Sometimes, a woman goes through pregnancy and labor, having a number of surprises on the way. When she's expecting, she notices that she suddenly has heartburn. Or her sense of smell becomes way too keen. Or she sweats like crazy. When she's giving birth, it turns out that movies are lying to us and delivery takes hours instead of minutes. And after she's delivered a baby, she realizes that breastfeeding is painful and her lady parts are never going back to the "normal" normal.
All these surprises could've been avoided if only hospital staff shared more information with pregnant women. If only they told us about everything that's common for pregnancy and childbirth, our experience would be less worrisome. So let's see what they're hiding from us to get more prepared!
20 The Girls Will Feel So Different
Did you know that sore breasts are one of the first symptoms of pregnancy? Well, according to Scary Mommy, it is. It happens because your body is getting ready for milk production. Extra flow comes to your girls and fat production also increases. It doesn't only make your rack look awesome, but it also contributes to tender tatas. You'll feel it especially well in the first few weeks.
19 And They Will Also Look Completely Different
Say bye-bye to your good-ol' nip-nips, at least to the way you're used to seeing them. We mean that your caps might protrude, while your areolas will probably look darker. A mom from Scary Mommy says that they will also get larger and small sweat glands around it will jack up to create lubrication for the area when you breastfeed. Again, it all happens because your body is getting ready for milk production.
18 The Toilet Isn't Your Friend Anymore
When you're pregnant, don't be surprised if you're constipated. According to Baby Gaga, it happens because you have extra progesterone production that aims to relax your uterus muscles and prevent early contractions, at the same time relaxing all your other muscles, too, and making it hard to do number 2. To prevent the problem, drink enough water, eat small fiber-rich meals, and move more.
17 Nasal Congestion? It's Actually Typical
Scarry Mommy says that it's common for some women to have their nose congested during pregnancy. It happens as a result of estrogen production. It may swell up the mucous membranes in your nose, which obviously leads to congestion and, in some cases, to nosebleeds. Although it's already uncomfortable by itself, it might also result in snoring. Ugh, as if everything else isn't enough...
16 Get Ready For Some Extra Saliva!
It's unclear why exactly extra saliva is common for moms-to-be, but Scary Mommy suggests that hormones are the cause, just like with most other pregnancy-related issues. Another reason why you might be salivating like crazy is nausea (which is also common for pregnant women). Typically, extra saliva is the body's warning mechanism that lets you know that you will barf soon.
15 The Whole Pushing Thing Can Last For Ages
In TV shows and movies they show us that a woman comes to a hospital with contractions and - bam! - she has a baby. In real life, it doesn't happen this way and it's much (and we mean much) more likely that you'll have to push for hours. "It can be an hour, two hours, three hours," said Jessica Anderson, a certified nurse-midwife from the University of Colorado Hospital. "I don't think women realize that pushing can be lengthy, especially with the first baby, and that's normal. That's OK."
14 You're Turning Into A Sniffer Dog
Sometimes, during pregnancy, it may seem that you can smell fish that is kept inside the fridge in your neighbor's house. And more often, you might be dying to tell your co-worker that their cologne should be called Repulsion 3000. Again, according to Baby Gaga, it's all caused by extra production of the hormone named estrogen and it can actually make your morning sickness stronger.
13 Peeing Your Panties Like A Little Girl
During pregnancy, women have to pee a lot and this is a pretty well-known fact. What most women don't know is that they will also have worse control over their bladder. The thing is, your bladder is located right under your uterus and it can't always handle the pressure, especially when your baby gets bigger. To have better control and avoid wetting your pants, try Kegel exercises. A mom from Scary Mommy says that they can actually make your life easier in many other ways, too.
12 C-Section Means Catheter. Always
Whenever a woman has a C-section (planned or emergency), she will have a catheter put in her bladder. According to HuffPost Life, it's done to keep it empty and clear of the surgical area. Besides, it's there to keep you from getting up and having to go to the bathroom during the first night after the procedure. You won't be willing to do it after having anesthesia, after all.
