Healthy Pregnancy Habits: From Start To Finish
From the first week of your pregnancy to the fortieth, it’s important to take care of yourself so you can take care of your baby. Even though you have to take some precautions and be ever-aware of how what you what you do and don’t do may affect your baby, many women say they’ve never felt healthier than during pregnancy.
Do Your Best To Remain Calm Throughout The Ordeal
You may or may not have thought about what you would do if you were to get pregnant in college, but as important as it is to think about potential options, its equally important to not put unnecessary stress on yourself or your relationship until you know for sure that youre pregnant. If you are pregnant, talk to health care professionals and your partner so that they can help you decide what the best choice is for you.
If you find out that youre not pregnan, reevaluate your current modes of contraception to figure out what is and isnt working. This is a conversation you can have with your gynecologist and also something you can bring up with your partner. Once youve had a pregnancy scare, you want to do everything possible to make sure the next time you think youre pregnant is when you actually want to be!
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Early Signs Of Pregnancy
For women who have a regular monthly menstrual cycle, the earliest and most reliable sign of pregnancy is a missed period.
If your period doesnt arrive as expected, you may be pregnant, but there can be other reasons for a missed period, such as illness, stress and strenuous activity.
Sometimes women who are pregnant have a very light period, losing only a little blood.
Some of the other early pregnancy signs and symptoms are listed below. Every woman is different and not all women will notice all these symptoms.
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More About Morning Sickness
The first thing to know about morning sickness is that it can hit you at any time of day.Probably a result of your changing hormones, it usually starts about week six and settles by week 14. The good news is that you may feel better if you:
- drink small amounts of fluid, often. Try flat lemonade, sports drinks, diluted fruit juice, weak tea, clear soup or a hot drink make of stock
- suck on ice or ice-blocks
- try ginger tablets, dry ginger ale or ginger tea
- eat small amounts of food more often, so you dont have an empty stomach
- eat a dry biscuit when you wake up in the morning, to avoid feeling sick when you get out of bed
- try salty foods such as potato crisps or salty biscuits
- suck on barley sugar or boiled lollies
- avoid fatty, rich or spicy foods
- avoid the smell of hot food
- avoid cooking dishes with strong smells
- rest as much as you can.
A small percentage of women have prolonged and excessive vomiting , which can lead to dehydration if it is not treated. See your doctor if you have severe morning sickness.
In some extreme cases, women need to be rehydrated in hospital, using intravenous fluids.
If You Have A Late Period It Doesn’t Mean You’re Pregnant
Finding out if you’re pregnant is going to be the most crucial step in moving forward with your anxieties and the best way to know if you’re pregnant or not is to take a pregnancy test. But, before we talk about how to get a pregnancy test, here are some quick reminders on what could cause your period to be late, if that’s the reason you suspect you’re pregnant:
So anyway, I’m sure that most of that came as little comfort to you, but it’s good to get a reality check.
If you’re wondering if you’re pregnant, now is a good time to rethink your birth control. Websites like Bedsider.org are excellent resources for finding a birth control method that fits your life.
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Im Pregnant What Do I Do Now
Finding out youre pregnant can be scary, but try to stay calm. Youre going to be okay, and there are people who can help you.
If youre pregnant you have 3 options:
Parenting giving birth and raising the child.
Abortion ending the pregnancy.
Adoption giving birth and giving the child to someone else, forever.
If you think you might choose parenting or adoption, you need prenatal care to make sure you stay healthy during the pregnancy. If youre thinking about getting an abortion, make an appointment as soon as you can. Abortion is very safe, but there are more risks the longer you wait. And it can be harder to get an abortion as time goes by. Whatever you decide to do, go to a doctor right away so they can help you stay healthy.
You can also get information and health care from other family planning centers or your family doctor. Be careful when looking for a reliable health center there are fake clinics that say they have pregnancy services. These are called Crisis Pregnancy Centers, and theyre run by people who are anti-abortion and try to scare or shame people out of choosing abortion. Read more about Crisis Pregnancy Centers.
No one should pressure you into making any decision about your pregnancy, no matter what. Only you know whats right for you.
You Are Sensitive To Smells
If you are noticing the smells in your home and office more, this could be a sign that you are pregnant. Being sensitive to smells is one of the most common early signs of pregnancy. Some researchers believe this may be to protect pregnant women from eating gone-off food that could be harmful to the baby.
