This is a guest post by Brittany Smith.
“OUCHHHHH!”, I exclaimed as I sat up suffering in pain. It was 2:00 A.M. and I was awakened out of my deep sleep at 23 weeks pregnant. I was experiencing a “Charlie horse” cramp for the first time. I had no idea why this was happening and admittedly a little terrified. The pain eventually subsided after 10 minutes or so. Thankfully, I happened to have a doctors’ appointment that week and brought it up during my visit.
The doctor asked me a battery of questions like: “are you taking your prenatal vitamins? How’s your diet? Is it consisting of mainly fruits and vegetables?”.
‘Yes,’ I said.
The doctor checked for blood clots and asked about my physical activity and we determined those weren’t influencing the cramps I had three times in that same week.
Then, he finally asked “how much water are you drinking a day?”.
I said, ‘Well, I only drink water. That is the only liquid I can manage to hold down so far.’
However, I learned I was not drinking enough water! I began to see how many of my symptoms, like bad muscle cramps, were related to dehydration.
Drinking water throughout the day is a great practice for everyone. While pregnant, it’s even more important since you are drinking for two! Water consumption is key to the development of your little one. It’s been amazing to see how upping the amount of water I’d drink everyday made a difference in my nausea, muscle aches, and blood pressure levels. By simply drinking more water – 10 to 12 cups a day – my symptoms are at a minimum, making me one happy mama-to-be.
I will admit that I was not the greatest at carrying my water bottle at first, but that has changed. I learned that if I were to continue being dehydrated it could possibly cause contractions which could lead to a preterm labor. I know all parents-to-be have a goal of a healthy baby and healthy pregnancy/ delivery. Who knew how much water played a part in that? I heart water and soon enough my baby girl will, too!
Happy Holidays, take care, and most importantly…stay hydrated 🙂