Let's be real — we all know the basic pregnancy "hacks" like pillows will help you sleep better at night, rubbing body or coconut oil on your ever-expending skin is a must, and yes, that belly band is as useful as it sounds. What expecting moms are really craving to know are those pregnancy hacks no one tells you. You know, the one's that aren't so obvious and that women didn't even figure out when they were pregnant the first time around. So, if you think you've read up on every tip in the book, there are actually a few more you might not know about just yet.
Whether it's your first pregnancy or third, being an expecting mama is no walk in the park. It's hard work. Chances are you'll feel any number of (if not all) the symptoms that come with growing a baby in your body at some or every point in your pregnancy. From exhaustion and extreme hunger to hormone fluctuations and physical aches, the list seems truly never-ending.
Honestly, there are never enough helpful tips to alleviate all pregnancy woes, but there are some tips that will make some of the insufferable ones a little more, well, sufferable. I don't know about you, but there was a point during my second pregnancy when I would've tried any trick from any book to help with some of my symptoms. You, too, may find any alternative yet legit hack to gracefully tackle your pregnancy a godsend. And you're in luck because there are plenty of fresh and unique pregnancy hacks to check out here.
1Put A Snack On Your Nightstand Before Bed
The term "morning sickness" is laughable to so many moms because the truth is it can hit at any time of the day or night. But in reality, it's called morning sickness because that's when it occurs for most moms-to-be. If you're struggling with nausea in the morning, Today's Parent said that "nausea is most common on an empty stomach." To piggyback off that, my my OB-GYN shared with me a pro tip several years ago: it's a good idea to leave a healthy snack near your bed at night. If you wake up in the middle of the night or when you first awake in the morning, eat it, and it can help stop morning sickness before it hits. For moms who experience it all day long, keep consuming smaller meals or snacks throughout the day so that you avoid that empty stomach feeling. Yes, it sounds counterintuitive — how are you supposed to eat something when you have no appetite? — there has to be something that your body can tolerate, so stock up on it.
2Try Sports Bras Instead Of Maternity Bras
Maternity bras are expensive, and not necessarily necessary. Especially if you're breastfeeding and saving up to buy nursing bras, which really are game-changers, you'll want to take advantage of this hack. Instead of splurging on maternity bras, opt for big, comfy sports bras instead, suggests Buzzfeed. All of the support and sturdiness for a fraction of the cost. And if your current bras get too small at any point throughout your pregnancy, pick up bra extenders ($8, Amazon) instead of buying new bras that you probably won't be wearing after you deliver.
3Suck On A Lollipop For Heartburn
Many women experience an escalated version of heartburn during pregnancy, and furthermore, there are lots of expecting moms who experience it for the very first time (like me). It's no joke. As a recommendation from a mom friend who has chronic heartburn, a sweet lollipop or hard candy (not a cough drop) will get rid of it. As the guinea pig who's tried it in desperation, I can personally tell you it works like magic.
4Relieve Pressure With An Inner Tube
If you have back pain or feel like the baby is constantly crushing your lungs, Baby List shared that floating facedown in the pool with your belly in the center of an inner tube helps you get relief. If you don't have a pool, an inflatable pool and giant donut float will do, or head to your local community/fitness center like the YMCA. You can also set up a tube inside on a comfy piece of furniture if you don't feel like leaving your home. Make sure you're not putting any pressure on your belly if you're using a hard surface, however – there should be space between your belly and the surface.
Not much is more annoying and uncomfortable than boob sweat. Especially if your breasts are growing, sore, or you're already in a hot climate, the whole chest region can feel miserable when you're already feeling like your body temperature is running higher than normal. Try throwing your bra in the freezer and then putting it on when you're feeling especially hot, sweaty, or uncomfortable, suggests Buzzfeed. As a bonus, it can possibly help with soreness and aching as well — an accidental ice pack, if you will.
6Make A Tiny Puke Kit
Since you won't have to carry around your prepped period bag for a while, you might as well prepare for what's likely to come out the other end: puke. At some point, "morning" sickness will strike at a random time during the day, or you'll get a whiff of something that makes you gag, even if you're not prone to that pesky pregnancy side effect. For these unexpected (or totally expected) moments, Cafe Mom suggested trading out your tampons and pads for a small plastic bag, toothbrush, travel-size toothpaste, a mini pack of tissues, and an extra pair of underwear ('cause you might pee yourself too). And throw in a pack of gum for good measure. Ah, the joys of pregnancy.
7Numbing Spray Is Your Best Friend
Just because you're pregnant doesn't mean that you'll stop waxing on your regular schedule. If you're going to continue to brave the nether-region waxes while expecting, a can of Dermoplast pain-relieving spray is a great go-to to try out before your next appointment, suggests Babygaga.
8Kinesio Tape For Pressure Relief
Have you heard of Kinesio tape? I hadn't. Basically, it's a tape used by athletes recovering from injuries to help relieve pain. Turns out you can use it to support on your baby bump too. Watch Wisconsin Family and Sports Chiropractic's Dr. Mackenzie Burgei in the video above to find out how you can use the tape to your best advantage.
9Make All Your Prenatal Appointments At Once
Part of the stress of scheduling appointments is running into conflict, booked-up offices, or not seeing the OB-GYN you want. In order to avoid the stress, you should book all of your prenatal appointments at the very first visit, according to PopSugar. This way you can block out time accordingly on your end while also getting the times and doctors you prefer.
10Distract Yourself From Having To Pee
In an interview with The List, birth doula and child preparation educator Bailey Gaddis said that it never fails that pregnant women have to pee most when they're trapped in the car, a meeting, the store, or anywhere else bathrooms aren't easily accessible. Gaddis shared you can "direct attention to your arm by lightly grazing the back of your fingertips across your arm," and it should distract you from the sudden urge to go right now. Because this tactic draws your attention away from the urge to pee, you can bide your time.
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