Positive Ways To Have A Healthy Pregnancy Experience
Every year, more than 200 million pregnancies are recorded worldwide. (1) Pregnancy is one opportunity for women to take care of themselves since within them grows another life.
In history, pregnancy was a very fragile part of a woman’s life because of the high mortality rate that came with it. To make matters worse, infant mortality was also high during this time. In the early 1900s 6 to 9 women die in every 1000 live births and 100 per 1000 live-born infants die within the first twelve months of their life. (2)
There are a lot of factors that need to be taken into consideration when a woman becomes pregnant because complications may occur when the health of the mother is not well taken care of.
Here is a simplified list that can help you have a positive and healthy pregnancy experience:
Regular Prenatal Check-Up
Your OB-GYN will request a baseline test to make sure that your pregnancy will be a safe one and also as a basis for comparison for future laboratories that may be taken on the 2nd and 3rd trimester.
The first trimester or the first 12 to 14 weeks of your pregnancy is very important because this is the time when the fetus is growing the important organs of the body such as the heart, neural tube (brain and spine), eyes, and ears.
Take your Prenatal Vitamins
These vitamins are given to aid in the growth of your baby. Vitamins such as folic acid and Vitamin B Complex is recommended because the deficiency of these vitamins may cause birth defects in infants such as spina bifida (3). Folic acid and Vitamin B Complex are important components of a varied biochemical process in the body that will help your baby adapt to the external environment once they are born.
Regular exercise can decrease your risk for gestational diabetes and cardiovascular diseases like preeclampsia or hypertension in pregnancy, perinatal depression, and varicose veins. Appropriate maternal and fetal weight is also achieved with exercise. (4)
Exercises during pregnancy include yoga, swimming, pilates, and walking. Check with your OB-GYN first if your exercise plan is safe for you.
Increase Fluid Intake
Read books regarding pregnancy and your baby. Read on postpartum depression and how you can avoid them. Understanding the changes that your body is going through when you are pregnant can help you be more patient with yourself and understand why these changes are happening.
Watch Your Weight
Your weight during pregnancy is important to avoid diseases such as gestational diabetes, eclampsia, and also to ensure that your baby has the appropriate weight.
For women who are underweight before pregnancy (BMI of less than 18.5), weight gain of 12.5 to 18 kg is expected. Women with normal weight before pregnancy are expected to gain between 11.5 kg to 16 kg. Overweight women are expected to gain 7 kg to 11.5 kg during pregnancy while obese women are expected to gain only 5 kg to 9 kg during pregnancy. (6)
Eat the Right Food
Have a Restful Sleep
Prepare a Birth Plan
Having a birth plan will make you understand the process of your pregnancy and this will ensure that you have an active participation in your experience in giving birth. Discuss with your OB-GYN the plans that he or she has for you and ask what your options are. Remember that your birth plan will also include your partner and your baby.
Try these tips to help you have a positive, healthy, and happy pregnancy journey!
- Fowler JR, Mahdy H, Jack BW. Pregnancy. [Updated 2020 Aug 23]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2020 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK448166/
- Kitchen FL, Jack BW. Prenatal Screening. [Updated 2020 Jul 10]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2020 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK470559/
- Al-Gailani S. (2014). Making birth defects ‘preventable’: pre-conceptional vitamin supplements and the politics of risk reduction. Studies in history and philosophy of biological and biomedical sciences, 47 Pt B, 278–289. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.shpsc.2013.10.009
- Hinman, S. K., Smith, K. B., Quillen, D. M., & Smith, M. S. (2015). Exercise in Pregnancy: A Clinical Review. Sports health, 7(6), 527–531. https://doi.org/10.1177/1941738115599358
- Bardosono, S., Prasmusinto, D., Hadiati, D. R., Purwaka, B. T., Morin, C., Pohan, R., Sunardi, D., Chandra, D. N., & Guelinckx, I. (2016). Fluid Intake of Pregnant and Breastfeeding Women in Indonesia: A Cross-Sectional Survey with a Seven-Day Fluid Specific Record. Nutrients, 8(11), 651. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu8110651
- InformedHealth.org [Internet]. Cologne, Germany: Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG); 2006-. Pregnancy and birth: Weight gain in pregnancy. 2009 Jun 17 [Updated 2018 Mar 22]. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK279575/
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