The Ultimate Guide to the Perfect Beach Day While Pregnant
Being pregnant makes everything harder, even relaxing days at the beach. But with a bit of preparation, a beach day can be just what the doctor ordered.
First things first: invest in a high-quality beach chair! Either bring your own or rent the most luxurious ones available on the sand. Pregnancy is never short on discomfort, and after all, you’re going to the beach to relax right?
Ideally, you’ll have a chair that reclines and allows you to put your feet up. Cushions are a must to keep you comfortable, but remember that you’ll want to stay cool as well.
Avoid Sunburns at All Costs
A beach day is meant to ease your stress and let you unwind. Nothing can ruin that faster than a bad sunburn. It’s hard enough to sleep well at night with a baby bump, and a sunburn will make it nearly impossible.
Use a sunscreen with minimum SPF 30. Reapply throughout the day or if you get wet. Here are our top picks for sunscreens for adults. Choose a spot in the shade and wear a hat. Wear thin, loose fabrics that cover much of your skin if you are very susceptible to burns.
Some women will get dark spots on their face from sun exposure during pregnancy. The spots can even remain permanently. Known as chloasma, these dark patches are just one more reason to layer on the SPF while expecting.
Pack the Right Kinds of Snacks
Pregnant women are always hungry. While expecting, it is best to consume six small meals throughout the day. This keeps your energy from crashing, and it ensures that you meet the daily calorie requirement for whatever stage of pregnancy you are in.
Bring a variety of snacks along with you. If you have cravings, that’s a good place to start when choosing what to pack. However, focus on nutritionally dense foods like proteins and full fats as opposed to sugars and refined carbs.
Healthy foods are better for you and your baby, plus, sugars and carbs can lead to a crash that makes you feel miserable. Fresh foods trump processed foods when you have the choice.
Maternity expert Hehe Stewart of Tranquility By Hehe reminds pregnant women, “In addition to eating more, it’s also important to focus on getting enough iron and vitamin D. And as you move into your third trimester, you’ll need even more calories as well as more iron, because your baby will start storing iron to use during their first few months of life.”
Examples of good snack choices include Greek yogurt with berries, guacamole and chips, or hummus and carrot sticks. If you are dealing with morning sickness, stick with plain foods like saltines and cheese or anything with ginger.
Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate
Pack two full water bottles in your beach bag. Sip them throughout the day, rather than attempting to chug.
According to the American Pregnancy Association, pregnant women need to drink eight to twelve cups of water per day. Expecting women have a higher water intake requirement for a few reasons. Firstly, water is essential in absorbing nutrients and transporting them to your growing baby. Next, mom needs water to help her flush her own system and avoid uncomfortable side effects like UTIs, constipation, and hemorrhoids.
Water is extra important while spending a day in the sun, to avoid overheating and dehydration. Proper hydration will prevent headaches or fainting, which pregnant women are more susceptible to. For women dealing with swelling, water will help minimize this by flushing out salt from the body.
Don’t Stray Too Far from the Restrooms
Locate the loo as soon as you arrive on the sand. Lay your towel out somewhere nearby.
Before pregnancy, your organs were neatly arranged inside your body. But as your fetus grows, they are pushed either up or down to make room for baby. Your bladder is below the fetus and is crushed down under its weight. Your now tiny bladder needs to be emptied seemingly constantly. And when you gotta go, you really gotta go.
Combine this limited liquid storage with the fact that you’ll need to drink plenty of fluids and you can see why you’ll need to be close enough to the restrooms!
Staying cool is of utmost importance during pregnancy. Sit under an umbrella and sip cool beverages throughout the day. It’s vital that an expecting woman’s body temperature not exceed 102 degrees Fahrenheit. Particularly during the first trimester, overheating can lead to neural tube defects and even cause a miscarriage. Later in pregnancy, women who overheat may faint or feel extremely ill.
Let Others Take Care of You
Let’s get real for a moment. Often women are the planners and the caretakers. There’s nothing wrong with that unless you neglect yourself. Pregnancy is a time for self-care, and accepting and enlisting the help of others.
Especially if you have older children joining you, try not to let a day at the beach become a day of taking care of everyone else, but at the beach. Have someone else unload the car and set up the towels and chairs. Lay back and enjoy yourself!
Looking to relax and unwind at the beach? Here are 8 Reasons Why All Parents Should Take a Kid-Free Vacation.