Thinking about bringing a new life to this world? You must be very excited. But are you aware of the health-related responsibilities of pregnant women?
If this is your first time conceiving a baby and you are unacquainted with how to keep yourself healthy, you must read this article until the end because we have opted to discuss this important matter today.
The matter of staying healthy during pregnancy is very crucial. It ensures that you and your baby are healthy. Here are some tips and ways to stay healthy during pregnancy.
1. Ensure a healthy diet
The cardinal rule of staying healthy during pregnancy is eating a healthy diet comprising healthy portions of fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, iron-rich fruits, vitamin C, calcium, and other essential nutrients.
A healthy diet is necessary for your baby’s physical and cognitive development. Babies get their supply of nutrients through their mothers. So, if a mother is not careful about her diet, the baby won’t receive enough nutrients to support its growth and development.
As a result, the newborn might be underweight and weak.
2. Say no to alcohol
Alcohol is strictly prohibited for pregnant women. Alcohol consumption can lead to many long-term issues in your baby, including developmental deficiencies.
Even the slightest amount of alcohol consumption is not good for your baby. It may lead to birth injuries, low birth weight, premature birth, small size, stillbirth, miscarriage, etc.
Women who want to conceive but consume alcohol in unhealthy quantities must get professional help from rehabs such as Delphi Behavioral Health Group, where experts help detox their bodies and remove all the toxins from their bodies.
3. Stop smoking
Tobacco smoking harms your health and results in various health-related troubles. Now think about how it will affect a pregnant mother whose body is already weak due to carrying a baby.
Smoking is not good for the baby or the mother. The harm of tobacco smoking starts even before you are pregnant. It reduces your chances of conceiving and increases your chances of infertility.
Issues that pregnant women suffer from due to smoking include:
- Premature placental detachment
- Ectopic pregnancy
- Premature labor and delivery, etc
- Don’t miss your prenatal appointments
Prenatal appointments are often scheduled at a regular interval leading to the time of delivery. Often they are bi-monthly or monthly appointments with your doctor. Prenatal appointments are essential and must not be neglected.
During every prenatal appointment, your doctor conducts tests and asks about your condition and if something is bothering you. Regularly attending these prenatal at their scheduled time means constantly staying in contact with your doctor and discussing the slightest issue with them. This way, the doctor can conduct further tests, locate the issue before it snowballs, and treat the condition at the earliest opportunity.
Ignoring your appointment makes even the tiniest issue more serious and potentially harms you or your baby.
4. Exercise daily
Some of you might think that you will be completing forgoing your exercise regime once you are pregnant. But it is not true. In fact, exercise is good for pregnant women; it helps keep your muscles moving and increases the possibility of a vaginal delivery.
Moderate exercise is completely safe for pregnant women. During pregnancy, you can engage in moderate-intensity aerobic activity every week.
However, it is recommended to talk to your doctor in case there are any complications about your pregnancy you must consider.
Also, if you were not physically active before pregnancy, you must follow your doctor’s advice and work with a fitness professional to nullify any risk of harm to your baby. Major health benefits of exercise during pregnancy include:
- Relieve constipation
- Increase circulation
- Increase energy levels
- Improve sleep
- Stress reduction
- Backache reduction
Particular aerobic exercises include light jogging, walking, swimming, etc.
5. Prenatal vitamin intake
Pregnant women need nutrients in calculated doses, and often, these requirements are not fulfilled by food only. Besides, it is extremely hard to plan your meal and calculate your nutrient intake. Therefore, doctors often recommend prenatal vitamins to fulfill dietary needs.
Among the prenatal vitamins, folic acid, which is a B vitamin, is widely recommended. During pregnancy, you must take 400mg of folic acid daily. Folic acid is taken several weeks before conceiving the baby and during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, lessen the peril of having a child with neural tube defects such as spina bifida.
Another vital nutrient that your doctor might recommend to you during pregnancy is choline. This nutrient also reduces the chances of brain and spine-related birth injuries.
Note of caution: Never start taking these nutrients on your own. Always consult your doctor and ask if you need to include any additional supplements in your diet.
6. Limit your exposure
If your work involves exposure to harmful substances, pollution, smoke, and chemical fumes, it is better to take a break as these substances can be detrimental to your baby.
The same goes for working where you have to lift heavy objects. A nurse’s job is such that you have to lift patients fully or partially, carry supplies, etc. Lifting heavy objects can be harmful.
Also, don’t go outside and get exposed to the sun unprotected. First, make sure to stay inside as much as you can. If going outside is necessary, wear sunscreen, lose clothes, and carry an umbrella.
The reason is that your temperature is already higher than normal during pregnancy due to the higher metabolic rate that supports the baby. Exposure to the sun can increase the body temperature further and make you uncomfortable.
Also, your skin is vulnerable, too, so sun exposure can cause black spots. So protect yourself and your skin from harmful rays of the sun.
Pregnancy is a crucial time in a woman’s life. Your body is weak and vulnerable. Therefore, it is important to maintain health during pregnancy, eat a healthy diet, keep your body active, take essential prenatal vitamins, and limit exposure to keep yourself and your baby safe.