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Were There Any Problems With It
There are many things that can potentially interfere with birth control. For oral contraceptives or the pill, some medications, like antibiotics, can nullify the effects. If you have a condom slip or break, you have a greater likelihood of pregnancy. So did you have any issues like this during your cycle?
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 isnt fully cooked can put you at risk for food poisoning. Dont eat more than 2 or 3 servings of fish per week . Dont 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 its light tuna. Dont eat more than 6 ounces of albacore tuna and tuna steaks per week. Its 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. Dont 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 and sucralose . However, if you have phenylketonuria , avoid aspartame.
- Dont drink more than 1 or 2 cups of coffee or other drinks with caffeine each day.
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How To Tell A Hook
If you believe you may be pregnant, have the conversation with the other person face-to-face and let them know that you are planning on taking a test. Keep it short and sweet, and definitely dont apologize they contributed just as much as you. If the person tries to bring up the question of what you will do if you do turn out to be pregnant, gently let them know that you will keep them posted but that you will cross that bridge when you come to it. No need to get ahead of yourself when it comes to something that might not even be an issue!
The Most Common Sign Of Early Pregnancy A Missed Period
Your menstrual cycle is your bodys way of preparing for a possible pregnancy each month. Part of that is the thickening of your uterine lining, which is where a fertilized egg would implant to begin a pregnancy.
If youre not pregnant, your period is how your uterus sheds that extra lining. If you are pregnant, that lining stays put and you dont get your normal flow. This is why a missed period is often the earliest sign of pregnancy.
Of course, a delayed or missed period doesnt always mean youre pregnant. If your body is under a lot of stress or you have a hormonal imbalance, you could be experiencing an irregular menstrual cycle.
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What To Do Next
Now that you know what to when you suspect you are pregnant and when to contact your primary care doctor or obstetrician/gynecologist, what happens next? If youre in Cooke County, Texas, you contact the North Texas Medical Center to set up all your prenatal care. We specialize in everything from prenatal care to labor and delivery to maternal newborn care and beyond. Our womens health specialists and state of the art facilities will give you and your baby the best care. We also can provide you with education and are always happy to answer any questions you might have. Contact us today to set up your appointment.
Finding Out If Youre Pregnant
Home pregnancy tests are very reliable and will give you a result within a minute or two. The best time to take a pregnancy test is 1 week after you miss your period. This is because the tests look for hormones in your wee/mimi. It takes about 2 weeks for these hormones to show up. Make sure that you follow the instructions on the box as each test works differently.
You can get a pregnancy test from:
- a pharmacy
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You Have Swollen Or Tender Breasts
One of the most common signs of pregnancy is swollen or sore breasts. As the breasts prepare to produce milk for the baby, they will fill out and slightly change shape, which happens in the early stages of pregnancy. This soreness will normally last for a few months, but not all women will experience this. You are less likely to experience this if you were previously on birth control pills.
What To Do Once You Find Out
Whether the test comes back positive or negative, you’re definitely going to have some things to deal with once you know what you’re actually dealing with. Take comfort that we live in a really connected era and that you have resources and access to a plethora of information from birth control to pregnancy options.
Knowledge is power, you know that, someone somewhere told you that, I’m sure. So empower yourself with information and make a plan to take whatever situation you’re in by the reigns and make it work for your future.
Here’s a list of links to help you get started:
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Do You Have Pregnancy Symptoms
Most pregnancy symptoms don’t show up until about the time that you miss your period, so about two weeks after you ovulate, and for some women, about four weeks since their last period. There are a lot of pregnancy symptoms out there, but the most common ones are:
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Su HW, Yi YC, Wei TY, Chang TC, Cheng CM. Detection of ovulation, a review of currently available methods. Bioeng Transl Med. 2017 2:238246. Published 2017 May 16. doi:10.1002/btm2.10058
Foxcroft KF, Callaway LK, Byrne NM, Webster J. Development and validation of a pregnancy symptoms inventory. BMC Pregnancy Childbirth. 2013 13:3. Published 2013 Jan 16. doi:10.1186/1471-2393-13-3
- American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Prenatal Development: How Your Baby Grows in Pregnancy. June 2015.
- Sapra KJ, Buck Louis GM, Sundaram R, Joseph KS, Bates LM, Galea S, Ananth CV. Signs and symptoms associated with early pregnancy loss: findings from a population-based preconception cohort. Hum Reprod. 2016 Apr 31:887-96. doi: 10.1093/humrep/dew010. Epub 2016 Mar 2.
