my 10 pregnancy must-haves

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

So I'm 35 weeks pregnant now - when did that happen? It's hard to believe that in just over a month the baby will be here! As the reality hits, I'm pretty nervous about becoming mum of two. Adam, on the other hand, can't wait and recently started saying he wants the baby out already ;)


I've been meaning to write this post for a while, but I actually think that being further along with the pregnancy gives me a better perspective. Because even though it's not my first baby, I honestly can't remember much about the first time! 

Anyway, here it goes - my personal favourites that make the pregnancy this little bit easier.



  1. Multivitamins
That's a given. When you go for your first appointment, the doctor or midwife will straight away advise you to start taking prenatal vitamins. They are here to ensure that you get enough vitamins and minerals, especially now that the baby will be taking a portion of them. They're particularly important for improving your folic acid and iron intake. You'll probably be recommended Pregnacare, as it seems to be the most complex one, but cheaper ones are fine too - this time round my pregnancy folder that I got from a midwife had NHS bottle of vitamins thrown in.
      2. Snack bars

While it's not really true that you need to eat for two now, pregnancy does tend to make you hungry more often. And for me hunger meant extra sickness, as if the standard "morning sickness" wasn't enough. I had this weird thing when I'd suddenly feel hungry, and that feeling of an empty stomach would make me horribly sick. Frequent snacking and smaller meals are supposed to help with sickness in general, so it's a good idea to always have something small in the bag - I'd usually go for some cereal bars, as they're most satisfying, give quick sugar rush and are relatively healthy option.

      3. Heartburn relief

According to some old wives' tales, heartburn is a sign of a hairy baby - well, it was actually true for Adam. I'm one of those who suffered with heartburn from the very beginning of the pregnancy. With all the hormonal changes, and the growing baby, you're pretty likely to experience heartburn. There are some natural remedies - some people claim drinking milk helps, others advise peppermint tea. These don't work for me, so there's always some heartburn medication in my handbag. Most of these are safe in pregnancy, but make sure to check with the pharmacist or at least read the packaging first - Rennie and Gaviscon tablets are fine, and they worked best for me. If you're not a fan of the flavour though, Tesco has pretty nice fruity tablets that work just as well (and are a bargain too).


      4. Maternity jeans

I'm not really into buying the maternity clothing, but I'm a jeans girl so maternity trousers were a must. I actually switched from my normal jeans and trousers around 10 weeks mark this time - my work trousers were the first victim of my bloated belly, and within the next couple of weeks I had to ditch my everyday jeans. Personally I'm a fan of the under-the-bump style - the wide elasticated waistband is perfect from the first days your bump pops out, right to the end. And they're fabulous for soon after the birth, when the remains of your bump are still there. I wouldn't go crazy with over-the-bump style - unless your bump gets big really quickly, you're only looking at wearing these for couple of months.


      5. Stretchy dresses

As I just said - buying maternity clothes is pretty pointless, with some exceptions. When I was first pregnant, I bought exactly two tops in maternity section. This time round I bought couple of dresses, but pretty much only because I'm now big at the different time of year than previously and started running out of things I can wear ;) Anyway - what got me through the summer, were plain bodycon dresses that I bought in Primark. I got myself a few different colours, and since they're stretchy I just went for my usual size and they still fit the bump perfectly. I like dresses and tunics, but if that's not your style they now also have long stretchy t-shirts that are great for the bump.


image: Primark


      6. Comfy underwear

While you might get away with not buying maternity clothes, it's definitely worth getting some comfortable underwear. Again, it doesn't have to be pregnancy-specific stuff. Just make sure your knickers' waistband won't be uncomfortable on the bump, and you're good. And since you'll keep growing, you might also want to wait for that nursing bra until you get near the end - you'll most likely need a size upgrade during the pregnancy. What worked best for me, were these non-wired bras from Matalan - they're super soft, come in big enough sizes, and are good value for money.


image: Matalan


      7. Decaf coffee

I'm a coffee lover, especially once being a trained barista ;) And I'm not sure I could get through my days with no caffeine whatsoever, especially when I still need to work and most of my pregnancy fell in time before Adam started school full-time. Good news is that pregnancy doesn't have to mean completely giving up coffee, however we should limit the caffeine intake to 200mg a day - that's about 2 cups of instant coffee. Remember that there's also caffeine in tea, cola and even chocolate. I actually drink coffee more for the taste than the caffeine (it doesn't really affect my energy levels - I can easily go to sleep after a cup of coffee), so I occasionally indulge in a cup of latte at work, but to avoid excessive caffeine intake I opt for a decaf option at home. 

Actually I don't particularly like the taste of instant decaf coffee, so my personal choice is "Inka". It's a Polish roasted grain drink that dates back to 1960s. It's a mixture of roasted rye, barley, chicory and sugar beet, naturally caffeine-free, hence safe for pregnant and breastfeeding women. It's even great for kids - it was quite popular to be served for breakfast in my pre-school - so I feel good about giving it to Adam who seems to like the taste of coffee and always tries to drink mine ;)

      8. Mints

I normally suffer from travel sickness, but pregnancy certainly made it worse. On some days I can barely get home from work, the 15-minute bus ride can be unbearable! That's why another item always in my handbag is a pack of mints - might not work for everyone, but for me they do relieve that terrible nausea.


      9. Maternity pillow

Sleep struggle is real. When you add up the size of the bump, all the kicks, and often nighttime heartburn, getting into comfortable position is a hard task. And if you add a four-year-old who just won't stay in his own bed... 

There are so many different shapes and sizes of maternity pillows available. My favourite was this maternity and nursing pillow I got off Amazon. It's not too big, so even if Adam gets into our bed there's still enough space for him. It's also great for daytime support, when the back pain strikes. And later it can be used to support the baby while feeding - I had one like this with Adam, and it really was a great help.


     10. Shower stool

That's another thing I've had since my first pregnancy. Well, I didn't really go for any fancy special shower stool, but Hubby got me a plain plastic stool in one of the local shops. Still, it's a great help - in the early stages, when I was weakened by the constant sickness, it probably prevented me from collapsing a couple of times. Now, later on, it just helps to sit down when I can't quite bend down.



That's just my personal list of items I found most useful in the pregnancy. Do, or did you have any items that you couldn't live without when you were pregnant? 

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