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12 Summer Pregnancy Tips To Help You Beat The Beat

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Summertime is here, and with it comes the heat and humidity. For pregnant women, this can be a difficult time. Here are some tips to help you stay comfortable during your summer pregnancy.

These simple ideas will help you stay cool on the hottest summer days when pregnant, to make your expectant journey far more enjoyable!

Tips for Surviving summer pregnancy

My first daughter was born 3 days into summer but we live in Queensland, Australia, which means the heat arrives well before summer does. My final week of work was spent with the cankles from hell and that was only spring.

The second time around, I got to experience the whole summer while pregnant but at least it was during my not-so-difficult 2nd trimester.

The Risks Of Summer Heat During Pregnancy

A summer pregnancy is not without its risks. In fact, pregnant women are more susceptible to heat-related illnesses such as dehydration and heat exhaustion, especially if spending time in direct sunlight.

Dehydration is a real concern for all of us in the summer, but especially for pregnant women. The growing baby takes up a lot of space in the womb and puts pressure on the mother’s organs, including the bladder.

This can lead to more trips to the toilet and increased urine output, which can in turn lead to dehydration if not enough fluids are replaced.

Another risk of summer pregnancy is heat exhaustion, which can occur when the body’s temperature rises too high. Symptoms include heavy sweating, weakness, fainting, dizziness and headache.

If you experience any of these, it’s important to get out of the heat and into a cool environment as soon as possible to reduce your body temperature. You should also seek medical assistance if you feel unwell.

Summer Pregnancy Tips For Getting You Through the Heat

Being pregnant can be hard at the best of times but when it’s the middle of summer, it’s MUCH worse! Especially in your third trimester, creeping slowly towards your due date!

Don’t get me wrong, there is no greater joy than growing the life you created.

Pregnancy is magical and amazing and so many good things. But it doesn’t mean you don’t want to stay comfortable during a summer pregnancy.

So let’s embrace these summer pregnancy tips so you can enjoy being pregnant in summer!

pregnant woman at beach

1. WEAR COMFORTABLE, BREATHABLE CLOTHING

First things first, get yourself some comfortable pregnancy clothes or loose-fitting outfits. Cotton is a great option when looking for breathable fabrics that will help keep your body temperature down.

Also, avoid dark colours as they will absorb more heat.

Choose comfortable shoes too. I tend to live in my thongs (that’s a flip flop for those of you not here in Australia… not skimpy undies).

They may not be ideal, as supportive shoes are best during pregnancy so find yourself something supportive and cool.

I have since discovered the most AMAZING comfy flip flops – Sanuk Yoga Sling, with soles made from yoga mat material. I wish I had these when I was pregnant! I pretty much live in them day to day, doing all the usual mum life things and even when we travel!

They are the best shoes for summer pregnancy if you want a nicely padded shoe that will keep your toes cool.

Otherwise breathable clothes such as cotton maxi dresses, loose t-shirts, summer maternity shorts… like these awesome stretchy waist ones that will become your go-to for clothing comfort. Keep it light and breathable.

2. HOW TO COOL DOWN WHILE PREGNANT

Did you know that when you are pregnant, your body temperature is higher than average? This means you have an even harder time keeping cool than everyone else.

Air conditioning can be your best friend, but not everyone has it. It can also be a really big increase to your household expenses.

There is no doubt air conditioning does wonders for getting you through summer pregnancies.

However, a good pedestal fan can make a big difference too.

Cold showers, ice packs, swimming, a spritz of water on your face, or a wet washcloth on your forehead will all help keep your temperature down.

Use what means you have to stay cool while pregnant.

pregnant woman with bowl of salad

3. EAT HEALTHY FOODS

When you eat healthy foods, you feel better physically which will also help with your general wellness during pregnancy.

Load up your meal plan with lots of green leafy vegetables and increase your protein level with healthy foods.

Avoid eating too many spicy foods as these will make you feel hotter and possibly upset your stomach during pregnancy.

Frozen treats of any kind really are a great addition to your freezer during summer. Fruity ice blocks. Freshly made smoothies with crushed ice. Ice cream in moderation.

Or these days technology is on our side, as a frozen dessert maker pretty much means you can have your frozen treats at home and know exactly what is going into them.

This is super important when you are trying to load your body up on great nutrients in between the crazy cravings!

Anything that cools you from the inside out is a winner, particularly if you can load it up with extra folate and iron as well, to ensure you are eating well while pregnant.

4. ASK FOR HELP

Don’t push yourself to do everything you normally do. No one expects it.

If that means asking hubby to hang the washing on the line on a hot day, or having your mum drop by the post office for you to run your errands, chances are they are all happy to oblige.

Ask for help and do not feel guilty about it.

You would do it for them if they needed it, which means there is no reason not to ask for help when you need it! And if there’s no one you know who can help, consider calling in the experts.

