If you’re reaching the end of the third trimester of pregnancy, then there are certain pressures that many women feel. You are not alone if you feel a certain anxiety, apprehension and excitement. This is a wonderful new chapter in your life that is about to start, but there is always a physiological fear of change:
- Exercise; can improve your mood. It’s perfectly safe to exercise during pregnancy. If you didn’t exercise before you were pregnant, now might be a good time to start. Follow advice from your Chiropractor or midwife before starting anything new if you are not used to it. Swimming is ideal, as it keeps you toned, without being too hard on your joints. Yoga is also very relaxing at this time.
- Meditation and positive visualisation techniques are great, and you can do them anywhere. These are ways of relaxing by concentrating your mind on one thing, and they’re often used in yoga. Meditation can help to lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol. Simply sit in a quiet place and close your eyes. Breathe in deeply and slowly through your nose, keeping your shoulders relaxed.Focus on your breath or an image, such as a candle, and start repeating either a word or phrase you find calming, over and over. Try to fit in 20 minutes of meditation, once a day, five days a week, ideally in the morning.
- Eating Well is good for your mind as well as your body. A healthy diet of omega-3 essential fatty acids, vitamins and minerals, can lift your mood. The omega-3 fatty acids found in oily fish and seafood may help to reduce depression. Try to have two portions of oily fish, such as salmon, tuna, mackerel, sardines, pilchards and trout, a week. It’s thought that the essential amino acid tryptophan can boost your mood. Tryptophan helps to raise levels of the brain chemicals melatonin and serotonin. Melatonin and serotonin help you to sleep well and boost your feelings of well-being. Your body can’t make tryptophan, so the only way to get it is from what you eat. Tryptophan is found in nuts and seeds, which are easy to snack on, as well as fresh turkey and chicken, fish, eggs, yoghurt and cheese. Keep an eye on how much water you’re drinking, as dehydration may affect your mood. Dehydration can also make you more prone to headaches.
- Rest up: It’s good for you and your baby if you can relax, so don’t feel guilty about it. Take time out to focus on your bump. Chat and sing to your unborn baby. From about 23 weeks, he can hear you! This will also help you to bond with your baby when he’s born. Listen to your body. If you’re feeling exhausted, go to bed early. Your body is working hard to nourish your growing baby and you need all the sleep you can get. If you’re a mum you’ll already know that it can be hard to get a break. But you do deserve time to yourself. Ask your partner, a friend or grandparents to look after your child or children for an afternoon.
- Keep Away from people who don’t uplift you: Let’s face it we all have them around us and at this time more than ever they can be a real challenge!
- Journal 3 good things that you have experienced each day no matter how small this will help you feel good as you go to sleep. If you are new to journalling, a video by thought leader Jim Rohn is a good place to start.
- Tool Kit: Preparing essential items that well help you to relax such as rescue remedy, herbal teas and music will also help.
- Enjoy the sun: when it’s out make the most of it!
- Knowledge: Find out as much as you can about the process you are going through. Even if this is not your first baby. This will help you to make your birth plan and assist you in making the choices you want to make.