Skip to:

Pregnancy Lifestyle

Coping With Morning Sickness During Pregnancy

 

Morning sickness, also known as nausea and vomiting during pregnancy, is common during the early days of pregnancy. While it happens to be unpleasant, it doesn’t put any harmful risk on your baby’s health and usually clears up between the 16th to 20th week.

 

Some women may get an extremely severe form of nausea called hyperemesis gravidarum. It affects around one in 1,000 pregnant women. The symptoms of HG include weight loss, repeated vomiting, and dehydration. Women affected with HG require special treatment and it usually involves hospitalization.

 

The possible risks of untreated HG (Hyperemesis Gravidarum) include:

 

  • Extreme depression and anxiety

  • Malnourishment of the fetus

  • Excessive strain on organs, including the heart, kidneys, and brain

  • Electrolyte imbalances

 

Morning sickness can be a misleading term as it can affect you at any time of the day or night, and some women may feel sick all day long. Studies suggest that hormonal changes in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy are one of the most probable causes of morning sickness.

 

Its symptoms start decreasing as your pregnancy progresses. In some women, symptoms gradually disappear by the third month of their pregnancy. However, some women experience morning sickness for longer than this. In fact, about 1 in 10 women continues to experience it even after the 20 weeks.

 

Morning Sickness and Your Baby:

 

Many women think that the action of vomiting may threaten their baby. They are concerned that vomiting and retching may strain the abdominal muscles and give rise to localized aching and soreness. However, the physical mechanics of vomiting doesn’t harm the baby in the womb. It’s because the fetus is protected inside its sac of amniotic fluid.

 

A number of studies have found that moderate sickness is correlated with a reduced risk of miscarriage. But, prolonged vomiting (leading you to dehydration and weight loss) can deprive your baby of proper nutrition and increase the chances of your child being underweight at birth.

 

Cures for morning sickness:

 

If you have morning sickness, your GP or midwife will initially suggest you alter your diet and daily lifestyle habits to help reduce the symptoms.

 

The changes include:

 

  • Getting enough rest, tiredness can make nausea worse

  • If you feel morning sickness as the first thing in the morning, try getting up slowly - have dry toast or a plain biscuit before you get up

  • Drinking plenty of fluids and sipping them frequently rather than in large amounts, helps prevent vomiting

  • Increasing intake of small, frequent meals that are low in fat and high in carbohydrates (such as rice, bread, and pasta)

  • Consuming cold meals rather than hot meals, cold meals don’t give off the smell that hot meals do, which may make you sick

  • Preventing eating food that you don’t like or make you feel sick

  • Not thinking about nausea as much as you can - nausea gets worse the more you ponder over it.

  • Wearing clothes without waistbands that fit you comfortably.

 

The time to see a doctor:

 

If you are having excessive vomiting and aren’t able to keep any drink or food down, there is a possibility that you could become malnourished or dehydrated.

 

Visit your GP or midwife if below-given symptoms are found:

 

  • Your urine has got dark-colored or do not pass for more than eight hours

  • Unable to keep fluids or food down for 20 hours

  • When standing up, feel weak, dizzy or faint

  • Feel incessant abdominal pain

  • Have a high temperature (fever) above 36C

  • Blood in vomit

 

Another cause of nausea and vomiting is Urinary tract infections (UTIs). A UTI is an infection that can harm the bladders as well as affect the kidneys.

In summary:

 

You may find that self-help, a combination of dietary changes, and natural remedies can help you tolerate morning sickness until it eases off. However, if nothing works, and you still suffer, see your doctor as early as possible.

Everything You Should Know When Delivering A Breech Baby

 

A breech position occurs when a baby is positioned bottom-down in the womb late in pregnancy. Breech births can be a matter of complication for both mother and baby. Therefore, planning for such type of birth requires discussion with the doctor or midwife. This article explains why and how breech birth happens, and the risks it poses to a pregnant woman and her baby.

 

How will you get to know your baby is in a breech position?

 

Most babies turn into a head-down position around the last month of pregnancy. Health professionals refer this a ‘cephalic’ or ‘vertex’ position.