There are services available for pretty much anything these days – washing, ironing, gardening, cleaning, mowing, cooking, and babysitting. Outsource whatever is within your budget!

If it’s not in your budget, utilise friends and family to reduce your personal load.

If you have other children, don’t underestimate how much they can help with too. Most younger children love the feeling of importance they get by helping out mum or dad with a job, and teaching them responsibility now will help you when their new sibling arrives.

5. AVOID DIRECT SUNLIGHT

There are always risks with being pregnant in the heat, even if you stay indoors. But as long as you take precautions and listen to your body, you will be fine!

Making sure not to spend too long in the direct sun is one of the simplest and most effective ways to avoid overheating. If you must be out in the sun’s rays, make sure to take breaks in the shade to reduce your sun exposure and drink plenty of water.

surviving summer pregnancy

6. ENJOY TIME IN THE WATER

Don’t have a pool? Me either. Unless you count the inflatable dinosaur adventure land that is my daughter’s toddler pool.

However, my in-laws have one.

If you aren’t lucky enough to have your own pool at home, find someone you know with a pool and get yourself plenty of invites. Don’t feel like being that forward?

Instead, head to the local public swimming pool and cool off there. There is no better way to get your body temperature down.

There’s an extra bonus if you have other kids who are complaining of boredom during the summer break, so they will love a chance to cool off and splash around too!

As an added bonus, it feels great to be weightless for a while instead of lugging around that big round beautiful tummy! It can be a huge relief off your back too.

Here are some great maternity swimwear options:

7. STAY HYDRATED

You need to keep up your hydration even more so when pregnant in the summer. To stay hydrated means lots of water!! 

This one is a bit of a no-brainer but sometimes we get busy and forget to drink enough water.

Keep a water bottle with you wherever you go, in your handbag or by your bed, so you are always in arms reach of some hydration.

pregnant woman on couch with water bottle

These water bottles are a great option as they help keep your water cold longer. Or choose a water bottle with markers so you know you are on track for your full 2 litres a day.

Keep a water jug in the fridge to make it extra refreshing on hot summer days.

Try to avoid hydrating with soft drinks or juice, or anything loaded with sugar. Cut back on coffee if you can handle it, as it can be very dehydrating. Instead switch to some herbal tea.

If you are feeling hydrated, having low sugar electrolyte fluids will help. Many sports drinks are loaded with electrolytes.

If you don’t enjoy the taste of plain water, try coconut water. Coconut water has a subtle flavour and is great for hydration. It also works well when making healthy smoothies.

It is also best to avoid alcohol during your pregnancy, although this is your personal choice to make. If you have concerns, consult your doctor.

8. REMOVE JEWELLERY

This may not be necessary but sometimes those swollen fingers can result in extra discomfort if your rings or other jewellery are suddenly cutting off circulation.

Preventative measures are often best. The last thing you want is to have to get your wedding band cut off to remove it when you have swollen up like a balloon.

For me, I only had to remove mine in my second pregnancy, as I got quite lucky the first time. Fluid retention was definitely worse for me the second time around and summer likely played a role in that.

And as for body piercings, you can get rubber belly button bars that you can leave in right up until near the end if you want to avoid your piercing closing up.

You can find heaps of pretty pregnancy body jewellery. And make sure you put any of your usual jewellery in a really safe place that you won’t forget if you do need to remove rings and other things. Pregnancy brain is a real thing!

9. REDUCE SALT INTAKE

Sodium makes us retain fluid which increases swelling. As tempting as it can be to have those lazy high salt meals, try to avoid them and keep your fresh food intake high.

Snack on fruit, veggies and hummus, and unsalted nuts or popcorn instead of chips or fries. Your body will thank you when you eat healthy foods.

If you do find your ankles swelling during the summer months, keep legs elevated to help reduce swelling. A couple of pillows or cushions under your feet on the couch can help, along with cold packs or ice packs.

Take care with certain food types when you are pregnant also, as some are high risk for illness if not prepared or kept refrigerated appropriately – raw meat, seafood, soft cheeses are a few examples. There is also a higher risk of food spoiling in summer.

10. SLIP, SLOP, SLAP

Those are important words here in Australia, reminding us to be sun smart with sunscreen, a hat, and sun-safe clothing. Can you imagine being hot, round.. and sunburnt? Not a great combo.

Save yourself some extra discomfort by doing the right thing and taking care of your skin during the hot weather.

woman in bikini while pregnant

Plus how stylish will you look in a big wide brimmed hat and a kimono by the pool? You gorgeous gal!

Choose a pregnancy-safe high protection sunscreen of at least SPF 50+ when you plan on spending time outdoors. Make sure to apply sunscreen often and spend time out of the sun in between as this will make it more effective against sun exposure.

And don’t forget to apply sunscreen to your entire abdomen! We don’t want you getting a sunburnt bump!

