The holidays are a time to celebrate with family and friends, but when you’re expecting, they can bring a whole set of new challenges. From morning sickness to swollen ankles, it can be difficult to enjoy the holiday season when you’re pregnant. But with a few simple tips, you can make sure you have a safe and enjoyable time. Whether you’re looking for ways to stay comfortable during family gatherings or just want to make sure you get enough rest, here are some tips to help you make the most of the holidays while pregnant.
Get plenty of rest
As your body changes to accommodate your growing baby, you may find that you need a little more sleep than usual. If you’re finding yourself waking up tired throughout the day, try to make sure you’re managing your sleep to stay healthy and happy. If you’re having trouble sleeping at night, try these tips to get some rest:
- Create a ritual and an environment that will help you relax at night. Take a bath, meditate, listen to calming music — whatever works for you.
- You can also try keeping your room at a slightly cooler temperature to encourage sleep.
- Avoid caffeine and alcohol. Consuming too much caffeine or alcohol can lead to poor sleep and rest.
- Don’t eat large meals close to bedtime as it can interfere with sleep as well.
Stay comfortable while traveling
Traveling during the holidays is always hectic and often uncomfortable. To stay as comfortable as possible during your travels, try these tips:
- Wear comfortable shoes - You’ll likely be doing a lot of walking, so make sure your shoes are comfortable. Avoid high heels and flip flops, and find a pair of comfy shoes instead.
- Pack light - Heavy bags are not only uncomfortable, but they can be dangerous, too. Make sure you pack light so you don’t end up with a sprained back.
- Find a seat with a plug - If you’ll be sitting in an airport or on a plane, find a spot where you’ll be able to plug in your gadgets. Charged gadgets mean you’ll be able to listen to soothing music or watch feel-good movies longer in order to stay calm and comfortable. This is especially helpful for moms who are experiencing anxiety attacks.
Eat nutritious foods
It’s easy to find yourself eating poorly when you’ve got a ton on your plate. But you need to make sure you’re eating well to stay healthy and comfortable. If you’re expecting, try these tips to make sure you’re eating the right kinds of foods:
- Eat lots of veggies - Carrots, peppers, broccoli, and other veggies are full of vitamins and minerals to keep you healthy. Avoid raw veggies with mayo or other fatty condiments to keep them healthy.
- Eat whole grains - Whole grains are full of fiber and protein, making them an important part of a balanced diet.
- Avoid processed foods - Stay away from heavily processed foods like chips, soda, and ice cream, as they’re often lacking in nutrients.
Drink plenty of fluids
Being pregnant can make you feel hot and uncomfortable at any time of the year, but especially during the holidays when you may spend more time than usual in public. Consume enough of water to maintain your body's fluid levels. If you’re feeling overheated, try some iced water or tea to help cool off. Iit's best to steer clear of sugary drinks and cut back on caffeine as well. Keep a pitcher of water handy in case you find that you need to drink more water than normal to stay hydrated.
Avoid big crowds
You can find yourself in the midst of a large number of people over the Christmas season. This can be enjoyable, but it can also be awkward, especially if you are required to go around and talk to different people. Reduce the amount of time you spend with other people, especially members of your own family. There is a possibility that several members of the family have the flu or another extremely contagious illness like COVID-19. Even while it is safer to be with family these days, it is still recommended to avoid huge gatherings in order to be on the safe side.
Cut back on holiday stress
Being pregnant can be stressful, and the holidays can add even more stress to the mix. Try these tips to cut back on holiday stress:
- Relax and enjoy some time off. Practicing this alongside self-care is essential. Even if it has to be scheduled, make sure you give yourself regular breaks to relax.
- Stay active. Most pregnant women will benefit tremendously from exercise, especially when stressed. Low-impact aerobics, swimming, yoga, and walking are all excellent places to begin. To find out what kind of physical activity is appropriate for you, consult with your healthcare physician first.
- If you’re feeling overwhelmed, take a break. Go for a walk or drive somewhere, or take a nap to give yourself a break from the holiday stress.
Ask for help
As your pregnancy progresses, you may find that you need a little bit of extra help. If you’re finding it difficult to stay on top of things, don’t be afraid to ask for help. You can ask your partner or family members for help with small tasks, or consider hiring a house cleaner or babysitter to make life a little easier. If you’re struggling and don’t have anyone you feel comfortable asking, there are many organizations that provide assistance for pregnant women.
Talk to your doctor
It's crucial that you maintain regular contact with your healthcare provider throughout your pregnancy. Make sure you're healthy and on schedule for your due date by checking in with them regularly over the holidays. Don't hesitate to seek assistance if you're stuck or need guidance with something. Your doctor may be able to suggest ways to improve your situation or recommend special treatments or supplements to help you feel more comfortable.
Enjoy the holidays with your family
You may have to make some changes in your normal routine to stay comfortable, but these tips can help:
- Stay hydrated - As with any large gathering, staying hydrated will help you feel better and keep your energy up.
- Choose comfortable clothing - If you’re feeling uncomfortable in your normal clothes, try wearing sweatpants or leggings. You may also want to wear a pair of supportive shoes, as high heels can be difficult to walk in when you’re pregnant.
- Sneak in a nap or two. Don’t feel guilty about leaving a party you’re hosting. Someone else can be in charge while you’re napping. And if your maternity pillow can help you fall asleep faster, then by all means use it during naps as well!
It's common to feel frazzled and anxious over the holidays. Take some time off to relax and soak in the Christmas spirit, but don't let that come at the expense of your well-being. By adhering to these guidelines, you can enjoy the holidays without worrying about the well-being of your child, and you can welcome the new year knowing that your pregnancy is progressing smoothly.