If you’re new to the idea of pregnancy planning, there is a ton of stuff to consider. Some of them things you probably didn’t even know to think about!
Things like conception, potential pregnancy complications, mental health, and birthing options are some of the many things that may be on your mind during family planning. But the one thing any pregnant woman truly wants is to have a healthy pregnancy. Those looking to ensure that happens would do well to reach out to a health care provider, such as a pelvic health physiotherapist, as they can do wonders for preconception care as you plan for pregnancy.
A physiotherapist can take unique approaches to reproductive health that will aid you during pregnancy planning. How will they do it? Read on to learn more about the things a pelvic health physiotherapist can do to give you the best chances of a healthy pregnancy.
How to Prepare For Pregnancy: Six Tips From a Physiotherapist
While some people become parents through unintended pregnancy, a planned pregnancy can leave lots of room for planning! Following the advice of health professionals like a physiotherapist is a great idea when planning for pregnancy, assisting in avoiding potential health problems to ensure a healthy baby and mum.
Consider incorporating any of the following tips as a part of a well-rounded prenatal care routine. These are the top pieces of advice physiotherapist healthcare professionals have during natural family planning and early pregnancy.
Have a Pre-Pregnancy Physio Checkup
A great idea for those expecting is to have a physio checkup – either pre-pregnancy or during pregnancy. This can do wonders to prepare the body for pregnancy and/or birth by assessing any potential health concerns that might impact the body during pregnancy.
In particular, a prenatal physio checkup will be done to look at the health of your pelvic floor. The pelvic floor muscles are responsible for holding the pelvic organs, including the uterus. Your physio can check to ensure these muscles are healthy and ready for pregnancy/birth.
Do Pelvic Floor Exercises
Touching on what we discussed above, a physiotherapist can also introduce you to pelvic floor exercises to address health issues, and assist with a smoother birthing process.
For many first-time mothers, there is a lot of anxiety and concern around health during labour and delivery. Mothers are worried about the potential damage done to the pelvic region during delivery, particularly through any birthing complications.
With the right pelvic floor exercises, many of these health concerns can be avoided, reducing anxiety during labour and delivery. A physiotherapist can help you prepare your pelvic floor and muscles in the pelvic region for birth as a part of preconception health.
Get Educated on Labour and Delivery
A physiotherapist can also help you prepare for the labour and delivery part of birth.
With expertise on the muscle and organ groups in the pelvic region, our team of pelvic health physiotherapists are well-equipped to educate patients on the realities of birth and pregnancy. Having a better understanding of what’s going on with your body during pregnancy, and the things that can come up during birth is important. This information can help you feel confident and empowered, fully prepared for what’s to come.
What can a physiotherapist teach you about? Plenty of things, including:
- Education on the labour stages
- Different birthing positions
- Breathing techniques to use during birth
- Coping mechanisms for birth pain
Take Your Supplements
It is highly recommended that pregnant mothers take supplements as a part of their routine to support the health of their developing baby. In particular, it is highly recommended to take folic acid supplements every day during pregnancy, and even before conception, as a part of family planning health.
Maternal foetal medicine shows us that folic acid and B vitamin supplements do a lot to prevent birth defects in a developing baby, especially when related to the brain or spine. While there are plenty of prenatal vitamin supplements on the market today, we recommend going to your healthcare provider for their specific recommendation.
Avoid Alcohol and Cigarettes
It’s a good idea to avoid ingesting certain substances to ensure a healthy pregnancy.
The biggest ones are no alcohol and no cigarettes. There is a ton of research out there that outlines the dangerous links between birth defects and consuming alcohol and/or cigarettes during pregnancy. Avoiding both of these things is the easiest and best thing you can do for your baby during pregnancy.
Stay Physically Fit
Finally, and maybe most importantly, prioritising your health by staying physically fit is one of the best things you can do when preparing for pregnancy.
Physical activity is important for overall physical health, with the Australian government recommending all women get at least 150-300 minutes of physical activity a week. This is even more true when planning for pregnancy, as a healthy body can lead to a healthier, easier pregnancy.
Being in good physical shape and at a healthy weight can help you avoid some pregnancy complications, particularly back and joint problems. There is also evidence exercise can reduce the risk of problems like pre-eclampsia, or gestational diabetes.
If you don’t already, try to incorporate physical activity as a part of your daily routine while preparing for pregnancy. Activities like jogging and walking are great places to start!
Need Support? Contact Sydney Pelvic Clinic!
If you’re looking for support during your pregnancy journey, we’re here to help. The team at Sydney Pelvic Clinic is fully prepared to help you navigate your pregnancy every step of the way, from preconception counselling all the way to post-birth health checks.
To begin, you could consider joining us for one of our FREE pregnancy webinars. These sessions are amazing at helping mothers understand the changes pregnancy can bring; whether they’re planning to become pregnant or already are. Click here to learn more.
You can also join our Bump, Birth & Beyond program, and discover the most comprehensive pregnancy program for every stage of your incredible journey. From evidence-based physio and tailored health services to exercise programs and educational workshops, our integrated program supports your physical and mental health at each stage. With a personalised approach and ongoing support, we’ll help you achieve a smooth pregnancy, a positive birth experience, and healthier living into motherhood and beyond.