The Little-Known Benefits of Pregnancy
We're all familiar with the negative aspects of pregnancy: stretch marks, morning sickness, discomfort, complications, and risks. But what about the positives of pregnancy? Despite the bad rep the experience of pregnancy seems to get, most women report a positive pregnancy experience. Here are some of the little discussed reasons why pregnancy is a positive experience.
Stellar Pregnany Sex
During the second semester, there's an increased blood flow to the pelvic area, making your genitals a lot more sensitive. This, for many, means greater sensitivity during sex and a higher likelihood of orgasm. Some women even experience their first orgasm during pregnancy, and some even start to have multiple orgasms. Pregnancy hormones and androgens also kick in to heat up your libido and make you feel sexier. During the first trimester you may feel too nauseous and fatigued, and during the thirds trimester you may feel too bulky and uncomfortable to really feel the libido change, but during your second semester watch out! Make sure to take this special time to reconnect with your partner before baby comes. Even if you're not up for sex, create intimacy by asking your partner to rub your back, neck, shoulders, or feet, or have a warm bath together. When the mood is right, don't worry about sex during pregnancy hurting the baby - it won't. Unless you have a complicated pregnancy, you can have sex up until delivery time.
Menstrual Cramps Be GoneAn end to pregnancy means a start to menstrual periods again, but there's often a welcome change. Many women find that after pregnancy their menstrual cramps are mush less severe or they even disappear all together. Scientists think that childbirth may eliminate some of the prostaglandin receptor sites in the uterus. Prostaglandins are the hormones that cause the uterus to contract and they play a role in menstrual pain. Fewer receptor sites means fewer cramps.
Healthful Pregnacy HabitsPregnancy is a great motivator for healthy diet and lifestyle changes, since mom knows that what she puts in her body she's also exposing her baby to. Experts say pregnancy is one of the strongest inspirations for quitting smoking and getting fresh air and exercise. New health and eating habits also last past the pregnancy, creating a healthier lifestyle for you and your family.
Heightened Pregnancy SensesYour sense of taste and smell increase during pregnancy. The same mechanism that makes you nauseous and morning sick in early pregnancy is what makes food seem especially appetizing and flavorful later on. Experts say that the phenomenon may have a protective effect for the baby; Mom's sensitive nose steers her towards foods good for Baby and away from foods and environments (like tainted foods and cigarette smoke) that are harmful to Baby. The "radar nose" is likely from high levels of estrogen during pregnancy.
Cancer Risk DecreaseIt's been well documented that pregnancy produces a protective effect against breast and ovarian cancers. Studies have confirmed that the more pregnancies you go through, and the younger you start having children, the more your risk is reduced. We aren't sure why quite yet, but there are a number of theories. One possibility is that women who ovulate less over a lifetime are at a lower risk of ovarian cancer than those who ovulate more (ovulation stops during pregnancy - that's nine fewer ovulations for every pregnancy). Some experts say that breastfeeding is the key to the breast cancer shield offered by pregnancy, even though those that don't breastfeed get the same hormonal stimulation of their breast tissue as those who do.
Soaring ConfidencePregnancy is the ultimate do-it-yourself project, so it's no surprise that it can also be a major confidence builder - after all, look what you can make! Women with low-risk pregnancies realize they can still do lots of activities, even with extra stress on their bodies. Women also gain a new-found sense of strength and resiliency after labor and childbirth. And you're less likely to worry about the little things when you realize that you're actually creating a new person and delivering her into the world. You've experienced the phenomena of creation that connects you to past and future generations.