Even if pregnancy can be considered as a wonderful time for a woman, there are plenty of risks you have to prevent in order to protect yourself and the baby.

Drugs and other hazardous substances:
Most of the substances that are considered as drugs have to be stopped immediately as soon as you are considering getting pregnant. Whether this is hard of soft drugs, they can have dramatic effects on the baby. First of all, the risks of miscarriage are a lot higher. Many cases of malformation have also been registered because of the cutting agents used. Stunting growth and premature births are also very common to drug users.

Among the main substances that are commonly used by pregnant women and that have disastrous effect on the foetus we also have alcohol and cigarettes. Only a few glasses of alcohol or a few cigarettes can have detrimental effects on your pregnancy. Most of nurses and doctors recommend not drinking or smoking during pregnancy.

Medication can also be very hazardous during pregnancy. In spite that you might get ill during pregnancy, you have to be very careful not to take any kind of drug during this period. In any case, you should call your doctor to get some advice on which kind of molecule you can use while expecting your baby.

What are the precautions you should take at work:
For some women, even going to work can be dangerous for the baby. The main risks linked to work while pregnant concerns the substances you might be in contact with during pregnancy. The WHO – World Health Organization – recommends avoiding environment using dangerous products such as glycol ethers, paintings or pesticides. It is then recommended to shift the pregnant women to an other work station until her maternity leave.

Any work that involves strong efforts can be prejudicial to the baby and the mother to be. Women working in restaurants and in several industries have more risks of miscarriage than women working in a more comfy situation.

Watch what you eat :
Eating is very important to everybody. Most people are eating at least three times a day and pregnant women can feel like eating pretty much more than that. But, it can also be a dangerous activity particularly when you are expecting a baby. While pregnant, you should consider avoid eating a wide range of stuffs such as: seafood, non-pasteurized dairy food, all kind of raw fishes and meat as well as some delicatessen that might contains. Many doctors advice not eat fishes such as tuna or salmon more than twice a week because of the high level of mercury in their flesh.

The main aim of stopping eating this products is to avoid being in contact with bacteria or parasitic infection that might endanger the foetus. The most common infection are toxoplasmosis and listeriosis. Toxoplasmosis can severely affect the nervous system, listeriosis can provoke premature birth as well as severe infection of the foetus that can have a fatal issue.

What you will need for the baby part 3 – These little things making life so comfortable for you and the baby

This article is part of a series dedicated to the main things you need to buy for your baby. The previews posts were:

In my recent articles, I have made up a list of must –haves that all expectant women need to have to go to the hospital and to welcome the baby. However, a plethora of articles are now available that, if they are not that necessary can be very useful for you and for your toddler.

Moving with the baby

If a pushchair appear to be one of the must have for most expectant women, there are some other ways to carry your baby with you. push chairMost of the providers specialized in baby’s articles and accessorizes offer a wide range of carriers from carrying sling to the most sophisticated baby carriers. At the end of the day, it can be very useful to have carriers, sling and pushchairs in order to vary the way you will carry your baby depending on his and your mood.

Your baby might also have to spend the night out. In this case, it can be very useful to have a folding bed. This will help you to offer your toddler a comfort close to his own bed even you are not at home. You will find many kinds of folding beds including ones that can adapt to you baby’s age.

Baby at home

When coming back home, the only thing you have in mind is that you will offer the best of yourself for your baby. You will find many articles that will help you make every moment with your child a good one.

You will find many security equipment that will help you feel secured when your baby is in his bed. You can currently find many intercoms that will place in your baby room in order to hear if you cry when you are not next to him.

Some companies have launched in the market a product that detect any problems you baby can have from his breath to this body temperature. In the case, that the sensors detect something abnormal, it provokes a noise to warn you of a possible danger.

Just like every mom, you will one day have to face your baby’s first cold. In this case, having a humidifier will be very helpful. It will help maintain an ideal level of most in the baby bedroom. Thus, it will keep his mucus liquid and will avoid any stuffiness and will help your baby to breathe at night. Most of paediatricians currently recommend having a cool mist than a warm steam mainly in order to prevent from any risk of burning.

You will rapidly notice that you have to change your baby’s diapers many times a day. More and more providers are now manufacturing bins dedicated to diapers in order to diminish the smells and the microbes they contain. Some of them can contain up to 30 diapers without having any odours in your house.

