those toasty fires might make you shed a few layers when indoors.
If the weather gets too frightful allow yourself some grace on ordering in, shopping online, and getting your groceries delivered. While you’re staying home, avoid cabin fever by keeping yourself busy with projects. Organizing the baby’s room, making postpartum plans or freezer cooking can all help you in the long run, and are a great use of your time when stuck at home. While you’re at it, order a few extra items in case there’s a storm and you get snowed in. Nothing worse than pregnancy cravings with no solution available.
Enjoy the season
While old traditions of sledding and ice skating may prove too daunting while pregnant, there are many other fun ways to enjoy the cold. Cuddle up in your blankets and have a hot cocoa while you read a good book, or have a movie marathon. Cold weather makes a great excuse to try some baking or if you’re too tired to delegate dinner to whoever knows how to make soup. Decorate your house and start to think about traditions you want to enjoy your new little one. This can be a great time to pick up a new hobby or rekindle an old one like knitting or crochet to make some hats and booties for your new bundle of joy.
Don’t get too lonely though, even though it can be easy to become a homebody in the winter, you might want to be social as well. Invite your friends over for a winter themed slumber party, make sure you stake out the best seat on the couch before they get there and hoard all the throw pillows, you need them for support right? Feel free to be judicious on accepting invites for parties and other events, go to the ones you really want to but don’t over-do it. Make sure you’re not just going because you feel obligated to.
Family time can be special during the winter, so embrace those moments and memories that make your pregnancy special. Go look at light displays or go window shopping. Take advantage of expectant mother parking at the mall, it’s there for you!
Whatever you do, remember that your health and safety are the most important things and take time when you need to rest, to relax, or just to build a blanket fort and enjoy some quiet time. Winter can be a magical time to be pregnant as long as you’re prepared for eventualities and maintain a good attitude.