10 easy-to-follow tips for a healthy pregnancy-work life
Pregnancy can be a beautiful, transformational experience. But it can also be overwhelming. The combination of hormonal changes, morning sickness, hunger pangs, dietary restrictions, doctor’s appointments, and worries about the future can become particularly overwhelming at times. If you are working during pregnancy, its important to remain healthy, comfortable and stress free. How do you do that? Well, here are some 10 classic tips that are easy to follow and will ensure a healthy pregnancy-work life.
Tip 1: Carry healthy snacks to work
While you’re not really eating for two, your body does need extra calories and chances are that you’ll feel some major hunger pangs at work. Staying hungry for long periods can make the nausea, bloating, or constipation worse. So, take healthy snacks to work. Food items like nuts, dry fruits, rice cakes, and apple with peanut butter will help you keep those hunger pangs in check and allow you to focus on work.
Tip 2: Stay hydrated
Always keep a good plastic-free water bottle or even a glass bottle on your desk so that you remember to drink. Sip water throughout the day so that you stay hydrated. Your body needs more fluids during pregnancy to produce amniotic fluid and to increase the blood volume to carry essential nutrients to the foetus. Infusing the water with some orange or lemon or mint will help keep things interesting.
Tip 3: Use an adjustable chair
If you have a sedentary job that requires you to sit for long hours, make sure you use a comfortable, adjustable office chair that provides good lumbar support. You can also use a cushion for your back to feel more comfortable. Oedema or swelling of the legs can become a big problem later in pregnancy, so keep your legs up from time to time to avoid it.
Tip 4: Be very careful while lifting things
Avoid being careless while lifting things, even if it’s just lifting a pencil off the ground, as it can affect your back severely. Bend your knees instead of keeping them straight and bending from the waist. Keep the object you’re lifting close to your body, don’t twist your body while lifting, and lift from your legs, not your back.
Tip 5: At-work remedies for morning sickness
For starters, make sure you carry two washcloths with you. A cold washcloth will help soothe you during bouts of nausea and the second one can be used to clean up. Also, try to carry some warm ginger water or mint tea in a thermos flask; it really helps with nausea. It may also be wise to avoid the company canteen or common lunch area for a while if certain smells trigger nausea.
Tip 6: Take short but frequent breaks
Sitting for long periods of time can take a huge toll on your body, so keep getting up every 20-30 minutes and taking a short 3-5-minute walk around the office itself. It’s also a good idea to plan for frequent bathroom breaks because if you hold urine in, you could end up with a UTI (Urinary Tract Infection).
Tip 7: Manage your checkups
To begin with, try scheduling your checkups either before your workday begins or during the lunch hour — as you may be too tired after work. Another thing to keep in mind is to plan as far ahead as possible and keep your manager apprised about your schedule. If required, get a written note about the appointment and give it to the human resources team.
Tip 8: Do not stress about your future at work
Many working women end up feeling very stressed about how their pregnancy and maternity leave will affect their careers. Try having a heart-to-heart with your manager about your fears and see how you can delegate things during your absence. Also, make sure you read up on maternity laws and the benefits you are entitled to, so that you don’t get short-changed.
Tip 9: Eat iron and protein-rich foods
Your body needs extra iron and protein during pregnancy, without which you may end up feeling fatigued. Make sure you incorporate lean chicken, seafood, leafy green vegetables, and beans in your diet.
Tip 10: Cut back on post-work activities
Your body is undergoing a lot of changes and you’re likely to feel tired and fatigued. Try to cut down on some demanding post-work tasks and see if you can hire help for chores like cooking, cleaning the house, gardening, etc.
Balancing work and pregnancy can seem like an uphill battle at times, as there are usually many work restrictions during pregnancy. But if you follow these basic tips and remain healthy, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be able to work until you go into labour.