If you watch a movie or read many of the pregnancy hand books available on the market, you will see that experts will tell you that early signs of labor include increasing contractions, a show, or your water breaking, but there is a sure sign that few first time mothers link to labor – the nesting instinct.
The third trimester and early labor signs – What is the nesting instinct?
The nesting instinct is one sure fire sign that you are due to give birth in a matter of few weeks, maybe days. Here’s what it is….
Many of us have watched documentaries of animals preparing their nest for their offspring, but few first time mums are aware that their sudden urge to sterilize the house or clean the tile grout with a tooth brush is linked to their pregnancy.
During the second trimester the mother will feel an urge to start preparing for her baby. If you ever entered a baby store and felt like buying everything on the shelf, you know what I am talking about.
In the third trimester, the urge to prepare the house increases and rather than focusing just on clothing and baby gear, the expectant mother will have a sudden boost of energy and a very strong urge to clean the house, prepare the baby clothes and see to it that even the slightest detail is ready for the impending arrival of her child.
Even if the nesting instinct is relatively harmless (except for your wallet) and it is funny to watch first time parents fussing over baby gear, there are also hazards associated with this condition that the expectant parents should keep in mind.
The third trimester and early labor signs – Stress
Decking up a nursery, buying baby clothes and choosing all the baby stuff should be a fun process, but in a time of financial constraints not everyone can give their newborn all the fancy gadgets out there. Overdoing and overspending can result in a situation where the parents feel they are failing their child because they are not in a financial position to cope with the expenses.
Tip: Though the basic requirements for the new arrival should be met, the most advisable thing to do at this stage is to get back in control of your emotions. For example, if there is something holding you from finishing your nursery in time, Baby can sleep or co-sleep with her parents until the new room is ready. If the expenses get too overwhelming – try browsing a second hand store or an online market like e-bay for a bargain crib or baby changer.
The third trimester and early labor signs – Heavy lifting
When you are hit by a sudden urge to do a thorough spring clean,( even though you happen to be in mid October), it is easy to overdo things, lift stuff which is too heavy for you to carry or climb on leaders when your balance is more precarious thanks to the big bulge on your stomach. A pulled muscle or a fall from a tall leader can have very serious repercussions when your pregnancy is advanced.
Tip: If you feel the need to clean up the house, ask for someone to help you out. It could be your partner, your sister or your friend, but the idea is to prevent you from getting so engrossed with the cleaning and re- decorating that you put yourself or your baby in danger because you overdo it.
The third trimester and early labor signs – Chemical hazards in paint
Painting a nursery or sprucing up a bedroom is an easy way to give a fresh touch to your house, especially if you are on a budget, but there are serious hazards associated with paint during pregnancy. Pregnant mothers should stay away from the lead paint in old houses (or old furniture) and the strong smell of fresh paint, (even eco friendly or soy based paint) can be too much for you.
Tip: As a rule of thumb let someone else do the painting, or if you feel you can take the smell, see to it that the place is well ventilated and do not sleep close to a freshly painted room. If you doubt you are coming in contact with lead based paint, stop what you are doing immediately and contact a technician to take care of the problem.
The third trimester and early labor signs – Toxic cleaning products
The strong smell of bleach and ammonia are especially harmful to your system when you are pregnant, and many mothers to be are put off by the strong smell, but other cleaning agents can be harmful too even though the smell is not as pungent. In addition strong cleaning agents can cause dermatitis if they come in contact with your skin.
Even if you are used to cleaning with strong products, your system becomes more sensitive when you are pregnant so it is best to use milder products and go for eco friendly labels, like 7th generation, that still give good results.
Tip: Remember to always wear gloves when cleaning. If your skin starts to itch or become red, wash under cold water and stop using the product. If the problem persists consult your doctor.
A final tip – Use common sense as always
Mold, rot and animal dung are the biggest no no when you are pregnant, so don’t plan to scout for a heirloom crib in your grandma’s dusty attic or your aunt’s basement. Try to avoid places where you come in contact with excessive dust or dirt, as this can have very harmful consequences, especially during early pregnancy.