10 things that will make your life SO much easier in the first trimester

The first trimester of pregnancy is such an exciting time, but it's normal to experience some problems too.

You can't fit into your jeans, but maternity clothes are too big; you're experiencing the WORST mood swings, and you wish the morning sickness would get lost. You're also bursting to tell people what's going on, but know it's wiser to keep it to yourself a little longer.

If you can totally relate to the above right now, then here are 10 things that will make those first three months easier and give you peace of mind. 

1. Comfy, cotton bras

Ditch the uncomfortable pinching bra and buy some cotton ones. Tender swollen breasts are common in the first trimester so a good bra is your first port of call.

You may be already experiencing breast growth so bear this in mind while shopping. Try getting fitted - most department stores will have a lingerie advisor who can help you pick some pregnancy styles.

2. Floss and a soft-bristle toothbrush

Pregnant women can be susceptible to gum disease, and your gums may be more sensitive at this time. If you've been experiencing bleeding gums or soreness, try a toothbrush with soft bristles, and floss daily. This should make a huge improvement to your dental health.

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3. A belly band

This is a smoothing band which you can put on top of jeans or trousers. If you're struggling to do up your jeans, you can leave them unbuttoned and put the band over the top. It's a good way to get mileage out of your old clothes, as most women don't need maternity wear in the first trimester.

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4. Prenatal vitamins

Although prenatal vitamins shouldn't be used as a substitute for a healthy diet, they can cover any nutritional gaps in your diet. For example, if you are a vegetarian, you may need some extra iron during pregnancy, to prevent developing anaemia.

If you haven't been taking folic acid already, make sure you start taking a prenatal vitamin that contains it. Folic acid reduces the baby's risk of developing spina bifida.

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 5. Body lotion and skincare products

Your skin may feel tight, dry and sensitive,  particularly on your belly, as it slowly stretches. Remedy this with a big tub of a body lotion, ideally containing shea butter or cocoa butter which are kind to skin and safe for pregnancy. 

Be sure to check your other skincare products also, and avoid anything containing salicylic acids and retinoids. Doctors advise against these, as they can be absorbed directly into the bloodstream.

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6. A body pillow

Pregnancy is synonymous with fatigue and sleeplessness, and you'll need all the rest you can get in the first trimester of pregnancy. 

It's worth investing in a foam body pillow to support you. And you'll be thankful for it later in your pregnancy too.

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7. Ginger mints/ginger ale

Ginger is great for staving off the dreaded bouts of nausea and morning sickness, but you probably don't fancy chewing on a lump of ginger. Stock up on ginger mints and ginger ale instead - they're far more palatable and will do the job just as well.

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8. Crackers, bread are your favourite snacks

You may find it near impossible to eat, and some women even lose weight early in the first trimester due to nausea.

If you can't face proper meals, keep your store cupboard full of crackers, bread and light snacks you enjoy. These will tide you over until you get your appetite back and can do a proper grocery shop without feeling ill.

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9. Pregnancy books and magazines

The first trimester is such an exciting time, and you will be encountering lots of physical and emotional changes. 

As you probably won't have an ultrasound till about 12 weeks, a good pregnancy book will give you an idea of how your baby is developing. It's great to have a resource, but remember to consult your doctor if you are worried about anything. 

Stock up on some of your favourite magazines, too - they'll come in handy if you have to take a day off with morning sickness.

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10. A meditation app

You may find yourself getting anxious, stressed and emotional during early pregnancy. This is totally normal, and you can expect a roller coaster of emotions thanks to the soaring hormones.

Stress and worry are not good for either you or the baby, so why not download a meditation app to help you relax? Just a few minutes everyday can help you feel calm and more relaxed.

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