10 Best Ways To Reduce Stress During Pregnancy

Medically reviewed by Maria Sarino, MD FACT CHECKED

Pregnancy, in most cases, is a life-changing phase of a woman’s life. During this phase, a woman may go through every possible emotion due to the release of different hormones.

Hence, it may be natural that she may feel overwhelmed at times. However, it is critical to take care of your physical and mental health at such disturbing times.

Researches show how moms-to-be may experience stress during their pregnancy. Though stress is normal during this phase, it becomes a concerning issue when it bothers you constantly.

At this time, you should seek support for the well being of the baby and your health. During stress, the body releases several hormones like cortisol and adrenaline.

The hormones help you to fight stressful situations and combat physical exertion. Once the intense circumstance gets over, your body returns to its normal state.

However, this is not the case with pregnancy. During this phase, when you take tension related to childbirth, your stress levels do not decrease.

This can further lead to several health and development problems for your baby. The foetus may face problems like impaired cognitive development, ADHD and so on.

All such problems verify the fact that it is very crucial to maintain chronic stress during pregnancy. This guide will help you to balance your hormones and improve your well being with the following methods.

  1. Healthy Breathing Habits

    Persistent stress can lead to a vicious cycle of lack of oxygen. When people are anxious, they take shorter and shallow breaths.

    This truncates the amount of oxygen reaching your body. Once the oxygen decreases, the stress levels of the body boost. Hence this vicious cycle is quite harmful to the well being of the mother and baby.

    To combat this stress, all you need to do is to meditate and concentrate on your breathing pattern. Taking deep breaths will help your body to receive extra oxygen.

    More on that here.

  2. Exercise Regularly

    Incorporating movement in your body schedule helps to relax your muscles. Studies also show how exercise helps to release chemicals in your body called endorphins.

    These chemicals ameliorate stress, anxiety, and depression by enhancing your mood.

    The best way to abridge stress is to stretch your body. Stretching helps to tighten up the muscles and relieve stress during pregnancy.

    These exercises during pregnancy could help you very efficiently.

    One of the best relaxations is to stretch your neck towards your left so that your left ear touches the left shoulder. Once you feel the position is comfortable, you can relax for 20 seconds.

    The to-be-mother should make sure to breathe deeply in the stretched position. This will help you to bolster the endorphin levels and ease your mind. Treat yourself with complementary therapies

    Stress incentivises depression and anxiety. So, during aggravating moments, it becomes crucial to take breaks that can help to alleviate your mind.

    Besides exercising and stretching, trying out complementary therapies can prove to be a good treat for your body.

    Getting yourself a massage is one of the best ways to de-stress and soothe your mood. You could get a massage from your loved one or hire a masseuse.

    Even a simple message from any of your family members can help you to relax. However, certain beauty salons provide pregnancy massage treatments as well.

    Besides massage, studies even show that aromatherapy is also likely to lessen the stress during pregnancy.

  3. Healthy Eating Habits

    Eating well during pregnancy is one of the most crucial aspects of the well being of your body and baby. The pregnant mother should always eat regular meals so that she does not feel tired.

    Good eating habits also support maintaining the blood sugar of the pregnant lady. Besides eating, drinking is also very important during pregnancy to manage your stress.

    Dehydration will make it difficult to cope up with the stress. So you should drink at least 8-10 glasses of liquids every day.

    Not only water but different drinks like fruit juice, milk, coffee, tea, herbal drinks, etc. Count on during pregnancy. But make sure that the pregnant lady does not intake more than 200 mg of caffeine.

    This article by MedlinePlus talks about this in detail.

  4. Curtail Commuting

    One of the major sources of heightening stress is commuting during pregnancy. So you should make sure to strike a healthy deal with your job employer related to the commute during pregnancy.

    Regular commuting to long distances is not good for your stress and the baby. But if it is emergent, then you should always take a seat on public transport.

    Here are few in-depth pointers on the travel part.

