Motherhood is an incredible journey that comes with its own set of challenges. And self-care tips for moms are sometimes easier to talk about than put into practice.
From the moment you find out you’re pregnant to the day you hold your little one in your arms, it’s an experience that’s both beautiful and overwhelming at times.
As a mom, it’s easy to get caught up in the daily hustle and bustle of caring for your family, leaving little time for yourself. However, taking care of yourself is just as important as caring for your little ones.
That’s why we’ve compiled a list of self-care tips for moms, from pregnancy to postpartum. These tips are designed to help you prioritize your own well-being, so you can be the best version of yourself for your family.
Table of Contents
The importance of self-care for moms
As a mom, it’s easy to put everyone else’s needs before your own. However, neglecting your self-care can lead to burnout, stress, and even physical health problems.
It’s important to prioritize your own well-being so you can be the best version of yourself for your family. When you take care of yourself, you’re better equipped to handle the challenges of motherhood and provide the love and support your family needs.
Self-care doesn’t have to be complicated or time-consuming. Although, when necessary take as much time as you need to rejuvenate without feeling guilty.
It can be as simple as taking a few minutes to breathe deeply, going for a walk, or taking a relaxing bath.
The key is to make self-care a priority in your daily routine. By taking care of yourself, you’ll feel more energized, focused, and ready to take on whatever comes your way.
Self-care tips for moms during pregnancy
Pregnancy can be an exciting and challenging time for moms.
As your body changes and your hormones fluctuate, it’s important to take care of yourself both physically and emotionally.
Here are a few self-care tips to help you feel your best during pregnancy:
1. Get plenty of rest
Pregnancy can be exhausting, especially in the first and third trimesters. Make sure you’re getting plenty of rest by taking naps throughout the day and going to bed early when possible. If you’re having trouble sleeping, try using a pregnancy pillow along with plenty of additional pillows for extra body support. Pregnancy is also a great time to consider purchasing a new mattress to help give you more restful nights. Try giving your bedroom extra attention with fresh sheets, decluttering, and fresh air to help provide a relaxing oasis. Taking a warm bath with Epsom salt before bed is also a nice treat for the end of a long day.
2. Stay active
Exercise can help you feel more energized and reduce pregnancy-related discomforts like back pain and constipation. Talk to your healthcare provider about safe exercises for pregnancy, such as walking, swimming, or prenatal stretching. In Mayo Clinic’s Pregnancy and Exercise: Baby Let’s Move it states that exercise in pregnancy (with your doctor’s okay) may help boost mood and energy levels, prevent excess weight gain, and may even help shorten labor! Tons of research suggest exercise during pregnancy is extremely beneficial.
3. Eat a healthy diet
Eating a healthy diet can help support your baby’s growth and development, as well as your own health during pregnancy. Focus on eating plenty of fruits and vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains. Avoid processed foods and sugary snacks as much as possible, which can leave you feeling sluggish and tired. There are many advantages of cooking from scratch that anyone can benefit from especially during pregnancy. It’s important to remember you are not only feeding and nurturing yourself, but you are also providing nutrients and developing the tastebuds of your growing baby.
*Along with a healthy and well-balanced diet don’t forget consistently take the highest quality prenatal vitamins your budget allows. Your vitamins are crucial for providing additional support for you and your growing baby. Some of my favorite prenatal vitamins are:
- Baby & Me 2 by Mega Food
- Ladies ONE Prenatal by Bluebonnet
- Vitamin Code Raw Prenatal by Garden of Life
Self-care tips for moms during postpartum
The postpartum period can be a challenging time for new moms. Your body is recovering from childbirth, you’re adjusting to life with a newborn, and you may be dealing with hormonal changes and sleep deprivation. Here are a few self-care tips to help you feel your best during postpartum:
1. Ask for help
It’s okay to ask for help during the postpartum period.
Whether it’s asking your spouse or partner to take over some of the baby duties or reaching out to a friend or family member for support, don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. Even older siblings can be a huge help when given tasks they are mature enough to handle. When asking for help, try to be as clear and specific as possible with your request. People may want to help but don’t quite know exactly what to do. It may be a good idea to have a notebook handy with ideas of ways for people to help you during your postpartum time.
2. Take care of your physical health
Make sure you’re taking care of your physical health by getting plenty of rest, eating a healthy diet, and staying hydrated. Just as you did while pregnant. If you’re breastfeeding, make sure you’re eating enough calories, continuing your prenatal vitamins, and drinking plenty of water. I know how tempting it is “jump back” into the swing of things and prove you can handle it, but rest and recovery is such an important time for anyone who has recently given birth. This is the time to restore your body and be kind to your body. Take it easy as much as you can and ease into your new rhythm of parenting.
