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Lifestyle Adjustments During Pregnancy

lifestyle adjustments during pregnancy explained with meide nannies

Congratulations on your expectancy!

Excited and keen to know how your lifestyle and habits could and should change during pregnancy?

On top of diet and nutrition adjustments, and medical visits, here are certain lifestyle changes during pregnancy you should take note of too:

  • Work
  • Exercise
  • Sex
  • Travel
  • Animals and Pets

In the following lifestyle adjustments during pregnancy, we discuss both the mental and physical aspects and their impact:

An Overview Of This Article

Work

Let us tackle one of the most difficult adjustments during pregnancy first:

Should you tell your colleagues, or boss, about your pregnancy? If so, how to even go about it?

Abashedly, despite our breathtaking advances in skills and tech, juggling pregnancy whilst working still remains a large taboo subject amongst many workspaces.

In Singapore, employees are often well aware about the government incentives for having babies – such as the baby bonus, and parental leave schemes. However, they are equally aware that their employer(s) and fellow colleague(s) may subconsciously balk at the idea of having less manpower and increased workloads.

Hence, adjusting to work during pregnancy – both physically and psychologically, requires quite some preparation and tact.

Choose an appropriate time, harmonious setting, and let others know about the pregnancy, whilst attending carefully to your workplace and colleagues’ concerns. Whilst there is no need to hide, avoid being “overboard” in public celebrations or announcements too. Reassure your boss and colleagues that you will continue to be a supportive and contributing team player!

Health Considerations At Work During Pregnancy

Here, we list down common health considerations during pregnancy that would likely affect your work. It is imperative that you take note, and inform and discuss these with your work colleagues to avoid misunderstandings or unpleasantries!

Overnight and shift work

Overnight and shift work take a toll on the mind and body. Whilst it is not a definite no-no during pregnancy, it does result in problems like insomnia and decreased immunity over time. Weigh your priorities and options, and do your best to cater to your baby and own health needs. For example, you can ask to trade working longer day time hours in exchange for less “night duties”, or even forgo a few “night allowances” by skipping overnight work (ask yourself if you really need the money?).

Factory and Processing Work

Factory and Processing work that involve chemicals, or fumes or radiation, may not be suitable for pregnant ladies. During pregnancy, ensure you get clearance from your doctor and employer(s) as early as possible to avoid such toxins!

Veterinary and F&B Work

During pregnancy, be mindful that certain organisms like Toxoplasma, Listeria, and Hepatitis can harm yourself and the fetus. Hence, avoid handling raw meat without proper precautions. If possible, stay away completely from animal litter (including dogs and cats), and sheep and lambs. Get the appropriate immunizations to protect yourself, with a medical professional!

Exercise

exercise during pregnancy is encouraged - MEIDE nannies
exercise during pregnancy is encouraged – MEIDE nannies

Secondly, exercise is good and helpful during pregnancy!

Although some old wives’ tales may caution against physical activity, it is actually quite the opposite.

An active and healthy lifestyle, involving frequent exercise, will allow for a smoother and better pregnancy journey. So, go ahead and do what you want in terms of keeping fit and fab.

Of course, remember to exercise common sense. Do not engage in extreme sports that pose extra danger to your body and your fetus! Avoid sports that has tendency for violence, close contact or frequent falls (eg. extreme skating, sky-diving, mountain biking, certain martial arts, etc).

Swimming, brisk walking, jogging, and light sports are all definitely highly recommended at all stages of pregnancy.

Sex

sex during pregnancy is safe - MEIDE nannies
sex during pregnancy is safe – MEIDE nannies

During pregnancy, couples can continue to engage in sex.

Yes, contrary to what many may think, sex is healthy and acceptable during all stages of pregnancy. The few exceptions are when the pregnancy is at risk of complications, such as the presence of bleeding, or when the mother-to-be is already a few days before due date (e.g. water bag may have broken).

On top of this, couples may need to experiment with varying coital positions as the baby bump gets larger and certain positions during sex may become less than ideal or uncomfortable.

According to medical experts, it may also be wise to avoid overstimulation of the nipples to avoid a surge in serum oxytocin levels. This can cause contractions and is not recommended. In the event that your partner is suffering from sexually transmitted disease(s), including cold sores, seek medical advice first before engaging in sex.

A full detailed Q&A on sex during pregnancy is available here (courtesy of Healthhub) too!


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Travel

Generally, it is safe to travel during pregnancy. However, MEIDE nannies have certain pro tips to ensure a safe pregnancy even when traveling:

  • Check with airline before booking itinerary because airlines may not recommend or allow travels during late pregnancy stages (to avoid flight diversion and less-than-deal delivery on the plane);
  • Avoid long haul rides or flights, and if you must really do so, ensure you walk around and get blood circulation going to avoid deep vein thrombosis;
  • Do not travel to rural areas or locations that are far from established healthcare facilities – you never know when an emergency can occur and pregnant ladies are at higher risks generally;
  • Ensure you are vaccinated up-to-date with your gynae advice, but remember that not all travel vaccinations are 100% suitable for pregnancy;
  • Avoid risky travel areas such as those with Malaria, Zika or teratogenic viruses because these can cause serious harm to the unborn baby and yourself;
  • Wear your seat belt in a fashion that does not compress or go directly above your baby bump. The best way is to have the straps go either above or below the baby bump.

Animals and Pets

Again, animals and pets are by themselves safe. However, their litter and surroundings or fur may be contaminated with harmful organisms (see above under Vet and F&B Work).

If you could, avoid close contact with animals and pets. However, if you are a pet lover, or really do want to keep up the animals and pets contact, seek professional clearance from your gynae and have your pets seen and vaccinated properly at vets.

After all, who is to say a cute furry friend cannot help to uplift your mood amidst some stressful periods during pregnancy, right?

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