Nesting: What It Is and Why It Happens

We’ve all heard about it and we’ve probably asked an expectant mama about it, too. “So have you started nesting yet?” So many people mention nesting without really knowing what it is or even why it happens. Don’t worry–we’ve done the digging for you.

The What

Nesting is, simply put, the act of preparing your home for your baby’s arrival. It’s often characterized by big bursts of energy late in pregnancy, leading expecting moms to typically scrub their homes from top to bottom. However, nesting can be physical–scrubbing your floors, washing baby’s clothes for the 15th time. Or it can even be emotional–bonding with your partner and unborn baby, being choosy about the type of people you continue to spend time with.

Nesting is not a medical condition, but rather instinctual. In fact, many animals do it as well, so humans are not alone in the act. But if you’re a mom that has never experienced the urge to clean every inch, don’t worry. It doesn’t happen for everyone, and both nesting and not-nesting are perfectly normal human behaviors.

The Why

So why does it happen? As mentioned above, it’s a purely instinct. However, it can be triggered by other things, including:

  • Boredom or frustration over the fact that you are still pregnant and your little one hasn’t arrived
  • The re-occurring realization that once baby is born, caring for him will take up all of your time and energy, so things must be done now
  • The overwhelming excitement that your little one is coming so soon, and wanting everything to be just right for the arrival

Nesting is perfectly safe to do while pregnant, but with all things, take some caution. Do not do any heavy lifting or climbing on ladders. Make sure you take breaks and keep hydrated and snack often as well. You’ll want to be careful to not use all of your energy as you’ll need some of that for going into labor. 

So as a recap, nesting is simply an instinctual urge that (some) mamas experience in preparation for their little babe. Embrace the instinct if it hits you, because you’ll need to have all focus on baby after the arrival, and you’ll greatly appreciate the cleaned space.  

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