Pregnancy is an extremely exciting time in your life, but as anyone who's been through it will tell you, it's no walk in the park. If you've already had a baby, you're probably quite familiar with the ups and downs of pregnancy, but if this is your first time, you're in for quite a ride. It takes a lot of energy to grow a baby, and the process certainly takes its toll on the body. For as fun as it can be hearing your baby's heartbeat or feeling your little one squirm and kick inside of you, pregnancy can also be rife with inconveniences. Of course, most women would tell you that it all pays off in the end, but that doesn't make these aspects of pregnancy any more enjoyable. Below are a few of most common problems women have to deal with during pregnancy, and a few tips on how to tackle them.
A classic side-effect of pregnancy, morning sickness impacts many women starting in their first trimester. Although it's called "morning" sickness, these feelings of nausea and vomiting can strike at any time. Some women experience it only in the morning, others in the evening, and for some, these uncomfortable feelings, unfortunately, persist all throughout the day. While the feelings of nausea and the accompanying vomiting itself can be extremely unpleasant, the biggest problem with morning sickness is that it deprives your body of nutrients and hydration. There are a few things you can do to combat this. Drink lots of water to ensure your body stays hydrated, and to fight the feelings of nausea, try ginger or vitamin B6. Both are considered safe to ingest during pregnancy and many women report that these substances are beneficial. You can also find sucking candies or lollipops that purport to fight morning sickness. The effectiveness of these products varies from individual to individual, but many women swear by them. Before trying any product, though, be sure to consult with us to ensure it's considered safe.
Managing Your Diet
Managing your diet during pregnancy is no easy task, particularly if you're also struggling with morning sickness or if you develop an aversion to certain foods during the pregnancy. Focus on eating fruits, vegetables, and whole grains while trying your best to avoid sweets, sugary drinks, and carbs. This can be difficult for many women, especially if they develop cravings or a sweet tooth during pregnancy, but remember that the healthier you eat, the better it is for your baby. In addition, women who gain a significant amount of weight (above and beyond what's considered to be the normal, average weight gain) during pregnancy usually end up with a larger baby, which can make delivery more difficult, and can also lead to problems like hypertension and diabetes. That's not to say that you should stress out when you step on the scale and see your weight rising -- most women don't like the idea of gaining weight, but it's all part of the pregnancy process. It's completely normal and healthy to gain weight during pregnancy, and it's better to gain a little too much weight than it is to be underweight. There's no true target number when it comes to weight gain during pregnancy, as it varies depending on the individual patient, but in general, a weight gain of around 35 pounds during the pregnancy is considered ideal.
In addition to being mindful of your diet for weight purposes, also be vigilant about the types of foods you eat as they relate to the safety of your baby. For example, you should limit your fish intake because of the potentially high mercury levels, and you should avoid raw or undercooked foods like sushi and rare red meat. In addition, stay away from foods like deli meat, hot dogs, and unpasteurized dairy products, as these can all contain the harmful listeria bacteria.
Trouble Getting Comfortable or Sleeping
In early pregnancy, before the bulk of your weight gain, things will feel pretty normal, but as the pregnancy progresses, many women start to experience physical discomfort. Carrying around a big belly puts extra strain on the spine which can result in soreness and lower back pain. This can make standing for long periods of time very uncomfortable, but even when it's time to sit or sleep, it can be hard to get comfortable. If you used to sleep on your stomach, you can't do that anymore during pregnancy, and lying on your back can seem to just worsen your back pain, in addition to causing your baby to press down on your blood vessels, which can cause you to feel faint. Many women find that sleeping on their side is the best option, with a pillow or two placed in between their knees to help ease the pressure on the hips and pelvis.
Pregnancy is an exciting bus stressful time, and most women have a lot of questions about the process. We’re here to serve as a resource for you to make your pregnancy as smooth and safe as possible. If you’re looking for a reliable and proven gynecology practice, don’t hesitate to contact us to learn more about our team or to schedule an appointment.