11 You Can Have Heartburn (And It Won't Mean A Hairy Baby)
Despite the old wives' tale that tells you that heartburn means you'll have a hairy baby, the reason for it is completely different. Again, progesterone is, in fact, to blame here. Scary Mommy says that this hormone relaxes a muscle called the lower esophageal sphincter that makes stomach acid go back up. And it all results in heartburn.
10 Sometimes, The Epidural Doesn't Work. Yeah, Really
Yikes! It turns out, there are cases where epidural doesn't relieve the pain. According to HuffPost Life, it might happen if your dural sac was injured in a way due to surgery or infection you had in the past. And it can also happen due to the so-called "individual woman's anatomy". In the latter case, the medicine just doesn't spread and sometimes the woman doesn't even feel like she had the shot.
9 Feeding The Baby For The First Time Can Hurt
It doesn't always happen, but some women feel pain while breastfeeding, at least in the beginning. According to nurse Jessica Anderson, some birth experts don't tell their patients about it and, as a result, women think that they're bad mothers because they can't blissfully nurse their babies right away. But, in fact, it's common to experience pain while breastfeeding and new moms just need to know how to deal with it.
8 Your Body Will Fire Up On All Engines
All the pregnancy-related hormones are being produced and the metabolism changes... and it all leads to sweat, Scary Mommy says. To a lot of sweat. Maybe this is what some people call the "pregnancy glow"... Is it just the internal furnace overdrive that makes you all wet and "glowy"? Whatever it is, prepare to sweat a lot during pregnancy.
7 Who Let The Gas Out?
Like we said earlier, progesterone helps relax all the muscles. A mom from Scary Mommy reports that it means that you might experience one more side effect of pregnancy. Gas. See, your gastrointestinal muscles also relax, your digestion slows down, and it leads to the formation of gas. So be prepared and warn your family members about it. You know, they should also be ready for it.
6 Number Two During Labor Is More Typical Than You Think
Right, during pregnancy you're constipated, but while you're trying to deliver your baby, you will poop. In front of everyone who's there with you - doctors, nurses, the baby's dad... whatever. It might make you scared as heck, but it's actually normal. Dr. Shieva Ghofrany, an OBGYN with Stamford Hospital, tells her patients, "If you poop, you're doing the right thing!" And she emphasizes that hospital staff couldn't care less about it. You're delivering, after all, and it's a miracle!
5 Get That Dental Check-Up Already!
Agh, this progesterone again... Another thing it does is making your gums bleed. According to Scary Mommy, it's a common side effect of pregnancy, so if you experience it, it shouldn't make you worried. To avoid worsening the issue, don't eat a lot of sweets and visit your dentist on a regular basis while you're pregnant. And if you have morning sickness, be sure to rinse your mouth with water every time after you barf.
4 They Said There Would Be Glowing...
We've already discussed that the so-called glow might just be the sweat your body produces during pregnancy. But it won't be the only issue. Scary Mommy says that you can also notice that your skin looks different. You'll probably have acne, your freckles might become darker, and you'll most likely have that line running down your stomach that's called the linea negra. Thank you, pregnancy!
3 You Think Everything Down There Will Get Back To Normal?
After you give birth (provided you didn't have C-section), your lady parts change forever. "Typically, they go back to normal, but it's a 'new normal'," nurse Jessica Anderson says. So don't be surprised when you notice that it looks or feels different down there. Just get used to it. It's a new normal for you now.
2 No Food For Ya!
According to HuffPost Life, all hospitals, birth centers, and midwives have their own set of rules for women, but most of them won't allow you to eat during labor. If this is the case in your hospital, you'll have to limit yourself to clear liquids or ice chips. But don't worry, probably you won't even be hungry in the process because of all the hormones that are boosted during childbirth.
1 You'll Feel Like It's An Effing Marathon
Everyone can guess that childbirth is tiring, but few women realize how tiring it actually is. HuffPost Life says that in most cases, they aren't even prepared for how they will feel when it's all over. Women are often already exhausted in the final weeks of pregnancy due to the lack of sleep and due to having to carry around all this extra weight. And after labor, it all only gets worse... But don't worry, it'll all be fine because you've just become a mama to a brand new human being!
Sources: HuffPost Life, Scary Mommy