 

It’s common for a baby to get into a breech position before 35-36 weeks gestation. But, most babies settle into the cephalic position prior to a last few weeks of pregnancy.

 

To determine whether the baby is in a breech position, your doctor examines your abdomen whenever you go for the check-ups during the second and third trimester of your pregnancy. In medical terminology, it is called an ‘abdominal palpation.’ Further, when the doctors feel your abdomen at 35-36 weeks, they assess whether the baby has turned into a head-down position or not. When they suspect that your baby might be in a breech position, they confirm it with an ultrasound scan.

 

There are 3 types of breech positions. All of them include the baby being in a bottom-down, head up, position.

 

  • Complete breech-  The baby gets in a sitting posture with his legs crossed in front of his body and his feet near his bottom.

  • Frank Breech- In a V shape, the baby’s legs are straight up in front of his body, and his feet get up near the face.

  • Footling breech- One or both of the baby’s feet hang below its bottom and the foot or feet will be coming first.

 

What does it mean for your baby?

 

When your baby is in the womb, he is as safe in a breech position as he would be in a cephalic position. There are no signs of long-term effects upon babies in a breech position during pregnancy. However, the birth process becomes challenging when the baby is still breech at the start of labor.

 

Why does a baby get in a breech position?

 

Many times it’s unclear why a baby remains in a breech position, but some of the reasons may include:

 

  • too little or too excessive amniotic fluid around the baby

  • twin birth - for instance, when one baby is in a head-down position and another in a breech position.

  • uterine fibroids

  • the length of the umbilical cord

  • irregular size of the mother’s uterus

 

Will the baby turn after 36 weeks?

 

Sometimes, babies in a breech position naturally turn themselves in head-down position in the last month of pregnancy. If you’re giving birth for the first time and your baby is breech at 36 weeks, the chance of the baby turning itself naturally is about 1 in 8. If you’re giving birth to your second baby and this one is breech at 36 weeks, the chance of him turning naturally is about 1 in 3.

 

When the baby is in a breech position at 36 weeks, your doctor may recommend you think about an external cephalic position, or ECV, after 37 weeks. This increases chances of your baby settling into the cephalic position.

 

However, before trying any techniques such as moxibustion (a Chinese herbal treatment) or by holding yourself in different positions, be sure to consult your doctor or midwife.

 

What options do you have?

 

The safest process to give birth, for both mother and child, is a head-first vaginal birth.

 

In case if you don’t want to try ECV, or even on trying it doesn’t work, other remaining options are cesarean birth or a vaginal birth.  

 

Generally, women are encouraged to undergo a cesarean birth when the baby is breech. Nevertheless, a breech vaginal birth is possible depending on your individual circumstances such as the type of breech position, and the skills of the doctor or midwife looking after you.

Everything You Need To Know About Twin Birth

 

Giving birth to twins or multiples can be a time of delight, excitement, and curiosity for the whole family. While on one hand the thought of having twins might be thrilling, but on the other, it might also get you worried about how you are going to deal with this. However, being well informed about twin birth can definitely help calm your nerves and clear your doubts.

 

Generally, twin pregnancies are considered high risk, but there is also an overwhelming percentage of healthy, normal births of twins these days.

 

In this article, we have covered essential things you must know about birthing twins.

 

Giving Birth to twins:

 

Twins are more likely to be born early, usually before 38 weeks. While only less than half of all twin pregnancies last beyond 37 weeks. And in some cases, twins are often born prematurely. Thus, it’s important to discuss all available birth options with your midwife or doctor early during your pregnancy.

 

You can also discuss where you would like to give birth. But it’s advisable to go for a hospital birth as twin births carry higher chances of complications. In comparison to a home birth, the number of medical staff that will be available at the hospital is higher. This staff includes a midwife, an obstetrician, and two pediatricians- for each baby.

 

Vaginal Birth:

 

Almost half of all the twin births happen vaginally and the process is quite similar to that of a single child birth. During the vaginal delivery of twins, doctors usually recommend the use of an epidural injection, used especially in childbirth to generate a loss of sensation below the waist. In case of any complication, this makes it easier to assist delivery when the mother has already been given a good pain relief.

