An unplanned pregnancy can take a toll on your health because you are going through a range of emotions. You may have feelings of fear, insecurity, and frustration — all of which can lead to stress, and even depression. It will be a momentous moment in which you decide what your future, along with your child’s future will look like.
With that being said, it should not be a reason for you to neglect your health and well-being. In fact, it should encourage you to strive for a healthy lifestyle, whether you decide on adoption or not. If you are feeling overwhelmed, take a deep breath. You are not alone. Your adoption experts at Adoption Choices of New York will walk with you on this journey to help you explore all the available options and determine what is most suitable for your unique circumstances.
If you do indeed choose adoption, there are a lot of required steps when placing your baby. But, again, don’t worry. We are there with you. While you are deep in the adoption paperwork, don’t forget to take care of yourself and your baby. Here are some ways to stay healthy during an unplanned pregnancy.
Prepare Your Adoption Plan
Going through a pregnancy can already be extremely tiring and stressful. Experiencing any negative turbulence is dangerous for you and your baby. You can reduce that stress by building yourself an adoption plan. This will help you be fully prepared once the baby arrives. If you have already worked out a plan with your adoption experts, then you should sit back and relax. If you have not, don’t panic, there is still time. An adoption plan essentially details your decision, the type of adoption you will have (open adoption, semi-open adoption or closed adoption), who gets to be involved during your pregnancy, medical and living expenses, and your relationship with the adopted parents after the adoption has been processed.
Remember, you are not in this alone. Check our brochure or contact your adoption experts if you have any questions.
A Healthy Diet
Food is one of the best ways for your body to get the nutrients it needs. When you are carrying a baby, remember that the baby will also be receiving the nutrients you get. So choose wisely. Just because you’re eating for two doesn’t mean you should double your calorie intake. Ask your doctor what food you should stay away from, and what you should try to consume more of. According to dietitian nutritionist, Frances Largeman-Roth, “Folic acid is crucial for the proper development of the baby’s neural tube (it covers the spinal cord), and it’s vital for the creation of new red blood cells.” Folate rich foods include fortified cereals, asparagus, lentils, wheat germ, oranges, and orange juice.
Fruits are also great additions to your daily meals. They provide natural sugar that your body will need to stay healthy. Fish, high in Omega3, has also been shown to be critical in brain development. But be careful as some types of fish high in mercury content can be toxic to you and your baby. The FDA recommends that pregnant women eat around 12 ounces of fish per week. Along with eating right, make sure you keep yourself hydrated with 8 to 10 glasses of water a day.
Stay on Track With Appointments
Doctor appointments, and possibly childbirth classes, are necessary steps to stay healthy during an unplanned pregnancy. Your OBGYN will be one of the most useful resources during this journey for questions relating to the actual birth and how to make sure you and your baby are healthy on the way. Don’t feel shame in going to the doctors during an unwanted pregnancy. They want what’s best for you and your baby.
If you don’t feel quite comfortable yet, ask someone to go with you to the appointments (someone from Adoption Choices of New York would be happy to go with you if you want) or have them remind you of upcoming dates. Also, tell your doctor if anyone in your family has had trouble with past pregnancies or birth defects.
Say No to Chemicals
There’s a rule that says pregnant women should not drink or use any form of drugs. This is because there have been scientific links between usage of tobacco, alcohol and illegal drugs to birth defects, miscarriage, and other negative consequences. Exposure to everyday substances like nail polish remover can even be harmful. Try to remove those hazardous materials from the house and keep yourself away from any unsafe area, like smoke zones. If you don’t know what is considered harmful for your baby, check with your doctor or adoption experts.
Say Yes to Prenatal Care
On the other end of the spectrum, you may want to take prenatal supplements to boost your health. According to Planned Parenthood, “Prenatal vitamins are supplements that contain daily vitamins and minerals you need before and during your pregnancy.” When deciding what to buy, look for one that contains folic acid, iron, calcium, vitamin D, and iodine. These are just some of the main nutrients you and your baby will need to remain healthy. Consult your doctor on what is the best prenatal brand for you.
Don’t Keep it All to Yourself
This might seem out of place, but building up your emotions is unsafe in any scenario. There needs to be a way for you to release any troubling thoughts or confusion. Whether it’s talking to a friend, spending time with your family, or seeking professional guidance and counseling, you need a way to escape the negativity. Even if you don’t feel troubled by your unplanned pregnancy, it doesn’t hurt to share positive emotions with another person. You are not alone, this is part of life. If you need help reaching out to support groups, your adoption experts will connect you to the appropriate resources.
Stay Healthy and have Peace of Mind
We understand that the timing of things is sometimes not ideal, and we are here to help alleviate even just a small part of your stress. It is so crucial for you to stay healthy during an unplanned pregnancy. Think of it as doing yourself a favor. And if you are thinking about adoption, think of the baby as a blessing for another hopeful family. You are providing a miracle.
Adoption Choices of New York
For more information on adoption or if you are currently in the process of adopting a baby and have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact, Adoption Choices of New York.
Support Adoption Choices
Adoption Choices, Inc. is partnering with Crowdrise, a fundraising website for nonprofits, to help our adoptive parents and birth parents with much needed financial assistance. We understand that expenses keep clients from fulfilling their dreams. Both with birth parents making a plan for adoption, and with adoptive parents growing their family. It is our mission to provide financial assistance through grants and scholarships, awarded annually in November, in honor of National Adoption Month. Funds assist adoptive parents with matching and placements, adoption finalization and helping birth mothers improve their lives through higher education — and much more.
However, we can’t do it alone. Please read up on our programs and donate money where you are able. Your donation will make a huge impact.
About the Author
Lisa Truong is an undergraduate journalism major at the University of Denver. She is minoring in writing and Chemistry. She has been commended by professors for her news stories as well as creative writing.
During her freshman year, her essay “See Ya on the Other Side” was displayed at a writing exhibition sponsored by the University of Denver. That essay later went on to be published in Many Voices One DU, a book also sponsored by the university.
Lisa frequently volunteers to be a leader at the Daniels School of Business for their quarterly Ethics Boot Camp where students learn about the importance of character in business. In her free time, Lisa enjoys watching animated movies with her mother, listening to music, going for bike rides, and eating breakfast food.
“23 Tips for a Healthy Pregnancy.” Parents. Accessed November 1, 2019. https://www.parents.com/pregnancy/my-body/pregnancy-health/healthy-pregnancy-tips/.
Adoption Choices of Colorado Team. “How to Have a Healthy Unplanned Pregnancy Before Adoption.” Adoption Choices of Colorado, February 10, 2018. https://www.adoptionchoices.org/unplanned-pregnancy-healthy-pregnancy-adoption/.
Parenthood, Planned. “What Are Prenatal Vitamins?: Which to Take Before Pregnancy.” Planned Parenthood. Accessed November 1, 2019. https://www.plannedparenthood.org/learn/pregnancy/pre-pregnancy-health/what-are-prenatal-vitamins.