The Best Pregnancy Books (And Why Each Is A Must-Read)
Congratulations! If you are reading this article, it might be safe to assume that either you or someone you love is expecting a baby. There are so many books on the market it can be hard to know where to begin! When it comes to pregnancy, as with most things, knowledge is power.
So make a pot of tea and get ready to work on your Amazon wishlist.
What to Look for in Pregnancy Advice
If you are reading this article, you have likely discovered that pregnancy is an open invitation to unsolicited advice. When evaluating a book or even evaluating advice from the lady at the grocery store, here’s some things to keep in mind. First, people will be quick to tell you harrowing tales of pregnancy horrors. Swollen ankles, endless tests, late-night trips to the bathroom.
Most of the time the people who share this type of advice are well intentioned. Their advice, however, is not helpful.
Each person’s story is their own and there is no reason to generalize someone else’s negative experiences to your own pregnancy. Your body was built for this job. You are strong and powerful. It is quite a humbling and amazing experience to grow life within your own body.
Try to let negative commentary go in one ear and out the other. If you find a book that focuses on causes for alarm as opposed to the beauty of your physiology and what your body is capable of, skip it!
The Best Pregnancy Books
Not all pregnancy books are created equal. Many of the most popular books on the market are best at fostering fear. These books often cause women to doubt themselves and create unnecessary anxiety. Here are five wonderful, positive books.
Gentle Birth, Gentle Mothering by Dr. Sarah Buckley
In this excellent book, Dr. Buckley discusses in depth the physiology of labor. She explains the hormones and chemistry that coordinate labor and birth. She weaves her own birth stories seamlessly throughout her discussion of pregnancy, labor, and birth.
While the first half of the book is devoted to pregnancy labor and birth, the second half discusses mothering. It does not stop with the birth of the baby. Instead, it goes on to discuss the early days and months of mothering.
This is a positive book packed full of information that is sure to empower you and give you confidence in your amazing body.
Mothering Magazine’s: Having a Baby Naturally by Peggy O’Mara
Peggy O’Mara has been the editor of Mothering Magazine for decades. In this book, she compiles the wisdom she has gained over her many years of experience. She discusses all the questions most mothers have as they are expecting. The book discusses topics such as pregnancy nutrition, exercise, and morning sickness remedies as well as challenging topics such as birth defects and loss.
This book is a fantastic pregnancy guide, from start to finish. It includes a trimester by trimester guide to what is happening in your body and what is happening with your baby.
This book is written with the understanding that women are smart and capable and able to make informed choices that are best for themselves and their children.
The Thinking Woman’s Guide to a Better Birth by Henci Goer
In this book, Henci Goer gives a detailed and thorough explanation and exploration of common medical testing, techniques, and procedures that are routinely provided to pregnant women in the United States. She examines the procedures themselves as well as the evidence, or lack thereof, to support their use.
This book discusses many controversial topics such as vaginal birth after caesarean. Henci Goer gives a reasoned account of available evidence and encourages mothers to make their own informed decisions about their pregnancy care.
This book is a beautiful testament to the fact that knowledge is power. After reading this book, mothers will be confident with an understanding of what is being offered to them and what type of care they, as the consumer, wish to receive.
The Pregnancy Book: Month-by-Month, Everything You Need to Know
From America's Baby Experts by William Sears, M.D. and Martha Sears, R.N.
This is a lovely month by month guide to pregnancy. It includes what to expect, common concerns, remedies for discomforts, as well as a section on labor and birth. Additionally, this book includes a chapter on the “tenth month” of pregnancy, the immediate postpartum.
Dr. and Mrs. Sears have written extensively on pregnancy, birth, and parenting from their perspective as medical professionals. This book fits in nicely with their other works and will flow well with their subsequent books.
This book is an excellent resource for how your baby is growing. It also provides information and support for how you are changing throughout pregnancy, both physically and emotionally.
Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth by Ina May Gaskin
While this book is far more focused on labor and birth than pregnancy, no pregnancy book list would be complete without it. In this book, Ina May Gaskin helps mothers learn about the process of labor and birth.
She focuses on the physical, emotional and spiritual aspects of giving birth. This book is sure to inspire confidence while releasing doubt and fear.
Last, but Not Least
While this is not a book, it would be a terrible disservice not to include this website. The Dr. Brewer Pregnancy Diet website is a fantastic resource for pregnancy nutrition. If you read only one thing on this entire list of resources, read this website.
Joy Jones is a nurse who provides excellent, thorough, and practical nutrition advice, utilizing the work of Dr. Brewer. She explains why nutrition is so important and how women can stay healthy and low risk during pregnancy by being attentive to their nutrition.
Once again, congratulations! This is an exciting journey, use these resources as lampposts to light your path.