Pregnancy is one of the most exciting times in a woman’s life. However, it also comes with its own set of challenges. For example, you must be extremely cautious about what you eat and drink during this period as your baby grows inside your womb.
A study by the University of California San Francisco claims that 6% to 8% of overall pregnancy cases are considered to have high-risk complications. These complications can be critical and require special care to get the best results. Hence, it’s better in the first place to avoid such pregnancy complications.
It is important to know that any kind of medication or food can harm both mom and baby if taken at the wrong time or in the wrong quantity. This article will cover some effective healthcare tips during pregnancy that can help you stay healthy during this period:
Prenatal vitamins are a great way to ensure your baby gets everything he or she needs throughout pregnancy. Without prenatal vitamins, you could be at risk for giving birth to an infant with neural tube defects (NTDs) or cleft palate.
The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends that pregnant women take a daily multivitamin containing 0.4 mg of folic acid daily. It is recommended to start before conception through 12 weeks gestation to avoid NTDs.
Iron is another important nutrient that should be included in your prenatal vitamin regimen because it’s necessary to form red blood cells. It also helps prevent anemia during pregnancy, which can lead to fatigue and other complications during delivery. A shortage can also delay the development of your baby’s organs if they don’t have enough oxygenated blood flowing through them early in the uterus.
Use Caution with Non-Prescription Medication
Medication is a controversial subject during pregnancy. Many women avoid all medications during pregnancy, while others prefer to take the occasional medication and determine what’s best for themselves and their babies.
It’s important to consult with your doctor before taking any over-the-counter or prescription drugs. Many medications are safe, but many more are not. Some can even cause birth defects in infants if taken during pregnancy.
Generally speaking, you should avoid painkillers like Tylenol as much as possible because they have been linked with harm to unborn babies when taken frequently or in large doses. In addition, drugs like Tylenol (Acetaminophen) are known to cause Autism and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder in children if they were exposed to acetaminophen during pregnancy.
However, if you notice any such issues in your child over time, you can file a Tylenol Autism lawsuit against the manufacturers and distributors of acetaminophen. It will help you get compensated for medical procedures and treatment to overcome these conditions in kids.
Aspirin and ibuprofen have also been linked with risks, including miscarriage and other severe complications in pregnant women who take them regularly or on an occasional basis for longer than recommended by their healthcare providers. Thus, it’s best not to take these painkillers unless necessary.
Do Not Consume Alcohol, Recreational Drugs, or Smoking
There are many things that you can do to improve your health and make sure that your baby is healthy. One important thing to consider is not consuming alcohol, recreational drugs, or smoking during pregnancy.
These substances may cause birth defects in newborns. It’s also possible for these substances to harm the baby’s brain development, heart function, and hearing ability.
A study by the Centers for Disease Control states the following negative effects of smoking on your newborn:
- Smoking reduces the growth rate of your baby. Hence, they would be born smaller even after a completed pregnancy term.
- Smoking is also the main reason for premature births, and premature babies can go through a lot of health issues.
- Smoking results in damaging the growth of your baby’s lungs and brain. This damage can last from their birth till they reach their teenage years.
- Smoking increases the chances of unusual bleeding during delivery. It can eventually risk the lives of both the child and the mother.
- Smoking also increases the chances of birth defects in newborns.
Caffeine is a major no-no during pregnancy. Studies have shown that consuming too much of it can lead to miscarriage, premature birth, and low birth weight. In addition to caffeine, you should also avoid smoking or drinking alcohol while pregnant. Both are known to increase the risk of miscarriage and other health problems in babies.
If you’re struggling with addiction issues, your unborn child should get help before becoming pregnant. Otherwise, there are steps you can take during pregnancy to cut back on caffeine consumption:
- Try switching from caffeinated drinks like coffee or soda to decaf versions of those beverages. However, even small amounts of caffeine may still be harmful.
- Switch from tea, which has more than one-third less caffeine than coffee.
- Choose non-caffeinated sodas instead of regular ones.
Folic acid is a B vitamin critical for your baby’s health. It helps prevent birth defects, such as spina bifida and cleft palate. Folic acid can also reduce the risk of preterm delivery.
Take 400 micrograms (mcg) daily from a multivitamin containing folic acid or from food sources such as leafy green vegetables, beans, citrus fruits, whole grains, and fortified breakfast cereals. In addition, your prenatal vitamin should contain at least 400 mcg of folic acid per day.
Maintain a Healthy Body Weight
If you are overweight or obese, maintaining a healthy weight is the best way to give your baby the best start. Experts recommend that pregnant women aim to gain between 20 and 25 pounds during pregnancy, which means that if you’re at a healthy weight before becoming pregnant, it’s important not to gain more than 2 pounds (1 kilogram) per month.
If you’re currently overweight or obese, pay attention to how much weight you gain during pregnancy by meeting with your doctor regularly and monitoring your own activity level and food intake. In addition to following these guidelines on how quickly to gain weight during pregnancy:
- Don’t skip breakfast: this will help improve blood sugar control throughout the day;
- Exercise regularly: walking 30 minutes 5 days per week is advised for most people;
- Eat healthy foods: fruits and vegetables contain plenty of vitamins A&C along with fiber necessary for proper digestion;
- Avoid junk food: processed foods contain high amounts of sodium which can lead to excessive fluid retention.
Control High Blood Pressure or Diabetes Before Pregnancy
There are many ways to control blood pressure and diabetes before pregnancy. If you have high blood pressure or diabetes, talk with your doctor about how to manage it. Some of the most common treatments include taking prescription medications for high blood pressure, losing weight, eating a healthy diet, and exercising regularly.
You can also take steps like quitting smoking or reducing alcohol use, as well as reducing stress to lower your chances of developing any complications from these conditions during pregnancy.
It would help if you continued working closely with your doctor throughout this process. However, there are risks associated with treating either condition during pregnancy that must be considered carefully before deciding what treatment options may be best for you and your baby-to-be.
Self-Care Can Ensure a Healthy Pregnancy
To have a healthy pregnancy, you must be careful and adhere to all the tips mentioned above. In addition, be careful with prescription medication and even over-the-counter drugs. Avoid alcohol, recreational drugs, and smoking during pregnancy because they can cause birth defects in your baby.
Caffeine also should be avoided as it can lead to miscarriage or a low birth rate in infants. You must also maintain a healthy body weight before getting pregnant as it will help avoid complications during pregnancy, such as high blood pressure or diabetes that may affect the growth of organs inside your womb giving birth defects in infants.
Healthcare is a vital part of our everyday lives, but many people don’t understand how it works. The article above might have helped you better understand how your body works during pregnancy, which can help you avoid birth defects in infants.