 

If the first twin is in cephalic (head down) position, it is likely going to be a vaginal birth. However, this won’t be possible in case if your pregnancy has other medical reasons. If you’ve previously had a cesarean section, then you might not be able to give natural birth to twins.

 

Once the first baby is born, your midwife or doctor will check the position of the second baby by doing a vaginal inspection and examining your abdomen, and then proceed ahead.  

 

C-Section:

 

Either you can choose to have an elective c-section from the outset of your pregnancy, or your doctor will recommend a cesarean section birth later in the pregnancy as a consequence of potential complications. Whereas, the twins’ position also determines whether they need to be delivered through a c-section. If the presenting baby is in a breech position (knees, feet or buttock first), or if a baby is lying in a transverse position (when the body is lying sideways), you may have to undergo a cesarean section.

 

There are other conditions as well, in which a c-section becomes a must. For instance, if you have a low-lying placenta (placenta praevia) or if the twins share a placenta.

 

In very rare cases it happens that one twin will be born vaginally and there will a c-section to deliver the second baby when a baby becomes distressed.

 

Recovery after the birth:

 

This mainly depends on whether you’ve had a c-section or a normal birth. Or, if you’ve had other complications such as a postpartum hemorrhage.

 

If everything during the birth goes well, you may be discharged within two days after a natural birth and four days after a c-section.

 

Get Help:

 

At this time, family and friends can be of great support and help. They will be more than pleased to help if asked. Unfortunately, If you haven’t got your close ones nearby you in this situation, consider taking the help of your health visitor or contact TAMBA (the Twins and Multiple Births Association). They offer professional support and service to families with multiple birth or twins.

How Safe Is Travelling During Pregnancy

 

When it comes to traveling, pregnancy involves its own set of challenges and guidelines. However, with a little advance planning along with some common sense, you can make traveling safe and easy for yourself..

 

Best time to travel:

Doctors recommend that pregnant women should avoid travel during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. It’s because nausea and tiredness are common in this period and common obstetric emergencies occur during the first and third trimester. The preferred time to travel is between 18 to 24 weeks of pregnancy.

But it’s safer if you consult this decision with your healthcare provider and discuss purpose to travel, destination, underlying medical and pregnancy related complications beforehand.

 

Air Travel:

Traveling by air isn’t harmful to your baby. However, discussing your health issues or any potential risks particular to your pregnancy with the doctor is necessary. For instance, a pregnant woman with gestational diabetes or multiple pregnancies is not advised to fly by air.

The likelihood of going into labor is higher after 37 weeks, and your airlines may not let you fly towards the end of your pregnancy. So run a check on airlines’ policy regarding this.

 

Post 28 weeks of pregnancy, your airline can ask you for a letter from your midwife or doctor confirming your due date, and that you aren’t at risk of any complication.

 

Long distance travel, for more than 5 hours, carries a higher risk of blood clots. To refrain yourself from this during the travel, drink plenty of water and move regularly every 30 minutes or so. In case you have a swelling in your legs, buy a pair of support stockings from the pharmacy to help reduce it.

 

Vaccinations:

 

Usually, vaccinations are not recommended because of the concerns that the bacteria or virus in the jab could harm the baby in the womb. However, it is safe to vaccinate pregnant women with influenza vaccine. It is strongly recommended for all pregnant women as influenza can cause a serious illness in pregnancy.

 

Pregnant women are advised to not travel countries where immunization is an unavoidable process. If it is must for you to travel to countries requiring vaccinations, consult this with your doctor as the chances of having an infectious disease often outweighs the harms of vaccination.

 

Automobile Travel:

Dizziness and fatigue are two of the common diseases in pregnant women. Hence, when traveling to a long distance destination in a car, drink regularly, eat natural, eat energy-giving foods and keep taking regular breaks.

