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What do you wish you were told/not told before pregnancy?

(53 Posts)
slightlyonedgemum Tue 02-Jun-09 16:52:12

We're hoping to start TTC in a few months time and whilst looking on the net for info on being wheat free and whether it'd affect my baby earlier, I found an advisory website telling you what you should eat/not eat, supplements to take, why you should garden wearing gloves etc and I'm now a bit shell shocked and feeling rather nervous!

So, what were the important things you read/heard and what made you panic for no reason?!

McSnail Tue 02-Jun-09 16:55:53

I wish someone had told me my body would be completely taken over by weird and ultimately unpleasant sensations/symptoms. I especially wish sommeone had told me about the fanny pain. That was one of the biggest horrible shocks, I have to say...

mistlethrush Tue 02-Jun-09 16:57:46

Surely you don't want to hear the things that panicked other people - you'd be put off from even starting ttc!

whomovedmychocolate Tue 02-Jun-09 16:59:00

Most of these 'advisory' websites have something to sell, whether a product or an idea. Is there any reason you can't eat wheat? Your child is no more likely to have allergies than anyone elses. If you breastfeed the risks are very low indeed.

Take folic acid, avoid drugs and alcohol, plus ibuprofen and hay fever pills for the three months before you want to get pregnant - that's it.

You probably have toximoplasmosis if you've ever had a cat. I do, I probably picked it up years ago, it's not a problem unless you pick it up for the first time when pregnant I believe. Eating liver/blue cheese/shellfish.... well unless you actually are pregnant yet, don't stress.

I did everything right the first time and had a terrible pregnancy (and let's not count the two miscarriages). Second time I was much more laid back and didn't pay much heed except to not do too many stupid things and everything was terrible but at least I got to eat cake and nice food during it!

If you really want to get a good overview though - Zita West's Guide to getting pregnant is a fab book - covers absolutely everything you could want to know about the subject.

Good luck!

CurryMaid Tue 02-Jun-09 17:00:10

Um, that you will feel as though you have a hangover every day even though you've not had a drink for 9 months?

TBH, I think you're better off not knowing.

slightlyonedgemum Tue 02-Jun-09 17:00:29

I know-that's the problem. If I read things that are supposed to be helpful, I'll never go out, see people, eat normal food, do anything ever again!

I'd like to be prepared and know what I'm facing (figure it's better than a nasty surprise) but I suspect a lot of what is written is for the 0.001% of people it goes wrong for.

Cies Tue 02-Jun-09 17:02:22

I'd echo whomovedmychocolate!

If you want down to earth advice on what to eat when you're pregnant, then look no further than the FSA's page here

Otherwise, I'd say don't worry too much!

slightlyonedgemum Tue 02-Jun-09 17:06:28

So you can't take ibuprofen for 3 months before you want to get pregnant? I take that for migraines which I'm getting a few of. Bugger.

I think I'm slightly intolerant to wheat and was considering cutting it out of my diet to see if I get more energy, less migraines etc. But then I worried it might affect my body more long term and thus my baby when I have one.

I'm vegetarian so just need to avoid blue cheese and feta/brie type things I think. Not happy about that but I can cope.

Don't have cats!

mistlethrush Tue 02-Jun-09 17:11:50

If you've got special dietary needs its probably worth doing a bit of research and/or seeing your Dr and seeing if you can get some good advice early on. Although, having said that, I'm lactose intollerant, but can eat yoghurt and cheese, but wanted to find out whether I should be limiting these - some suggestion that it is helpful - I spoke to a dietician (by phone, as advised by midwife) who was very short with me for wasting her valuable time and asked me whether I had been formally diagnosed (no, but the results of milk are almost immediately obvious, even in small quantities) and said that if I could eat cheese and yoghurt I couldn't be lactose intollerant - 5mins on the web put paid to her authority on that point.... So, even if you do consult with a health care 'professional', if their advice seems peculiar, double check it!!!!

Pregnancy will change you - yes, you will probably find that you are eating a reduced range of things (eg I went off chinese t/a first, then indian, then even pizzas shock) but not as much as having a small child will!!!! grin

mistlethrush Tue 02-Jun-09 17:12:34

Slightlyonedge - btw, you can have all the cheeses as long as well-cooked...

chaya5738 Tue 02-Jun-09 17:21:44

Exercise exercise exercise! Make sure you are very fit and healthy before you get pregnant. It is very hard to start exercising once you get pregnant and if you are unfit and/or overweight pregnancy will be much much harder (greater risk of high blood pressure, sore back, diabetes, putting on too much weight).

