Pregnancy is a beautiful and transformative journey, regardless of your size. While the media might portray a certain image of pregnancy, it’s important to remember that every body is unique and beautiful in its own way. Plus-sized moms can absolutely have a healthy and fulfilling pregnancy by embracing self-care, seeking professional guidance, and focusing on holistic well-being. The BirthPlace at Conway Medical Center is offering positive ways to help you navigate this incredible journey with confidence and grace.
You are Perfectly Normal
The average woman in the US is a size 16-18 and around 171 pounds. In fact, 67% of US women are considered pus-size. That means that if you are pregnant and consider yourself plus-sized and curvy, you are perfectly normal. Plus-size pregnancy is common.
Take comfort in the fact that the majority of plus-size women have normal pregnancies and healthy babies. That’s not to say you shouldn’t do what you can to take care of yourself and your baby. Here are a few things to keep in mind during your pregnancy.
1. Embrace Self-Love:
Pregnancy is a time to celebrate your body’s capabilities and nurture a positive self-image. Embrace self-love by focusing on your body’s strength and the miracle of growing a new life within you. Surround yourself with supportive people who uplift and encourage your self-esteem.
2. Establish a Strong Support System:
Having a strong support system is crucial during pregnancy, regardless of your size. Surround yourself with people who understand your needs and offer encouragement. Seek out friends, family members, or support groups where you can connect with other plus-sized moms who are on a similar journey.
3. Consult with Healthcare Professionals:
Embarking on a healthy pregnancy begins even before conception. Schedule a preconception appointment with your healthcare provider to discuss your goals and address any concerns. This is an opportunity to review your medical history, assess your current health, and establish a plan to optimize your well-being during pregnancy.
Once you do become pregnant, regular prenatal care is essential and important. Plus-sized mothers might require additional monitoring to ensure a safe and healthy pregnancy. These appointments allow your provider to track your baby’s growth and development and address any concerns that may arise.
4. Focus on Nutrition, Not Weight:
During pregnancy, the focus should be on nourishing both yourself and your baby. Instead of fixating on weight, concentrate on consuming a balanced and nutritious diet. Incorporate a variety of whole foods, including fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, whole grains, and healthy fats. Consult a registered dietitian who can guide you in making healthy food choices.
Staying hydrated is essential for both your health and the well-being of your baby. Drink plenty of water throughout the day to support digestion, circulation, and overall bodily functions.
5. Stay Active Safely:
Physical activity can contribute to a healthy pregnancy, but it’s important to engage in exercises that are safe and suitable for your body. Low-impact activities like walking, swimming, and prenatal yoga can help you stay active while minimizing strain on your joints. Always consult your healthcare provider before starting any exercise routine.
6. Prioritize Comfortable Clothing:
As your body changes during pregnancy, comfortable clothing becomes crucial. Invest in maternity wear that provides ample support and allows you to move freely. Properly fitting clothing can boost your comfort and confidence throughout your journey. The right bras and supportive belly bands can alleviate discomfort and help you stay active throughout your pregnancy.
7. Educate Yourself:
Knowledge is power. Educate yourself about the various stages of pregnancy, common discomforts, labor, potential complications, and postpartum care. Understanding the changes your body will go through can alleviate anxiety and help you make informed decisions and take proactive steps to ensure a healthy pregnancy.
8. Manage Stress and Mental Health:
Pregnancy can be emotionally overwhelming, so prioritize your mental well-being. Practice relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, or gentle stretching. If you find yourself struggling, don’t hesitate to seek professional help from a therapist or counselor who specializes in maternal mental health.
9. Focus on Rest and Sleep:
Quality sleep is essential for everyone, but even more so during pregnancy. Create a comfortable sleep environment, establish a calming bedtime routine, and aim for a consistent sleep schedule. Adequate rest supports your physical and emotional health.
10. Celebrate Your Journey:
Lastly, celebrate the unique experience you’re going through. Document your pregnancy journey with photos, journal entries, or a creative project. Remember that every kick, flutter, and milestone is a testament to the incredible journey of motherhood.
Embracing a healthy pregnancy as a plus-sized mother involves a holistic approach that prioritizes your physical, mental, and emotional well-being. By nurturing a positive self-image, making informed choices, and partnering with your healthcare provider, you can embark on this incredible journey with confidence and joy. Remember, every pregnancy is unique, and your commitment to your health will set the stage for a beautiful chapter in your life story.
The Answers to All Your Questions
The BirthPlace at Conway Medical Center is committed to making your delivery experience as positive as possible. Learn more about how you can make your delivery smooth and stress-free with our hospital bag checklist or sign up for childbirth class or breastfeeding class at Conway Medical Center. If you want to discuss your delivery with an expert, request an appointment with an OB/GYN at CMC Women’s Health.