Keep air circulation at normal in the car and wear the seatbelt with a cross strap between your breasts. Wear lap strap across your pelvis under your bump, not across the bump as a sudden jolt could cause the placenta to separate from the uterus.

Do remember:

 

The safest time for you to travel is the second trimester, provided you don’t have health risks and complications. Avoid travel to developing countries during pregnancy. And be wary of taking proper medications of any type, including the ones commonly used to treat a traveler’s diarrhea. 

Dangers of Smoking During Pregnancy

 

It’s never too late to quit smoking as the health benefits begin in the body as early as 20 minutes after your last smoke.

 

This is applicable, not only to mothers-to be to quit smoking during pregnancy but to their partners as well. It’s because passive smoking can be intoxicating for both mother and the baby. In addition to this, a smoke-free household provides you with a healthier atmosphere.

 

Initially, it can be hard to quit, but with the appropriate support from your family members and friends, it  can be done easily.

 

Fertility and Smoking:

 

For both men and women, consumption of nicotine through smoking can excessively decrease fertility rate.

 

Women who smoke can have:

 

  • early start of menopause

  • vulvar and cervical cancer

  • difficulty in smoking

Men who smoke can have:

 

  • trouble maintaining the erection

  • decreased sperm count

  • Issues in the DNA of the sperm causing health issues to the baby.

 

How smoking affects the baby during pregnancy?

 

According to the studies, smoking during pregnancy exposes your baby to several harmful chemicals. Every time you take a puff of smoke, your baby smokes it with you and harmful nicotine and other chemicals get through the placenta and into the fetus. Not only that, it also reduces the blood flow in the body, eventually causing birth difficulties.

 

For pregnant women, smoking can result in a far higher risk of:

 

  • premature birth

  • low birth weight

  • damage to the baby’s lungs and heart

  • miscarriage, stillbirth or ectopic pregnancy

 

Even after the birth, there are still health and development risks if you or other members in your family smoke. These include;

 

  • respiratory disorders such as asthma

  • increased chances of obesity

  • increased risk of childhood cancer, allergies, and high blood pressure

  • three times higher risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)

Passive smoking:

 

Passive smoking is no less damaging than smoking itself as other people’s smoke can put harmful effects on both mother and the baby. If it is not possible for other family members to quit, the least they can do is commit to a smoke-free household. Family members who smoke should do it outside or maintain a considerable distance from the pregnant woman while smoking.

 

In most states and territories, it is illegal to smoke in a car while a child is sitting inside. There is also a ban on smoking in public spaces.

 

How to start quitting smoking?

 

Quitting smoking completely can be the best goal for you. However, it will be easier if you start with cutting down on your smoking gradually.

 

There are numerous ways to quit smoking that you should at least give a try. Remember, every attempt to give up on cigarettes is a step taken towards becoming an ex-smoker which is immensely good for health.

 

You can quit by following methods that include:

 

  • going cold turkey- simply to withdraw suddenly from an addictive substance

  • using Quitline resources

  • mobile apps like Quit for you - Quit for two

  • taking support from family and friends

  • prescription medicine

  • nicotine replacement therapy

Prescription medications help you by reducing withdrawal symptoms such as anxiety, cravings, and irritability.

 

Nicotine replacement therapies (NRT) are readily available from pharmacies and come in two categories:

 

  • Steady response products in the form of nicotine patches

  • quick response products, such as chewing gum, tablets, lozenges and inhalers.

It is important to inform the chemist or your doctor that you are pregnant before using any NRT or prescription medications.

 

While some smokers may use vaping or e-cigarettes for giving up tar and tobacco, the long-term health effects are still unknown of such products. Due to the ingredients, even e-cigarettes can be harmful to you and your baby. Doctors emphasize on quitting smoking rather than depending on its alternatives.

It may take a few tries to quit as it does for most people. But it is worth it to keep trying. 

All You Need To Know About C-section

 

What is a C-section?

 

A C-section, or commonly referred as Caesarean delivery, is a surgical procedure used to deliver a baby. Its surgery involves one incision in the mother’s abdomen and another in the uterus to bring out the baby.

