When a soon-to-be mom is done with at least eight months of her pregnancy, one of the main things in her mind is usually waiting for the day she will give birth because the journey is ordinarily quite difficult. Most moms look forward to doing the things they used to do before getting pregnant because having a baby growing inside them forces them to make serious adjustments in their normal daily routines.
The last few months of the pregnancy are usually more intense compared to the first few, and moms can be tempted to do a few things that their doctors might not approve of. Some of the things moms end up doing may be the result of frustration and exhaustion because they want to feel normal again even if it were just for a few minutes. Therefore, these things are very common in soon-to-be moms, especially first-time moms.
Most of the things on this list are normal and a woman who is not pregnant or one who is in her early stages of pregnancy can engage in them without much risk. However, the reason women should do their best to steer clear of these things is for them to improve their chances of having a good delivery and protecting their babies.
Here are 20 things soon-to-be moms should not do a month before their big day.
20 Stressing Over Labor
In the last month of pregnancy, moms worry a lot about labor and delivery. This is completely normal. These women worry about a painful experience because everyone knows childbirth is never a walk in the park. Contractions will definitely be painful but there are options of how to manage the pain through procedures such as epidurals and other pain medication.
Moms can also choose to go the natural way and do water births or walk around to manage the pain; this will depend on their pain tolerance levels. Moms can also stress over eventually needing a cesarean birth if the natural way seems impossible. However, all that matters is having a safe delivery for both mom and baby.
19 Going For A Run
Some moms, especially those that don't usually have a habit of going for a run, do so during their last month of pregnancy yet their bodies are not used to it. Running during pregnancy is good because it can reduce the risk of preterm birth or preeclampsia. However, this applies to moms who have been doing it throughout their pregnancy; the rest will be putting themselves at the risk of getting high blood pressure or complicated pregnancies.
Some believe they can shed off a few pounds or even get the baby to shift to a better position in their last month by running, but this is not always the case. Moms should worry about their pregnancy figures after delivery and maybe focus on eating healthy instead.
18 Eating Raw Or Undercooked Food
Soon-to-be moms should avoid undercooked meat and raw seafood. This is because they can unknowingly consume bacteria and parasites from the raw meats. Raw fish and meat can have serious consequences to the unborn baby, and it is the role of every parent to protect her unborn child at all costs.
In addition, moms should avoid deli meat due to the risks of getting listeria and other things that can make the pregnancy complicated or even affect the growing baby. All these can be a gamble for some moms, especially those who are used to eating these foods but it is only temporary. Cooking food thoroughly removes such bacteria.
17 Dismissing Weekly Clinic Visits
Clinic visits for pregnant women usually increase from the regular one or two visits per month to weekly visits in the last month of pregnancy. This is because a lot is crucial during that last month and soon-to-be moms should not dismiss their weekly appointments.
Towards the end of the pregnancy, doctors monitor the baby's movements and they do scans to check if the baby is in the right position. If the baby is not in a headfirst position in the uterus, they may try to turn the baby to improve chances of a normal delivery. Doctors may also do pelvic exams to make sure everything is fine with the mother's pelvis.
16 Skin Tanning
Soon-to-be moms are not encouraged to go for tanning. Some women may believe that the baby is fully developed by the last month of pregnancy and can be tempted to get back to their old habits like going for a tan. However, most pregnant women have sensitive skin and tanning can cause result in serious skin issues.
Tanning exposes pregnant moms to ultraviolet (UV) rays, which are not good for the unborn baby. Some tanning beds even give higher doses of UV rays, which can lead to more serious skin complications. Due to skin sensitivity, pregnant women should ensure they use sunscreen if exposed to a lot of sun rays as opposed to tanning beds.
15 Drinking Too Much Caffeine
Some women are used to having coffee and cannot go the nine months during pregnancy without their morning cup. Such women have the permission to continue drinking coffee but they should limit their intake to just one cup a day and ensure it is not as concentrated as they normally take it.
However, with all the stress and jitters that come on the last month of pregnancy, soon-to-be moms can forget about the required limits. Caffeine can affect the baby in manyt ways. Regardless of what this soon-to-be mom chooses to drink, she must consume as little caffeine as possible, for the sake of the baby.
14 Eating Large Meals
On the last trimester, mothers may be tempted to overeat because they are literally eating for two and because they all over sudden have developed a huge appetite after a few bad months of nausea and appetite loss. However, overeating may affect the mother's health and that of the baby. In the last month, the bump is fully-grown, therefore, leaving very little room for the stomach.
Soon-to-be moms are encouraged to eat several small portions of food instead of one large meal. This also helps reduce discomfort and heartburns. Moms should also be careful not to under eat because the last few months are when the baby gains a lot.
13 Assuming Health Insurance Will Pay For Everything
In the last month of pregnancy, soon-to-be moms should ensure they prepare financially for the birth of their little one. Some might have health insurance covers that offer maternity packages and some may not. It is always good for moms-to-be to consult beforehand with their insurance companies and know what their cover entails and what it does not cover.
Insurance covers vary widely and depend on the type of health insurance policy the mother has taken. New moms, especially, can end up with huge bills when they don't know the rules. Some insurance companies cover only a percentage of costs and some might not be as straightforward as expected, so it's always good to be aware and avoid last minute headaches with a newborn.
12 Forgetting To Prep Postpartum Meals
With a newborn, it will be very difficult for new moms to find time to prepare meals especially during the first few weeks postpartum. Therefore, in the last month of pregnancy, women are encouraged to prep for meals and to stock up the fridge and pantry.
With a newborn, the temptation of ordering junk food every day is very high so prepping for meals before giving birth helps new moms indulge in healthy and nutritious foods until they are able to get back to the kitchen. If it's not possible, moms can always ask for help from family and friends or hire someone to do it.
