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4 Tips to help you survive summer as a pregnant woman

A native of the storied coastal city of Charleston, South Carolina, Julie Sprankles has been a lover of words her entire life. As a Southerner, she certainly has what her mama calls “the gift of gab.” When she’s not writing, Julie can be...

Bring on the heat

Yes, pregnancy is a blessing. But if you're gestating your sweet baby during the summer, having a bun in the oven may make you feel like, well, like a bun in an oven. 'Tis the season of swelling and sweat, but don't fret... we've got a few pointers for keeping your cool.

1. Prop those feet up, girl

While all pregnant women have to contend with some swelling during pregnancy, women who are pregnant during the summer deal with the mother lode of edema (Mother lode... get it? Ha!). When I was pregnant with my daughter, I didn't just get cankles. I got elephankles. My feet were so grotesquely swollen, I was actually convinced at one point I had thrombophlebitis. My fingers kind of looked like Mickey Mouse's comically large mitts. Or, you know, like I'd stuffed them inside of Hillshire Farm sausages — a link for each fat, squishy finger. Like finger corndogs.

Good news, though: You can relieve some of the pressure on your veins by putting your feet up whenever possible. I spent a lot of time avoiding the stifling heat by kicking back in the cool AC with my feet elevated — where else do you think I got the time to WebMD the definition of thrombophlebitis and email my oh-so-patient OB-GYN pictures of my porky feet?

2. BYO... BW

To add insult to injury, not only do you have to waddle around on your newly acquired Fred Flintsone feet, but everywhere around you people are throwing beer-b-q's at which craft beer and sangria rain down from heaven. OK, admittedly, that may be a bit hyperbolic... it can sure feel that way when you can't have so much as a sip of your favorite suds, though. But think of it this way — summer heat plus alcohol equals dehydration which equals hangover. When all your friends are feeling it the next morning, you'll feel refreshed (as much as one can when one is pregnant during the summer).

So while it may sound counterintuitive to the woman who is literally peeing every three-and-a-half seconds, bring some bottled water to these summer shindigs and get to chuggin', sistah. Bonus? It will help you beat the heat, and your skin will look fantastic and dewy all the time.

3. Prepare for perspiration

It's summer. Translation: It's frickin' hot. And since your pregnant body already feels like you're incubating the sun, there's going to be sweat. Lots of it. You will sweat in places you didn't even realize you had sweat glands. Not only will you be sweating profusely from seemingly every pore on your entire body, but you'll also be dealing with lovely little pregnancy side effects like excessive cervical mucus. Long story short? You're going to want to be prepared for all that perspiration... and stuff.

Do yourself a favor and go out right now and buy a box (or 10) of Carefree Acti-Fresh Pantiliners. Wear one. Every. Single. Day. They'll help keep you fresh all day long, and they're so soft and thin and absorbent, you'll forget you're even wearing one — which frees you up to think about more important things, like whether or not the river of sweat flowing down your back is soaking through your shirt.

4. Get thee to a Gillette

Yeah, I've read the article debunking the popular beauty myth that hair grows faster in the summer. According to Elizabeth Cunnane Phillips, a New York City trichologist, "There may be a slight increase in the rate of the growth, but it's really marginal. A natural hormonal shift and increase in UV may contribute to some changes, but again I must stress it's marginal." But as a woman who has braved many a steamy summer day pregnant in sundresses, I can most decidedly assure you that there is something going on with this season and an influx of hair.

Much like the profuse pregnancy sweating, hair pops up in places you never knew could get hairy. It's a simple thing — with no actual medical benefits — but investing in some good razors and keeping your legs smooth will just make you feel more confident. Which reminds me, you're probably also going to want to take up prenatal yoga so you can reach all of the secret Sasquatch spots that will inevitably spring up during your summer pregnancy.

This post was sponsored by Carefree.

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