 

Caesarean delivery has now become a common procedure to deliver about 1 in 4 babies in the U.S. Doctors recommend avoiding C-sections before 39 weeks of pregnancy so that the baby can have enough time to develop in the womb. However, due to certain complications, C-sections must be performed prior to 39 weeks.

 

Reasons to perform a C-section:

 

A C-section is performed when certain complications make vaginal birth difficult, or put a mother or baby’s life at risk. In this situation, a C-section becomes the immediate alternative for saving lives. So, you may enter into the delivery room expecting a normal delivery and suddenly find that you will have a C-section. Some of the reasons that might precipitate this decision with your doctor are listed below.

 

  • Problems with the baby’s development in the womb

  • Baby’s head bigger than the usual size for the birth canal.  

  • Breech birth, when the feet come out first

  • Early pregnancy difficulties

  • Health problems with the mother such as high blood pressure

  • Complications with the placenta or umbilical cord

  • Stalled labour

  • Baby’s shoulder coming out first

 

The risks in a C-section birth:

 

It is becoming a more common type of birth option, but it is still considered as a major surgery that carries health risks for both mother and the baby.

 

The risks that may occur while performing a C-section include bleeding, blood clots, increased risks for future pregnancies, infection, injury to the baby during surgery, or surgical injury to other organs.

 

Tips for the fast recovery:

 

Childbirth is an exciting time. It’s the time when you get to meet the life that’s been growing inside you for the last nine months. However, having a baby can be challenging for your body if you have gone through a cesarean delivery. You will need more time to recover from this as compared to a normal delivery.

 

Follow the given tips to speed up your recovery and spend less time tired and sore, and more time bonding with your baby.

 

Take care of your body:

 

After a C-section, your body needs 4 to 6 weeks to completely heal the incision site. You will need to take extra care in getting around. Avoid going up and down stairs as much as you can. Be careful and hold your abdomen whenever you sneeze or cough to protect the incision.

 

Doctors prescribe to avoid strenuous exercise until your body is healed completely, but you can take gentle walks as often as you want. Taking short and gentle walks in this recovery period helps you prevent constipation and blood clots.

 

Nutrition is a necessity:

 

Consumption of vital nutrients in the months after you deliver is as important as it was while you were pregnant.

 

When you breastfeed, you become the primary source of nutrition for your baby. Research indicates that eating green vegetables after the delivery imparts vital flavors in breast milk. It fills the need of nutrients in your baby and helps him grow healthily. Also, drinking lots of water as extra fluid in the body boosts your breast milk supply and help avoid constipation.

 

Time to call the doctor:

 

Recovery from a C-section can be a painful time. You will probably feel soreness in the incision, or might bleed for up to six weeks. That’s normal. But the following symptoms after the C-section signal to call a doctor.  

 

  • Pus, redness, swelling seeping from the incision site

  • Fever for more than 100.4 Fahrenheit

  • Chest pain

  • Redness or swelling in legs

  • Heavy vaginal bleeding

  • Difficulty in breathing

 

Indeed, if you know someone who has gone through a C-section, you don’t have to compare yourself with her. Every woman would have different experiences with this surgery. Now, give your body the time it needs to get back to normal and focus on how well are you recovering.

Best Tips to Overcome Mood Swings During Pregnancy

 

Pregnancy brings happiness and excitement for everyone around you, but it can also be the time of challenges and concerns for a pregnant woman. Factors like anxiety, relationship woes, job demand, hormone fluctuations, etc. create troubles for a woman during all these nine months, leading to constant mood swings.

However, as an expectant mother, it’s important to keep your anxiety levels to a minimum. The chronic stress created due to the anxiety not only put harmful effects on you but also the life evolving inside you. High levels of chronic stress can increase the risk of delivering the baby before the due date along with a low birth weight and hampered cognitive skills.  

So, if you are suffering from sadness and long-standing anxiety causing you mood swings, reach out to a professional doctor. But if you experience short-term moments of unhappiness, use following tips to help reduce the negativity and increase positivity inside you.

 

Meditate:

This may sound cliche, but meditation can do wonders. It can help you calm down and get through the stressful stages of pregnancy.