In just a few months, you baby will begin eating all kind of food and mainly mashed fruits and vegetables. Many companies specialized in childcare have launched on the market cookers dedicated to your baby. They will help you prepare food ideally cooked for your child with very few efforts!

Even if all these products can appear as a bit frivolous, it is possible that you might rapidly become a real addict as they were built to ease most of new mothers in their day to day life.

What you will need for your baby? Part 2 – What you need to have home when coming back with your baby

This article is part of a serie dedicated to the main things you need to buy for your baby.
Please see also:

A baby can be considered as a very small person. However, you will be very surprised that he takes a lot of place. Indeed, your baby will need many things you will have to prepare before coming back from the hospital. 

Feeding : 

The furniture you will need to feed your baby will depend on your choice to breastfeed your baby or not. If you wish to breastfeed, you will need to have : 

  • Nursing bras
  • Breast pads to deal with leaking breast  
  • Breast shell to catch the milk that can flow from your breast
  • Breast shield to soothe your potential breast pain
  • A breast pillow can also be very convenient for you and the baby

If you wish to pump your milk, you will need :  

  • A pump
  • Bottles to feed your baby
  • Sterilising equipment for the bottle, pump and teats
  • Brush to clean your bottles and pump
  • Storage bags if you wish to freeze your milk
  • You can also decide to buy a bottle warmer; this is not necessary but can be useful

If you wish to bottle feed your baby, you will also need to have bottle, teats, sterilising equipment, brush to clean it all and the bottle warmer can also be of help. 

Baby’s bedroom: 
Prepare a baby crib for your baby

Prepare a baby crib for your baby

Even if you wish your little baby with you for a while, it is good to have his bedroom ready so that he will go in his own bed as soon as you will be ready. To make the room convenient for the two of you, you will need to have: 

  • A baby bed or crib responding to all the security requirements
  • An adapted mattress to his delicate body
  • Bed linen and bumper set for the bed
  • A changing table or a chest of drawers with a changing mattress allowing you to put in order all the clothes and little things you will need for the baby.
  • A chair where you can sit to feed your baby

Decoration is up to you but keep in head that you must avoid to have too many soft toys next to your baby as they attract dust and consequently allergens. 

Baby bath time: 

  • Bath time is often a very nice and relaxing time for your and the baby. For this great moment you will need:
  • A baby bathtub – You have plenty of baby bathtubs. You will need to find the one that makes the bath comfortable. You can whether put it on the floor or in your own bathtub
  • You bathtub can also be equipped with a mesh sling that will make washing time more enjoyable for your toddler.

Baby on the way: 

  • Baby loves to go out, be ready to go everywhere with him. For that, you will need to have :
  • A stroller
  • A seat for your car
  • A baby carrier or a carrying sling to keep your baby on you when walking (this can also be useful at home when you need to do some stuffs in your house but your baby want to be next to his mom.)
  • It might also be useful to consider buying a travel bed in case your might to spend the night out of your home for family visits or holidays.

This list can be considered a panorama of the must haves for your baby. On our next article, we will talk about all these little things that are not necessary but that can help a lot!

What you will need for the baby? Part 1 – Preparing your bag for your stay at the hospital

Preparing the arrival of your baby is great moment but also sometimes a bit confusing. Your baby is very small but will need plenty of stuffs you have never thought about before.

This article is part of a serie dedicated to the main things you need to buy for your baby.
Please see also:

The Pregnancy Notes blog offers you the opportunity to have a complete list of what you will or might need for the baby before the delivery and in the following months.

What things you should pack for your stay in hospital

Pack very helpful things for your own comfort or for the baby’s one

This list will include the must haves as well as furniture that is not necessary but that can be very helpful for your own comfort or for the baby’s one.

First of all, I would like to make a list of the main things that you will have to take with you at the hospital in order to be ready to face all situations. Note that this section will include a mix of stuffs you need not to forget before leaving as well as things you will have to buy.

What you need in the emergency room:

First of all, you need to gather some documents that will be helpful to your healthcare provider: ID, blood card, blood tests you did during the pregnancy as well as the results of ultrasound of your baby.