11 Taking Remedies To Induce Labor
Many remedies exist on how expectant mothers can induce their contractions. During the last month of pregnancy, women often feel tired and want their babies out sooner rather than later. One of the remedies is called a coffee potty, where a pregnant woman sits on the toilet over this hot coffee potty to induce contractions.
Another remedy is drinking castor oil. Many women will say that drinking this is healthy and will definitely guarantee labor but this is not always the case. In some rare occasions, it only helps speed up labor when it has already begun. These remedies can be dangerous and are not worth the risk, so moms should always consult the doctor.
10 Forgetting To Buy And Fix A Car Seat
Soon-to-be moms should ensure they buy and install the baby's car seat during that last month of pregnancy. They should make sure to do this correctly. Most parents think they have installed the car seats well but many of them do it wrong. Some retail shops selling these car seats have staff trained to help with installation.
In addition, there are many car seat varieties. Some moms may be tempted to buy a bigger car seat so that the baby can grow into it, but this can be very a bad idea. There are car seats specifically designed for newborns, which are placed facing the rear end of a car. It is crucial for moms to note that car seats should be changed regularly depending on the baby's height and size.
9 Not Resting Enough
The last month of pregnancy is usually very tiring for soon-to-be moms because of the little bundle of joy they are carrying and the fatigue that comes with being pregnant. Sleep is usually a nightmare because, with the bump, they barely find comfortable positions to sleep but despite all these, moms need to ensure they rest enough.
Pushing a baby out is very tiring and moms will need all the energy they can get. Some expectant mothers will wait until the last month to start shopping for baby clothes and furniture. This becomes very exhausting especially knowing the sleepless nights that await them.
8 Forgetting To Stay Hydrated
Some expectant mothers can slack on water intake especially because they are too tired to get up or do not want to make the endless rounds to the toilet. Others just don't like the taste of it. Not hydrating well during pregnancy is not something women should do.
Dehydration can lead to constipation, headaches, a drop in blood pressure, and in some cases premature births. Even the baby's amniotic fluid will be insufficient if moms don't hydrate enough. Moms should constantly drink fluids not necessarily water to prevent such issues, the frequent bathroom visits will soon be over before they know it.
7 Making Last-Minute Plans About Delivery
Some expectant moms, especially working moms, will wait until the last minute to go book for delivery in the hospital. It is always good for new mothers to plan early enough. Some would want a private room after delivery but because of waiting until the last minute, they find that their preferred hospitals are all booked.
Some moms may want a specific person in the delivery room with them but if they failed to communicate early enough to that person, he or she may not be available.
In addition, making a birth plan and knowing whether the hospital performs some of your requirements should be done before the big day.
6 Not Prepping For Baby's Homecoming
Expectant mothers should spend the last month preparing for their baby's homecoming. If there is furniture to assemble, she should arrange for this to happen in good time. They should wash all the new baby clothes, beddings, shawls, and blankets and then fold and stored them in clean cabinets. Moms should make sure the baby's room is clean and organized.
Waiting to do these things after the baby is born will be a challenge, especially if the mother had a C-section. In addition, spending time on the nursery is a great way for moms to prepare mentally and emotionally for the arrival of the new bundle of joy.
5 Taking Maternity Leave Too Early
Some expectant working women make the mistake of taking their maternity leave too early because of various reasons. Some take early leave because they worry that their water will break at work and some do so because of the suspense of not knowing when their water will break.
First-time moms should not worry about such things because in most cases, the water does not break in a gushing splash or they may even start contracting before their water breaks and the doctor ends up breaking it. Working until the last minute allows moms to spend time with the baby at home for a considerable period.
4 Driving With The Big Belly
Driving, especially in the last month of pregnancy, will be difficult for some women because of the big bump. If a mother is not comfortable reaching everything they need to with her seat pulled back to create more room, then they should temporarily do away with driving. Their bellies will be very close to the steering wheel, which can be bad in case of emergencies and with swollen feet, driving even for short distance can be uncomfortable.
Some women find it uncomfortable because of how the seat belt feels tight on their bellies or just the position of sitting while driving. In addition, getting in and out of the car might be challenging. If mom is not comfortable driving, it is time to hand over the keys to dad.
3 Painting The Baby's Room
During the last month of pregnancy, moms may be tempted to do everything in preparation for the baby's room. This includes painting the room. Paints come in various categories, latex, enamel, and oil and most contain petroleum-based chemicals that can cause health problems when inhaled for longer periods.
In addition, painting a room may require a lot of ladder work and pregnant ladies should stay off ladders because their balance could be jeopardized by the big belly. Paint can make them feel nauseated and lightheaded and this job should definitely be left to dad. Proper ventilation should be a priority when the room is being painted.
2 Believing Everything You Read
Expectant moms are always doing research to be comfortable and confident when the baby finally arrives. While it good for moms-to-be to equip themselves with knowledge there are all sorts of contradictory information online, in television shows and in books.
Moms may be tempted to think that as long as the information is on the internet it should be right but this is not always true. There is a lot of misinformation out there and moms should know the difference between the information to believe and what to ignore. They should always trust their instincts and when in doubt consult a doctor, not the internet.
1 Standing Or Sitting In One Position For Too Long
During the last month of pregnancy, women experience swollen face and feet because of increased bodily fluids needed to develop the baby and because of this, moms-to-be may be tempted to stay in one position for longer periods. Standing for too long will enhance the swollen state of the legs. If she cannot avoid it, mom should make sure she takes breaks and rests her legs up on a stool on a regular basis.
Sitting down for too long can expose expectant moms to the risk of developing certain health issues. Also, walking and staying active helps with the dilation process.