My third baby "dropped" into my pelvis at roughly 30 weeks. This resulted in a great deal of pelvic pain and discomfort, but also a warning to "stay off my feet" from my midwife. This wasn't being put on bed rest per say, but basically the same thing. Being that this is my third pregnancy, I have two existing toddlers and a house to care for. This left me with one solid predicament; how can I get off my feet to avoid preterm labor, and still take care of my kids and housework at the same time? I came up with a few nifty solutions I'd like to share with other expecting pregnant mothers who find themselves in the same situation.
I found likely the most effective method was to alternate my daily tasks. I'd do something that required standing, like the dishes, and then find something that could be done sitting, like reading the kids a story. In my case, the issue is that when standing, the weight of the baby would press on my cervix causing pain, but also dilation, which could lead to an early labor. By limiting the amount of time standing to short-bursts followed by periods of sitting or lying down, that effect was limited as much as possible for a busy mom.
Now, then I began to find that I had more situations that required standing than sitting and things were just not balancing out. This is where altering everyday tasks to be done sitting came in to help me get off my feet. For example, usually when I pick up the toys to vacuum, I walk around and pick them all up. I found it was just as easy to sit on the floor and scoot about if needed, though as generally my toddlers like to just dump toy bins, they are already in a concentrated area. Many household tasks can be turned into sit-down activities, like laundry folding and cooking simply by adding a high stool next to a counter.
Ask for Assistance
Finally, it may seem like a no-brainer to ask for help when you've been told to stay off your feet or put on bed rest while pregnant, but if you're like me with a slightly overly independent personality type, that just doesn't come natural. I don't like to be dependent on others or inconvenience others. Even when people would ask me if I needed help, I found myself politely telling them,"no," and that wasn't the truth. Disobeying my midwives suggestion to get off my feet was causing me pain which was making me quite the grump, but it was also not medically safe. If you find yourself pregnant and on bed rest or in a situation similar to mine, remember that you're not just being "lazy," you're doing the right thing for your baby and there is no shame in that or asking for help.
I'm currently 34 weeks and still pregnant, so thus far my methods have been successful at preventing premature labor.
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