The Great British Summer - Keeping Cool in a Heatwave When Expecting.

Pregnancy is a beautiful journey, but it can come with its own set of challenges—especially during a British heatwave. As temperatures rise, it's crucial to find ways to stay cool and comfortable. Here are some tips that helped me during the 2020 heatwave when heavily pregnant, along with a few additional suggestions to help you beat the heat.

Tips for Keeping Cool

**1. Feet in Cold Water:** Soaking your feet in a basin of cold water can provide immediate relief from the heat. It’s a quick and easy way to cool down.

**2. Freeze a Hot Water Bottle:** Fill a hot water bottle with water and freeze it. Place it in your bed before you sleep, or use it to cool down specific areas of your body. Even better, you can get neck water bottles that you wear; freeze one of these to keep the back of your neck cool.

**3. Frozen Wet Towels and Muslins:** Dampen towels or muslins and freeze them. Use them to cool your body, especially at bedtime. Placing them on your forehead, wrists, or ankles can be particularly refreshing.

**4. Cotton Pyjamas:** Opt for lightweight cotton pyjamas. You might feel cooler wearing light, breathable clothing rather than going without. Cotton allows your skin to breathe and wicks away moisture.

**5. Manage Indoor Temperature:** Keep curtains closed during the day to block out the sunlight and prevent rooms from heating up. At night, open windows and internal doors to create a cross-breeze. If you have a loft hatch, keep it open to allow hot air to escape upwards.

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Additional Tips for Pregnant Women

**1. Hydration:** Staying hydrated is essential. Drink plenty of water throughout the day. Carry a water bottle with you and take frequent sips.

**2. Sugar-Free Ice Pops:** Keep a stash of sugar-free ice pops in the freezer. They are a delicious and hydrating treat that can help you stay cool.

**3. Avoid Direct Sunlight:** Stay out of the sun as much as possible, especially during the peak hours of 11 am to 3 pm. If you need to be outside, wear a wide-brimmed hat and loose, light-coloured clothing.

**4. Use Fans and Cooling Devices:** Portable fans can be a lifesaver. Consider using a handheld fan or placing a bowl of ice in front of a fan to circulate cooler air.

**5. Light Meals:** Eat smaller, more frequent meals. Heavy meals can increase your body temperature. Opt for light, refreshing foods like salads, fruits, and yoghurt.

**6. Rest and Relax:** Make sure to take breaks and rest in a cool, shaded area. Avoid strenuous activities during the hottest parts of the day.

 At our Nottingham photography studio, we have an air conditioning unit and powerful fan to keep you comfortable. However, if it’s exceptionally hot, I’m happy to reschedule your appointment for a cooler day—after all, typical British summers only last about four days! 

Navigating a heatwave while pregnant can be challenging, but with these tips, you can stay cool and comfortable. Remember, it’s important to listen to your body and take it easy. If you ever feel dizzy, lightheaded, or unwell, seek medical advice immediately.

Stay cool and take care!

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