Sleep during pregnancy is full of irony—you're waddling around so tired you feel like you're sleepwalking all day, but when you finally hit the sack, you find yourself playing a very un-fun game of watch-the-clock-strike-various-early-morning-hours. “Rest truly contributes to a healthy pregnancy and delivery, but it's often disrupted when expecting,” says Catherine Darley, N.D., founder of the Institute of Naturopathic Sleep Medicine in Seattle.
Getting a prenatal massage can be extremely beneficial to your physiological, psychological and emotional health throughout pregnancy. But it's important to work with a practitioner whom you feel comfortable with, trust, and someone who is well-trained in giving a prenatal massage.
The problem: Weight gain, a shifting center of gravity, and ligament-loosening hormones all contribute to aches and pains as your pregnancy progresses. The solution: Strengthen your core muscles to support your back and spine, and stretch your shoulders, upper back, quads and hip flexors with these simple exercises. Looking for more? These 10 yoga poses are safe for every trimester.
I wanted to be mother, don’t get me wrong. I was getting to that point in life where it becomes clear that things didn’t go as planned. I had a (somewhat) great career as the Features Editor of a popular entertainment website in Los Angeles, fabulously hip and fancy friends, a handful of Louboutins in my closet and a hip apartment on the coolest street in America (as designated by GQ magazine) but there were a few things that were missing, most notably, a ring and a kid.
Q: I just found out I’m pregnant, and virtually everything I smell makes me sick to my stomach. Is it all in my head?
Already I find myself 8 weeks pregnant. I’m 38 years old, so time seems to fly by faster and faster as I age. Normally, I wish for the world to just s-l-o-w d-o-w-n some. But since the day I found out I was pregnant, I’ve had that can’t-wait feeling every day. The day that I can finally meet my baby can’t come soon enough.
You may have noticed something besides your belly growing during pregnancy: your breasts. In fact, it’s not uncommon for, ahem, the girls, to grow up to two cup sizes, especially if this is your first pregnancy. This new growth is a good sign that your breasts are getting ready, all by themselves, to provide milk for your baby after delivery.
My partner James and I have been together for two years, and since close to the beginning of our relationship, we discussed the possibility of having a child if things worked out well with us. I don’t have any children, but he has a 6 year-old son from a previous relationship and relishes the role of involved father. At our one-year anniversary in January 2012, we decided to officially start “trying” and I stopped taking birth control.
After learning that you’re pregnant, your main agenda is simple: Tell your partner and celebrate! But once the happy news sinks in, the next steps can seem overwhelming. To help simplify the situation, we asked Akua Afriyie-Gray, M.D., an assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Loyola Medical Center, for the most important moves a pregnant woman should make.