Congratulations, you’re pregnant! Things are about to get serious.
Depending on how far along you are now, you probably have about 6-8 months to prepare, so here are my top 12 things to do now that you are expecting.
1. Find a maternal health care team
This is so, so important. Without the right care, your pregnancy and birth experience will not be positive. If you have private health cover, you may be able to choose to be cared for through your pregnancy by an obstetrician. If you are going through the public health system, generally, you will be cared for by your GP as well as a midwife. If you need extra care, you will also see an obstetrician at the hospital.
Most care providers won’t see you until you are about eight weeks along, so try to work out your due date and when you fell pregnant. There are lots of online calculators available. It’s a good idea to book your first appointment as soon as possible as appointments can fill up and some obstetricians cap the number of women they see each month.
2. Give some thought to a birth plan.
Do you have any fixed ideas on where and how you want to give birth? Again, depending on your insurance, you may have a choice to birth at a private hospital or birthing centre, you might want to know more about a water birth or even a home birth. Now is a great time to do some research to make an informed decision.
3. Relieve your morning sickness.
Morning sickness can be horrific for some women and not affect some at all. I have a couple of friends who were sick for their entire pregnancy and some others who breezed through. Thankfully, my morning sickness eased in my second trimester, but I did search for solutions to get me through the first few months.
With milder morning sickness, you can combat the nausea by eating dry crackers or biscuits before getting up, drinking ginger tea and eat small meals regularly throughout the day. If you find that these things aren’t helping, your doctor can help you with vitamin supplements or medication.
4. Buy some new underwear
Your body is going to go through some tremendous changes and your boobs will need all the extra support they can get! It’s definitely worth having your bras professionally fitted as you are likely to up one or more sizes. Another option is getting a maternity bra that will provide support without uncomfortable underwire and it will also see you through breastfeeding, if you choose to nurse your baby. As your belly gets bigger, you may need some new undies too.