I had a goal of running a half-marathon before we started trying. I am very pleased I did because my body has handled it all much better and becoming overweight hasn't been too much of an issue. But if you can't manage that then exercising 30 mins 3-4 times a week is a great.

I wouldn't worry about the not drinking, taking ibuprofen etc until you are actually pregnant unless you have fertility issues.

slightlyonedgemum Tue 02-Jun-09 17:24:28

I'm not sure if I'm wheat intolerant or not, that's the problem. Maybe I'll just cut it down and if things improve, cut them out. TBH, I think migraines are stress, sugar and dodgy neck induced!

I'll definitely mention not eating meat when the time comes as I'm also anaemic (but not iron deficient) which may cause problems.

Glad about the cheese-that would take a lot out of my diet!

As for small children, I've acquired a 7 year old through marriage who was brought up vegetarian and didn't eat most foods-it doesn't get much worse for a change!

slightlyonedgemum Tue 02-Jun-09 17:26:50

Yuck-exercise! Used to swim loads, run, walk up lots of hills etc. Now I'm married and have to take a 7 year old to school, I do the walking around at the weekend but no swimming. Just started an exercise dvd as I need to be fitter and know that would help. Plus it's bellydancing which is good babywise!

mistlethrush Tue 02-Jun-09 17:35:58

I'm vege - didn't have any problems (just a bit of reassurance really!)

cazinski Tue 02-Jun-09 17:56:19

Take everything with a pinch of salt and remember that every woman/pregnancy is very different. Do whatever works for you, eat what you feel like at the time, try not to worry yourself silly about what you should and shouldn't be doing. If you can, enjoy the 9 months as it really doesn't have to be a chore and full of horror stories.

I do a bit of everything in moderation and have had a great pregnancy. Sure it helps if you're generally fit and healthy beforehand, but don't stress yourself out about anything. I eat what I fancy, have a glass of wine if I go out for a meal-so far no problems to report. The midwives are very happy with my progress, I've had zero morning sickness, feel fantastic and everyone I meet tells me how well I look.

In a nutshell, don't do anything radical and ignore all the tales of pregnancy that get thrown at you. Like I said, everyone is different and you can't really plan or predict. Good luck with it all and have lots of fun with the TTC!!

makipuppy Tue 02-Jun-09 17:58:29

I agree with Chaya. I got really fit before ttc. Also, giving up caffeine and alcohol (or at least cutting right down!) seems to have a very positive effect on fertility - according to several studies, but of course these things are hard to prove.

YanknCock Tue 02-Jun-09 18:03:23

I wish I'd known that round ligament pain can wake you in the middle of the night, and you'll think you have appendicitis! Thankfully, I fell asleep/passed out again after what seemed like an agonisingly long time, couldn't even speak loud enough to rouse husband sleeping in other room. Next morning, absolutely fine, and spoke to friend who has two DCs. She described the pain perfectly, and said she'd ended up in A&E with her first pregnancy because of it!

heartmoonshadow Tue 02-Jun-09 21:56:34


Nobody told me some of the following:

That you may get extremely blocked noses and that it would feel like a permanent bout of hayfever.

That at 28 weeks I would no longer be able to lie down in bed and have to decamp to the settee everynight to sleep (even if it is in 1hour/2hour bursts).

That if I sit for longer than 10 minutes in one position I seize up like a pensioner and have to hobble around the furniture to get around.

But equally no-one told me how protective I would get about my bump, and how much I would like the 'little' thumps I get even when they hurt like hell.

I am not enjoying being pregnant with my elephant feet and sort back,legs,bump,shoulders - in fact all over sore muscles - but I would not miss it for the world.

Roll on the birth I think after that all my niggling pains will be put into perspective!!!!!!! Hopefully 6 weeks 5 days to go or up to 8 weeks 5 days if I am really unlucky!

slightlyonedgemum Tue 02-Jun-09 22:25:11

Thank you mistlethrush, I do feel reassured. It's so confusing when you read all the info and then people say 'well it's just common sense' and you think 'how common?'!

Cazinski - you've pretty much said what my DH and Mum have said about the pinch of salt. It sounds like you're doing really well and I hope I can be as relaxed! I'm so worried about things that might happen in pregnancy anyway that finding out more didn't help! DH has given me a 'reassuring cuddle'...

