During our grandparents’ times and in most cases our parents’ times the women used to stay at home and when they are pregnant would not stress themselves too much. Now over the years this has changed. We see more and more Sri Lankan women opting to go to work, even during their pregnancies. However carrying out day to day life can get stressful and trying to keep up with the normal routine could in some instances lead to additional stress and anxiety.

We are not encouraging moms-to-be to stay back at home instead of doing the jobs that they much prefer to do. In this article we hope to introduce a few easy and fun stress releasing techniques that you can adopt into your life to make pregnancy a journey full of pleasant experiences and not a battle you should fight.

Is stress bad? Will it affect my baby?

This is one of the questions that were asked by mothers who visit the BabySpace. But you needn’t worry because being a stressed or a little restless is normal when you are pregnant. Even if you had a stressful time you can deliver a healthy baby.

However if you are stressed almost all the time and feel irritated by every single thing then you do have a problem that requires immediate attention. Specialists say that recurring anxious feelings can affect you baby due to the the secretion of stress hormone that can cause damages to the emotional development of your baby.

Yet, some mothers can bounce back from a stressful period more easily than others. If you are one that falls to the latter group do not worry because there are numerous ways to keep yourself calm and anxiety free. Listed below are some of these relaxation methods that can help you cope with stress better.

1. Having a healthy diet

Food play an important role in keeping your stress levels at bay. You have to identify what you should eat and should not. If you have an allergic reaction to any food try to avoid it during your pregnancy. Omega-3 can help you keep your mind and body healthy. This essential fatty acid is found in fish products. Add a piece of fish into your diet to help you feel better.

Also try eating fruits and green vegetables that has plenty of vitamin and mineral. This, like fatty acids, will boost your bodily ability to fight stress.

Adding a food items such as eggs, yoghurt, chicken and cheese will help you get sufficient amino acid tryptophan that can also help to be stress-less and healthy.

In addition to these food products you should also have enough water to keep your body hydrated all the time. This will purify you blood and encourage a good flow that can help you calm down.

2. Few minutes of deep breathing

You will be surprised to see how easily you can fight stress by just five minutes of deep breathing or meditation. There is many ways you can do this simple exercise. One of the most common ways is to take a deep breath, hold it and count up to ten and breathing out slowly and lightly. Keep up a rhythmic space and continue for five minutes.

3. Guided imagery

This is yet another way of meditating. The best thing about this technique is that like deep breathing you can do this in your office or when you go for a tea break. To do this first you have to sit in a relaxing position, close you eyes and breath rhythmically. Then guide you imagination to a place that you will be happy in. This could be at your grandmother’s house, near a lake or watching the sunset at the beach. Imagine that you are there and listen to the breaking of the waves, feel the breeze in your face until you are relaxed. This technique will take you from ten minutes to thirty but the results are just amazing.

4. Do a bit of gentle exercises

You can relax better with a few minutes of exercises. You could do some simple stretching exercises or yoga to help you boost both mental and physical health. Even a walk in the garden is a good way of relaxing and having a good intake of fresh air. Swimming is also a good exercise that will help you keep yourself concentrated and help you get enough stamina.

5. Muscle relaxation

This is another technique that you can adopt anywhere you are. Muscle relaxation will help you get rid of the tension and help your body to relax better. To start this relaxation technique sit in a comfortable position and close your eyes. When breathing in slowly and softly tense the muscles in you forehead and release it. Follow the same technique in sequence in different parts of your body. Doing muscle relaxation daily will also help you to have a easy pregnancy.

6. Visit your loved ones

When you are pregnant and working you will be occupied with a number of chores that keep you busy. But paying a visit to your parents or a close friend help you take your mind off and having a some girl time. Being happy and laughing will help you keep yourself emotionally healthy.

7. Make special plans with your partner

Even if you are living with your partner doing something special will help you both de-stress yourself. Make reservations at your favourite restaurant or go for a movie and have some alone time with your partner . This will strengthen your relationship and help to tackle any problems without over burdening yourself.

8. Spend time with your baby and sleep well

Even if your baby is still to see the world you can spend some alone time with it. When at home relax on your bed and communicate with your unborn baby. Talk to it about what you did or how happy you are to have a baby.

This way you can also focus on your stresses and try to overcome it yourself. If you are tired get enough sleep.

Most of all if you feel that you need a break take time off from work. A peaceful mind and relaxed body van help your baby to be healthy as it can be.