Thinking about having a baby? Learning how to prepare for pregnancy is the first step. When you are preparing to get pregnant, there are several points to consider that will keep both you and your future baby as healthy as possible. Here are some great things to remember when preparing for pregnancy – and each new tip is just as important as the last.
10 Tips Help With Preparing for Pregnancy
Stop birth control. Depending upon the type of birth control you are on, you might need to hold off trying for a few weeks after you discontinue it. If you use a diaphragm or condoms, you can start trying immediately – but if you are on the pill or some other hormonal medication, talk to your doctor about when it is okay to begin trying to conceive.
Take a health check. How is your overall health? A solid health check is a good idea when preparing for pregnancy. This can tell you everything from how your cholesterol is doing to whether you might have any sexually transmitted diseases. This health check is a must to get done when you are trying to conceive.
Choose the best time to conceive. Keep in mind that most couples succeed in becoming pregnant within one year of trying. If you want to try moving things along faster than this, you could track your most fertile days. Many women who are preparing for pregnancy will choose this route to help them plan when they might become pregnant.
Keep a healthy weight. Having a healthy weight can make it easier to get pregnant, and it can also make a pregnancy easier as it progresses. Women who are preparing for pregnancy should try to keep their body mass index, or BMI, between 19 and 25. Anything outside of this range can cause problems with ovulation or conceiving.
Mind your medicines. What medications are you on? Some of them might be just fine for a growing baby, but others might lead to serious problems or even birth defects. Long before you start preparing for pregnancy, talk to your doctor about which medications you need to change or which ones you should stop taking altogether.
Try to avoid stress. When you are preparing for pregnancy, you may encounter some problems with getting pregnant; or some of the things you read or hear might bother you. Just try your best not to let this happen! Having high levels of stress isn't good for you and your future baby. Do what you can do right now to alleviate stress – learning good techniques for meditation or exercise can help tremendously.
Talk about other health issues. Now is the time to meet with your doctor and discuss the things that might need to be done before you actually get pregnant. For instance, are you up-to-date on your immunizations? Do you have any sort of health concerns that might make pregnancy risky for you? Is there any history of genetic issues in your family that need to be discussed before you get pregnant? Now is the time to bring it to the table.
Take some supplements. When you are preparing for pregnancy, there are some things absolutely being required. They include things like folic acid, which can help prevent neural tube defects, and vitamin D, which can keep you both healthier. Look into a good multivitamin for pregnant women and begin taking it long before you actually conceive for the best coverage and protection.
If possible, you are supposed to take folic acid for 400µg (micrograms) a day from the time you stop birth control to the 12th week of pregnancy.
Eat healthy foods. Preparing for pregnancy is the perfect time to change your diet. Look for plenty of fruits and vegetables, and get some starchy foods too, such as potatoes. Protein is very important for a baby's brain development, and fiber is important for your own health and regularity. Calcium, found in dairy foods, is excellent for growing bones. Start a good diet now in order to keep your baby healthy later.
Avoid smoking and alcohol. Finally, always avoid these vices, no matter what! Smoking can endanger the life of your baby, and so can excessive alcohol consumption. Both habits can lead to serious problems for your child, both in the womb and later in life. Kick the habits right now, while you are preparing to get pregnant, to give your child the best possible start in life.