Health tips for mums-to-be

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late-stage-pregnancyDr Shira Michaeli gives expert advice for mums-to-be during late-stage pregnancy. Plus a special offer for Sweet Living readers. See bottom of article.

The expected arrival of a new baby is an exciting time as the months go by and your belly begins to grow. Soon you won’t be able to see your feet and you’ll learn to find humour in the weird changes happening to your body. As the last few weeks of pregnancy are vitally important, here are some suggestions for all mums-to-be to take on board during your final stages of pregnancy.

 1. Get on your hands and knees and go for a crawl… twice a day for 5 to 10 minutes.

This may sound crazy but crawling on all fours allows more optimum room for your baby to move around and position itself correctly within your pelvis. This is particularly helpful if your baby is rotated incorrectly within your pelvis or is yet to move down into your pelvis.

pregnancy-12. Watch your posture.

Make sure you keep sitting up. Leaning backwards while sitting does not encourage the correct positioning of your baby. If you’re sitting on the couch, try to lean forward over a large exercise ball, or kneel and lay your upper body over the ball. If you’re going be in a car for a long time, make sure you stop and walk around frequently for at least 10 minutes… and no slouching in the car.

3. See a chiropractor to keep your spine and pelvis in check to help with an easier birth.

As your hormones change and your centre of gravity shifts, your body will have to cope with far more postural stresses than before. Current research is showing that when your spine and pelvis are correctly aligned, labours tend to be more straightforward and there is less pain and trauma for both you and your baby. Chiropractors help ensure that your spine is free from inferences caused by postural stresses while you are pregnant and will reduce the chance of complications during labour.

4. Perform regular perineal massage with Vitamin E or jojoba oil

If this is your first birth or you have suffered perineal tears before, this is something you HAVE TO DO!!! This massage can sometimes be painful and difficult, but it is one of the best ways to prepare your body physically for birth. Use Vitamin E or jojoba oil to soften this area so it can stretch and more elastic when the time comes.

pregnancy-25. Strengthen your pelvic floor

Making sure your pelvic floor is strong right through your pregnancy helps with a quicker post-birth recovery. You don’t want to feel like you have to physically hold your pelvic floor next time you climb a flight of stairs.

6. Fill your cupboards with raspberry leaf and stinging nettle tea.

You can get these from health food stores. Stinging nettle tea is rich in iron and vitamin K and is useful at helping reduce the risk of haemorrhage and improve post-birth recovery. Raspberry leaf tea is also high in nutrients. It is loaded with calcium, iron, folic acid and vitamin E. When drunk after birth, it also helps with milk production and in recovery of your uterus and pelvic area.

7. Make sure you rest!

Have a nap every day. It is important for both you and your growing baby.

8. Don’t be specific with your due date

It is important to remember that your baby will initiate your labour when he or she is ready. By not letting your friends and family know your exact due date means you won’t have to deal with repeat phone calls from well meaning family and friends. It will also help reduce the impatience for all involved.

A new baby brings much joy and adventure to your life. For many women, being pregnant can be a difficult and scary time. What is most important is that you follow your instincts and remember your body knows best!

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