Even in the indirect sun such as driving long distances can result in sunburn. Cover your shoulders with light fabric for extra protection.

11. BEDTIME COMFORT

Getting to sleep is difficult enough in pregnancy (and summer) without combining the two.

Make sure you have what you need to be comfortable, whether that be air conditioning or a fan, comfy cotton pyjamas… or completely naked if clothes are just unbearable right now (it happens).

For me, what is most important throughout pregnancy is my beloved body pillow.  Actually I use it all year round regardless, but having it sure does help get comfortable when trying to manoeuvre a round tummy.

There are special pregnancy pillows available too, like the one below. They don’t leave so much room for hubby in bed, but totally worth it!!

With all that in mind though, remember pregnancy is a very special time in your life, whether it is your first pregnancy or your 5th, you want to enjoy it as much as you can!

Place cool compresses on your body

12. USE COLD PACKS ON YOUR BODY

If you’re feeling overheated, placing cool compresses on your wrists, ankles, and neck can help cool you down. You can also soak a cloth in cold water and place it on your forehead.

Use what you have at home to keep your body cool. Even a few ice cubes in a cloth can feel downright blissful when you’re dealing with heat and humidity during the summer months!

Staying comfortable will certainly help you get the most enjoyment from your pregnancy.

And if you happen to have an older child too, now is the perfect time to start preparing them for the arrival of the new baby.

And since I’m a big believer in simplifying as much as you can before a big life change, be sure to check out my tips on ways to make life easier with a newborn. All these tips won’t just help you with surviving the summer while pregnant, but will also help you to get through all seasons easier. Pregnancy comfort is important to your sanity!

Don’t forget to enjoy those early moments too. They are so precious!

Pregnancy Planner

Need extra help staying organised during your pregnancy? Grab the pregnancy planner created by a midwife:

bump to bassinet pregnancy planner

You may also like these other pregnancy and parenting articles:

What is your favourite way to keep cool in summer? Leave a comment below. I would love to hear it! And share this post to Pinterest for later! Be sure to follow me on Facebook or YouTube for more pregnancy and parenting like these!

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Jordan Baker

Friday 18th of September 2015

I loved your advice to drink plenty of fluids. Too often, we think that we will be fine with just an air conditioner. However, there are other factors that play a role in keeping cool during the summer. And, if you are pregnant, you should be drinking even more water.

Holly

Saturday 19th of September 2015

Spot on! Headaches don't take much to come on when pregnant either!

Kell @ All Mum Said

Tuesday 28th of July 2015

I have experienced 2 summer babies, 1 winter baby and number 4 is also a summer kid. If I could choose, I would go summer each and every time! I found it was easier to stay cool than to get warm but the heat does somewhat disturb the comfort. Great post that has made me remember a lot of what I’m in for AGAIN! haha.

Holly

Saturday 1st of August 2015

I loved having a Summer baby too. So much easier without the need for heavy swaddles and layers, plus no freezing nights getting up to feed them. But being pregnant through a whole summer was horrible. Thankfully my winter baby hasn't been too bad either as it has been a very mild winter here in Queensland.

Christina

Saturday 2nd of May 2015

Thanks for sharing this. I had a good luagh when I read your post title because my last child was due the middle of August and came 12 days later at the end of the month. I was SO uncomfortable! I spent a lot of mornings sitting in my kids little swimming pool while they played followed by naps in my basement in the afternoons. You just do what you have to in order to get through it :)

Holly

Sunday 3rd of May 2015

Oh yes, kiddie pools are quite the saviour in the absence of a big pool. I am so grateful for ours :) eeek... 12 days over, you poor thing!

bel @ Mums Take Five

Saturday 21st of February 2015

All my babies are winter babies but even in early pregnancy i so struggled with the heat. SO hot, so sticky, so sick ....... ohhh terrible lol. All brilliant tips - you do whatever you have to to cool down :) Thanks for contributing this post to The Sunday Brunch Magazine! All the best, Bel

Holly

Saturday 21st of February 2015

Thanks Bel. I think any time pregnant in summer is tough. Is pregnant women just don't do heat well lol but I'd say our summer is going to come to a short end after the cyclone here in Qld.

Erika @ Ever-changing Life of a Mum

Tuesday 17th of February 2015

This is the first time I have been heavily pregnant during summer. So long as I'm in my air conditioned house I feel ok, so I've pretty much turned into a hermit, only venturing out in the heat when I really have to ;) I count myself lucky that I live in Melbourne so one day can be a dry hot 35 degrees and the next day a beautiful pleasant 21 degrees! Popping over from the Digital Parents Blog Carnival.

Holly

Tuesday 17th of February 2015

That's true of Melbourne. At least there is a break from sweltering heat. Not so much in QLD but thank you air con! I was born in Victoria but don't do cold well so am a happy QLDer... Usually ;)