Pregnancy doesn’t have to be scary — really! Yes, it’s new, and it’s natural to ruminate about everything to come. But it isn’t exactly on the bug-eating, locked-in-a-tiny-box level of Fear Factor. And given there are plenty of things to make your BP rise post-baby — 18 years of things — the best thing to do during pregnancy is relax, let that baby grow, and stop freaking out about these common anxiety triggers.
1. Morning Sickness: Yeah, it seriously sucks — and it’s not always just in the morning. But don’t stress; this too shall pass. You won’t have morning sickness forever, and most likely, it will only last through your first trimester. Don’t worry about your baby not getting enough nutrition. Unless it gets severe enough for the doc to worry, your growing baby will still get nutrients from anything you do manage to keep down.
2. The Weight: You’re going to gain weight — it’s just a fact of pregnancy. The pounds you put on help your baby grow and account for amniotic fluid, the placenta, and your increasing blood volume. Even if you don’t lose every pound you gain, it’s perfectly possible to get back into a healthy shape after baby’s birth day.
3. Sex and the Baby: Your S.O. is feeling amorous, but you’re worried that baby will see or feel what’s going on. But even if your baby daddy is spectacularly well endowed (ahem), he’s not going to poke the baby. That little guy or gal is sealed up tight inside the amniotic sac, and then there’s the mucus plug, which walls up the cervix, keeping everything (including your partner) out.
4. Premature Labor: Some women absolutely experience this, but it’s not something to stress over every second of every day. Preterm birth happens in one out of every 10 pregnancies, according to the CDC. Don’t let this stat scare you. That still means nine out of 10 deliveries happen on time. Those are some pretty good odds.
5. Childbirth Complications: The due date is still months away, but you’re already staying up at night thinking about everything that could possibly go wrong during childbirth. Every TV or movie scene of a birth that went horrifically wrong is playing over and over again in your mind. It’s true that bad things sometimes happen during labor and delivery, but bad things also happen when people cross streets, take baths, drive, and… well, you get it.
6. Pain, Pain, and More Pain: The bigger that baby of yours gets, the more you fear the day when she has to make her exit. You kind of can’t even imagine how someone the size of a small watermelon can come out of you without causing major pain. Yes, childbirth hurts, but that doesn’t mean you need to spend your pregnancy worrying about it. Instead, turn that nervous energy toward researching meditation, breathing, and other pain management options.
7. Fish: You may have heard warnings about the dangers of mercury exposure during pregnancy, and some fish (such as king mackerel, marlin, orange roughy, shark, swordfish, tilefish from the Gulf of Mexico, and bigeye tuna) do contain high levels of the stuff. But there are plenty of fish that you can safely eat two to three times a week while pregnant, and they’re a great source of protein! Check out the FDA’s list if you’re not sure which ones to try.
8. Being a Mom: This whole mommy-ing thing is new to you. The amount of info you need to know is overwhelming, and you’re fairly certain you’ll screw the whole thing up. Don’t worry — you won’t. As long as you love your little one, you’re doing your job.
What’s your biggest pregnancy or parenting fear? Share yours and tweet us @BritandCo!
(Photo via Getty)