Pregnancy is a beautiful period in a woman’s life where she physically and mentally prepares for the birth of her child. Yes, it can be painful, tiring and nauseating at times but it becomes worth it when you see your beautiful bundle of joy for the first time. During pregnancy, you can expect the following to happen:
The first trimester of your pregnancy begins on the first day of your last period and ends at the mark of the twelfth week. During these first three months, the fertilized egg is divided into layers of cells and attaches itself to your uterine walls. Your baby is now an embryo. The embryo grows rapidly and by the end of this trimester, your baby’s organs and limbs would have formed, including the amniotic sac and placenta.
You should expect to experience morning sickness, breast tenderness, weight gain, and mood swings. During this time, you should be taking your prenatal vitamins, choosing your practitioner(s) and ob-gyn, consider genetic tests, budget, look into health insurance and start planning for your baby’s future.
At the end of the first trimester, your baby is called a fetus.
The second trimester is often referred to as the best stage of pregnancy and occurs during weeks thirteen and twenty-eight. Nausea or morning sickness subsides and fatigue is reduced and you may exhibit what is known as a “pregnancy glow”. The baby’s organs continue to develop and the baby’s movements can be felt by the mother, such as when it wakes up, falls asleep or moves. The baby begins growing hairs and can even hear and swallow. Your kidneys, heart, and lungs begin working harder as they are supporting two humans and your skin, hair, and nails begin to shine and glow.
You should expect to experience swelling of your hands and feet while your abdomen and uterus will enlarge. You will become hungrier, moodier and may experience aches and pain due to the baby’s growth and movement. Stretch marks will start to appear along with dark patches and bouts of itchiness.
You should also continue taking your prenatal vitamins, have regular checkups, and also discover your baby’s gender.
This stage occurs at weeks twenty-nine through forty. Your baby’s eyelids have formed and partially open. The baby’s hair grows and he/she becomes a lot more active, twisting and turning, grasping, kicking and stretching. The baby’s bones harden, becoming more responsive to stimuli and your baby begins to dream and think.
You should expect to experience abdominal pains, fatigue, heartburn, back aches, Braxton Hicks contractions, reduced bladder control, and leaky breasts. During this time you should be setting up your nursery, packing your hospital bag for any emergencies or labor, buying baby gear and be mentally prepared for your baby’s arrival.
After giving birth, all the pain and aches doesn’t just suddenly go away. You may experience mood swings and contractions even after you have given birth and you will still have a baby bump. One way to overcome some of these postnatal symptoms is by getting a postnatal or a post-baby massage.
There are a variety of postnatal massages that a new mother can experience but today we will specifically be discussing about a popular type of postnatal massage in Singapore, the Jamu postnatal massage. According to many mothers, the Jamu massage is the best postnatal massage because it focuses on the rejuvenation and recovery of the mind and body. This includes the use of experienced hands and oils, herbs and hot stones to relax muscles and increase blood flow and breast milk production. The belly is bound with a jamu wrap to reduce its size and tone the area, with the aid of scented and herbal candles putting the mother’s mind at ease.
This postnatal massage can be done in the comfort of your own home and accomodated to your own schedule. And before you worry about costs and leaving your baby alone, just remember: your body has just been through something new and traumatic, you deserve it.