My online carts were full of baby things the minute I found out I was pregnant, but do you know what was missing from those carts? All the pregnancy must-haves that I was going to need in the coming months for myself! Growing a baby is hard enough without having to navigate the world of pregnancy-related products, so below you will find a round-up of 25 must-have items to ease your pregnancy journey.
First Trimester Must-Haves
Keep track of your growing pregnancy with a keepsake pregnancy journal. “Expecting You” by Compendium is our must-have pick for a gender-neutral, hardcover, pregnancy journal. This journal is small enough to keep in your purse and includes wonderful writing prompts for those days when ‘pregnancy brain’ is taking over.
Pregnancy brain is real and soon even you may be struggling to remember what week you are into along your pregnancy journey. There are tons of apps that can help you keep track of things. I personally really liked The What to Expect app which focuses on week-to-week development tracking.
Pregnancy brings on a whole new influx of hormones. This influx can cause many mothers to experience bouts of nausea. Ginger gum is a fantastic way to not only relieve nausea but also to combat the awful dry mouth and excessive thirst brought on by growing this new life.
Ginger gum is also very portable and easily fits in your purse or can be left at your desk at work or in the car. All natural, Simply Gum ginger gum is our must-have for fighting off that prenatal nausea.
Sometimes the nausea is relentless and you are just not in the mood to have anything orally. Sea bands are a great way to ease nausea. They can be worn at any point during pregnancy. They are great for combatting car sickness and can be used in addition to your ginger gum or other anti-nausea aids. These are lifesaving pregnancy must-haves for any mom that is battling nausea.
We could all increase our daily water intake, however now that your body is growing a sweet, new precious life, it is even more important to increase your daily water intake. Getting your recommended daily water intake is much easier when you have a great water bottle.
One of my favorites is the Owala water bottle, with its built-in straw, cute colors, and lifetime warranty this bottle is sure to quickly become one of your favorite pregnancy must-haves.
Your body is growing a new life! What better way to support that new life than by making sure you are getting all of the necessary vitamins and nutrients to support a healthy pregnancy? When combined with a nutritious diet, prenatal vitamins can make sure you are getting enough of the nutrients that are considered a must-have during pregnancy.
Workout Program / Routine
Staying active during your pregnancy is not only important for your health but it also carries many health benefits for the baby. This is why Bodylove Mamas by Bodylove Pilates is the pregnancy workout must-have for moms. This program is designed by moms for moms and provides over 500, on-demand, workouts that will follow you along the whole motherhood journey.
Second Trimester Must-Haves
Prenatal Physical Therapy
You may have heard the jokes about how moms can’t jump on trampolines or sneeze without peeing after giving birth. Well, lucky for you this doesn’t have to be the case. Seeing a physical therapist will not only help strengthen your pelvic floor to shorten labor, but it can also prevent those annoying postpartum issues like bladder incontinence.
Physical therapy can reduce those annoying body aches and pains and make you feel less out of touch with your ever-changing body.
With all the changes to your body, you’re more than likely going to need some new bras. Finding a stretchy, yet supportive bra is key to accommodating a growing and changing body. You may find nursing bras not only provide adequate fit and support for a wide range of sizes but they are also handy if you choose to breastfeed once the baby arrives.
Snacks, who could forget about snacks? Pregnancy cravings can get intense. Keep an easy-to-grab stash of your favorite snacks to help when those intense cravings strike! What are some of your must-have snacks? Have any bizarre cravings yet?
Everyone loves a good legging. As your belly begins to grow and your body begins to change to make room for your precious little one having a good quality, supportive legging can go a long way. A staple in maternity fashion, Pact Maternity Leggings are made of fair trade, organic cotton and promise to keep you supported and cozy throughout your pregnancy.
Maternity / Birth Photographer
Traditional maternity shoots and capturing your sweet baby belly on film are a great way to preserve those precious memories. However, many moms don’t think about capturing those exciting and exhausting moments of birth until after the fact. Don’t rely on your nurses or your husband to try to capture your precious birth story on your phone. Invest in an experienced birthing photographer.
Not only will they do an amazing job at helping you remember how powerful and strong you and your body are, but you will also have lasting memories of your birth story. Get inspired, check out the stunning and powerful birth photography by the amazing Ashley Blyth on Instagram at Ashblythephotography.
A doula is a person who assists a mother through labor and delivery, providing support, and information, and serving as an advocate. Having a doula can decrease the risk of a C-section by 28%, shorten labor times, provide a more positive birthing experience, and women who use a doula are 60% less likely to request an epidural, and the ones that do, often see a reduction in the amount and duration of anesthesia needed.