Doing regular meditation directly affects your diet. The body stops craving for junk food. And as the awareness dawns, you start to make healthier food choices vital for the proper nourishment of the baby. Not only this, it also helps decrease the pressure on the spinal cord and makes you feel more comfortable during the last stage of your pregnancy.

Laugh Often:

When you laugh often, the stress hormones go down and the endorphins, the feel-good hormones, come up. The endorphins temporarily suspend pain and create an overall sense of happiness. In addition to this, laughter also relaxes the muscles and helps you feel more optimistic and elated.

Thus, bring more laughter into your life. Invite your friends to a dinner and spend some quality time with them. Talk to them about the funniest and embarrassing moments you had after getting pregnant. Indeed, instead of pondering over what’s bothering you, try to find humor in situations.

Listen Music:

Studies conducted in the past validate that soulful and soothing music contains healing capabilities and help us de-stress, relax and change our mood for the better.

On the other hand, studies say that unborn babies who are exposed to the music while in the womb, show significant improvement in their overall health. They have better mental, cognitive, behavioral, psychological and emotional development as compared to those babies who have never been exposed to any music while being the womb.

Exercise Everyday:

Sticking to a daily exercise plan is the best thing you can do to keep yourself healthy and energetic. It’s perfectly safe to exercise during pregnancy. If you haven’t exercised before, this is the right to time to start.

Swimming is also ideal in such situations. You can join an aqua natal class running at your local pool. As a matter of fact, you are entitled to paid time off work to attend pregnancy related classes.

If you are a working woman, try to include exercise in your daily routine. At work, don’t sit for too long, get up and walk around often. Go out at lunchtime to get some fresh air, even if it’s for 10-15 minutes.

Make Healthy Lifestyle Choices:

A complete pregnancy diet plan is a must for pregnant women. Increase your daily intake of carbohydrates and proteins, recommended food like green leafy vegetables, fortified whole grain bread and nuts. Keep having salads and fresh fruits in between your meals. Refrain from unfavorable habits like smoking and drinking as well. And do not miss your exercise regime as this helps in managing your anger and make you feel fresh.

In Conclusion:

The above-mentioned tips can effectively reduce mood swings during pregnancy as these are mostly natural remedies and do not need any type of medication. However, if the mood swings persist for more than two weeks, meet your practitioner. You may be suffering from depression that needs proper care and immediate attention.

5 Pregnancy Apps to Keep Track Of Your Growing Baby

 

While the latest technology is leaving its stamps on every sector, no field has been affected more than the healthcare industry. Doctors, patients and technicians are all contributing to the discovery of new and effective ways to monitor personal healthcare. Tasks like tracking daily sleep patterns, counting calories, research treatment options and even monitoring your heart rate have become easier due to the development of nifty gadgets and smartphone apps.

 

Pregnancy is a phase that requires constant monitoring of the health of both the mother and the baby. The apps listed below do all that seamlessly:

 

1) Baby Bump Pregnancy Pro (iOS and Android):

 

Although it has “pro” in the name, Baby Bump is a free app having numerous functionalities.

It is a comprehensive pregnancy app that keeps soon-to-be moms informed about their pregnancy progress.

 

Its features include-

  • a journal to outline your daily symptoms, moods and thoughts.

  • a kick counter and contraction timer to track your baby’s shenanigans.

  • a baby naming function that allows you to search by sound, origin, meaning, or gender.

  • a section where you can play a vaginal birth video to help you prepare mentally for pregnancy.

 

It’s a must-have app if you are enthusiastic about tracking your entire pregnancy and want to stay informed.

 

2) WebMD (iOS)

 

Most of the medical information present online related to pregnancy is usually not recommended. It’s because the Internet is a plethora of misleading information and you may end up reading about some rare conditions that might not even apply to you.

 

On the other hand, WebMD contains information drawn from actual doctors. It features articles that are both well cited from reliable medical origins and reviewed by licensed medical practitioners.

