Your Guide to First Trimester Shopping

First Trimester Shopping

Each trimester of pregnancy comes with its own shopping list. Stocking up on a few necessities can help expectant mothers deal with the physical changes commonly associated with that trimester.

Because of the physical changes that happen during the first few months, a shopping list for the first trimester can include everything from acne medication to water bottles. Here are a few suggestions to help:

  1. Prenatal vitamins: Prenatal vitamins contain folic acid, iron, iodine and calcium, which are important for your developing child.
  2. Wardrobe boosters: Before long you may wonder where your waistline has gone and a few wardrobe boosters can help delay the transition to maternity clothes.

– Employ extenders. When pants suddenly begin to feel tight temporarily a waistband extender or even a rubber band or elastic hair tie can temporarily hold the top button of your pants. Another option is to switch to yoga pants or leggings during this trimester. Pair them with a top that reaches mid-thigh, throw a blazer on top of this outfit and the outfit is ready for the office.

– Shop for a new bra. As the first trimester progresses, many women find that they need a comfortable bra in a larger size. Since breasts may feel tender, some women find they feel better wearing a sports bra while sleeping.

– Be safe in comfortable shoes. Pregnancy is a good time to switch from heels to flats with some support. The added baby weight can change a woman’s center of gravity, throwing her off balance, and making falls more likely. Support is essential since the extra weight also strains joints and ligaments.

  1. Stock up on some reading material: The first trimester is a good time to read up on pregnancy and childcare. Reading pregnancy books can help you compose lists of questions to discuss with your healthcare provider.
  1. Invest in a good night’s rest. Get a body pillow: The changing dimensions of your body can make it difficult to sleep comfortably, even during the first trimester. So, you may want to research the best body pillows, which can make it easier to sleep on your side. Some pillows are specially marketed as maternity pillows but often a good body pillow will do the trick.
  1. Reevaluate your beauty products:

– Acne products. Pregnancy can prompt changes in your complexion. Often the surge of hormones improves a woman’s complexion but for some women, the surge in the hormone progesterone causes an overproduction of oils, resulting in blemishes. If that’s the case, talk to your healthcare provider about acne treatments that are safe to use during pregnancy. Both prescription and over-the-counter products may contain harmful ingredients.

– Body lotion. Skin may feel drier and itchier during pregnancy so it’s important to invest in a moisturizing body lotion. Most expectant moms will develop stretch marks because the skin on their stomach is growing so rapidly, but moisturizing daily can help minimize lasting marks. There are many products specifically marketed to reduce stretch marks, but many women prefer emollients such as coconut oil, almond oil, cocoa butter, or olive oil.

– Safer nail polish. It is considered safe to get a manicure or pedicure while you’re pregnant, but if you worry about the chemicals found in nail polish, such as formaldehyde, there are brands of nail polish that do not have many chemicals. Be sure the salons you visit are well ventilated.

  1. Shop for nausea remedies: Morning sickness—which can strike day or night—is very common during the first trimester. Besides keeping disposable barf bags on hand, there are a few safe home remedies that have been used to alleviate nausea. Some mothers experience nausea relief when they drink peppermint or ginger tea, suck on peppermints or eat ginger chews, or snack on saltines.
  1. Swap your toothbrush: Since pregnant women are more likely to suffer from gingivitis, consider buying a new toothbrush and some floss to inspire vigilance about dental care. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends that pregnant women brush with an ADA-approved fluoride toothpaste twice a day, and floss daily.
  1. Plan to stay hydrated: During pregnancy you need extra fluids to stay hydrated—about 10 cups of fluids daily. Buying a BPA-free water bottle can help remind you to drink enough water.

This shopping list can help make the first trimester more comfortable.

Joan MacDonald
Joan Vos MacDonald has written about health and fitness for newspapers, magazines and websites. She is a member of the National Association of Science Writers and the author of two books on health-related topics, "Tobacco and Nicotine Dangers," for young adults, and "High Fit Home," a design book about fitness and architecture. She lives in upstate New York near her children and grandchildren.

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