During those exciting and anxiety-filled months before baby’s arrival, many pregnant women turn to the printed word for guidance and reassurance. The number of books on the market written specifically for expectant mothers continues to grow, as do the sales numbers. Pregnant women buy many of these books for themselves, but these books also show up as baby shower gifts.
Types of Advice Books
From books devoted to explaining fetal development to those advising pregnant women on how to stay fit to those addressing the emotional and spiritual aspects of pregnancy, expectant mothers can get advice on every aspect of pregnancy from books. The perennial New York Times best-seller, “What to Expect When You’re Expecting” by Heidi Murkoff and Sharon Mazel is a comprehensive guide that includes advice on pregnancy issues and a week-by-week explanation of the baby’s development. For fitness issues, pregnant woman buy “Iyengar Yoga for Motherhood: Safe Practice for Expectant & New Mothers,” by Greeta S. Iyengar and Rita Keller, or “Buff Moms-to-Be: The Complete Guide to Fitness for Expectant Mothers,” by Sue Fleming. A popular choice for self-reflection during pregnancy is “Chicken Soup for the Expectant Mother’s Soul,” by Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, Patty Aubery and Nancy Mitchell.
Keeping a journal during pregnancy is a practice that has increased in popularity since the 1960s. According to Childbirth, one popular choice is “Pregnancy Day by Day: The Expectant Mother’s Journal,” by Shelia Kitzinger, which provides space to record thoughts and answer thought-provoking questions; it also features a calendar for recording milestones and appointments. Another choice is “The Pregnancy Journal,” by A. Christine Harris, PhD, which allows the expectant mother to record daily updates and also provides advice and information.
Early in a pregnancy, or even before conception, expectant mothers look to books filled with specific information on pregnancy, such as the “Mayo Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy.” Also popular are books that detail fetal development, such as “In the Womb: Witness the Journey from Conception to Birth through Astonishing 3D Images,” by Peter Tallack and Heidi Murkoff. As the pregnancy progresses, expectant mothers may turn to resources for naming the baby, such as “The Best Baby Names Treasury,” by Emily Larson, or “25,001 Best Baby Names,” by Lesley Bolton. Expectant mothers sometimes buy books written specifically for the baby’s father, such as “Be Prepared: A Practical Handbook for New Dads,” by Gary Greenberg and Jeannie Hayden, or “The New Dad’s Survival Guide: Man-to-Man Advice for First-Time Fathers,” by Scott Mactavish.
For some pregnant women, special considerations direct their reading. For example, an overwhelmed expectant mother who’s just been told she’s going to have twins (or more!) could use some special information provided in books like “When You’re Expecting Twins, Triplets, or Quads, Revised Edition: Proven Guidelines for a Healthy Multiple Pregnancy,” by Barbara Luke and Tamara Eberlein. Women preparing for a Cesarean birth might read “The Essential C-Section Guide: Pain Control, Healing at Home, Getting Your Body Back, and Everything Else You Need to Know About a Cesarean Birth,” by Maureen Connolly and Dana Sullivan.
As the pregnancy progresses, expectant mothers may turn their thoughts to what the future will bring and choose such books as “The Year After Childbirth,” by Sheila Kitzinger.” Popular books on caring for an infant, such as “What to Expect the First Year”, by Heidi Eisenberg Murkoff, Arlene Eisenberg and Sandee Hathaway, and
“Your Baby’s First Year,” from the American Academy Of Pediatrics.