From the moment you first suspect that you might be pregnant until the moment you’re holding your baby in your arms, it can seem like you’re on an emotional roller coaster.
Experiencing a wide range of emotions during pregnancy is normal. It’s certainly not always easy being pregnant, but that doesn’t mean that it has to be a miserable period of time either.
Just because you’ll likely go through a range of emotions in your pregnancy, doesn’t mean you need to stop trying to feel happy. Whether you’re already feeling happy or looking for ways to boost your mood during pregnancy, we’ve got plenty of suggestions for you.
Spend time thinking about and planning for labor
While there’s a fine line between becoming educated and giving yourself anxiety over everything you could be doing during your pregnancy, knowing what to expect can help put your mind at ease.
One benefit of preparing for labor in advance is that you can make decisions that will lead to better health outcomes — which should definitely make you happier!
For example, research shows that having continuous support during labor leads to better birth outcomes. Who will provide this for you? Consider working with a doula, who can share their experience and support throughout your pregnancy, labor, and birth.
By preparing for labor in advance and seeking support, you can plan for upcoming decisions and challenges and lower your stress.
Get a prenatal massage
A little human touch can go a long way if you’re feeling sad and anxious. By relieving muscle tension and improving overall health, massage therapy can also help to relieve some of the aches and pains that may be getting you down.
Plenty of research has shown the benefits of touch, and the benefits can continue in the postpartum period if you need a mood booster. (Bonus that if you’re breastfeeding, massage can help increase the hormones responsible for milk production and letdown, resulting in greater milk production.)
Scents can be powerful. Just a whiff of a certain smell can bring memories rushing to the forefront of your mind or lower your blood pressure. (If you don’t believe us, just try baking some homemade cookies )
While pregnant, make sure to check with your doctor about any essential oils you intend to use for aromatherapy to ensure that they will be safe for you and baby.
Spend time with loved ones
Spending time with people you care about can help to ground you in the present, reduce anxiety, and decrease stress. Talking to a loved one can also be a surefire way to get some laughs in, which can be mood changing.
Spending time with people you love can help you to feel connected to them. These connections can be a powerful source of encouragement and offer support during pregnancy.
Take parenting prep classes
Knowledge is power, and it’s also stress reducing. By preparing yourself for your upcoming role as a parent, you can reduce anxiety.
Parenting prep classes can also build confidence, and this confidence can result in increased happiness. You can find classes through your local hospital, library, or other community center.
As an added bonus, parenting classes can also help you connect with other expecting/new parents…
The ability of exercise to affect mood is well proven. It has been shown to reduce anxiety and feelings of depression. Additionally, exercise increases the amount of endorphins produced by the body, which not only can not only bring feelings of happiness, but help reduce feelings of pain. (Every pregnant person’s dream!)
You don’t need to engage in super intense exercise to see benefits to your mood. Talk to your doctor about exercises that are safe for you to get moving for an improved outlook.
There are many benefits to eating healthy, including weight control and increased immunity. A balanced diet can also boost one’s energy and improve longevity. Perhaps equally important is that this increase in energy, control over weight gain, and decreased chance of illness can result in a mood boost. Taking control of your food choices and eating to nourish your body and your baby can empower you to feel better each day.
Poor sleep is linked to depression, weight gain, increased inflammation, and a suppressed immune system. A lack of sleep can also impair a person’s ability to regulate emotions and interact socially.
Many pregnant people experience pregnancy fatigue, which can leave them feeling out of sorts and moody. Addressing this issue and getting adequate sleep can be a game changer.