 

The main attraction of this app is the Pregnancy 101 section. Here, you can learn everything about you and your baby and take important notes regarding illness, exercise, nutrition, and health & safety.

 

3) MommyMeds

 

It’s a useful app based on the research of Thomas Hale, Ph.D., a leading expert in the field of perinatal pharmacology and the use of medication. This app allows expecting moms to search by the name or scan barcodes of prescribed medication and over-the-counter drugs. MommyMeds is an easier way to find out whether certain medications are safe or not while expecting. The information available on this app has been compiled as a result of the rigorous research, studies, and experience of the InfantRisk Center.

 

The objective of MommyMeds app is to provide up-to-date, evidence-based information regarding the use of medication. Not only this, it can make you aware about the effects of some disease conditions during pregnancy and breastfeeding as well.

 

4) Prenatal Pilates By Blue Sparrow

 

It’s known for its great visuals and commands that help you stay in shape during pregnancy. The exercises on this app are designed to fit for every stage of the pregnancy, by taking into consideration the posture changes and body alignment. You can find the right workout based on your body parts and fitness level. In addition to this, you can also keep track of your weight and stamina and listen to guided instructions.

 

5) Ovia Pregnancy Tracker

 

It’s a companion of the Ovia Fertility app that comes with numerous useful pregnancy tools that you can personalize accordingly. It has a development calendar and symptom tracker that tells us the preferred steps to take at different stages of pregnancy. Your sleep, exercise, mood and blood pressure can all be tracked easily. The most intriguing feature of the app is its categorized notebook where you can record questions for your doctor, shopping list, cravings and more.

 

Moms-to-be should always keep in mind, as good as these pregnancy apps are for keeping track of body changes and connecting with others, they are not substitutes for professional advice from your doctor. If you have health concerns, always consult your doctor. And keep following your doctor’s appointments as per the routine.

How To Deal With Depression During Pregnancy Without Any Medication

 

One of the hardest thing for a woman is to deal with the depression during her pregnancy. What’s worse for her is the decision whether to go for antidepressants or not. Because high levels of stress hormones put harmful effects on the baby. On the other hand, antidepressants have their own consequences too.

It has been found that taking antidepressants during pregnancy is linked to an increased risk of preterm birth. Researchers firmly believe that the medication is to blame for this.

Studies show that the most common antidepressant pregnant women use as a medication is Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs). Doctors say that taking medication to cure depression is a wise choice in some cases. But numerous studies show SSRIs are potentially linked to fetal cardiac arrest and premature birth. Thus, many women with mild-to-moderate depression are now looking forward to drug-free alternatives, and are finding significant success.

Outcomes of Doing Nothing:

Clinically depressed women tend to have a poorer diet and improper sleep habits. They are less likely to take their prenatal vitamins and visit their doctor. In fact, they incline more towards undesirable habits like smoking and drinking.

Meanwhile, most pregnant women prefer to take medication or do nothing to win over depression until the baby is born. Women want to get to the end of the pregnancy and don’t try for any treatment. But depression can prove to be harmful to both you and your baby if not cured immediately.

Studies suggest that excess exposure to stress hormones like cortisol in the womb can influence the development of a baby’s stress-response system and impair the growth of neurons.

So, if you are experiencing symptoms of depression and your doctor suggests that medication is not the best option or the only option, there are several drug alternatives that could help you bring down your depression.

Light Therapy:

Bright-light therapy is the most intriguing and emerging alternative of medication. In this therapy, a mom-to-be spends around one hour each morning in front of a specialized artificial light.

Intense, bright light reduces the onset of the evening production of the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin. Further, it helps reset your circadian rhythm that controls from sleep-wake cycles to hormonal fluctuations in your body.

According to a study published in 2011 in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry outlines that 13 out 16 moderately depressed women receiving light therapy for five weeks showed at least 50% improvement in symptoms. Additionally, 4 of them stopped being depressed completely- with no side effects.

Yoga and Meditation:

Mindfulness-based meditation classes blend gentle yoga poses with supervised meditation exercises and group discussions to help expectant women to become less judgemental of their thoughts and feelings. This further helps mom-to-be to become more in tune with the body.

