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Work-Life Balance For Pregnant Women: How Much Should You Work While Pregnant?

Pregnancy is one of the most exciting transitions you will experience. It can also, however, be one with worries and stress. Among these maybe not knowing how you will balance your job with your new pregnant life. Here are the answers to your most common questions:

Is it safe to work while pregnant?

The answer to this depends on your unique situation and pregnancy. In general, though, it is safe. Most women continue to work for most of their pregnancy and experience no issues. If, however, you are a high-risk pregnancy it’s worth discussing this with your healthcare provider who can tailor the answer to your circumstances. It also depends on your occupation. If your job exposes you to any risks such as radiation, loud noises, or vibrations, or if it requires you to be highly active, again it’s worth discussing your situation with your healthcare provider.

How can I cope with pregnancy symptoms at work?

One of the biggest challenges pregnant people face when juggling work with pregnancy is coping with their symptoms at work! The most important thing to keep in mind is to go easy on yourself. Nobody expects you to be your most productive self during this time and taking care of yourself and your future baby should be your priority! It might help to let your employer and coworker know for the additional support, but if you’d rather that’s fine too! Here are some of the most common symptoms you’ll likely experience at work and some tips on how to deal with them:

Morning sickness

Nausea usually begins around weeks four to six of pregnancy. Despite its name, morning sickness can occur any time during the day. It’s unclear exactly what causes nausea and morning sickness, but hormones are thought to be the main culprit. During the first trimester of pregnancy, many women experience mild to severe morning sickness. It may become more intense toward the end of the first trimester but often wanes as you enter the second. It’s a good idea to avoid any potential triggers, such as strong odors or heat. Eating plain snacks throughout the day also helps to settle your stomach.

Dehydration

During pregnancy, it’s important to up your water intake. You should aim to drink between 10 to 12 cups of fluids every day so keeping a bottle with you at work and filling it up a few times a day is a good tip to stay hydrated!

Tiredness

It’s not uncommon to experience fatigue during pregnancy, particularly as the due date nears. Make rest and relaxation your top priority when you are off work and aim to get 9 hours of sleep each night. Seeking some help from a partner or friend with any additional tasks you need to get done will help you achieve this.

Back pain

Many pregnant people experience back pain, as their body prepares itself for labour. To ease this symptom, consider wearing a pregnancy support belt to ease the pressure on your back. If possible, take breaks from long periods of sitting to go on short walks or, if you are standing for long periods, take breaks to sit down. Placing a warm hot water bottle or an ice pack on your lower back may also help relieve this pain.

If you experience any symptoms that are more severe than this, do contact your healthcare provider. Also, if you feel as though work may be aggravating these symptoms or inducing stress, it’s worth considering taking the time off. Every pregnancy is different and takes a lot out of you, so making the right decisions that suit your situation is important to make this pregnancy as easy and happy an experience it can be.