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First time pregnancy tips

With so many important pointers and factors to remember, pregnancy can be an overwhelming experience, especially for the first timer. To help guide you on your pregnancy journey, here’s a simple, printable pregnancy checklist. We have divided these pointers into 3 trimesters to make it even more comprehensive and easy to follow. Print it out so it’s easier to use.

1st trimester – weeks 1 to 12

◯ Visit your doctor

As soon as you feel the early signs of pregnancy, consult your doctor. the doctor can confirm you’re pregnant, determine your due date and help you plan your antenatal health care program.

Signs of pregnancy may include late period or Very light period, tenderness of the breasts, morning sickness, increased urination, and fatigue.7 Remember: when in doubt, consult your doctor straight away!

◯ Book your antenatal check-ups

Regular check-ups are crucial in knowing if your pregnancy is going well. Your first antenatal visit should be between 10 and 16 weeks.

◯ Book the hospital or birth centre

As soon as you know you’re pregnant, discuss your birthing options with your doctor and book the hospital.

◯ Start taking pregnancy multivitamin every day, if you’re not already

Start taking pregnancy supplements in your first trimester as recommended by WHO. Elevit®Pronatal, a multivitamin-mineral supplement, contains the recommended combined level of folic acid, iron and other essential vitamins and minerals for a healthy baby development. Elevit®Pronatal is clinically proven to reduce the risk of neural tube defects such as spina bifida by 92% (and other birth defects).

It’s recommended to take Elevit®Pronatal daily for at least 1 month before you conceive, during pregnancy and while breastfeeding.

◯ Manage morning sickness

If you need help managing morning sickness symptoms such as nausea and vomiting, read up about how to manage common conditions in pregnancy.

Consider taking a multivitamin-mineral supplement like Elevit®Pronatal that has been clinically proven to reduce a risk and severity of morning sickness. If your symptoms are severe or worrying, contact your doctor.

◯ Quit smoking

It’s recommended to quit smoking as soon as you think you’re pregnant, if you haven’t already.

◯ Cut out alcohol

The safest option is to avoid drinking alcohol whilst you’re pregnant and breastfeeding.

◯ Be a healthy eater

Ensure a nutritious, well-balanced and varied pregnancy diet to help keep you and your baby healthy. Learn about the foods to avoid or limit and drink plenty of water.

◯ Cut down on caffeine

Try to have less than 200 mg of caffeine a day. That’s the equivalent of about 1 cup of espresso. Don’t forget that caffeine can be found in other food items and beverages too, such as chocolate, tea, some soft drinks, and energy drinks.

◯ Exercise regularly

Stay active and try to take 30 minutes of moderate exercise, like walking or swimming, every day. Consult your doctor to find out the appropriate activity levels.

◯ Check your maternity leave entitlements

Ask your employer about your entitlements to maternity leave.

◯ Stop cleaning the cat litter tray

Avoid cat litter as much as possible. If you have a cat, wear rubber gloves to clean out the litter tray, or better yet, ask someone else to do it. If you have a garden, it’s also a good idea to wear gloves.

2nd trimester – weeks 13 to 26

◯ Book your second trimester screening tests

This will usually be a blood test between 15 and 18 weeks and an ultrasound scan between 18 and 20 weeks to check your baby’s development.

◯ Join a birth group

Joining a birth group should not be ignored; it is an essential activity on your pregnancy checklist. Share your experiences and get support from other pregnant women due to give birth around the same time as you.

◯ Make a birth plan

Discuss your preferences for labour and delivery with your doctor and your partner and write out a birth plan.

◯ Book antenatal classes

These helpful classes will explain what to expect during labour, your pain relief choices, pregnancy exercises, and basic childcare such as feeding and settling. It’s also an opportunity to ask questions, discuss your feelings and meet local parents-to-be.

◯ Learn about breastfeeding

Breastfeeding your baby has great health benefits for both of you. If you’re planning to breastfeed, your doctor or midwife will give you advice on technique.

◯ Do your pelvic floor exercises

During pregnancy you may find that you leak urine when you cough or strain. This is known as stress incontinence of urine and it can continue after Pregnancy.

By performing pelvic floor exercises, you strengthen the pelvic floor muscles and this helps to reduce or avoid this problem after pregnancy. These simple exercises will help tighten your muscles up.

◯ Consider childcare

If you plan to go back to work after the baby is born, check out the childcare options in your area. Some of them book up well in advance, so put your name down at your favorites before you give birth.

◯ Go shopping for maternity wear

You’ve probably noticed that your clothes don’t fit properly - it’s time to look for maternity clothes! You’ll also need a maternity bra.

3rd trimester – weeks 27 to birth

◯ Buy or borrow the essential baby equipment

As well as the nursery furniture, you’ll need a baby carriage, baby clothes, diapers, and other essential supplies. There are lots of options to buy new or perhaps borrow from friends and relatives with older children.

◯ Buy another maternity bra

Your breasts will have grown from the first maternity bra you bought, so you’ll need a fitting for another one at about 28 weeks.

◯ Get the car baby capsule fitted

Children under 6 months must be secured in an approved, properly fitted rear-facing restraint when they’re in the car. You’ll need it to bring your new baby home from the hospital, so have one fitted sooner rather than later.

◯ Pack your hospital bag ready and place it near your house’s main entrance/exit point

You may need to get to the hospital quickly, so have your hospital bag packed and waiting to go. Remember you need to include supplies for baby too, such as Bepanthen Nappy Care Ointment which contains pro-Vitamin B5 to keep your baby’s skin protected from Redness and Diaper rash.

◯ Prepare the nursery

The last and not the least on your pregnancy checklist is setting up the baby’s room so it’s ready when you get home from the hospital.