Think about your comfort! Delivery is a tiring and sometimes painful time. Take with you everything that will help you feeling better: water spray, refreshing wipes, stress ball. Take with you comfortable clothes, socks and slippers.

Don’t forget to take with you a watch, your camera and camcorder with full batteries and don’t forget a few things for the father to be: money to buy snacks, magazines as well as his cell phone in order to announce the good news to the family!

If you have one, take your pregnancy pillow. It will be very helpful, particularly if you decide not to have an epidural.

Make apart a small bag with the clothes of your baby in order to give it rapidly to the father. This bag will include bodysuit, sleeper with a hat as well as socks.

What you need for your stay:

For you : pyjamas, toiletries, make up, disposable pants, nursing bras, a mirror, a bag to pack your laundry, hydro alcoholic gel mainly for visitors, sanitary napkins, flip-flop to shower. It might also be useful to take some food with you as what you will receive at the hospital might not be very tasty. Having your own toilet paper, cleaning wipes for the toilets, tissues and nipple cream can also be of use. If you already have some other children take with you a present for them. They will be very happy to receive something from the new baby.

What you will need for the baby

Preparing your bag for your baby

For the baby: bodysuits, sleepers, socks, slippers, hats, pacifier, a blanket, a bunting, bibs, diapers, saline solution to clean his eyes, cotton, diaper cream, cleaning milk, soap, towel, baby bottle, milk if you wish not to nurse your baby.

Prepare your bag in advance in order not to forget anything. Even if some of these stuffs seems not very useful you might have to reconsider your judgement during your stay. Don’t forget that the more you will be ready, the less stressful you will be.

The main signs of an upcoming delivery

Most of expectant women, especially when this is their first time, do wonder when they will have to go to the hospital. In order to be sure that you will not decide to leave too early, here’s a list of the main signs that you have to take into account before going to the emergency room.

The first sign of an upcoming delivery is, in general, a great tiredness. You feel heavier than usual, could have some pain at your muscles and do feel that your belly is moving down. All these symptoms are linked with an hormonal change which is the main cause of delivery. You will also probably suffer from « Braxton Hick’s » contractions. These ones are irregular and intend to prepare your body for the delivery. These symptoms generally take place around two days before the real work will begin. However, at this stage, this is not the right time to get ready to go.

The loss of the mucus plug occurs between 48 hours and only a few hours before the delivery. The mucus plug is made of glairs that can sometimes have a pinkish color due to the presence of blood. This plug has helped closing your uterus during the whole pregnancy time. When you are loosing it, you can expect that the contractions will now begin very soon. The loss of mucus plug is due to hormonal changes as well as an opening of the cervix leaving space for it to fall.

If you feel a fluid falling from your vagina, that means that your membranes have ruptured. This is what is also called « water break ». As soon as this occurs, you have to rush to the hospital. Indeed, it involves that your baby is no more in a sterile environment and that all kind of bacterias can enter you vagina and affect the baby. It is very rare to experience water break without previously having contractions.

Contractions can also be a clear sign that the labor has begun and that it is time to contact your health-care provider. However, as I told before, some contractions, in particular when they are not painful or irregular, can be the sign of a fake labor. An expectant woman will have to consider going to the hospital when the contractions will be regular occurring around every five to ten minutes and lasting at least 30 seconds.

Surprisingly, the few hours that will precede the delivery, you will feel full of energy and will be highly motivated for cleaning your whole house and having everything ready for your baby. That will be a very strange feeling compared with the days before where you felt particularly exhausted. I advise you to prepare everything in advance in order not to get too nervous the D-day and to keep all your energy for the labor as you will dramatically need it.

Prepare your body to welcome your baby

In many ways, pregnancy will appear to be a very tiresome experience for your body. Furthermore, you will have to do your best to provide your baby with all the nutrients he will need to grow healthily. In order to prepare your body, you will then have to follow a double path :

  • Decrease the chances of feeling bad during the pregnancy
  • Be sure your baby will have the best of you.

To ensure that you will achieve these two stakes, you will, first of all, have to adopt a healthier way of life before getting pregnant.

First of all, in order to no harm the baby to come you will have to strongly consider stopping smoking cigarettes. Smoking could have negative effects on your fertility as well as on the baby’s health. If that sounds like something hard to realize, we advise you to consult a specialist that will help you in that way.

