As a first time mom, I found myself researching everything I could to help get me through the first trimester. Every pregnancy is different, but these were some of my favorite products and tricks that got me through those rough three months.
1. Sea Bands
You’ll find these on almost every preggy mom’s list, but they were lifesavers for me. I actually already had a pair because I suffer from intense motion sickness even just riding in the car for more than 15 minutes, but I wore these trusty bands almost 24/7–so much so that I even got a second pair. They didn’t totally eliminate my nausea, but they definitely helped keep it from getting any worse if it already started.
2. Migrasil Migraine Stick
I also already had one of these in my purse on the regular to help with tension headaches when I was teaching, but this trust roller stick was a lifesaver for both headaches and nausea. I tended to get bad migraines in the afternoons, and rolling just a little of this stick on my temples and at the base of my neck would give me instant relief.
3. Capri Suns
Okay, okay. I grew up as a 90s kid and hadn’t even thought of these since my fifth grade lunchbox days, but when I was in the throes of morning sickness, these were the only liquid I could keep down. They were in manageable portions and had just enough sugar and flavor to keep my blood sugar up when plain water was just so unappetizing.
4. Vitamin B6 + Unisom
I strongly recommend talking to your doctor before starting yourself on any medication routine. However, during the daytime, my doctor recommended that I take a B6 and half a Unisom tablet to help manage my nausea. This actually ended up not being enough for nighttime , and I was prescribed Zofran, but it worked well enough that I could make it through work without vomiting or falling asleep.
5. A Squatty Potty
Sorry if this is TMI, but the constipation that comes with the bloating phase of the first trimester is NO JOKE. I purchased one of these babies after a horrible week of suffering, and it has worked like a charm ever since. Of course, you want to make sure that you are drinking enough fluids and eating enough fiber to help keep you regular, but for the actual process–the squatty potty is the way to go (literally and figuratively)
6. Smarty-Pants Prenatal Vitamins
When we were TTC I religiously took the Ritual prenatals. I loved that their ingredients were transparent, they weren’t horse pills, and they had a light minty taste and smell instead of the dog-food like aroma from some other prenatals. However, about halfway through the first trimester, my nausea was so bad that I couldn’t stomach even these gentle-on-the-tummy vitamins. In came the gummy vitamins! The Smarty Pants brand was a no brainier because they didn’t contain added sugar, their flavors were great, and they were easy enough to pick up at our local Target. Are they as robust as my Ritual vitamins? Not quite, but you gotta do what you gotta do to keep both you and baby happy and healthy.
7. A Body Pillow
Even though I wasn’t showing yet, I was super bloated throughout the first trimester. The nausea also made it difficult to sleep without propping myself up or laying on my side. My body pillow made sleeping so much more comfortable, and it allowed Daniel to have a little more bed space for longer before I brought in the husband- pregnancy pillow.
8. Korean Citron Honey Tea
I cut out caffeine for this pregnancy. I wasn’t a huge coffee addict to begin with, but I was an avid tea drinker. Since the verdict on a lot of herbal teas seemed controversial, I got my tea fix by relying heavily on this citrusy, marmalade-like tea in the mornings. The citrus fruit has a lot of anti-oxidants and healthy benefits, but the taste is mild and it was gentle on my stomach.
9. Facebook May Mommies Groups
Since the pandemic has been going on throughout the duration of my pregnancy, it’s been really difficult to connect with and meet other moms in person. I was lucky enough to find and join two, non-judgemental Facebook groups for moms due in May of 2021, and boy have they been worth their weight in gold.
As a FTM, I found myself worrying a lot with every new body change, and these groups gave me a place to ask questions and also see that I wasn’t alone. It was so nice to be able to get feedback from other women going through the same stage of pregnancy and to also learn from moms who were expecting their second, third, or fourth babies. It kept me off of Dr. Google and really gave me a sense of camaraderie during the toughest months.
10. My husband.
I’m not saying that everyone needs to have a husband, but I do believe that everyone needs a support person. For me, that was Daniel. Having him by my side to hold my hair back on morning sickness days, make sure I was drinking enough, and to just keep a hold on things around the house when I couldn’t do anything aside from be a blob on the couch, was huge. The first three months of pregnancy were undoubtedly the toughest so far, and not needing to go it totally alone really helped.
Even if you don’t have someone living with you that can help physically, just having someone to reach out to when you’re feeling exhausted, miserable, and totally at your wits end with pregnancy is a massive comfort. You are growing a human, and knowing there is someone in your corner helps make that sometimes unbearable job more manageable.