I don't drink caffeine as I don't have hot drinks and don't really like fizzy ones. Only drink coke if it has vodka in it! So my only caffeine is chocolate which I'd have to eat a lot of to get to the recommended limit! I tend to only drink 2 units of alcohol a week so I'm quite good with that too. My issue is lack of exercise and time. Saying that, my osteo says that as I'm always rushing about I'm still on the 'moderate' level with my 'exercise'.

YanknCock - that sounds horrible!

heartmoonshadow - a lot of this sounds like me anyway! I always have a blocked up nose (have just realised I need to check the steroid spray packet as they might take that away too), have back problems so often end up 'trying to get comfortable' for an hour before sleep, often hobble as my back seems to have caused knee problems (sit cross legged a lot) and I'm often sore due to migraines and my related accidents! I also suspect I'd be amazingly protective of my bump. Good luck with the birth!

mogwai Tue 02-Jun-09 22:56:36

that you will feel like this for your first baby and your first baby only.

That you'll be much less worried second time and have some persepctive that people have been gettign pregnant and carrying healthy children for years and years without all these guidelines.

EffieGadsby Tue 02-Jun-09 23:06:46

slightlyonedgemum, you can eat feta! I wouldn't want you to miss out; it and halloumi are keeping me going while I mourn the loss of Brie (cooked Brie is not the same). I wish I'd had a major blowout of all banned foods before I got pregnant - I will plan better next time.

staylucky Wed 03-Jun-09 01:16:02

In the politest possible way: what mogwai said.

Don't sweat the small stuff, as Dr Phil would say.

Stokey Wed 03-Jun-09 08:31:21

I didn't change my lifestyle at all before i got pregnant as far as drinking, taking painkillers etc, caffeine are concerned.

I think people get pretty paranoid about this stuff - we just stopped using contraception, didn't stress about timing, ovulation etc. & within three months i was up the duff.

I have had a couple of bad headaches, but have mainly been sleeping through the night & had no morning sickness - am now at 18 wks and all seems fine (tho am missing pimms & rose now that summer is here).

pippa251 Wed 03-Jun-09 09:11:07

Personally- I never TTC it was a big suprise shock when I found out I was pregnant.

I found out at 6 weeks and thus without knowing had been out on big drinking sessions, killer personal training sessions and even a fire arms course (which involved both shooting targets and running around fields with having gas canisters thrown at us and putting on our gas masks on and rolling round on the floor fighting in role plays putting hand cuffs on people). I am quite horrified now and wouldn't advise it but figure that this demonstrates how strong your body is.

DONT WORRY I am 35 weeks and have a normal pregnancy.

here's what I wish I had known

1)I would echo the fitness advice- i have been told off my mw that due to my fitness my blood pressure is excellant and I really haven't suffered any side effects until about 28 weeks apart from morning sickness and now general uncomfyness.

2)Morning sickness can start what ever time and last all day

3) if your body wants to eat something- you will eat it

4)Register for loads of companies baby clubs you get loads of freebies

5)I really appreciated going on holiday at 28 weeks

6)If you do not get on with your midwife you can change- even if you're just a bit unsure

7)bio oil god send - no stretch marks yet!!!

good luck

flyingcloud Wed 03-Jun-09 09:12:22


I am enjoying this thread, as I took a test yesterday and found out I was pregnant (between two and three weeks according to the indicator - are they accurate?) We have only just got married and weren't actively trying but neither were we being careful (oops!) but nonetheless are delighted! It's all a bit new...

As we weren't really trying and as I had no clue that I might have conceived I have been drinking (moderately, save for a hen weekend which resulted in a hangover which was treated with painkillers), smoking (moderately)and eating all the wrong food - steak tartare, lots of cheese, shellfish, coffee, etc. I have stopped all that now of course! I am a tad worried that the baby growing inside has had to cope with a lot in the first couple of weeks of its existence. I keep telling myself that lots of women must find themselves in this situation and that only in very rare cases do the excesses and unhealthy living make a difference

I've had no signs that I might be pregnant other than the late period followed by a positive test.
I'm happy to have joined here as I've just moved to another country to be with my husband and I don't have anyone to talk to about this, and obviously it's so early I don't want to discuss with anyone I know until it's all been medically confirmed (doctor tomorrow).

Good luck everyone, good luck slightlyonedgemum TTC.

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