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When you are pregnant your body will change more than ever before. Your altered hormone levels can affect your mood and emotions as well as physically affecting your body.

Remember that it is the job of your hormones to help regulate the many changes taking place which will enable your baby to grow and you to go through labor and give birth. Some of the most significant hormones in pregnancy are estrogen, progesterone, oxytocin, endorphins and prolactin, and they all have important and different functions.

Mood Swings

It is normal to have mood swings during pregnancy as the hormonal changes affect your levels of neurotransmitters – the chemical messengers in your brain.

Be aware that there can be a lot going on in your mind during your pregnancy. You might be worrying whether you’re going to have a healthy baby, if you’re going to be a good mom and how you’re going to manage your finances with a baby. Mixed feelings are to be expected when you’re pregnant and your hormones can heighten your emotions – you might find yourself laughing one minute, then literally crying the next!

Physical symptoms such as frequent urination, heartburn and fatigue as your body changes can contribute to a feeling that you are not in control of your body and some women can feel unattractive as their bodies change and they put on weight.

Many women find that mood swings are more extreme at the beginning of pregnancy, level out by the middle and often increase again at the approach of full term.

Tips to help you manage

Snacks

You may benefit from snacking every few hours to maintain your blood sugar levels and help prevent dizziness and fainting. Plan in advance so you don’t get caught out; keep some fruit or healthy energy bars with you when you’re out, have a supply of ready-chopped vegetables in a container in the fridge at home, and avoid the temptation of a sugar rush from the biscuit tin.

Hydration

It is very important to keep hydrated, carry a bottle of water with you if you’re out and drink regularly throughout the day.

Move!

Unless there is a medical reason not to, usually there is no reason not to exercise during pregnancy. You may not feel like running a marathon every day, but try to fit in 30 minutes of gentle exercise on most days, such as walking, swimming or pregnancy yoga. As well as helping your body to be fit and prepared for labor and childbirth, the release of endorphins through exercise can boost your mood and energy levels.

Relax

Make some time for yourself each day, even if it’s just a few minutes. Taking time out to be aware of your body at this amazing time in your life can be empowering, especially when you start to feel your baby moving inside you. Relax and enjoy some peace and quiet, read a book, call a friend, have a soak in the bath tub – just take it easy on yourself.

Finding a comfortable position to sleep can become challenging as you get bigger – propping your feet up on a pillow in bed can help and another under your bump. If you’re really struggling to get a proper night’s sleep, resting in the day can help your body relax too.

Remember that when you’re pregnant your body is undergoing the biggest changes since puberty. Try to take good care of yourself every day in preparation for the amazing moment of meeting your brand new baby for the first time!

Sources

http://www.parents.com/pregnancy/my-life/emotions/

http://www.babycenter.com/0_mood-swings-during-pregnancy_253.bc

http://www.whattoexpect.com/pregnancy/pregnancy-health/pregnancy-hormones.aspx

https://www.nct.org.uk/pregnancy/hormones-pregnancy

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