In an experiment, it was found that depressed woman who participated in a 12 week mindfulness-based yoga class experienced a significant decrease in their depressive symptoms and scored higher on the tests analyzing how close they felt to their unborn baby.

Acupuncture, Magnetic Stimulation and Omega-3s:

Another research conducted on 150 pregnant, depressed women found that acupuncture is way more effective than massage or placebo in reducing symptoms of depression. And a number of trials tell that supplementing it with even 300 milligrams of omega-3 fatty acid in the form of DHA not only help decrease depression but also prevent from postpartum.

These are some of the overwhelming results that push the idea of using drug alternatives in place of medication. However, several studies and researches are being conducted to find the cure for depression of either type, mild or moderate. Researchers are developing new therapies. But the important thing is to recognize a depressed, pregnant woman and encourage her to seek proper treatment. This way she can take good care of her and the baby.

Here's How Gadgets Can Enrich Your Pregnancy Experience

 

Pregnancy can be an unsettling experience for some parents. But the arrival of the latest technologies and gadgets are making pregnancy incredibly easier than before. These consumer gadgets are helping parents from pregnancy to conception and beyond.

 

Ranging from baby health monitors to advancements in ultrasound, now advancements in technology can provide parents with a bunch of detailed information such as how is their baby growing inside the womb?
 

Enhance your pregnancy experience with these Prenatal Gadgets:
 

Ultra Stan:

Ultrasound scanning has been developing rapidly over the past few years. Hospitals can provide detailed scans of the baby inside the womb. While imaging and maternity clinics now offer the opportunity to store 3D stills and 4D moving images of an ultrasound scan report on a CD. This technology promises to go even further and lets you experience some defining moments of your baby.
 

With Ultra Stan, you can hear and see your baby inside the womb wherever and whenever you want. Simply link this ultrasound pregnancy scanner with a supported smartphone app and enable audio or video recording of the baby inside you.
 

Baby Buds for Baby Bump:

Currently, there is no definite conclusion whether playing music or another type of sounds put profound effects on the baby’s development or not. But, there are a growing number of such gadgets in the market serving the purpose. Gadgets like Baby Buds allow pregnant moms to play voice recordings or soothing music to their baby. Just place the discrete Baby Buds system to the belly, and let your baby listen to peaceful music.
 

Shell by BellaBeat:

With devices like Shell by BellaBeat, parents can listen to their baby’s heartbeats from the comfort of their home. This gadget makes pregnancy more cherishing for those listening to it by omitting the inside noise and amplifying the sound of the baby in-utero. Additionally, it even enables you to record and share your baby’s heartbeats with your family and friends.

 

QardioBase Wireless Smart Scale

It’s a stylish body analyzer that keeps track of your body’s health and progress as the baby develops inside you. It’s compatible with both Android and iOS devices and easily pairable with the Qardio app installed on the smartphone. Pregnant moms can view their body data and share it with chosen contacts including their doctor.

 

Meanwhile, its scales can be programmed to measure the BMI and weight of multiple users, so that other users can also make use of its specific settings.
 

The Pinard Stethoscope:

The Pinard stethoscope is another heartbeat audio device that is traditionally used by midwives to listen to a baby’s heartbeat. It takes a while to detect the fetal heart rate, but when it differentiates the heartbeat of your baby from yours, it’s fun to listen to it. This is a handy and inexpensive gadget that provides you and your partner an amazing listening experience. 

 

Bloomlife:

Bloomlife is a wearable pregnancy sensor that you don’t have to wear the whole time but once or twice during the third trimester. It’s a device that sticks onto the belly and keeps track of the counts and timings of contractions. The gathered data on contraction is then sent to be viewed on the compatible iOS or Android app. This in turn, helps you prepare in a better way for labor.
 

In Conclusion:

The gadgets mentioned in this article are intuitive and easy to use. They require minimum efforts to set up. Thus, expectant parents can save all their enthusiasm and energy for the time when their baby is born.

Subscribe to RSS - Pregnancy Lifestyle