How to Survive the First Trimester of Pregnancy in 12 Steps

The first trimester of the pregnancy brings about the most dramatic changes. Our 12 step program helps you survive this important trimester

  1. Taking the test: As soon as the first day of the missed period, mom can take a home pregnancy test to determine if she has hCg in her urine. hCG is the hormone that is used to detect pregnancy. While the test can sometimes be performed before the missed period, the results are most accurate after the missed period.
  2. Making an appointment: Before the first Ob-Gyn appointment, the doctor's office will order a blood pregnancy test. This is not because the doctor does not trust the home test. The blood test will report the level of hCG in the blood. This is used to determine how far along the pregnancy currently is. If the mother reports a last period that is not likely with the hCG level, the mom may be carrying more than one baby.
  3. Telling the father: After verifying the pregnancy, the mom will need to tell the father. While many fathers are happy with the pregnancy, this is not always the case. If there is a chance the father of the baby will not be happy, a friend or family member should be there when the news is broken to dad.
  4. The prenatal vitamin: From the first day the home test is positive, mom needs to be taking a prenatal vitamin. The vitamin contains folic acid which prevents neural tube defects as the fetus grows. These defects can occur very early in the pregnancy.
  5. The first symptoms: The first physical symptoms may occur before the positive pregnancy test. These symptoms include tender breasts and tender nipples. For many women, this is not the big light bulb moment regarding the pregnancy as their breasts are tender before their period each month.
  6. Dealing with morning sickness: Within the first few weeks after the missed period, morning sickness may occur. While the name is morning sickness, it does not have to occur in the morning. Nausea and vomiting are often controllable with simple diet and lifestyle changes. In some cases, medication will need to be given to stop the vomiting.
  7. Oh, so tired: Pregnant women are very tired from the first weeks of pregnancy. The body is undergoing a huge list of changes and while these changes are necessary and common, they are no less hard on the body. Napping whenever possible is the only option. Changing the diet and trying to talk walks daily may increase energy.
  8. Not the bathroom again: As the uterus starts to expand in preparation for the new baby, the bladder will be pressed. This pressure will cause frequent urination from the first weeks of pregnancy.
  9. Cravings and aversions: Food cravings are the most popular symptom of pregnancy. Nearly every movie with a pregnant woman talks about craving one food or another. Food aversions are not commonly discussed. During pregnancy, mom may hate some of her favorite foods.
  10. What not to eat: There is a long list of foods not to eat while pregnant. These foods can cause illness to mom and baby. The obstetrician will be able to offer a list of foods to avoid during pregnancy.
  11. Telling the family: After the first trimester comes to a close, mom may be feeling ready to tell the family. Many women wait until the first three months pass due to the passing chance of miscarriage. It is commonly believed that if mom makes it through week 12, she is home free. While this is not entirely true, mom may feel more comfortable waiting until more information about the pregnancy is known before telling the family.
  12. The pain of losing a baby: If there are complications, the baby may self abort. This is commonly referred to as a miscarriage. While miscarriages are emotionally painful, there is a reason why the pregnancy was aborted by the body. Many women never even know they are pregnant as the pregnancy miscarries during the first week of gestation. Mom thinks she is having a stronger than normal period. It is thought that one out of every four pregnancies ends in miscarriage and mom never knows.

Read More:
First Trimester Checklist
Pregnancy Week by Week
The Six Trimesters of Pregnancy