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If you or someone you know is pregnant, it’s important to know there are things a mother-to-be can do to help give her baby the healthiest possible start. Remember the following tips:
Getting plenty of rest, especially on your left side, provides the best circulation to your developing baby and helps decrease swelling. Listen to your body—you often need more rest than you did before becoming pregnant.
Your baby isn’t able to cool off, if your body becomes overheated, so steer clear of saunas and hot tubs. Baths are a good way to keep yourself and your baby relaxed, but always keep the water at room temperature.
Wash your hands throughout the day and before preparing food and eating. Keep hand sanitizer close by for use when you’re on the go and can't access soap and water. Stay away from children with skin rashes, which may be caused by viruses.
Becoming a mom can feel like an overwhelming responsibility. Talk to friends and family members who have children. (Programs like VNSNY's Nurse-Family Partnership can also offer assistance for eligible moms-to-be.)
Eight to 10 cups of water or other fluids per day can help you feel well and prevent urinary tract infections, preterm labor and constipation. Also, eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, but avoid raw meat and fish, soft cheese and cold cuts that are not cooked.
Low-impact exercise, such as walking, yoga and swimming, can help both mom and baby by lessening discomfort and fatigue as well as providing a sense of well-being.