Pregnancy Essentials Checklist – You Didn’t Know You Needed

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Pregnancy inevitably leads to other ‘P’ words – planning and purchasing! As you ponder over the changes to your life, the new crib and stroller, do not lose sight of the little things.

Pregnancy Must-Haves for Every Expecting Mom

Before planning pregnancy purchases, take a look at these essentials and how they help you.

1. Total Body Pregnancy Pillow

Yes, pregnancy is tough on the body! Daily chores get harder to do, simply bending down does, and one afternoon, you prepare yourself for a light nap after a heavy lunch and woah! How did sleeping become hard as well? Total body pregnancy pillows are designed to hug and support the contours of your body so that lying on your side doesn’t feel like another punishment meted out by gravity.

Pregnancy pillow

When It’s Required

It is wise to get a supportive body pillow as your tummy begins to grow. It becomes essential toward the later stages of your second trimester and throughout your third trimester.

2. Bra Extenders

Often it isn’t your cup size but your band size that will need changing! Your mammary glands are spread over your chest and even to the sides. As they grow large, you may notice that your old cup size serves you fine, but the straps don’t meet at the back. Bra extenders are the cost-effective, practical solution to this.

When It’s Required

Your breasts will begin growing at around 6 to 8 weeks. So it is handy to get some extenders towards the middle of the first trimester. They will be used throughout your pregnancy.

3. Maternity Bras

Yes, your breast size could go up by one or two cups during the course of your pregnancy, and beyond it, as they begin producing milk. Find yourself some comfortable, non-tight, maternity bras as you grow.

Maternity bra

When It’s Required

You will want to buy new bras in your second and third trimesters and a specialised one for breastfeeding beyond that.

4. Tennis Balls

Why do we have this on the list? Because, they make for excellent lower back massagers, of course! The strain of carrying a whole unborn human in your belly is felt most on your lower back. Have your husband or other family member roll the ball over your lower back, using pressure from their palms.

When It’s Required

Your tennis ball massages become essential in the third trimester, as your tummy gets heavy and puts a strain on the lower back.

5. Massage Oil or Lotion

As your pregnancy progresses, the strain on your internal systems become greater. Blood circulation to your hands and feet decreases. Massaging your hands and feet boosts blood circulation. The use of a good moisturising cream or lotion helps combat dry skin on your hands, feet and ankles that develops as a side effect of pregnancy.

Massage oil

When It’s Required

Dry skin can occur right from the first trimester onwards, so this essential is useful throughout your pregnancy!

6. Ginger

Ginger is a natural remedy to keep morning sickness at bay. This is especially useful for those days when the “morning” in morning sickness is forgotten by the “sickness” part, and you end up feeling nauseous all the time. Ginger can be added to your green tea and used in food. You can also find ginger candies, which are a great tidbit to keep handy in your purse!

When It’s Required

Morning sickness is experienced during the second half of the first trimester of pregnancy, so definitely keep some ginger candies at hand during this time.

7. Hot Water Bottle

A hot water bottle could be your best buddy when you have an aching back, sore feet, etc. There is even battery operated massaging hot water bottles that stimulate the water to flow in waves, giving the effect of a light massage.

Pregnant woman with hot water bag

When It’s Required

Your hot water bag will become an indispensable home item during your second and third trimesters.

8. Antacid for Heartburn

Heartburn is caused by the build-up of acid in your stomach pushing into the oesophagus. This occurs commonly in pregnant women, as a result of their womb expanding and applying pressure on surrounding organs – stomach, in this case.

Make sure you have an antacid at hand during your pregnancy. If you do not have store bought antacid at hand, you can mix baking soda and water for quick relief, at home.

When It’s Required

Acid reflux is experienced by pregnant women from the very first trimester till the very last one. Hence antacids are a constant requirement.

9. Flat, Comfortable Shoes

Believe it or not, your feet will get bigger during the course of your pregnancy! And that’s not including the non-permanent swelling. So investing in a pair or more of some comfortable, flat loafers or “athleisure” shoes is a great idea!

Comfortable flat footwear

When It’s Required

Your old shoes will grow tighter towards the middle of the second trimester. Feet size keeps increasing until the end of the pregnancy, so when buying shoes, care to buy one or two sizes larger.