  5. Positive Self Talk

    Having a positive talk with yourself is also likely to improve your stress levels. All you need to do is to figure out the reason behind your anxiety. Then you can frame a mantra and repeat it as many times as possible to yourself.

    This will help to disperse all the negative thoughts away from you. You could have positive self-talk by saying something like.

    “I am happy, healthy and relaxed and cent per cent ready to take care of my sweet child.”

    Whatever you say to yourself, make sure that helps to reduce your stress.

    This article might be able to shed a little light on this one.

  6. Converse About Your Mental Health

    Many times during pregnancy, you may have mood swings. The stress related to these mood swings is all in your mind. This happens when you overthink giving birth to a baby and all aspects related to it.

    But you can avert such situations by having a healthy conversation with someone else. Conversing about your mental health serves as an outlet for your negative emotions and feelings.

    You could converse about your mental health to your partner, friend or even a therapist. Talking to other pregnant mothers can also help you to relate to them.

    Another great method is to create a journal where you can pen down your thoughts. Or, you could make a list of the things you are grateful for during pregnancy. No matter what you do, it is very important to let your feelings out.

    There may also be other factors that may be affecting your partner. Hence, talking to your partner could be one of the positive things that may improve stress levels.

  7. Practise Mindfulness

    Mindfulness serves as a great method to enjoy the moments and surroundings near you. When you practise mindfulness, you do not get emerged in the sea of negative thoughts.

    Researches have even shown how practising mindfulness has a plethora of benefits for the mental health of individuals.

    You could practise mindfulness by observing the sounds, sights or sensations near you. Or, you could even take a break at a certain time each day to listen to your thoughts.

    If all these methods do not work out for you, then you could opt for a mindfulness session or course.

    More on mental health during pregnancy here.

  8. Treat Yourself With Complementary Therapies

    Stress might incentivize depression and anxiety. So, during aggravating moments, it becomes crucial to take breaks that can help to alleviate your mind.

    Besides exercising and stretching, trying out complementary therapies may even prove to be a good treat for your body.

    Getting yourself a massage is one of the best ways to de-stress and soothe your mood. You could get a massage from your loved one or hire a masseuse.

    Even a simple message from any of your family members can help you to relax. However, certain beauty salons provide pregnancy massage treatments as well. Besides massage, studies even show that aromatherapy is also likely to lessen the stress during pregnancy.

    This governmental article talks more about pregnancy massage.

  9. Sipping Peppermint Tea

    Peppermint tea might help you relieve your stress during pregnancy. The peppermint leaves consist of Menthol that could help in relaxing the muscles.

    Besides this, the menthol present in the peppermint tea might even combat pregnancy-related issues like vomiting and nausea.

    Thus, drinking peppermint tea might be considered a natural method to relieve stress during pregnancy. Due to this, you should keep peppermint tea with you wherever you travel. Since peppermint tea is caffeine-free, you do not need to consume it in limits. You may sip on it all day at work or even at your home.

    Herbal tea during pregnancy.

  10. Pamper Yourself

    Pampering yourself and taking care of your baby and your health during pregnancy is very crucial. You could pamper yourself by watching a funny movie or binge-watching your favorite series with someone.

    You might even read, listen to your favorite podcasts, write blogs, cook food, or paint pictures. No matter what you do, make sure that it interests you and makes you happy.

    One of the best ways of relaxing and de-stressing yourself is laughter. So what about watching several standup comedies at relaxing your mind?

    Moreover, pregnancy may be the perfect time when you do all those activities which you were not able to do earlier.

    You could treat yourself with all the beauty treatments that you always wanted to try out. If you want, then you can also book a pedicure. No matter what you do, make sure that it helps you to be nice to yourself.

    Relaxation during pregnancy.

Final Thoughts On Ways To Reduce Stress During Pregnancy

So there are myriad reasons for shooting up the stress levels during pregnancy. Occasional stress is not a severe problem for the baby.

However, if you find yourself anxious all day and night, then it is time that you follow certain tips to maintain your stress that levels.

Prolonged and extreme stress is likely to amplify the risk of premature birth along with the low weight of the baby.

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