You’ve done the pregnancy test, perhaps several times to be sure and it’s starting to sink in that yes, it’s true, you really are expecting a baby! Cue: popping corks, hugs, tears, general hysteria and happiness. The journey over the next 9 months will amazing, tiring, possibly anxious at times and information on what to expect will be at an all-time premium. The good news is that there are abundant sources of advice and support about pregnancy and birth from your mum to Mumsnet, to random strangers at the bus stop. But nothing beats curling up with a good book that reassuringly sets out how your body will change, what equipment you need and – our favourite at Bumpalicious Maternity, what baby looks like at different stages of development. Here are five of our favourite pregnancy and birth books to be getting on with.
This beautifully laid-out pregnancy book is a down-to-earth, on-side guide to what to expect from the moment your baby is born. The photos are lovely and the chapters are labelled simply “start,” “sleep,” “feed,” “thrive”. Each one offers invaluable info for first-time parents, including a list of what you really need for the baby – versus what department stores try and sell you, plus advice on how your relationship with your partner can change post baby. Crucially for busy new mums, there are loads of useful links, organised under chapter headings for everything from pram manufacturers to support for single parents, so you don’t have to spend precious time on Google.
This heavy hardback is well worth its weight, providing advice and information, photos and diagrams of what is happening to you and your baby for each day of your pregnancy. Written by experts and edited by consultant obstetrician Maggie Blott, but including perspectives from mums too, if you only buy one pregnancy book this won’t let you down.
This interactive pregnancy, birth and first year journal enjoys rave reviews on Amazon and won Gold at the Independent Publisher Book Awards 2014. From ten weeks on, expectant mums and dads can record their feelings about being pregnant, how they found out and special moments, including baby’s first smile, without finding it a chore. Take it from us, it is lovely to have a record from really early on in your pregnancy to share with your child when they’re older.
Filling a clear gap in the market for pregnancy and birth books aimed at new dads, Dan Beaumont helps men take an active role in their partner’s pregnancy by providing advice and information on every stage of pregnancy, from a bloke’s perspective. Tackling issues such as the father’s role in the birth and how to prepare for becoming a dad, it provides a great guide on how dads can get more involved and informed in what can feel like an exclusively female experience.
It’s great to see this pregnancy classic now in its fourth edition, updated to address everything from lifestyle issues around tattoos, piercings and recreational drugs, to preconception, workplace concerns, emotions and sex. Plus, information on your baby at each developmental stage. Delivered in a humorous upbeat style, this book is not called a manual for nothing and does cover quite a lot of ground so don’t read it when you’re feeling exhausted. That said, WTEWYE’s sheer brand pedigree means it’s a reassuring presence on your maternity bookcase or in your Kindle and whatever your question, it probably has the answer.
These are just a few of an enormous selection of pregnancy and birth books so it should be easy to find one you get on with it. Once acquired, sit back and enjoy.