It is not a matter of if, but a matter of when pregnancy fatigue and exhaustion will set in.
Ugh, the never ending exhaustion no matter how much rest or sleep we get.
But, why do we even feel like that in the first place?
Why do we experience pregnancy fatigue and exhaustion?
Every woman experiences a different degree of fatigue and exhaustion thought out their pregnancy.
There are factors that influence the way we feel during pregnancy that are out of our control, such as hormonal changes and well, growing a human.
The reason for such symptoms are attributed to body and emotional changes that happen as a result of different stages in pregnancy.
Your body is working hard and fast to keep up with all of the new changes and demands if a growing baby. Hormone levels make a steep increase in the first trimester causing all kinds of early pregnancy symptoms such as dizziness, fatigue, nausea, and exhaustion.
In addition, increased progesterone levels, are responsible for making you sleepy (source).
It is likely that you may have more energy and fewer mood swings in the second trimester. That is because your hormones start to balance out during this pregnancy phase.
Pregnancy fatigue and exhaustion in the third trimester happen as a result of:
- extra weight from the baby
- frequent urination throughout the night
- lack of sleep be
- being uncomfortable
- Braxton Hicks
- body getting ready for labor.
Besides the aforementioned pregnancy symptoms, other factors can also contribute to your pregnancy fatigue and exhaustion
Especially, if you have other little ones and/or a full-time job which requires a lot of energy and attention.
However, there are still many things we can do from our end to ensure we treat pregnancy fatigue and avoid exhaustion.
Next, we will go over 13 of the best tips and techniques to do just that.
13 Ways to Prevent and Ease Pregnancy Fatigue and Exhaustion
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1. DRINK WATER
Sounds obvious, right? Well, it wouldn’t be number one on my list if it wouldn’t be one of the most important factors in combating pregnancy fatigue.
Staying well hydrate during pregnancy is fundamental for your health and the well being and your growing baby.
Dehydration during pregnancy can lead to complications including headaches and dizziness.
The recommended amount of water to drink during pregnancy is 8 to 12 glasses of fluid every day. In addition, you should add another glass of water for every hour of light exercise you do (source).
2. MAKE A PLAN
When you have a concise plan of action you are less likely to be overwhelmed and anxious, which can both lead to fatigue and exhaustion.
By appointing a date and time for each task that needs to get done stops you from overworking yourself.
Get yourself an agenda, and pencil in everything you would like to get done, including doctor appointments. Spread out your tasks in the calendar based on priorities and time-sensitive goals.
Better yet, get yourself a Pregnancy Planner which can help you plan your entire pregnancy, birth, and after birth without feeling like you are missing something.
The Oh Baby Pregnancy Planner guides you step-by-step through pregnancy and beyond. It comes with 50+ pages that will keep you organized, prepared, and ready to tackle mom life!
Everything from trimester “to-do” lists, “must have” checklists, provider questionnaires, pre-baby checklist, labor and delivery prep sheets, newborn care sheets , and more!
The Pregnancy Planner covers all the important pregnancy prep work so you can sit back and relax… well, sort of, haha.
3. EAT WELL AND OFTEN
Eating healthy during pregnancy is almost an immediate antidote against fatigue.
There is a direct correlation with what we put is our bodies and how it affects us physically.
Processed, sugary and/or fried foods can drain your energy.
Opt for foods that are good sources of complex carbs carbohydrates, iron, fiber and protein.
Here are some great food ideas to boost energy:
- Green leafy veggies
- Brown rice
- Whole grain breads
In addition, eating often ensures your blood glucose levels are steady and regulated. A sudden drop in blood sugar can result in fatigue, weakness, and exhaustion.
Again, remember to choose healthy snacks that are satisfying and nutritious.
- Fruit bowls
- Apple slices and peanut butter
4. STAY ACTIVE
In might sound counterproductive to stay active when you are looking to treat or prevent pregnancy exhaustion.
Obviously if you are feeling extremely tired, get some rest.
However, studies show that exercising regularly during pregnancy have a lot of positive effects on the body.
As it relates to pregnancy fatigue and exhaustion, benefits of exercising throughout your pregnancy include (source):
- Increases your energy
- Promotes muscle tone, strength, and endurance
- Helps keep you keep fit during pregnancy and may improve your ability to cope with labor
Some ideas to keep fit and active during pregnancy, thus combating pregnancy exhaustion include:
- Walks around the neighborhood
- Prenatal Yoga (Shiva Rea walks you through simple yet important exercises that will keep you strong and healthy through pregnancy and get your ready for labor).
5. TAKE YOUR PRENATAL VITAMINS
Not only do prenatal vitamins ensure you and baby are receiving the necessary vitamins and minerals for healthy development, but they also help guard against fatigue.
A lack of essential vitamins and minerals, such as lack of iron, can cause fatigue and tiredness.
6. SMALL ACTIVITIES
Pacing yourself is one of the main things to remember in order to avoid pregnancy fatigue and exhaustion.
Sometimes we feel so well, that for a slight second, we forget we are growing a human. Then, we go on to doing too much too fast.
