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Working and pregnancy

Working and pregnancy

Working early on in your pregnancy can be a little challenging if you are experiencing morning sickness or are tired.

So, how do you ensure that you can continue working as normal, while looking after your health, your baby’s health, and your team’s goals?

Getting plenty of rest, eating well and staying comfortable can help you manage your pregnancy symptoms at work.

You may also decide to make some changes at work to look after yourself, such as:

  • Taking regular breaks
  • Wearing comfortable shoes and clothing
  • Do five-minute mindfulness exercises or breathing exercise to boost your energy levels.
  • Avoid standing all day and try to sit down when you can to relieve back and leg pain.

To make working while pregnant a positive experience, you may consider:

  • What you could do to make life easier at work, for example, hiring a temporary car space or working from home.
  • Plan meetings so people come to you or set up conference calls.
  • If you are a casual worker, talk to your manager to let them know what your ideal working hours are. For example, if you experience morning sickness first thing in the day, maybe it is better.
  • Think ahead to how you may handle people commenting or touching your stomach. It is OK to tell people not to do this if it makes you feel uncomfortable.

At work, you may begin to forward prepare.

You may start planning a handover by noting the parts of your job that others will need to fill while you are on leave.

Schedule training and handover activities well in advance so that you and your colleagues are not getting stressed out.

If things do not go to plan and you are feeling overwhelmed, it is OK to discuss this with your manager and find ways to discuss your workload.

Your pregnancy will also consist of lots of appointments. Try not to feel guilty for taking time off for this or taking sick leave if you are unwell.

Ensure you schedule appoints and time off in advance. Ask your doctor or midwife about local clinics and services that are open at a time that is convenient for you.

If you are a casual or shift worker, you may decide to work public holidays to make up for the time off and to boost your pay as public holidays usually offer a higher pay rate.

Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, it is safe to work while pregnant. Enjoy this special time and the excitement that comes with it.