During pregnancy, it's easy to become so preoccupied with looking after your bump that you forget to look after yourself. 

 

What we eat, how we behave, where we go and even what we think becomes consumed by our impending arrival, and looking after our mental health can take a back seat.

 

However, now it is even more important to look after yourself – for both you and your baby.

 

1. Healthy diet

Sticking to a healthy diet is important, not just to help with your baby’s development, but also for you.

 

Make sure you're getting a mix of essential fatty acids, vitamins, minerals and carbohydrates into your diet.

 

It's also important to up your fruit and vegetable intake, and put the crisps, chocolates and takeaways to the back of your mind.

 

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2. Make time for you

Make time during the week for some of the things that you love to do. 

 

Whether it’s reading a book in a quiet corner, relaxing in front of the TV, going for a walk, or spending time with your family and friends; do something that will help you relax and feel happy.

 

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3. Sleeping beauty

You are going to be exhausted, especially during the first and third trimester, so try to get as much sleep as possible.

 

While we know this can be difficult at the best of times, and even more so if you have other children to look after, try to go to bed 30 minutes earlier, take up offers of help and, if you can, cut down on some of your commitments.

 

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4. Express yourself

Hiding your feelings will only cause them to manifest as you lose sense of perspective, so be open and honest as much as possible.

 

If you are worried or scared about what the future holds, talk to someone - keeping it bottled up is not helping you or your baby.

 

Remember, a problem shared is a problem halved.

 

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5. Exercise

Exercising not only helps your body release feel-good endorphins, it also helps you de-stress, and is a great way to socialise with others; all of which will have a positive effect on your mental health.

 

There are plenty of exercises expectant mothers can do in their first, second and third trimester, such as walking, swimming and, our favourite, prenatal yoga

 

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