Let’s face it: Pregnancy on a perfectly balmy day can be downright uncomfortable. Add to that ice-cold temperatures, biting winds, and a roaring furnace, and you have the makings of a pregnancy nightmare. Here’s how to ensure you have the happiest, safest, and most comfortable winter of your life—baby bump and all.
Take the worry out of a trip outside by investing in some heavy-duty snow boots. Choosing a pair with adequate traction ensures you can weather the ice and snow without panicking about about your footing. Can’t bear to spring for a fancy pair of boots? No worries. Instead, pick up a pair of traction cleats from outdoorsy stores such as LL Bean and Eddie Bauer. These steel-studded contraptions (running about $15) strap on to the bottom of your shoes to give you stabilization—and peace of mind—or inclement weather.
Read more: How to stay active during a winter pregnancy
Crank up the humidifier
Pregnancy has a special way of zapping our skin of its natural moisture. With icy temps outside, blasting the heat in your house or apartment only makes the problem worse. Combat dry air by setting up a humidifier in your bedroom. Run it every night and you’ll not only breathe easier, but you’ll have softer, more supple skin too. Just be sure to change the water daily and disinfect your machine with vinegar once a week. One thing you absolutely don’t need this winter is to introduce a host of unfriendly bacteria into your bedroom.
Trick your brain
Even if you’ve never struggled with anxiety or depression before, your fluctuating hormones during pregnancy may find you feeling bluer than usual. Dark, short, and gloomy winter days certainly won’t help your situation. If you’re feeling down in the dumps or on-edge lately, consider purchasing a sunlight lamp. These specially made, full spectrum lights mimic daylight and may boost serotonin and help ease your mind.
If you’re looking for an even cheaper way to soak up some warm weather, seek out a conservatory near you. Many cities have free admittance to their conservatories—large greenhouses filled to the brim with tropical plants and beautiful flowers. Leave your coat in the car and stroll the wonderfully warm, humid rooms while you take in the rainbow-colored blooms and pretend it’s springtime.
A regular fitness routine during pregnancy can not only help stave off extra weight gain, but it can also mean a healthier baby. Talk to your health care provider about introducing gentle exercise such as walking or yoga into your lifestyle. If you have trouble staying on track, consider joining a prenatal fitness class—or bringing in some buddies to keep you accountable.
Now it’s your turn: How are you weathering the winter with a baby on the way? If you have any helpful tips to share, leave them for other moms-to-be in the comments below.