Don’t forget that alcohol also has negative effects during pregnancy. If, in general, you might authorize yourself to drink one or two glass of alcohol per week, you definitively have to stop drinking before and during pregnancy.

On order to increase your chances to be pregnant as well as acquiring the right reserve for your baby to be, you might also reconsider your whole way of eating:

Try to eat three healthy meals a day – that also means that you need to avoid everything that is not good for your body such as fat and refined sugar.

Increase your consumption of dairy products – You need at least 800mg calcium per day which will make you have a reserve that will be used by the baby to constitute his bones during the first three months of pregnancy.

Your feeding also needs to be rich in folic acid. This vitamin also known as vitamin B9 has numerous favourable effects for you and your baby. It prevents from miscarriage and helps the development of the nervous system of the baby. It can also avoid some malformation such as the spina bifida. You will find folic acid in various foodstuffs such as dried fruits, liver, salad, spinach as well as some fruits.

In order to be sure that you will not encounter any health troubles during your pregnancy, you can decide to make a complete check up that will help your doctor to verify that everything is OK. It will also be the right time to check your immunization for illness that might affect the foetus such as measles or toxoplasmosis.

As soon as you feel ready in your head that the one who shares your life is ready for the adventure, there is no doubt that your pregnancy will be a wonderful moment that will result in the arrival of healthy baby.

Discover the main steps of your baby’s development

In a few months or maybe in a few days, you will give birth to your child. Between the moment of his conception and his arrival your baby will experience a nine month period of tremendous changes.

It will be probably hard for you to consider that the combination of your reproductive cells – egg and sperm – will result in a three or four kilos baby able to breathe, to eat, to ear and to see. This article intends to present the main steps of development of your child.

Joined development of reproductive cells

In the next few days following the fecundation of your ovule, the zygotic stage will take place. At this phase, cells resulting from the meeting of the egg and sperm will multiply rapidly. The inner cells will become the embryo while the outer cells will constitute the amniotic sac and placenta that will nourish the baby.

At the end of the first month, your baby’s size only reach 0.1 to 0.2 mm in diameter. His organs are constituted yet. At this phase, your baby is called blastocyst.

Two months and already a little baby

At the end of the second month, your baby already has already begun to develop all his vital organs. During the ultrasound, you are able to hear his heartbeat. You will also be surprised to see that your child to be already has hands, legs, kidneys, and nose. He already has genital tubercle but it is not possible yet to see clearly if it’s a boy or a girl. You will need to be a little more patient.

At the end of the first trimester, the size of your baby is approximately 8 to 11 mm. The process of ossification has begun and baby makes his first spontaneous moves.

Six months, your baby is already viable but fragile

At the end of second trimester, your baby is nearly completely formed. All his organs has continued their development – brain, kidney, liver… The fetus begins to develop fat that will help him stay warm. At this stage, if your baby born, he has some chances to survive with intensive cares. However, his lungs are not able to function properly. Women diagnosed with risks of giving birth at this stage of pregnancy are often given steroids or cortisone in order to accelerate the lungs developments. , are improving everyday. At the end of this period, all the organs are well formed but cannot work properly independently.

Ready to go

The third trimester of pregnancy can be considered as a maturation time. Your baby has achieved the main steps of his development. A baby born after 33 weeks of pregnancy has nearly 100% chance to survive. However, staying inside your belly will allow him to get on weight and to develop all the reflexes needed to live outside you. This period is also characterized by a high increase of his weight. Don’t be surprise if your baby takes two kilos or more during the last three months.

When your baby finally arrives, his whole body is ready to work properly and to adapt to his new environment. In spite of all these miraculous transformations, your baby strongly relies on you for all his vital needs. You will, more than ever have to take care of him.

Pregnant and beautiful

During pregnancy, your body experiences many changes that might sometime make you feel not as beautiful as usual. Even if this state is transitory, keep in mind that you can with no doubt be pregnant and seductive at the same time.

Here’s a short list of advices to look and feel good during pregnancy.

Pamper your skin: with all your hormonal changes, your skin is affected a lot and can appear as very different than it is usually. Most of expecting women agree on the fact that their skin is drier and more fragile. The skin can also suddenly overreact to some of the product you daily use with no side effects. To keep a smooth skin, use soft cosmetics and hydrate your skin twice a day.