What If I’ve Experienced Bleeding
Surprisingly, too, some women may be pregnant despite having what they believe to be a period. This could be due to implantation of the embryo, or a sign of low hormone levels.
“Implantation bleeding usually occurs earlier than a missed period would, as it’s when the embryo implants. However, for some women who have an irregular cycle, it may come later,” explains Halliday. “But it’s usually a much smaller amount and can be pinkish in colour rather than red.
“Also, some women have what’s known as a low HCG pregnancy where the hormone levels aren’t as high as usual these women may continue to experience periods throughout their pregnancy – although this is very rare.”
It’s very important to be aware of the risk of ectopic pregnancy – a pregnancy which develops outside the womb – if there is any chance you might be pregnant. Symptoms include low tummy pain and vaginal bleeding, and sometimes diarrhoea, feeling faint and shoulder-tip pain. It’s important always to seek medical help if there is any chance you may have an ectopic pregnancy.
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Focus On Your Nutrition
Youre eating to feed two. So its important to get adequate nutrition for both your and your developing babys whole health. Here are some things to keep in mind.
- Talk to your doctor about what vitamins are best for you. In general, prenatal vitamins with DHA are commonly recommended.
- Eat a balanced diet, avoiding foods that could be harmful to your baby, such as unpasteurized dairy and juices, certain seafood, undercooked meat and too much caffeine. Talk to your doctor about his or her specific recommendations for you.
- Be aware of what over-the-counter medications are considered safe during pregnancy and be cautious about anything not approved by your doctor.
Youre Regularly Becoming Nauseous
We arenât talking about that nasty feeling you get after a greasy meal but chronic bloating and/or a recurring upset stomach. Nausea during pregnancy, often referred to as âmorning sickness,â usually starts around a month after you become pregnant. You may also develop intense desires for particular kinds of foods or suddenly become averse to foods youâve historically enjoyed. This nausea may or may not involve vomiting, so itâs important to note both kinds. If youâve been sick to your stomach for several days or nights and you arenât sick, pregnancy could be the reason.
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Discuss Medications With Your Doctor
Let your pregnancy care professional know about any medications or supplements youre taking. Not all of them are safe to take during pregnancy because they can pass through the placenta.
However, you should never discontinue a medication before talking with your doctor either. Many medications, like antidepressants, can cause severe side effects if you stop them cold turkey.
A healthcare professional can help you make a plan for safely tapering any medications that arent recommended during pregnancy.
Some pain medications, such as ibuprofen are not safe to take during pregnancy. Your provider can also tell you which OTC medications you can take.
For example, if you have a headache or run a fever while youre pregnant, you can take acetaminophen . If you have allergies, you can take certain OTC medications, according to ACOG.
Your best bet, though, is asking your doctor what they recommend for your specific situation, so you can make sure its safe for both you and baby.
Alternative Ways To Check For Pregnancy
If you dont want to buy a test yet, there are other ways you can find out whether its likely youre pregnant or not. But keep in mind that this is in no way accurate, and pregnancy tests are the best way to confirm your pregnancy.
All of the symptoms listed above can be early signs of pregnancy, but dont always mean that you are. If youre experiencing several of them at once, it could be a sign that its time to take a test.
Clearblue has a free online quiz which asks you about any symptoms, as well as what contraceptives youve been using, if applicable. It takes minutes and they can give you advice on whether or not to use one of their tests.
You also know your own body better than anyone, so you might identify significant changes to your mood, physical changes to your body especially around the stomach. If you have regular periods, any changes to that routine could indicate youre expecting too.
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Be An Authoritative Parent
, on the other hand, are much like dictators. They arent interested in hearing about the thoughts and feelings of their teens or children. Their word is the law and must be followed at all costs. It is hard for anyone to have a good relationship or meaningful conversation with a parent who acts as a dictator.
Control Your Own Reactions
Our teens will screw up and make mistakes. Some mistakes will be big and some small. Regardless of the infraction or situation, we need to remain calm, so we can control our reaction. Screaming at our teens when they screw up will not help the situation and will likely only alienate them.
Overreaction can create barriers between you and your teen. It is like a wall going up, much like resentments can cause. Control your reactions toward your teen and their bad behaviors, so that you can maintain good communication and avoid saying things that you will regret later. Consequences can be conveyed in a calm voice and are often more effectively communicated in this manner than yelling or using raised voices.
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