Congratulations! You've now stepped from preconception to pregnancy. The next 38 to 40 weeks may be a challenge, but producing a healthy baby at the end is well worth it. Having a significant other, family, or friends by your side will motivate and keep you in a positive world through the worst days.
Get prenatal care as soon as possible. Early prenatal care is essential for good health during your pregnancy. It can help prevent fetal compromise from undetected problems such as diabetes and RH immunizations. Late prenatal care is resulted in blood tests, such as Hepatitis B and different immune tests. It is advisable to get prenatal vitamins as soon as you know that you're pregnant and keep all of your appointments with your doctor. Take your significant other or someone close with you to ultrasounds.
Alert your boss when you feel comfortable announcing the pregnancy. Letting them know that you are pregnant, not only deters you from lifting things, but also advises them to allow time for labor and maternity leave. It is illegal for them to ask if you are pregnant, and also illegal for them to fire you or lay you off due to your pregnancy.
Eat healthy for the two of you. Pregnant women need a lot more nutrients than non-pregnant women, which means a bigger proportion of fruits and vegetables. The caffeine intake should not be more than 300 mg (milligrams) a day; some professionals say that you should avoid caffeine as much as you can. Trade your cravings for healthier items. Instead of potato chips, eat carrot sticks. Try chocolate cereal with skim milk instead of chocolate candy. Drink non caffeine drinks, such as Fanta, 7up, or juice. Remember to get your 7 to 8 glasses of water!
Keep crackers or gum near you. Believe it or not, chewing gum helps stomach acid and lowers the amount of morning sickness. If you do start to feel nausea waves, eat a few soda or animal crackers.
Keep active, but know your limits. For this part in your life, you're not Super-Woman. Don't lift more than your doctor or OBGYN advises. Wear fitted clothes, as you will gain throughout the months. Avoid saunas and hot spas during your pregnancy. Don't be on your feet for prolonged periods of time -- relax and take deep breaths.
Don't be ashamed of preparing early! Window shopping and tossing out ideas are great ice breakers to get you in the spirit when the time comes for purchasing. If you wish to go cheap, search Craigslist.com, Walmart, or local garage sales. You can purchase many items used, however, it is best to purchase a new crib and car seat. If you do purchase a used crib make sure all of the hardware is present and in good condition, you should also verify that the crib meets the current national safety standards, check with the National Safety Council. If you decide to purchase a used car seat, you should also inspect its quality carefully, look for signs of wear on the straps or stress cracks then make sure to check with the National Highway Traffic & Safety Association (NHTSA). Write down the car seat manufacturer, model number and serial number and call the NHTSA Hotline to confirm that this particular model and serial number has not been recalled. Many local organizations will provide car seats to you at a reduced rate if you can't afford a new one, check with your doctor or local community center.
Be more confident with information. Go to libraries, thrift book stores, or ask for pamphlets on pregnancy, labor, and caring of infants. Sign up for classes within a local hospital, which may be free or have a small fee (depending how long the sessions go for, etc).
Get ready for the unexpected. Your may go into labor any time between 38 to 42 weeks and it may happen at the most unexpected times and places. Prepare a plan for how to get to the hospital. Pack a bag for you and your baby ahead of time too, make sure to include any items you and the baby will need. Don't forget the camera! You should also install your car seat ahead of time, hospitals will not release you unless you have a properly installed car seat.
Getting close to your significant other can be defined as granted massages -- feet and back massages are heaven during your pregnancy!
Go all the way and start a pregnancy scrapbook. Include all ultrasound pictures that you receive, log down how you felt through the months, what you craved, pictures of your stomach (against a wall or a mirror image), and people's sayings or reactions about the pregnancy.
Watch out for Toxoplasmosis from cats' feces. You don't need to avoid or get rid of cats, but just be extra alert while either cleaning a litter box or being around it.