Pregnancy is an exciting period for the mother, for her close friends and family. Being pregnant is a totally new stage in women’s lives, and it requires certain changes to the lifestyle. Besides changes to the lifestyle, there are certain rules and guidelines future mothers must oblige to. These are the Do’s and the Don’ts during pregnancy.
1. Be Sure You are Pregnant: Many women suffer from similar pregnancy symptoms, and they instantly assume they are pregnant. Making sure you are pregnant is the first step. There are several pregnancy tests on the market that accurately detect pregnancy.
2. Take Your Vitamin: Usually, prenatal vitamins are prescribed few months before conceiving. However, if you haven’t started taking them, it is time to start. Folic acid is the most important nutrient mothers need during pregnancy and before.
3. Examine Your Health Insurance: Make sure to place a call to your health insurance provider and ask how much does the insurance covers regarding prenatal care, delivery costs, costs and care for the baby. Alternatively, you can consult the benefits department in the company where you work. For mothers without a health insurance, seeking help is essential.
4. The Choice of a Caregiver: For those who already have a caregiver, this one is easy. For others, a comprehensive research is required. Usually, the best recommendations come from friends and family, as well as colleagues at work. Mothers can also consult their health insurance provider for recommendations.
5. Make an Appointment with Your Caregiver: The appointment should be scheduled before conceiving, or in the first two weeks of pregnancy. You can write down the first day of the last period to help the physician better determine the expected labor date. Feel free to consult your caregiver about possible complications, the medical history of yours and your partners family, and ask as many questions as you want.
6. Get Your Screenings: Technology has improved vastly in the past several decades. Screenings are one way to detect any issues, abnormalities, and complications that might occur during pregnancy. In the first and second trimester tests analyze hormone levels in the blood, and ultrasound can detect chromosomal abnormality.
7. Gain Weight, but do it the Smart Way: The most common myth during pregnancy is that mothers need to eat for two to pack some extra pounds. The reality is that 300 extra calories per day is all that is needed. And those calories must come from a healthy food source. Based on the mother’s initial weight, their physician determines how much weight is normal for them to gain.
8. Visit Your Dentist: Routine checkup at the dentist is important. During pregnancy, hormone levels increase, causing mothers to develop gingivitis. The condition leads to diseases that cause low birth weight and premature delivery. A regular checkup can prevent that.
9. Work Out Wisely: While working out, it is recommended mothers to keep their heart rate below 140 beats a minute. While exercising is recommended during pregnancy, mothers should not overdo it.
10. Keep Your Seatbelt On: Protection is important, and mothers should not forget to put their seatbelt on. However, different positioning is required. The lap belt should be under the belly and across the hips, while the shoulder belt goes between the breasts of the mother.
1. Do Not Smoke: Smoking is harmful for the mother, and for the baby as well. Even exposure to secondary smoking can be harmful. Therefore, mothers should try to avoid certain environments.
2. Do not Drink Alcohol: The physician may allow for a glass of red wine per week, but future mothers should try to skip alcohol at all. Alcohol has a harmful effect on the baby. The risk of premature labor and miscarriage greatly increases with the consumption of alcohol.
3. Avoid Hazardous Food, including raw, unpasteurized and processed foods. Chips and snacks are also included in the list. Some food choices may be harmful for the baby, like sea food for example rich with mercury.
4. Don’t Deliver Early: The designated delivery date is 40 weeks into pregnancy, and mothers should stick with that. While in the past doctors encouraged mothers to deliver in week 38, now days, studies have shown that rushing is more harmful than beneficial.
5. Do not Drink Coffee: A cup here or there does no harm, but too much coffee can cause miscarriage. The recommended dose is 200mg per day. However, be wary that chocolate and tea also contain caffeine.
6. Don’t Use Hot Tubs and Baths: Saunas and hot tubs can raise mother’s body temperature to degrees that disrupt fetal development.
7. Do not Jog: While light exercise and walking are recommended, those do not include jogging. Intense physical activity such as jogging can increase the temperature of the body, something we mentioned is harmful for the baby.
8. Do not Take Birth Control Pills: Some researchers have suggested a link between the pill and increased risk of low birth weight, preterm labor and urinary tract issues.