Exercise during pregnancy

Exercise is important for the health of you and your unborn child. And yet it is thought that as many as three quarters of pregnant women don’t do enough physical activity. As long as the exercise you are doing is gentle and safe, it can be hugely beneficial throughout pregnancy and beyond. See below for our guide to staying active and fit before the baby arrives.

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Flying during pregnancy

If your pregnancy isn’t at risk of complications and you are generally healthy, then it is safe to travel by plane. Flying is not harmful to you or your baby as long as you have discussed your plans with your midwife or doctor before taking off. But there are some things to consider if you are pregnant and thinking of travelling by air. See our top tips for expectant travellers below.

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Travelling during pregnancy

As long as your pregnancy is healthy and you take the right precautions, it is safe for you to travel with a bump. Do speak to your GP before you go, and make sure you’re covered for all eventualities when pregnant and not close to home. See below for Brown Bear’s top tips for making your journeying comfortable and safe. Au revoir!

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Unconventional baby showers

Baby showers are changing, with many no longer fitting the traditional girls-only event filled with presents and baby-themed games. You might not like the idea of the spotlight being on you and your baby, or you might not feel the need for gifts, but a shower is still a nice opportunity to get together with your friends. See below for our favourite ideas for untraditional showers, all of which are easy to host.

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The best books about motherhood

It is surprisingly hard to find fiction about mums. Mothers feature in books, yet they don’t often take centre stage. Perhaps this is because the bond that mothers share with their children isn’t straightforward. It’s difficult to pull a plot out of a relationship so multi-faceted and which runs so deep. Perhaps also the experience is considered too commonplace to be able to say something new. And yet, reading about fictional mums is a great way to understand other families and to work through any anxieties you have. We’ve selected five of our favourite portraits of motherhood, all of which make for exceptional reads.

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Pregnancy dos and don’ts: lifestyle

What you can and can’t do during pregnancy can be baffling. You can exercise, but you can’t wear heels. You can have a bath, but you can’t sit in a sauna. It is important that you’re aware of the reasons behind these pieces of advice. See below for our top ten lifestyle dos and don’ts to bear in mind when you’re expecting your child.

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Pregnancy dos and don’ts: food and drink

What you can and can’t eat during pregnancy can be confusing. While some recommendations highlight foodstuffs that can cause damage to your unborn child, others work on the basis that a healthy diet during pregnancy will give your baby the best possible start. As an expectant mother, you are the single source of nutrition for your child. It is important to think about what you eat – you need a variety of different foods every day to get the balance of nutrition you need. See below for our top ten dos and don’ts when it comes to eating for your baby and you.

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Packing your hospital bag

Packing your hospital bag is an essential task in the final weeks of pregnancy. You’ll need to gather all of the things you think you’ll need for labour and delivery, as well as for after the birth. It is worth having this ready a good few weeks before your due date, just in case – the advice is to start preparing it up to eight weeks in advance. See below for Brown Bear’s list of the items you’ll want in your bag.

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Pregnancy dreams

Mothers-to-be often dream more vividly than they did before they became pregnant. Anxiety-based dreams are common, as is the feeling of dreaming more frequently at night. The events and colours of the dream world are remembered with more clarity too. Why does this happen before the baby arrives, and what might your imaginings mean?

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