If you decide you want to continue going to work—whether for personal or financial reasons, know that it is entirely possible to do so! These tips will teach you how to manage some possible discomforts during pregnancy so you are able to have the happiest and healthiest work experience possible:
Tip #1: Snack, Snack, Snack — and Drink H2O!
One of the most common side effects of pregnancy is morning sickness, characterized by nausea and vomiting. In fact, 80 percent of women experience morning sickness in the early stages of pregnancy. The best way to control these feelings of nausea is to snack regularly, particularly on foods heavy on carbohydrates, such as pasta, crackers, or rice. Also, stay hydrated! Many find that ginger ale alleviates nausea, but it may be best to stay away from the early-morning coffee. If possible, situate yourself away from anything that might trigger sickness, such as fatty foods or foul smells.
Tip #2: Take It Easy
Besides morning sickness, many women experience mild to extreme fatigue throughout their pregnancies. The easiest way to curb fatigue is to get at least eight hours of sleep per night. If this is not possible, cutting back on certain tiring activities, such as shopping and keeping up a regular exercise routine, can do the trick as well. Consider having heavy items like water and baby furniture delivered by family or friends. Furthermore, eat foods rich in iron and protein, and consider taking short walks around the office to keep your blood flowing.
Tip #3: Plan Wisely
Most employers are very accommodating when it comes to working while pregnant, but remember to be respectful of your boss’s time and expectations. Try to plan doctor’s appointments before or after work, or during your lunch break. Additionally, schedule appointments around your work calendar, so you do not have to miss a meeting or presentation. Most important, communicate with your employer, especially if there is a conflict between a doctor’s appointment and work.. Remember the saying, “Never surprise your boss.” Doing so will show your boss that you care about and are committed to your job and will make him or her more likely to grant you additional time off when needed throughout your pregnancy.
Tip #4: Prepare for Maternity Leave
When you tell your boss you are pregnant, he or she will assume that you will want to take maternity leave eventually, but it is still helpful to plan for your leave in advance. Work with your boss to schedule how long you will be gone, and be sure to ask about compensation or benefits. Your boss may also want you to help hire someone to take your place while you are on maternity leave. Remember that there is no right or wrong time to start your leave—only you know what is best for you and your family. To learn more about the dos and don’ts of maternity leave, click here.
Tip #5: Keep in Touch/Keep Your Boss and Co-Workers Informed
Most likely, your boss and co-workers will be supportive. Let them share in your joy by sharing images of your newborn and remember that thank-you notes are appreciated for baby showers, gifts, offers to baby-sit, and more.