Avoid chloasma: During pregnancy your skin is subject to hyper pigmentation. Dark stains can appear on your face. This is what doctor calls chloasma. It is mainly due to a hyperactivity of pigment cells. In order to avoid this disagreement, avoid the sun as much as possible and use sunscreen with a high SPF everyday.

Fight stretch marks: Stretch marks can be considered as the number one public enemy for expecting woman. These red lines might appear on your body where the skin is particularly stretched mainly on belly and breast. This is due to the high production of cortisol inhibiting the production of collagen. More and more companies offer cream to reduce or avoid stretch marks. It is also very important to monitor closely your weight. Sudden increase of the body mass is often linked to stretch marks.

For your breast, you also have to choose adapted bras. Choose supportive and comfortable bra without under wire. Strengthen your muscles by doing adapted exercises.

Keep fit: Nothing prevent you from doing sport during pregnancy. It also helps you to keep your muscles active. However, you have to choose cautiously your sport. Avoid any that could be harmful for the baby. Overall, walking and swimming can be considered as the most adapted activities for you.

Keep your weight under control: The more you will get on weight during pregnancy the more kilos you will have to loose afterwards. Expecting a baby does not mean eating twice but twice better. Have a look at your weight curve and try to eat healthy food full of vitamins and minerals.

In spite of the fact that pregnancy could affect your appearance, in some other ways it can also improve it. Thanks to the hormones, your hairs will look particularly beautiful, shinier and with more volume. Women suffering from acne will also experience tremendous changes in their skin face with less buttons and pins.

Don’t forget that the best ingredient to look beautiful during pregnancy is happiness. If you feel comfortable with your new situation, expecting your baby will make you look at the same time special and lovely.

Dealing with the little troubles linked to pregnancy

Even if expecting a baby is, in most cases good news, there are some symptoms of pregnancy that might make you feel pretty bad during this happy time.
The disagreements linked to pregnancy evolve with time and are not the same whether you are on the first three or last three months of pregnancy.

Here’s a short list of what you can expect and how you can deal with it.

Frequently, pregnancy involves digestive disorders. A large part of expectant women complain about nausea especially during the first three month of pregnancy and mainly in the morning. Some others just feel uncomfortable with idea of eating or even with just looking at food. Even if these symptoms could be very inconvenient, they don’t last for long. However, these gastric problems push many expectant women not to eat properly: eating whatever is easy to prepare and fast to eat when they finally feel like it. This behavior is the main trap of every pregnant woman looking to eat healthily while expecting baby.
In order to avoid having to much nausea, doctors advice to always eat a little something and to wait for a while before getting out of bed. Overall, taking time in the morning to pamper you is the only effective method to deal with nausea.

Tiredness can also be recognized as one of the main enemy of pregnant women. Many of them feel like sleeping all day long. Tiredness is very common during the first three months because of the increasing level of hormones in the blood due to pregnancy. This feeling tends to decrease between the fourth and sixth month of pregnancy as the body has got used with his new state. However, after the sixth month, many woman feels exhausted as the baby is getting on weight making and pushes on all other intern organs. In the meantime, the baby nutrients needs can cause deficiency in vitamins and minerals for the mother to be.
Eating healthily a wide range of foodstuffs can you help you dealing with tiredness. Your doctor might also suggest to take additional vitamins or iron in order not to lack of any nutrients that are essential for both you and the baby.

During pregnancy, women can experience many other troubles. This can include painful breast, frequent micturition, dizziness, constipation, mood changes, fainting or body aches.
Overall, during the first trimester, you might expect breast pain, morning sickness, frequent urination, ligament pain or excessive saliva.
During the two last trimesters, you might experience heartburn, cramps, backache, fatigue, constipation or hemorrhoids.
Unfortunately, it is pretty much difficult to prevent any of these symptoms and for many of them there is no other treatment than being patient.

Taking each of these disagreements appears like nothing in comparison of giving life. However, dealing with each of them in addition to the natural worry of becoming a mother might be difficult for some expecting women.

If these troubles are causing you too much troubles of if you do feel really bad, do not hesitate to consult your doctor. He will help you to deal with all these disagreements in order to live a serene pregnancy.