Stress and pregnancy

  1. Hi ladies,
    I would love to hear your tips. I am in the business world and I feel constantly under stress w/ deadlines, office politics, new initiatives etc.....I am trying not to let it impact me b/c I have read so many articles about stress leading to miscarriages. How did you keep your stress levels at bay when you were preggers?
  2. I had high levels of stree with both pregnancies which led to elevated blood pressure. For me all it took was a notice from my Dr. that she was going to put me on Bed Rest to force me to make changes...and that's when I started buying bags...but seriously walking helped, foot massages from my husband, reading, and just a constant reminder to myself that baby had to come first.
  3. High levels of stress can really impact your pregnancy! I'm glad you are trying to alleviate the stress early on. Try meditating- if that seems too silly for you, just take 15 min to do absolutely nothing with your eyes closed. No reading, exercising, cooking, watching tv, etc. It really helps to restore calm in your life.

    I was under insanely high levels of stress (unpreventable) when I was pregnant with my son, and I gave birth at 29 weeks. Our doctors said that there is a correlation between miscarriages and premature births and high levels of stress. Low-moderate stress isn't so bad, but high levels need to be brought down.
  4. I was under tons of stress at work, and after much discussion and analysis, we decided it was best to walk away. I was 24 weeks pregnant, and after suffering a major loss twice, I wasn't taking any chances. After being home, my appetite is better, no headaches, no swelling, and no stomach issues. If you can do it, I'd do it for the health of you and baby.
  5. I think it depends how you, personally, are feeling with the stress and what it's doing to you physically. I had a little bit of the opposite experience, where the pregnancy helped me keep the work stress in perspective and made things that would normally keep me up grinding my teeth seem less important.

    I work for a company going through a major reorganization and centralization effort. My organization is on the losing side of the power struggle, to a large extent. Almost all of our management team has been axed, and I hear of people I know being let go pretty much every week. I ended up in a new position with my old boss, so I think things look a bit better now, but I was really nervous early in my second trimester. I'd been moved into an team run totally by another group, and things did not look good.

    However, I have a high-risk pregnancy because I have an auto-immune disease -- for the sake of pregnancy it's the same problems as lupus. One of the issues is potential fetal heart block, which keeps the baby's heart from beating properly and can require a defibrillator implant. I was starting screening for this at the time that the rumor mill was really going wild at work and everyone was most stressed about things, and I had my amnio right around this time as well and was irrationally worried about that as well. I found that I was so much more worried about the baby and what might be wrong with him, and that was so much more important to me than my (in comparison) stupid job, that it helped me keep it in perspective. I remember saying to one of my colleagues when she was flipping out that I could only stress about one thing at a time, and it wasn't work right then. Things now look great so far w/baby, and I'm past the highest-risk period for his heart, so now I just focus on being so grateful that it looks like I'll have a healthy baby that it also makes the work stuff less consequential.

    There are definitely still days that I get stressed out (I know seven people who were let go last week, so that was a bummer), but I think that overall, it's much less than I used to get when I wasn't pregnant, since baby is more important -- and, to be honest, because half the time I'm too tired to put the effort into worrying about it that I would have in the past. I didn't make myself work late, I didn't kill myself over making an impression, I just did what I had to do for me & the baby.
  6. Yeah stress is a bad thing. I would say take lots of baths and/or showers. Try to lay down/sit down and do nothing for at least an hour a day. Also, try napping, and taking short walks. Reading up on pregnancy helps take away stress for me too, just lay down on your left side and read mommy to be books! Good luck with your pregnancy!
  7. First off...congrats!
    Next...echoing what everyone here has already said re: stress being a not good thing.... BP issues really can complicate a pregnancy; been there in a big way!!

    Find whatever works for you that helps you relax and commit to dedicating time and energy to that for yourself and your baby - and be OK with that. Maybe it's prenatal massage, maybe it's a calm walk somewhere, maybe it's reading indulgent books or magazine, maybe it's a hobby or journaling. Whatever you feel helps bring that level down where you can breath and just feel safe and at peace.

    And a biggie...if you can cut yourself a break and not buy into the 'guilt' that often comes with feeling like you need to step back and spend energy and time taking better care of yourself, you'll be way ahead of the game!! When it comes right down to it, there is little else that is more important than taking care of yourself and your baby-to-be.
    good luck.......!
  8. This is interesting -- I was looking at an article from Parenting that another member posted a link to (in the heartburn & baby hair thread.) It says that moderate stress won't negatively affect the baby, and that cortisol may actually help brain development.,19840,1640671,00.html
    True or false? If you're stressed out during pregnancy, it'll hurt your baby.
    False. There's no medical connection between everyday worries — too many tasks to juggle, say, or a disagreement with your mate — and giving birth to an unhealthy baby. One study even suggests that cortisol, a hormone released when you're stressed, may actually help your child's brain development. So relax: It's normal to have some anxiety during pregnancy, and you don't have to feel guilty about it.
  9. kimberf-Thank you for the article. That definitely helped to put my mind at ease.