You have just gotten the big news! You are pregnant! The feeling when you get confirmation from your Gynecologist doctor, is amazing! Having a child is the most precious, amazing and scariest thing ever!
Don’t worry though, I know it seems as if there is so much to do before the baby comes and there is, but relax, it’ll be okay and you’ll have help to get these things taken care of. Here are some tips for you for first time pregnancy. These will help you get through your first time being pregnant with little worrying. Let’s face it, we’re women and we worry but don’t get so worked up, it will upset the baby. Good luck and congratulations.
Take Care of yourself during your pregnancy
The basic premise here is to be healthy and stay healthy for you and your baby. Don’t smoke or be around second hand smoking or be around heavy smokers. You should not drink either. You should sleep and rest as much as possible because you will NEED it! If you’re not, start taking prenatal vitamins, with folic acid. When you buy these, always make sure they contain folic acid. It is vital to your pregnancy. Taking care of yourself will ensure that you have a healthy baby growing inside of you. Your baby’s neural cord turns into the brain and spinal cord, developing in the 1st month you’re pregnant. Therefore, essential vitamins and minerals are very important from day one.
If you don’t know this, it is very important that you exercise in some way to help with stress, weight control, help your circulation, keep your mood stable and you’ll sleep better if you exercise. You should take a walk for at least 15-20 minutes each day. Swimming is a really good exercise when you are pregnant, especially if it’s summer time! Try to get at least 30 minutes of exercise a day.
Get to know more about your baby
Educate yourself and learn about what was going on with your body. Learn the pains and what happens each week as your baby grows inside. If you read up on the baby, it will get you thinking about certain questions to ask your doctor. Also, find out your family history, you’re going to need to know everything about everyone.
Keep track of your weight gains
During your pregnancy, it’s okay to gain weight, you’re eating for two, however, gaining too much weight can be unhealthy for you. Also, you’ll have a hard time losing the weight if you gain too much. If you don’t gain enough weight, your baby’s birth weight and health could be in jeopardy. This is what Gynecologist doctors recommend that you gain for your pregnancy:
- Underweight: Gain 28-40 Pounds
- Normal Weight: Gain 25-35 Pounds
- OverWeight: Gain: 15-25 Pounds
- Obese: Gain 11-20 Pounds
Eating Healthy will pay off! Trust me!
You definitely should drink about 8-10 glasses of water a day. My doctor told me that I should eat about five or six well-balanced meals each day. When you eat, you need to make sure that you are eating foods that are folate-rich. These foods include: cereals, lentils, oranges, orange juice and asparagus. Again, folic acid is extremely important in the development of your baby’s neural tube. Folic Acid also is vital for red blood cells to be created. Natural sugars in bananas and apples can lift your energy levels, which is close to a cup of coffee.
Nausea with or without vomiting
Morning sickness or nausea, which can strike at any time of the day or night, is one of the classic symptoms of pregnancy. For some women, the queasiness begins as early as two weeks after conception. Nausea seems to stem at least in part from rapidly rising levels of estrogen, which causes the stomach to empty more slowly. Pregnant women also have a heightened sense of smell, so various odors – such as foods cooking, perfume or cigarette smoke – may cause waves of nausea in early pregnancy. There are some hints and tips to help combat the effects of morning sickness.
It’s important to take care of your baby, even before he or she is born. You can do this by living a healthy lifestyle and keeping doctor’s appointments while you’re pregnant. This is called prenatal care. You’re more likely to have a healthy birth if you maintain a healthy pregnancy.
Path to improved health
Schedule an appointment with your Gynecologist doctor as soon as you find out you’re pregnant. Your doctor will start by reviewing your medical history. He or she also will want to know about your symptoms. During this first appointment, urine and blood samples will be taken. (These will also be taken again on later visits.) Urine tests check for bacteria, high sugar levels (which can be a sign of diabetes), and high protein levels (which can be a sign for preeclampsia, a type of high blood pressure during pregnancy). Blood tests check for blood cell count, blood type, low iron levels (anemia) and infectious diseases (such as syphilis, HIV, and hepatitis).
The doctor also may do other tests at your first visit. These may vary based on your background and risk for problems. Tests can include:
- A pelvic exam to check the size and shape of your uterus (womb).
- An ultrasound to view your baby’s growth and position. An ultrasound uses sound waves to create an image of your baby on a video screen.
After your first visit, you will have a prenatal visit every 4 weeks. In months 7 and 8, you will have a visit every 2 weeks. In your last month of pregnancy, the visits will occur weekly until you deliver your baby. At each visit, the doctor will check your weight and blood pressure and test your urine. The doctor will listen to your baby’s heartbeat and measure the height of your uterus after the 20th week. You should always discuss any issues or concerns you have with your doctor.
Here are some other guidelines to follow during your pregnancy.
How much weight should I gain during pregnancy?
Talk to your doctor about this. It’s different for everyone, but most women should gain about 25 to 30 pounds. If you’re underweight when you get pregnant, you may need to gain more. If you are overweight, you may need to gain less.
What should I eat?
Eating a balanced diet is one of the best things you can do for yourself and your baby. Be careful of the following foods and drinks during pregnancy.
- Raw meat, eggs and fish. Food that isn’t fully cooked can put you at risk for food poisoning. Don’t eat more than 2 or 3 servings of fish per week (including canned fish). Don’t eat shark, swordfish, king mackerel, or tilefish. These fish have high levels of mercury, which can harm your baby. If you eat tuna, make sure it’s light tuna. Don’t eat more than 6 ounces of albacore tuna and tuna steaks per week. It’s safe to have 12 ounces of canned light tuna per week.
- Fruit and vegetables. Wash all produce before eating it. Keep cutting boards and dishes clean.
- Eat 4 or more servings of dairy each day. This will give you enough calcium for you and your baby. Don’t drink unpasteurized milk or eat unpasteurized milk products. These may have bacteria that can cause infections. This includes soft cheeses such as Brie, feta, Camembert, and blue cheese, or Mexican-style cheeses, such as queso fresco.
- Sugar substitutes. Some artificial sweeteners are okay in moderation. These include aspartame (brand names: Equal or NutraSweet) and sucralose (brand name: Splenda). However, if you have phenylketonuria (PKU), avoid aspartame.
- Don’t drink more than 1 or 2 cups of coffee or other drinks with caffeine each day.
Can I take medicine?
Check with your doctor before taking any medicine. This includes prescriptions, pain relievers, and over-the-counter medicines. Some medicines can cause birth defects, especially if taken during the first 3 months of pregnancy.
Dr.Ruchi Tandon is a Gynecologist practicing in leading hospitals in South Delhi, with over 13 years of clinical experience. At present she is practicing in Max Smart super specialty hospital, Saket, Apollo cradle Royale, Nehru place and her clinic in Greater Kailash part 2, Delhi.