The Surprising Secret to a Happier, Healthier Pregnancy

Your jeans size, your appetite, turning the spare bedroom into a nursery—lots of things change during pregnancy. But one thing remains the same: Physical activity pays dividends for your health.

A new study confirms that moving more and sitting less reduces the risk for pregnancy complications like high blood pressure. Other recent findings show that staying active can lift your mood and ward off fatigue when you’re expecting.

Doctors recommend pregnant women aim for the same 30 minutes of daily moderate activity that all adults need. Check in with yours about a suitable program.

Safe Ways to Move for 2

Pregnancy does alter your body in ways that affect movement. Your ligaments relax, causing back and pelvic pain. The extra weight in front changes your center of gravity, stresses your joints and makes your heart and muscles work harder.

But don’t let these facts confine you to the couch. After all, exercise doesn’t have to be intense or complicated. Simply spending less time reclining can pay off in better health. Try:

  • Taking walks around the block or at the park or mall.
  • Getting up from your chair, whether you’re working or watching TV, at least once an hour to walk around.
  • Adding low-impact workouts, such as cycling, swimming or aerobics. Or sign up for prenatal yoga—look for details in Classes & Events under Bridges.

Avoid These Activities

While almost everybody can keep moving during pregnancy, there are a few workouts moms-to-be should avoid. These include:

  •  Sports with a high risk of falling or impact
  • Scuba diving
  • Moves that involve lying on your stomach or flat on your back after the first trimester

Drink plenty of water before, during and after your workouts. And stop exercising if you feel dizzy, short of breath or nauseous.

New Pain Relief Options for Moms Giving Birth

Lutheran Medical Center now offers a new pain-relief option for moms giving birth—nitrous oxide. Also known as “laughing gas,” it has been used for years as a labor pain management option in Canada, the UK and Australia. Learn more about Nitrous Oxide.

Award Winning Labor and Delivery

Lutheran has received the Healthgrades 2016 Labor and Delivery Excellence Award™, placing us in the top 10 percent of all hospitals evaluated for the exceptional care provided to mothers during labor and delivery. Healthgrades also recognized the Women and Family Center at Lutheran for achieving a five-star rating in vaginal deliveries.