These benefits alone are enough to make this a pregnancy must-have; but wait, having a doula provides many benefits for the baby too, higher APGAR scores are just one of them!
Similar to a honeymoon, a babymoon is a fantastic way to take some time to get away with your significant other to celebrate each other and your new journey into parenthood. It is a great way to get a break from all the stress of pregnancy and just enjoy each other’s company. Its recommend that you schedule your babymoon between 14-28 weeks of pregnancy.
Third Trimester Pregnancy Must-Haves
During pregnancy, your feet can grow! Your feet may even grow a full 1-2 sizes. Finding a good supportive shoe can go a long way in providing relief for your achy legs and feet. A running store might also be a place to get professionally fitted and try multiple styles of supportive shoes.
These may not be the trendy pregnancy must-have that you had in mind when for maternity wear, but your legs will thank you. During pregnancy, your body produces up to 50% more body fluid, which can lead to a lot of swelling, especially in the feet and legs. Compression socks are an easy and safe way to relieve pain and discomfort due to swelling and help reduce the chances of developing deep vein thrombosis (blood clots).
If you’re still looking for stylish, look no further than Comrad Compression socks. They have lots of great colors and patterns in addition to multi-length options.
A Support Belt
As your belly grows, you may find yourself wanting some extra support for your belly, hips, or back. A pregnancy support belt can provide much-needed support and comfort for your achy body.
Our must-have tool for those pregnancy aches and pains is a lacrosse ball! A lacrosse ball is perfect for massaging those hard-to-reach pressure points.
Taking a birthing class is a pregnancy must-have for first-time moms! This class will help you to prepare physically and mentally for birthing. The class is a great way to learn about all the different birthing options you have available to you, you’ll practice hands-on comfort techniques, and learn how to being building your birthing plan. Check your local hospital as many provide these classes free of charge.
In addition to a birthing class, a breastfeeding class is a fantastic resource for those who are considering breastfeeding. Breastfeeding doesn’t always come easily or naturally for everyone. Taking a class can help you feel prepared and armed with support and resources if breastfeeding difficulties arise.
Appointment with a CPST
You might be wondering what a CPST is. They are a certified child passenger safety technician. When it comes to picking out a car seat there are many things to consider. Budget, ease of use, fit in the vehicle, and safety features are all things to consider when trying to decide on a car seat.
A CPST can not only help you decide on a car seat but make sure that you have installed it correctly in your vehicle. Did you know that 3 out of 4 car seats are used incorrectly? Safe Kids USA provides an up-to-date listing of all certified CPSTs in your area.
Most CPSTs do virtual or in-person car seat checks to check the installation, fit to a child, and fit to the vehicle; they also are there to answer any questions you may have like how to properly clean your seat, how to adjust your seat, and even how to fly with your seat. The best part, most CPST do not charge, however, most will happily accept tips.
Postpartum Recovery and Fourth Trimester Must-Haves
The fourth trimester is often the forgotten trimester of pregnancy. It is the 12-week period immediately following the birth of your baby. Although often forgotten, it is just as important as the prior three.
After birth, you’ll want all the comfy clothing. Having a super soft nightgown and rode, that provides easy access for breastfeeding, if you choose to go that route, will be a must-have. Sweet Bamboo has thick, zero-pilling, buttery soft, bamboo robes, nightgowns, and pajama sets that are sure to keep you cozy as you cuddle with your new bundle of joy.
Postpartum bleeding known as ‘lochia’ can last up to 6 weeks after giving birth. Period panties can be a comfy alternative to pads. Period panties can also be more gentle on your sensitive areas as they heal. Plus, they are washable and reusable and can be used as your period returns later.
A Follow-up appointment with CPST
Now that baby is here and you’ve made it home, it’s a great time for a follow-up appointment with a CPST. During this appointment, they can check your baby’s fit in the car seat and answer any new questions that may have arrived. It is also a great time to get all caregivers on the same page and educated on best practices when it comes to car seat safety.
The fourth trimester is a time of great physical and emotional change for both you and the baby. Take time to care for yourself. Make sure you are keeping up with your postpartum OBGYN visits. Check in with your physical therapist to begin working to heal and safely strengthen your body.
Most importantly, check in on your mental health. Check On Mom is a fantastic resource for supporting your maternal mental wellness throughout pregnancy, during the fourth trimester, and beyond. Here you can build your support system, create a mental wellness plan, and find many additional support resources.
There you have it, these are the pregnancy must-haves that I wish someone would have told me about ahead of time! Remember to take care of yourself and treat yourself throughout this journey, it will benefit both you and your baby. Oh, and get a pair of compression socks ASAP, trust me you won’t regret it.
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