Since every day should build on the excitement you felt the moment you found out, here’s a checklist that focuses on the start of your amazing journey. It’s meant to put your initial pregnancy questions and concerns to bed, so you can look forward to all the thrills that lie ahead for you…and your baby!
- Schedule your first prenatal visit with your doctor as soon as you think you’re pregnant.
- Plan your visits to your healthcare provider four weeks apart initially and increase the frequency as your pregnancy progresses or follow the schedule provided by your health care professional
- Ensure your immunizations are up to date as recommended by your health care profession.
- Talk to your doctor about prenatal genetic testing and screening if your family has a history of genetic disorders.
- Choose a place to give birth with advice from your healthcare provider (hospital/birth centre.
- Take medications as prescribed by health care professionals.
- Avoid alcohol, drugs and cigarettes.
- Consult with your doctor before taking any medication.
- Get plenty of sleep. (Naps are encouraged, especially when you feel tired!)
- Be careful not to become overheated during prolonged periods of exercise.
- Be aware that many women experience nausea in their first trimester (Ugh, the worst. Try eating whatever pregnancy-safe foods appeal to you and try to get extra rest).1
- Boost your energy with high-protein and healthy carbohydrate foods like brown rice, yoghurts, hard cheeses , multi-grain breads.
- Eat foods naturally high in folic acid like oranges, melons and dark-green, leafy vegetables.
- Hydrate! Drink lots of fluids, especially water (8-10 glasses a day if you can).
- Eat plenty of iron-rich foods like meats, beans, green leafy vegetables, nuts, raisins and fortified whole grains.
- Coffee-lover? Cut back on caffeinated beverages by trying decaffeinated coffee or tea.
- Eat well and make healthy choices
- Start budgeting (it’s never too early) for your new life with baby—think about your maternity and parental leave plan, as well as educational savings.
- Consider starting a pregnancy diary or a photo diary of your changing body. (You won’t regret it!)
- Add to your resources: Sign up for Nestlé Start Healthy Stay Healthy to receive super-relevant info from the 1000 Days Nutrition Program, or visit a library, bookstore, even a friend’s house, for a few pregnancy books.
No matter what, do your best to make learning about your baby relaxing—and fun!
1 Campbell K et al. The Management of Nausea and Vomiting in Pregnancy. J Obstet Gynaecol Can 2016;38(12):1127-1137.