Your Pregnancy Health
Pregnancy brings a time of both excitement and uncertainty for an expectant mother, and looking after your health during pregnancy is extremely important.
While there are many ailments that come along with being pregnant, some are more serious than others. If you suspect that you have any of the following conditions, you should consult your doctor straightaway.
High blood pressure and pre-eclampsia
Pregnant women are at a higher risk of developing high blood pressure because during pregnancy the heart has to pump twice as hard to get adequate oxygen to the unborn baby. High blood pressure can be monitored and treated during pregnancy to be sure of a healthy pregnancy.
Pre-eclampsia is a form of high blood pressure that also presents as protein in the urine. The only cure for pre-eclampsia is delivery, but if the condition is mild, then the doctor may treat the high blood pressure and require that the mother have bed rest and a monitored diet with a decrease in salt intake.
Gestational diabetes is a form of diabetes that is specific to pregnant women. If you find out you have gestational diabetes, your doctor can help you keep it under control with diet and, in some cases, medication.
Pre-term labour has a number of different causes, but in most cases, it can be prevented. Dehydration is a common cause of pre-term labour. There are medications that can be given to stop labour contractions. If you are having symptoms of pre-term labour, your doctor may keep you overnight at the hospital or recommend strict bed rest. Keep in mind that a baby born after 32 weeks has a great chance of survival, and even those born sooner have a much greater chance of survival than in years past.
Placenta problems often require bed rest. In some cases, the placenta may begin to tear away from the uterine wall; however, in most cases, the placenta will heal itself and reattach in a matter of months. Also, some women may have what is called an ‘old placenta’, which isn’t really past its prime but is simply not providing enough nutrients. In this case, the doctor might change the woman’s diet or decide to deliver the baby early if it is safe to do so for the baby and mother.
Pre-existing conditions can be a cause of great concern for pregnant mothers, especially those with conditions that are undiagnosed. While many medications for pre-existing conditions can’t be taken during pregnancy, modern medicine allows women with these conditions to have the best pregnancy possible. If you have conditions prior to pregnancy, make sure to work with your doctor to not only have a healthy baby, but a healthy mommy as well.
While pregnancy complications and higher-risk pregnancies can be difficult on both mind and body, take comfort in the assurance that we live in a world of modern medicine. There really isn’t much that can’t be relieved or cured during your nine months. Even when your body feels worn down, try to keep your spirits up and know that you are not alone.
Remember: Many women face the same obstacles and find out in the end they worried for no reason at all; so don't panic!