The following information—and much more—can also be found in the free Lamaze Pregnancy Week by Week email. Sign up now to receive helpful information for your stage of pregnancy. Subscribers will be given the opportunity to complete a Lamaze Parent Satisfaction Survey after their pregnancy and receive a Lamaze Toys coupon. We want to hear about your birth experience and the impact that childbirth education may have had so that we can continue to make sure parents have the information they need for the safest, healthiest birth possible.
You may still be working through the idea of being pregnant, with thoughts swirling through your mind day and night. While there are many things you will need to think about over the next nine months, you do not have to answer all the big questions right away. Try taking things one decision at a time and one day at a time.
At this early time in your pregnancy, consider focusing on your health. Take a look at your regular habits and determine what parts of your daily routine could be made even healthier. Healthy food choices and active living will benefit both you and your baby for the rest of your lives.
What’s new with baby?
Your growing baby looks a little like a tiny tadpole right now. The umbilical cord and placenta are already in place, transferring nutrients and oxygen to your baby. Most of the things you choose to put into your body find their way through your bloodstream to your baby. You can make the most of this fact by choosing to eat healthy foods (as much as your nausea allows). The medications you take also make their way to your baby, so bring a list of your medications to your healthcare provider. They can help you determine which of your medications are safe to take during pregnancy. If you do not currently have a healthcare provider, look for a local service that can answer your questions about medications and other substances during pregnancy.
What’s new with you?
You may be just finding out you are pregnant this week. Although you may notice changes in your body, it is hard for others to tell that you are pregnant just by looking at you. One choice you can make right now is who to share your news with. Having at least one or two people to talk to at this early time in your pregnancy can be a comfort as your body prepares for the journey of parenthood. Make space in your schedule and listen to your body. If you feel like you need extra rest or a nap throughout your day, go for it!
Let’s Talk: Finding Support to Quit
You may be concerned about how last week’s wine, cannabis, vaping or cigarettes have impacted your baby before you knew you were pregnant. The healthiest thing you can do today is focus your attention on quitting as soon as possible. Speak with your healthcare provider about your concerns and ask for local and online supports in your area if you need extra support.
Story from a Mama Who Has Been There
I had lots of support when I chose not to drink alcohol during pregnancy, but I know not everyone has the same level of support that I did. One piece of advice: find clear ways to tell your partner, friends and family that you will not consume any alcohol during pregnancy. Sending these Dry9 videos is one light-hearted way to do that.”
A Touch of Inspiration
“A woman is the full circle. Within her is the power to create, nurture, and transform.” - Diane Mariechild
Q & A with an Experienced Childbirth Educator
Question: “I am a smoker and I just found out I’m pregnant. I want to quit for my baby, and I know I’m going to need daily support. Is there support I can easily access with my phone?”
Answer: Parents who become pregnant while being a smoker may find it difficult to change this behavior, even with the knowledge that smoking harms their baby. Risks to the fetus from a parent who smokes include low birth weight, premature birth, placental complications and lower rates of effective oxygenation.
The good news is that Quit4Baby, a text message based stop smoking program for pregnant people, has been proven to successfully help pregnant smokers stop this behavior during their pregnancy.
Quit4Baby sends text messages to help pregnant people quit smoking. Messages include tips and advice, assistance in setting a quit date, support and fun games to help get through cravings, and a tracking system to monitor success. Quit4Baby is part of the Text4Baby program that sends out important information on pregnancy and early parenting. Other benefits of the program include the fact that people who enroll in Quit4Baby can remain anonymous, and those enrolled do not need to actively seek out more information on quitting – as it comes directly to them.
Sharon Muza, BS, CD(DONA), BDT(DONA) , CLE, LCCE, FACCE
Sharon Muza, BS, CD(DONA) BDT(DONA) , CLE, LCCE, FACCE has been an active childbirth professional since 2004, teaching Lamaze classes and providing doula services through her private practice in Seattle, Washington. She is an instructor at the Simkin Center, Bastyr University where she is a birth doula trainer. Sharon is also a trainer with Passion for Birth, a Lamaze-Accredited Childbirth Educator Program. To learn more about Sharon, you are invited to visit her website, SharonMuza.com.
More Information & Inspiration
People may be quick to tell you about things they avoided during their pregnancies, from kitty litter to hair dye. Remember that recommendations can change over time as we learn more through research. Consider looking for current evidence-based resources to help you decide what is safest for you and your baby in this pregnancy. MotherToBaby is one of several resources that offer evidence-based fact sheets, answering frequently asked questions about exposures during pregnancy and birth.
TagsPregnancy Early pregnancy Lamaze Pregnancy Week by Week