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How much water should a pregnant woman drink?

6 tips that will help you stay hydrated all pregnancy long

water_pregnant

It is incredibly easy to get dehydrated during pregnancy—no matter what time of year you are pregnant.

Not drinking enough water during pregnancy can lead to headaches, fatigue, urinary tract infections and even premature contractions.

In the summer, we tend to think about drinking water more often. But during the winter, our bodies have to adapt to the colder temperatures and drier air conditions. That's right, winter actually carries out low humidity, which means that you are more inclined to dry skin, dehydration, scratchy throat and sinus problems—all woes that you want to avoid during pregnancy.

Throughout pregnancy, it's important that your internal body temperature remains normal—yup, drinking enough water during pregnancy will help with this too.

How much water should a pregnant woman drink?

Pregnant women should drink 10 eight ounce glasses of water every day. Carry a water bottle with you and sip slowly throughout the day.

Here are six tips to help ensure that you are staying hydrated during your pregnancy:

1. Drink water (all the time)

As mentioned, dehydration can cause problems ranging from lightheadedness to preterm labor. So purchase a reusable water bottle and keep it close by. You are supposed to drink approximately 10 cups (over 2 liters) a day. Drink even more if you are adding exercise or travel to the mix. And if you get tired of water, enjoy some tea, preferably decaffeinated.

2. Start your day with fruits

Since you have to stay extra hydrated during pregnancy, you'll have to ingest a lot of water. So you may get sick of it from time to time. Mix it up a bit and load up on water-rich fruits such as watermelon, pomegranate and pineapple. It's a good way to stay hydrated and eat well.

3. Consider salt

Yes, you read that correctly! When you ingest salt, your brain tells the kidneys to hold on to water. You need salt to bring in fluid from the intestine to the bloodstream. Foods such as saltine crackers (especially if you're in the early months of pregnancy) and low-sodium chicken noodle soup can help retain water (versus losing it in urine) in your body as necessary.

Certainly, we don't want to overdo the salt during pregnancy. The recommended daily sodium intake for adults is 2,300 mg or less. Talk to your provider about what your specific guidelines should be.

4. Incorporate soups

Soups are one of the best way to incorporate fiber-rich vegetables, carbohydrates and protein into your diet all at once. Since the base of most soups contain water, this is also an excellent way to stay hydrated. As mentioned, chicken noodle soup could give you the right amount of sodium to keep water in your system.

Psst: Check out our six favorite crockpot soup recipes!

5. Avoid caffeine

Coffee is a diuretic, which means you'll lose fluids faster, so if you can, avoid drinking coffee. But if you can't imagine skimping on that cup of joe, be sure to make up for it with at least two 8-ounce glasses of water so that you're replenishing your body adequately. Switching to pregnancy-friendly herbal teas is an alternate solution for that afternoon pick-me-up.

6. Use a humidifier

A humidifier is a great way to keep your body moist when you are inside, especially in the winter when the air is drier and your heater is blasting. Your eyes and nasal passages will benefit from the moisture during this time, which can ultimately help prevent an oncoming cold or cough.

They say necessity is the mother of invention—and nothing makes you more inventive than motherhood.

Sometimes that means fashioning a diaper out of paper towels and your older child's underpants (true story). Sometimes that means creating an innovative and life-changing weighted baby sleep sack and totally crushing it on Shark Tank. Tara Williams is the latter.

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5 brilliant products that encourage toddler independence

Help your little one help themselves.

One of our main goals as mothers is to encourage our children to learn, grow and play. They start out as our tiny, adorable babies who need us for everything, and somehow, before you know it, they grow into toddlers with ideas and opinions and desires of their own.

You may be hearing a lot more of "I do it!" or maybe they're pushing your hand away as a signal to let you know, I don't need your help, Mama. That's okay. They're just telling you they're ready for more independence. They want to be in charge of their bodies, and any little bit of control their lives and abilities allow.

So, instead of challenging your toddler's desire for autonomy, we found five of our favorite products to help encourage independence—and eliminate frustration in the process.

EKOBO Bamboo 4-piece kid set

EKOBO bamboo 4-piece kid set

This colorful set includes a plate, cup, bowl and spoon and is just right for your child's meal experience. Keep them in an easy-to-reach cabinet so they'll feel encouraged (and excited!) to get their own place setting each time they eat.

$25

Puj PhillUp hangable kids cups

Puj PhillUp hangable kids cups

Before you know it, your little one will be asking (okay, maybe demanding) to fill their own water cups. This amazing 4-pack of cups attaches directly to the fridge (or any glass, metal, tile or fiberglass surface) making it easier for your child to grab a cup themselves. Just be sure a water pitcher or dispenser is nearby, and—boom!—one task off your plate.

$29

Wise Elk puzzle tower blocks

Wise Elk puzzle tower blocks

These beautiful blocks, made from sustainably-sourced wood and water-based, non-toxic, lead-free paint, will keep your little one focused on their creation while they're also busy working on their fine-motor skills. The puzzle design will encourage patience as your kiddo creates their own building, fitting one block in after the next.

$18

Lorena Canals basket

Lorena Canals Basket

This *gorgeous* braided cotton basket is the perfect, accessible home for their blocks (and whatever else you want to hide away!) so your kiddo can grab them (and clean them up) whenever their heart desires.

$29

BABYBJÖRN step stool

BABYBJ\u00d6RN Step Stool

Your kiddo might be ready to take on the world, but they might need an extra boost to do so—cue, a step stool! An easy-to-move lightweight stool is the must-have confidence-boosting tool you need in your home so your growing tot can reach, well... the world.

$20

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The new top 100 American baby names, according to the Social Security office

Did you have a baby in 2018? Did your name make the top 10?

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[Editor's note: We know that being pregnant can be, well, a lot. And understanding what you really need versus what's just a nice-to-have takes time . With your needs in mind, we've selected the best products for pregnancy in The Motherly Shop. We've got you, mama.]

No one can beat Emma when it comes to naming babies in America. This week the Social Security Administration announced its annual list of the most popular baby names in America and Emma has the top spot on the girls' side for the fifth year in a row. On the boys' side Liam took the top spot for a second consecutive year.

According to the Social Security Administration, these were the top 20 baby names in America in 2018:

Girls: Emma, Olivia, Ava, Isabella, Sophia, Charlotte, Mia, Amelia, Harper and Evelyn

Boys: Liam, Noah, William, James, Oliver, Benjamin, Elijah, Lucas, Mason and Owen

How do those top 10 lists compare to the top baby names of 2017? Well, the girls' list is nearly the same except that Mia and Charlotte switched spots, and Harper (a name that fell out of the top ten the previous year) is back and has ousted Abigail. On the boys' side, Lucas kicked Jacob out of the top 10.

The real changes happened lower down in the data. Let's take a look at the popular baby names that were trending hard in 2018:

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