As much as I wish I could say I’m “cherishing every moment” of pregnancy, there are quite a few things about carrying a baby that are awkward, uncomfortable, and a complete pain in the butt (or back, hips, feet…) Fortunately, I’m not the first person to take this road, and the many brilliant mommies before me have pretty much invented everything one could possibly need to manage the minor aches and pains of pregnancy. I’ve found a few things in particular that I loved during my first pregnancy, and which are absolutely essential as I near the third trimester this time around. Affiliate links below.
The Pregnancy Pillow – This is a lifesaver. Yes, I know it looks ridiculous and it takes up two-thirds of the bed. My husband likes to call it my fortress. But as soon as you aren’t allowed to sleep on your back anymore (around the start of the second trimester), this is a must have. I tried using pillows, but I’m a pretty restless sleeper, so I like to flop from one side to the other with ease. Doing that with pillows is a complete pain, because you have to move them with you and re-adjust every time. If you have any sort of sleeping issues during pregnancy, I highly recommend going this route!
Yoga Pants/Lounge Wear – As you get bigger, your usual pajamas and sweats will either get really uncomfortable or stop fitting altogether. I suggest pregnancy yoga pants, or loose lounge wear that will get you through the second and third trimester. If you’ve started wearing jeans and other maternity pants with the elastic waistband, you understand how uncomfortable that damn band is, especially if you have itchy skin like I do! I found decent maternity yoga pants at Old Navy, but after a few washes the softness wears away. I’m a stickler for texture, so that drives me a little nuts. The non-maternity lounge ware that I love and looks like I will be able to wear throughout the pregnancy (unless I develop thunder thighs in the next three months) are Lululemon’s studio pants. These pants rock!
Stretch Mark Oil/Lotion – I managed to conquer my first pregnancy without permanent stretch marks. I don’t know if that was genetics (my mom suggests otherwise) or if it’s because I was religious about stretch mark lotion on my belly, breasts, thighs, and butt. I use Palmer Cocoa Butter lotion, and lately I’ve also been using Honest Body Oil, mostly because it feels so good on my itchy skin. My belly is definitely bigger this pregnancy, so the ultimate test will be the coming months… but for now I feel well armed for this battle!
Heat Wrap – My back kills after a day running around, and picking up and holding my two year old can be agonizing. The aches and pains make it hurt just to stand up! I love using a microwavable heat wrap, particularly one that covers the whole back and wraps over the shoulders. It really does help after only a few minutes!
Peppermint Oil – I get monster headaches during pregnancy. Advil is not an option, obviously. My OB okayed using peppermint oil on my temples, and it works like magic! Also, you can’t go wrong with the smell of peppermint, with is invigorating in and of itself. I use Doterra oil, but you can find peppermint oil at Amazon, Whole Foods, and probably a million other locations.
I hope this short list is helpful, either for you or for gift tips for a friend. Pregnancy can be hard on our bodies, but it’s nice to have inexpensive (Ok, maybe not the Lululemon pants… go with Old Navy in that case), easy fixes and remedies to make it better. Do you have other “must have” items in your pregnancy toolkit? Please share!