3. Prioritize your mental health
Postpartum depression and anxiety are common among new moms. It’s important to prioritize your mental health by seeking help if you’re feeling overwhelmed or struggling with your emotions. Talk to your healthcare provider about resources for mental health support, such as therapy or support groups. Having a postpartum support team is just as important as a prenatal and birthing support team. Your postpartum team can consist of a postpartum doula, mom friends, prayer partners, community resources, breastfeeding support, or parenting groups (in person or online).
The role of partners and loved ones in supporting self-care
Self-care is important for moms, but it’s also important for partners and loved ones to support moms in their self-care journey.
Here are a few ways partners and loved ones can support moms in their self-care with more than “do you need anything”:
1. Encourage self-care
Encourage moms to prioritize their self-care by reminding them to take breaks, offering to take care of the baby while they take a bath or nap, or suggesting self-care activities, It’s more impactful to have conversations around self-care instead of assuming that moms already know what to do. During the early postpartum stage, many moms’ brains are swirling with things to do that self-care can easily get put on the back burner.
2. Share the workload
Sharing the workload can help moms feel less overwhelmed and more supported. Offer to take on some of the household chores or baby duties so moms can take a break and rest. If support people are not able to physically share in the workload hired help is just as effective.
3. Listen and be supportive
Sometimes moms just need someone to listen and be supportive. Offer a listening ear and validate their feelings. Let them know they’re doing a great job. Remind them you’re there for them as support for as long as they need it.
Not only does exercise help you stay physically healthy, but it can also boost your mood and reduce stress. Try finding creative ways to include your newborn in your exercise routines. Whether it’s taking your new baby out on morning strolls or joining some mommy and me exercise classes, here are a few ways to incorporate exercise into your postpartum self-care routine:
1. Find an exercise you enjoy
Find an exercise that you enjoy, whether it’s running, yoga, or dancing. When you enjoy the exercise, you’re more likely to stick with it and make it a regular part of your self-care routine.
2. Make it a priority
Make exercise a priority by scheduling it into your day or week. Treat it like any other appointment and don’t cancel unless it’s absolutely necessary.
3. Get outside
Take advantage of the fresh air and sunshine by getting outside for your exercise!
Now that pregnancy is over doesn’t mean we longer have to continue paying attention to our nutrition. Especially for exclusively breastfeeding moms who need quality extra calories to support a healthy milk supply.
1. Plan ahead
Plan your meals and snacks ahead of time to ensure you’re getting the nutrition you need throughout the day. Try meal prepping on the weekends or at least at the beginning of each day.
2. Stay hydrated
Staying well-hydrated is one of the major foundations of an overall healthy lifestyle. This is no less important as you are recovering from childbirth, and nurturing your newborn. Hydration will help with proper organ function, mood, mental clarity, milk supply, sleep quality, and much more. Postpartum is not the time to skimp on water intake.
Time management and productivity for self-care
First-time mom or 5th-time mom you will definitely find yourself busier than you were before your new baby. Here are a few tips to help you manage your time and prioritize your self-care:
1. Set boundaries
Set boundaries around your time and learn to say no when you need to. Prioritize your self-care or tasks that are important to you by scheduling them into your day and treating it like any other appointment. Remember, you recently gave birth and your rest and recovery are important for yourself and your family and need to be protected.
2. Get organized
Getting organized can help you manage your time more effectively. Use your phone, planner, or calendar to schedule your appointments and to-do list. Try staying on top of laundry, keeping your home decluttered, and opting for a more simplified parenting lifestyle.
3. Take advantage of small moments
Take advantage of small moments throughout the day to prioritize your self-care. Whether it’s taking a few deep breaths, enjoying a long relaxing bath, taking a mid-day nap, or listening to your favorite music.
Motherhood is beautiful.
But, it’s important to prioritize your own self-care along the way.
These tips can help you recharge and find balance in the chaos of motherhood.
So, make self-care a priority in your daily routine and enjoy the journey of motherhood.
More questions about self-care tips for moms, from pregnancy to postpartum
When should a mother begin prenatal care?
The safest answer is to begin prenatal care as soon as a woman suspects she may be pregnant. Many women who are planning to conceive will also schedule 1 or more doctor visits prior to getting pregnant to prepare for pregnancy and to help manage any pre-existing conditions.
What follow-up care is needed for postpartum mothers?
It’s important for women to keep all scheduled follow-up appointments with their OB/GYN or midwife. Receiving proper care before, during, and after birth is vital to women’s health. In addition to appointments here are some additional postpartum care options that benefit many women after delivery:
- Pelvic floor therapy
- Chiropractor treatment
- Postpartum massages
- Staying connected with a postpartum doula
- Counseling/support groups
- Lactation consultant services
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