In this health talk, Dietitian Pallavi Jassal talks about Pre-Pregnancy & Antenatal Care with Dr. Harpreet Kaur Isher, Senior Consultant Obstetrician & Gynaecologist, Fortis MedCentre, Chandigarh, the satellite clinic of Fortis Hospital, Mohali.
Pre- Pregnancy, also called Prenatal care is an important way to plan a healthy pregnancy for a healthy mother and a healthy baby. The Prenatal care after a mother conceives is called Antenatal care when it is made sure that the health & development of the future baby is ensured and the mother does not develop any complication through regular check-ups.
The regular checkups during the pregnancy are also great opportunities for the would-be parents to learn the signs of possible complications & learn how to ease the journey of motherhood for the would-be mother by training her what to expect and when.
Certain aspects & precautions need to be taken care when a couple is planning a pregnancy including avoiding certain lifestyle habits such as excessive alcohol intake, smoking, too much of junk food.
In addition to avoiding bad lifestyle habits, it is advisable to prepare the mother’s body nutritionally with a balanced diet rich in vitamins & minerals particularly Folic acid supplementation is recommended 3 months ahead of pregnancy to prevent certain spinal defects or neural tube defects in the baby.
Once you are expecting to get pregnant and as soon as you identify the early signs of pregnancy followed by confirmation of pregnancy by Urine Test for Pregnancy, you need to contact a qualified health care provider for certain precautions & recommendations.
The lady should carry the details of the vaccines she has received in the past for the doctor or nurse to guide her further. Certain vaccines like Rubella Vaccine go a long way in the prevention of serious complications in the mother and the baby.
All the vital developments in the baby take place in the first 3 months of pregnancy and it is important to monitor the health of the baby during the first trimester of pregnancy.
An ultrasound examination in 2 weeks of pregnancy can ascertain whether the fetus is embedded in the right place the mother’s womb or uterus. In some rare cases of ectopic pregnancy, when the fetus is detected in the fallopian tube of the mother, it is advisable to seek the immediate help of an expert gynecologist & obstetrician.
Each pregnancy may be a different journey for the same mother. In some cases, there is a recurrence of excessive vomiting ( hyperemesis gravidarum ), nausea ( morning sickness ) or reduced appetite, etc. or nothing of this sort. Other health challenges may vary from feeling lethargic or having constipation or vaginal discussion or increased frequency of urination can be discussed with your health provider. Your health provider is in the best position to advise you regarding the need for bed rest or exercise during pregnancy according to your overall health status.
The second trimester of pregnancy ( 4th, 5th & 6th month ) is considered to the honeymoon period of pregnancy as you feel the best during these three months out of the whole journey. There is less incidence of vomiting etc and the pregnant women have a better glow on the face during this period. This period is considered safer for travel and you can plan your travel according to your doctor’s recommendations.
The third trimester brings certain changes in your body that you should be prepared well ahead of the times. The excitement of the new member in the family increases & it is the best time to read books and prepare yourself for the motherhood.
Regular checkups are important at each and every landmark of this journey for a healthy baby & safe motherhood.
Take care, stay informed, stay blessed & LiveLifeMore.
Yours in health awareness,
Dietitian Pallavi Jassal & Dr. Sandeep Jassal,