Bed Rest In Pregnancy May Mean Different Things For Each Pregnant Woman
Many women with higher risk pregnancies are put on bedrest.
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I was never on bedrest, but I've known many women who nearly went crazy when forced to stay off their feet for months. Here is an article about how to survive:
What is Bed Rest?
Bed rest does not mean the same thing for every woman. Variabilities are dependent on each woman, her medical complications, and her healthcare provider. Bed rest may mean 24 hours a day in bed (strict bed rest). Other women may be allowed to get up only to use the bathroom (bed rest with bathroom privileges). For others, limited activity may be prescribed (rest periods in bed with shower privileges, car rides to the doctor, and the ability to make lunch, for example). It is extremely important that you clarify with your healthcare provider your exact activity level. Some specific questions to ask are:
Can I sit up?
How long will I be on bed rest?
Can I use the bathroom or take a shower?
Can I drive at all or be a passenger?
Am I able to do any household chores? Which ones?
Can I eat my meals at the table or at the couch?
What level of sexual activity is safe?
Can I work at home?
Tips to maintain your health and your peace of mind include:
Obtain information: Knowledge will help you feel more in control. Find out exactly which activities are allowed and which are not.
Organize your environment: Items to keep nearby include: telephone and telephone book; tissues; TV and VCR with remote controls; laptop computer; cooler or mini-refrigerator for beverages, snacks, and lunch; books on tape; magazines and catalogues; notebook and pen for questions and to-do lists; and a cassette/CD player.
Maintain a routine: A schedule will also help you feel more in control. Keep regular times for visits, naps, and activities.
Pamper yourself: Use body lotion; have a manicure; arrange for your hairdresser to come to your bedside; get a massage (check with your healthcare provider first); purchase pretty pajamas; and wear makeup if you usually do.
Stay connected: Keeping in touch with others will help you from feeling isolated. Have a friend come over for lunch as often as you feel up to it. Invite friends over who are good listeners and who can bring their own food; write letters; e-mail; write in a journal; and reach out to other moms on bed rest either via telephone or the Internet (see Resources).
Ask for help: You will need the support of your family and friends to get through this difficult time. Ask someone to fold a load of laundry; bring in the mail; collect take-out menus; drive a child to an after-school activity; go to the library; or run an errand.
Use delivery services: Many supermarkets, drugstores, and dry cleaners will deliver items. Take advantage of these services.
Practical Items: The following items will make your life on bed rest somewhat easier: a large wastebasket; wet wipes; cups with lids and flexible straws; an ironing board for a bedside table; a mini-refrigerator; a bathtub chair if you are allowed to shower; an egg-crate mattress; and a mechanical “arm” to reach far away items. In addition, keep a bag packed for unexpected trips to the hospital.