10. Sleep Mask

Exhaustion, aches, pains, soreness and nervous thoughts can all be a part of pregnant life. Getting some solid sleep is vital to recuperate and relax your body, however, your increased sensitivity to light could stand in the way.

When It’s Required

Its recommended you get your sleep mask in your first trimester, as it will be of use throughout your pregnancy.

11. Maternity Belt

Maternity belts come in a few different variations. They support your belly, a little like how your bras support your breasts! These are a blessing and a relief for your overstrained back and hips.

Woman wearing maternity belt

When It’s Required

Get your maternity belt in your second or third trimester.

12. Multivitamin Supplements

Supplements are pregnancy products must have, especially folic acid and vitamin D. These are absolutely essential for your baby’s development. We recommend going for a daily pregnancy multivitamin that also includes these two nutrients. Talking multivitamins ensures you get your body’s daily requirements.

When It’s Required

You should begin taking pregnancy multivitamins as soon as your pregnancy is confirmed. Avoid taking normal multivitamin tablets that are not specifically meant for pregnancy – they may contain ingredients unsuitable for your baby.

13. Maternity Jeans

Most moms-to-be think of it pregnancy as a 9-month long phase they can muscle through without going overboard on maternity clothes. Well, what’s the one item of clothing you can wear on pretty much all casual outings? Jeans of course!

Maternity jeans

When It’s Required

Nowadays, pregnancy jeans have enough stretch to accommodate the changes in your body through the pregnancy, while still being comfortable. The second trimester is a good time to go shopping for a pair.

14. Stretch Marks Oil or Lotion

Your body takes on additional weight and expands faster than your skin can regenerate when you are pregnant. This causes stretch marks, itchiness and sometimes even burning and a general feeling of tightness. Use a moisturising, anti-stretch mark oil to soothe your skin.

When It’s Required

You should start this routine in your first trimester, as your body begins changing.

15. Tissues

If you aren’t a regular tissue user, this is the time to become one. It is okay to treat yourself to a few good cries. Pregnancy can be overwhelming at times. Plus, this “habit” will be super important once your baby comes along. Cleaning a bit of drool, wiping down bits of cereal on the table top, patting yourself dry after breastfeeding, they’ll be required everywhere!

When It’s Required

We’d recommend you bring in the convenience of tissues into your life immediately, whichever trimester you may be in a while reading this!

16. Healthy Snacks

Okay, this one seems a little basic. But it’s worth listing because it’s simply too important to not speak of. Pregnancy means high blood pressure, diabetes, hypertension and even haemorrhoids. Also, poor nutrition of a pregnant mother could put their child at risk for being overweight and develop diabetes.

Pregnant woman snacking

When It’s Required

Just as with the pregnancy multivitamins, improve your diet as soon as pregnancy is confirmed, if it isn’t already pristine.

17. Face Care Products

Acne, just like in your teens, crop up during the early stages of your pregnancy, as your hormones levels fluctuate. Use a mild, oil-balancing moisturiser to keep your skin healthy. Do not go for powerful anti-acne washes and other skin “clearing” products. Your skin will clear up as your body stabilises to the change.

When It’s Required

This is most important during the first trimester.

18. Shoe Inserts

The quick weight gain that comes from pregnancy is not similar to gaining weight over a long period of time. Your legs do not get the chance to strengthen up at the same speed at which your pregnancy advances. Get some shoe inserts to support the arch of your feet. You could always ask your partner for the occasional foot rub.

Shoe inserts

When It’s Required

Give your feet all the support it can get, during your third trimester of pregnancy.

19. Soft Toothbrush

A change in the toothbrush is part of your maternity essentials. On average, half of all pregnant women experience swollen gums and gums bleeding, due to pregnancy-induced gingivitis. If you do not use a soft bristle brush already, change to one as soon as you can.

When It’s Required

Upgrade your oral hygiene in your first trimester itself.

20. Reading Material

Your friends, family and extended family, will be brimming with advice for you to follow during your pregnancy. But, it’s your pregnancy! Reading up and gaining some knowledge about what you are going through will help you gain the courage that will take you through the nervous phases. From bestselling books to magazines and the online world, information is everywhere. Make sure you have a trusted source.

When It’s Required

Essential all through your pregnancy and beyond!

With proper planning and budgeting, you can pave your way to a happy, unstressed pregnancy!

Also Read: Checklist of Things to do Before Planning for Pregnancy