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For expecting mothers, the time from the beginning of their first-trimester to the end of the pregnancy can seem simultaneously thrilling and terrifying. With so many changes happening so quickly, it can become difficult for a woman enjoying her first pregnancy to understand what’s going on.

A woman’s first trimester alone will bring a number of expected and unexpected changes. While most soon-to-be mothers will expect their waistline to expand, it can comes as a surprise to many when their breasts begin to feel fuller and more tender. Frequent nausea, food aversions, fatigue, and occasional shortness of breath are all symptoms a woman may experience during her first-trimester and on throughout the pregnancy.

With so many constant changes going on in a woman’s body during pregnancy, it can be difficult for some woman to feel confident in their appearance. Keeping that in mind, here are a few helpful tips that will keep you looking and feeling your best during pregnancy.


It’s not uncommon to hear that a pregnant woman carries a glow about her, and with good reason. Pregnant woman’s skin produces more oil and the body enjoys greater blood flow. Combined, this can give pregnant woman an almost radiant appearance. However, the physical changes that provide a woman her healthy glow can also cause a number of other less desirable skin conditions, including frequent breakouts, itchy skin, stretch marks, and melasma, which causes the facial skin to become discolored. To help deal with these symptoms, try using moisturizing lotion to soothe itchy skin and stretch marks. Make sure you check with your doctor prior to using any acne medications.

Stay Active

The further along a woman gets in her pregnancy, the less active she probably feels like being. However, staying active during pregnancy helps to provide you with more energy and keeps the body prepared for childbirth. As long as your doctor doesn’t recommend against it, pregnant women should strive for at least 20 to 30 minutes of exercise a day.  Low impact exercises such as swimming or walking are ideal for maintaining health and mobility while pregnant. Check with you doctor if you want to get a little more physical during your pregnancy prior to running, performing aerobics, or lifting weights. Always drink plenty of water while exercising and stop immediately if you begin to feel light-headed or dizzy.

Stay Loose

A little pampering can go a long way during a pregnancy. An afternoon at the spa can be the perfect remedy to relieve tension and help to soothe muscle aches and pains. To ensure you receive the right kind of treatment, find a therapist that has their prenatal massage certification, and always clear any type of spa treatments with your doctor. Between massages, try practicing yoga to help keep your body, and mind, relaxed. Yoga will also help to improve your balance as your center of gravity continues to shift. Look for DVDs that teach pregnancy yoga or attend classes specifically designed for pregnant woman to avoid an injury.

Managing Makeup

As covered earlier, the increase of hormones your body produces can dramatically alter your skin’s appearance. This could make it necessary for you to change you makeup routine. If you’re suffering from dry skin, try using a cream or liquid foundation, or use blush or a powder foundation if you’re dealing with oily skin. You can also use concealer to even up skin tone or to cover up any dark circles that begin to form under your eyelids. However, just make sure you avoid using any cosmetic product that contains mercury.

Healthy Eating Habits

During your pregnancy, you’ll probably need to consumer between 100 to 300 extra calories a day. Where you get those extra calories can make a big difference in how you look and feel. Try making health decisions on what you eat by increasing your consumption of whole grains, fruits and vegetables, and plenty of protein, either from lean meat or beans and dairy products. Make sure you don’t skip breakfast and feel free to snack healthily throughout the day. Try to avoid foods that contain raw or undercooked meats or eggs, and fish high in mercury. Eating a little protein at night before bed can also help to reduce feelings of nausea in the morning.

Timothy Lemke is a freelance  writer. To read more of his work, visit the website of API/AMS, a Portland, OR machine shop.


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