8 Things Soon-To-Be-Dads Should Know About Pregnant Women
Pregnancy is different for every woman. The items listed below will not pertain to every pregnant woman. You might be able to relate to all of them or none of them at all. Pregnancy is unpredictable and it is different each time, regardless of how many children you've had.
Cravings are real. She will probably have many cravings throughout her pregnancy. Keep her happy by going to get those fries or chocolate at 10 p.m. It might be a little inconvenient for you, but it will make her happy. A happy wife is a happy life.
2. Baby Weight
Women will typically gain 25-35 pounds during their pregnancy. It is important that you realize that you are not gaining baby weight with her. You are not carrying a baby, so there is no reason for you to put on additional weight with your pregnant partner. Your pregnant partner is burning a lot of additional calories, so she has to eat more. However, you are not in need of extra calories. It might be hard with all the extra junk food lying around, but it will be even harder to lose that belly fat you gained.
She will probably become tired because she is growing another life inside her. Her body is hard at work making the necessary changes to accommodate your baby. She may also experience restless sleep, causing her to be more tired. Remember that she is tired. Do some extra things around the house. Carry the laundry basket up the stairs or make dinner while she rests.
4. Frequent Urination
A symptom of pregnancy is going the bathroom, a lot. Getting up several times throughout the night to use the bathroom will become a routine for her. That 2 hour car ride with no stops will turn into a 2 and 15 minute car ride with two stops. She's not happy about it either, so no complaining from your end.
5. Lots Of Pillows
There will be a lot of pillows that start appearing on your bed. In time, you may find that there is no room for you anymore. In this case, we hope you have a comfortable couch. Your pregnant partner may experience gradual posture changes to adjust to the pregnancy weight. This can result in strain, causing back pain. Pillows can help ease this pain. She will probably start cuddling with a giant body pillow instead of you. Don't take it personal, she is just trying to get as comfortable as possible.
6. Aches And Pains
Since her body is stretching, shifting and moving in all directions, there is bound to be aches and pains. She is carrying additional weight that her body has to support. This extra weight will cause stress on the lower back. Back massages are a great relief for her at the end of the day. Massages in general are a must for pregnant women. Whether they are foot, back, or hip massages, it is your job to help her out. Relieve as much tension as possible.
7. Senses are heightened
Your partner could have very heightened senses during her pregnancy, including her sense of smell. It seems like common sense but, if she is repulsed by the smell of fish, you'd be helping her out to avoid eating fish around her. It'd be best to avoid eating things she's sensitive to, even while you're not together, as you will come home smelling like whatever is more noticeable to her. It may seem like a difficult thing to accommodate, even avoiding things while you're not together, but she'll notice your willingness to make things as easy on her as possible, and will surely appreciate it.
It is quite natural for both of you to have worries about how your personal life and life as a couple will change with a baby. Take the time to talk with your partner about the upcoming changes, a little bit at a time. (Midnight might not be the best time, though.) Use this pregnancy time to seek out the advice of your trusted and experienced friends, your doctor, spiritual leaders, even your parents. Take everyone's advice with a grain of salt – every family situation is unique. If the worry gets too great, we are here for you to guide you to expert help.
There is not a lot you can do about the cravings and heightened senses. Fortunately, UnityPoint Health – Allen Hospital is here to help as much as possible. For more information regarding pregnancy, birth and classes, visit our Birthing Center page.