Before we know it, we run out of gas, and feel miserable and exhausted.
Working in short intervals through the day on any given task can help in prevent activity induced fatigue.
Related Article: 11 Ways to Find Pregnancy Back Pain Relief
7. FOCUS ON PRIORITIES
One of the biggest things you will learn as a mom is to prioritize.
Motherhood if full of crazy demands but not all require the same amount of immediate attention.
In order to stay sane and prevent exhaustion, make a list of the things that are imperative in getting done.
Then, make a list of the things that can be put off until a later time.
Work your way down the list and cross off activities as they get accomplished.
9. GET MORE SLEEP
Yes! You have a free pass. For the love of God… use it, love it, cherish it, and enjoy it for as long as you can. Sleep for you and sleep for me.
Oh… how I miss my noon naps when I was pregnant with my first child.
If you are pregnant with your first, you will know exactly what I mean.
Take advantage of every small window you get to either sleep or get some rest.
If you can‘t take naps during the day, push your bed time to an earlier hour to ensure you are getting the proper rest.
Being well rested is a must to fight against pregnancy fatigue and exhaustion.
Sleep posture and positions will also help you rest better and wake up more energized. Specially, in the second and third trimesters when you end up changing sleeping positions a million times throughout the night looking for the most comfortable spot.
Good sleep posture will also help treat and prevent pregnancy back pain and discomfort.
Consider this top rated, Amazon’s choice, pregnancy pillow to help ease you into a better sleep, reducing interruptions throughout the night and helping relieve back pain.
10. LOOSE CLOTHES
Tight clothing is suffocating. It makes you uncomfortable and restless.
Ditch the jeans with the rubber band and the tight underwear. Do yourself a favor and invest in a comfortable pair of maternity jeans and a wireless, breastfeeding bra that will make your life a whole lot easier and comfortable.
Go ahead, I’ll wait here.
Got them? Good. You can thank me later. 😊
11. STAY COOL
As a south Florida mom, I know the feeling of 90-degree weather and trying to stay cool and hydrated.
Hot weather conditions can cause excessive perspiration which can lead to dehydration.
As previously discussed, dehydration can lead to a whole array of issues including dizziness and fatigue.
- Wear loose clothing
- In the summer time, limit your time outdoors between 12pm-4pm
- Stay hydrated
Here is another great pregnancy must-have.
I carry this water bottle with me around ALL day and it reminds me to drink water.
What’s more, this 30z Tumbler from Built isn’t plastic, which I love. Instead is made of double-wall stainless steel, vacuum-sealed construction which keeps the water cold for 24 hours and hot for 8 hours.
12. MAKE A STATION
When I was pregnant with my kids, I always had a little area in the living room where I kept things I used most often.
As a result, I ran around less searching for the same things over and over.
Some of those things might include, the remote control, your phone, phone charger, books and magazines, your water bottle, and some healthy snacks.
Find a little nook in your house, such as your living room, and designate a space for your most used items. Ideally a small side table or night stand with compartment drawers, next to your couch.
Once you have the baby you can then transition your pregnancy station to your breastfeeding station.
12. ASK FOR HELP
Well, if you are anything like me you are going to want to tackle all aspects pregnancy on your own.
Decorating the nursery, setting up your registry, getting your postpartum recovery kit ready, and doing spring cleaning before the baby comes.
Although those are all important things to tackle during pregnancy, none of them is worth feeling exhausted or fatigued over.
I learned the hard way that I needed to let go of some control and ask for help.
It is important you don’t overdue it. If you do, your body will make sure to let you know. And trust me, you don’t want it to let it get to that.
For instance, make a list of monthly chores you would like your husband to help you tackle.
If you are a working mom, ensure you communicate to your boss tasks that seem too much to handle for the time being.
As a surgical nurse I always assisted in transferring my patients from the stretcher to the operating table.
However, when I was pregnant with my kids, I ensured that was something I had others help me do.
Remember, sometimes if we prevent fatigue, we might not have to treat it, and that is a much better pace to be in.
13. SECOND SEMESTER ADVANTAGE
So, you have reached the second trimester, YAY!
At this point the rapid surge of hormones that caused that awful first trimester fatigue should be starting to subside.
For most moms, the second trimester is the most forgiving in terms of less pregnancy fatigue and exhaustion.
However, the “feel-good” window won’t last for too long. As the third trimester approaches, the baby grows, and your body gets ready for labor, exhaustion and fatigue often make an unexpected return.
So, use your second trimester to do the things that require the most mental and physical energy.
Here is a list of second trimester to-do’s and take advance of your “feel-good” window”:
- Start you baby registry
- Plan out/assist in your baby shower preparations
- Designate a nursery space and prep the area
Pregnancy exhaustion and fatigue are caused by multiple factors.
While there are many things that are not in our control, there many others that are.
Use this list to help you apply these techniques and feel better through your pregnancy journey.
That way you can spend more time enjoying your pregnancy journey rather than blaming your husband for what he did to you, haha.
Happy and healthy pregnancy mama.
What have you tried to help ease your pregnancy fatigue? Has it helped?
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