Pregnant and Exhausted!

Being pregnant is exhausting, as I remember all too well! It’s particularly common during the first trimester…  Making babies puts a strain on your entire body, which can make you awfully tired.  Hormonal changes may be contributing to your sluggishness, and it doesn’t help that your sleep is interrupted by numerous trips to the bathroom! When you throw some morning sickness and daily vomiting into the picture, it’s no wonder you’re feeling drained of all energy.  By the end of the day you probably feel like you’ve just finished running a marathon!

The good news is that you’ll probably start feeling like your old self during the second trimester. Unfortunately, you’ll probably start loosing steam again at around seven months. As you enter the thrid trimester, you’ll be carrying more weight and may be having trouble sleeping well for a variety of reasons… in addition to frequent urination there’s backache, heartburn, leg cramps, the baby kicking just as you’re drifting off to sleep!

This is all normal, but if you feel like there might be something wrong, see your doctor about ruling out any underlying causes, such as anemia or depression. If you’re having problems with depression or anxiety, your caregiver can help you find a mental health professional.

Here are some coping tips from baby center.com:

Heed your body’s signals. Start by going to bed earlier than usual, and try to take a nap during the day. Even a 15-minute catnap can make a difference, so if you work in an office and you’re lucky enough to have a door, shut it, put your head down on your desk, and rest. Or get creative: Look for an empty lounge or conference room or lie down in the back seat of your car.

Try to adjust your schedule. Cut out unnecessary social commitments and let the housework slide. If you work outside the home, see if you can cut back on your hours or arrange to take work home over the weekend so you can cut out early once in a while. Take an occasional vacation day in the middle of the week (or a sick day if you’re not feeling well). If you’re a stay-at-home mom, give yourself a break now and then and leave your children with someone else so you can catch up on your sleep.

Make sure you’re eating right. You need about 300 extra calories every day, but watch where these calories are coming from! A healthy diet made up of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, skim milk, and lean meats can be energizing. Junk food, by contrast, actually saps you of vim and vigor. Snack on healthy foods like fruit and yogurt. Cut back on caffeine and make sure you’re drinking plenty of water so you stay hydrated.

Get some moderate exercise every day. You may feel like you barely have the energy to make it through the day, let alone exercise. But moderate activity, such as a short walk, can actually make you feel better. Take frequent breaks throughout your day to stretch and breathe deeply.

Hang in there. If first-trimester fatigue is getting you down, take heart that soon enough you’ll be in your second trimester and raring to go again. You may even be up to taking in the late show or going on a weekend getaway. If you’re nearing the end of your pregnancy, you’ll be a new mom before you know it, looking back on this period of relatively undisturbed nights with bleary-eyed nostalgia. So consider stocking up on your zzz’s while you can.

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