6 of the Best Pregnancy and Birth Books for Expecting Moms
Pregnancy is a thrilling time, but it can also be full of questions and anxiety. Your growing belly and body are constantly changing and unexpected issues may arise seemingly out of thin air. For new parents, it can be an overwhelming experience.
Knowledge is power. That’s why educating yourself about what lies ahead over the next few months and beyond is critical to both your physical and mental well-being. Reading a few books about pregnancy, birth, and what comes after can help you prepare for all the exciting (and not so exciting) changes ahead.
These days, there is no shortage of available books on birth and pregnancy on the market. Look for books that speak to your style, whether that’s formal or more conversational. Books backed by data-driven scientific research and authored by specialists who are experts in their field offer the most reputable information.
Take a look at a few of our recommendations:
What to Expect When You're Expecting, 5th Edition
With 18.5 million copies in print, What to Expect When You’re Expecting was named one of the “Most Influential Books of the Last 25 Years” by USA Today. This classic tome is filled with must-have information, advice, insight, and tips for a new generation of parents.
With author Heidi Murkoff's trademark warmth, compassion, and wit, What to Expect When You're Expecting has a response to every imaginable question expectant parents and partners could have, including dozens of new ones based on evolving pregnancy and delivery practices. Murkoff covers everything from prenatal screenings to the safety of medications during pregnancy. Current lifestyle trends are incorporated, too: juice bars, raw diets, e-cigarettes, push presents, baby bump posting, the lowdown on omega-3 fatty acids, grass-fed and organic, health food fads, and GMOs. There’s also expanded coverage of IVF pregnancy, multiple pregnancies, breastfeeding while pregnant, water and home births, and cesarean trends (including VBACs and “gentle caesareans”).
The Complete Book of Breastfeeding, 4th Edition
The Complete Book of Breastfeeding is a recognized classic in its field. Down-to-earth, enlightening, and warm, it’s one of the most accessible and authoritative books on nursing today.
The Complete Book of Breastfeeding offers a comprehensive introduction to breastfeeding, how to prepare for breastfeeding before the baby arrives, as well as how to involve partners and other members of the family. There’s also a complete chapter on the proper breastfeeding diet and the role exercise plays in the life of a nursing mother. You’ll find new information on nursing and the working mother, how to prevent nursing problems, and how to treat any that may occur. There's even a full discussion on special situations, such as nursing premature babies, nursing more than one baby, nursing and breast cancer, nursing and breast surgery, and weaning.
What to Expect: Eating Well When You're Expecting, 2nd Edition
What to Expect: Eating Well When You’re Expecting provides parents-to-be with a realistic approach to navigating healthy and delicious choices throughout the pregnancy. It features detailed chapters dedicated to nutrition, weight gain, food safety, the postpartum diet, and how to eat when trying to conceive again. This book also comes with dozens of practical tips and 150 trendy, flavorful, nutritious recipes that feed mom and baby well, are simple and quick to prepare, and are easy on nauseous bellies.
The Natural Baby Sleep Solution
Based on the human rest and activity cycle that occurs every hour and a half, The Natural Baby Sleep Solution is a scientifically based program for parents to help babies get all the sleep they need, both through the night and during the day.
Written by a scientist and mother, Dr. Polly Moore understands the intricacies of infant sleep and is empathetic to the roller-coaster of parenthood. Her method is simple, foolproof, and yields long-lasting results: truly restful daytime naps (which also give an infant a head start on cognitive development and emotional intelligence) and consistent nighttime sleep—as beneficial for parents as it is for the baby.
The What to Expect Pregnancy Journal & Organizer Diary
The What to Expect Pregnancy Journal & Organizer Diary is your personal pregnancy companion. Lightweight and sized to fit into a tote or briefcase, moms-to-be can use this handy journal to record all those memorable moments in the making of their baby, from the first kick to delivery to the first cuddle.
Featuring prompted pages, checklists, and a weekly write-in pregnancy and labor journal, this is a fantastic way to keep track of important dates, questions to ask the doctor, medications, milestones, childbirth class notes, shopping lists, phone numbers, and everything else that comes with the nine months of pregnancy. The journal/organizer's compact design ensures it can go everywhere mom goes. After the baby's arrival, it becomes an instant keepsake.
The Baby Keepsake Book and Planner
Speaking of keepsakes, this book isn’t “informational,” but it’s so much fun! This is a baby book like no other. Using a totally customizable binder format that makes it easy to remove pages you don’t need and add pages that make it truly your own, The Baby Keepsake Book and Planner is an all-in-one guide and personal record that takes parents from those first thrilling moments of pregnancy all the way through their child’s fourth year. This beautiful book was designed by best-selling author and celebrity wedding planner, Mindy Weiss, named one of the top wedding planners in the world by Harper’s Bazaar, Vogue, Brides, and Martha Stewart.
Looking for more great reads through your pregnancy and beyond? How about books for your little one? Take a look at our selection!
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