Discovering you're pregnant can bring on a range of emotions. One minute you can't stop dreaming up baby names, and the next second your panicking because you realize you've never changed a diaper in your entire life. It's normal for your mind to run wild with what the next nine months will hold (as well as the lifetime ahead) but before time gets away from you, you might want to make a checklist for the next few weeks. Because there are some things to do as soon as you learn you're pregnant that you won't want to put off for too long.
You're going to be spending a lot of time learning about what lies ahead for your pregnancy and all this new information is a lot to digest. Try to take it slow and don't let yourself become overwhelmed. Prioritize your to-dos and make sure to ask for help when you need it. Reach out to other moms you know for advice and support as you navigate this early stage of your pregnancy. Every trimester brings new changes and items to take care of, but in these first few weeks after learning you're pregnant, stick to these nine actions to set you up for a good pregnancy.
1. Check In With Your Emotions
Things get real when that "Positive" symbol lights up on a pregnancy test, which means you're bound to have an avalanche of emotions. Whether a baby was something you've been trying for or is coming as a complete surprise, take some time alone to check in with your emotions and get your footing.
2. Find The Right Person To Deliver Your Baby
Even though the birth of your little one is months down the road, finding the right midwife or obstetrician early on will allow you to get to know one another before the delivery. Ask friends who have babies for recommendations and make a few appointments to meet and chat with your short list of providers.
3. Decide Who To Tell, And When
Exciting news travels fast, so stay ahead of your baby bump announcement by planning out what order you will tell people in. As Baby Center pointed out, it's not just family and friends who need to be informed of the bun in your oven. The site noted that letting your boss and co-workers know you're expecting has a time and place as well.
4. Start Downing The Prenatals
Now that you have a small passenger on board, your regular multivitamin won't due. Pregnant women need a daily prenatal vitamin, which is full of all the extra nutrients mamas to be need, like folic acid, as Fit Pregnancy magazine explained.
5. Get Ready For Changes
Your body is going to go thorough many changes now that you're growing a human. As the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services explained, you can experience extreme tiredness, headaches, mood swings, and morning sickness in the first trimester alone. Accept that you're not going to feel like yourself for upcoming months and do what you can to manage these changes.
6. Rest Up
It's easy to get excited and want to be productive with your baby to-do list, but make sure you take advantage of getting some much needed Zs while you can. "Try not to run yourself down trying to get everything done before baby arrives," as The Bump suggested.
7. Contact Your Insurance
A call to the health insurance company can be one of the most dreaded tasks, but doing so early on will give you peace of mind. According to Parents magazine, calling your insurance provider will help you learn about your maternity coverage and know how to add your newborn to your family's health care plan.
8. Learn What's On The "Don't Eat" List
There are certain foods you have to avoid to help protect your baby. Steer clear of raw meats, fish with mercury, raw eggs, soft cheeses, and other potentially harmful food for pregnant women, as noted on the American Pregnancy Association's website. Proper nutrition during your pregnancy makes a big difference in the way you feel as well as your baby's health.
9. Part With Your Vices
As the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists pointed out, using tobacco, alcohol, and drugs during your pregnancy presents major risks to your babies development. Talk with your doctor or midwife about the safest and best ways for you to eliminate these vices from your life and seek the support of your loved ones when it gets tough.