‘What to Expect when you are expecting’: the perfect gift for all frazzled Mums-to-be
Heidi Murkoff came up with the idea of this book when she failed to get consolation for various doubts that troubled her during the course of her pregnancy. With the help of Sharon Mazel, she decided to write this volume, which is nothing less than a ‘Pregnancy Bible’, to guide all the expecting mothers.
At first, I was apprehensive to buy this book as its authors seemed to have limited credentials, with no credible medical qualifications. However, the book impressed me on flipping a few pages and skimming through the ‘The Table of Contents’. All aspects of pregnancy, including biological, emotional and others are covered quite exhaustively in the book, thereby making it a complete resource manual for new mums.
This best-selling book is 586-pages-long. It is divided into nine parts and each part seems to be relevant and complete in itself.
The first part talks about the preparations required for a healthy pregnancy. From choosing the right practitioner to prenatal diagnosis to eating well - it provides tonnes of information on how to adopt a healthy lifestyle.
Part 2 is very detailed and comprehensive as it deals with the week-by-week analysis of the nine months long pregnancy.
This part can actually soothe the anxieties of many expecting ladies with hands-on solutions to various problems they face in every trimester. Each chapter, in this section, has a column which mentions the physical and emotional changes one would possibly go through and also states a list of questions one can ask the doctor. To make it an interesting read, the author adds many fun facts (like ‘Baby Brain Food’, ‘Back to School’) and useful tips (like ‘Pushing without pain’, ‘Exercise in bed’) in special boxes at the corner of few pages. There is also an expanded section on working through the pregnancy and various beauty and skin changes one could expect.
I particularly liked the question and answer format in this section. I could simply read the questions that were relevant to my context and skip the rest.
The book doesn't just end with labour and delivery, it goes on to deal with various post-delivery requirements and issues. Basic knowledge about breastfeeding along with the methods to deal with postpartum depression, ideas on getting back to shape, exercises to relieve pain, medications and vaccinations after birth, are all very helpful to know.
There is also a special chapter for expecting fathers, guiding them well to come to terms with this life changing event and making pregnancy easier for their wives and themselves.
Women trying to cope with a pregnancy loss too, can find some positive advice in the last section of this book. Mothers managing a complicated pregnancy can get ideas to productively use their bed rest. A lot of information is also given on preterm delivery and labor equipping the readers with a sense of confidence while dealing with such situations.
I feel, the section on multiple pregnancy is underserved in the book. If you are expecting twins, you can try another book by Gila Leiter.
The language of the book isn't very difficult to comprehend. It is simple, straightforward and supported with lots of graphics and illustrations.
If you are looking for a read that can make your pregnancy journey easy, yet at the same time is affordable and has a slick feel, then you can surely give this book a try.
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