Pregnancy is an exciting time! Becoming a mom is life-changing, and those changes begin the very moment you find out that you’re going to bring a child into this world!
But let’s face facts – pregnancy also comes with its own set of challenges! During this stage of a woman’s life, she may go through some intense moments. After all, her physical, emotional, and mental health are all affected. And under all these circumstances, what pregnant women tend to worry about the most is the welfare of their babies. And there is a lot to do and learn about your pregnancy care.
Of course, several questions come to mind regarding pregnancy, especially if this is your first time. As always, there’s a solution for you by none other than celebrity instructor Yasmin Karachiwala.
In her recent Instagram post, Karachiwala is in conversation with renowned gynecologist Dr Ranjana Dhanu to address some of the frequently asked questions about pregnancy.
Here’s what she writes, “Pregnancy care consists of prenatal (before birth) and postpartum (after birth) healthcare for expectant mothers.”
If you want to conceive, knowing the ideal age is crucial. Please don’t go by societal pressure as at the end of it, you’re the ones who need to nurture the child. Responding to Yasmin’s question about the right age of getting pregnant, Dr Dhanu says, a woman is born with a limited number of eggs, therefore she has to plan for a baby before the age of 35 at least. After the age of 30, subfertility starts to set in and that’s when we check the AMH. Dr Dhanu further explains, AMH or the anti-mullerian hormone is a hormone that shows fertility levels, and diminishing AMH is often accompanied by a recommendation to freeze the eggs.
Dr Dhanu also assures that freezing eggs is not dangerous. If you can freeze your eggs and your genetic material in the lab, there is nothing like it.
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“Certainly”, says Dr Dhanu. She explains that a pre-pregnancy check-in includes routine sonography, certain blood tests, checking for diabetes, thyroid, etc. It also includes checking for a history of previous surgeries for fibroids or endometriosis, as it puts the person in the high-risk category. It is also very important to check for consanguinity. Consanguinity means genetic history is also analysed to look for any chromosomal defects in consanguineous marriages.
“Pregnancy is physiology, not a disease,” says Dr Dhanu. But there are certain patients who are different from the rest, because they could be suffering from certain cardiac issues, and a history of miscarriages. These women are the ones who need a medical supervisor, before they engage in any form of exercise during their pregnancy. Otherwise, exercise is safe during pregnancy. Also, after the 12th week of pregnancy, workout under supervision is a good idea, points Dr Dhanu.
Postpartum depression is very common, but the best part is that it can be prevented. Dr Dhanu explains,”The sudden withdrawal of hormones postpartum, sleep deprivation, and the presence of milk hormones, all these factors drive you to a certain phase of postpartum depression, despite everything being fine around you.”
In this phase, you may feel helpless, suffocated or maybe feel you’re not ready to take care of the baby. All this needs some forms of counseling and changes in diet!
Whether it’s a normal delivery (vaginal delivery) or C-section, at least six weeks are needed for the healing period. Post that, you can exercise. And if you don’t start exercising, the pregnancy bulk will build up and can become very difficult to lose, says Dr Dhanu.
Smoking as well as substance and alcohol consumption can affect the baby’s growth negatively, Dr Dhanu says. “It is important to cleanse your body. If you get pregnant in a semi-cleansed manner, it can affect the baby’s intrauterine growth, placentation, or lead to growth retardation.”
Cleansing your body at least three months before the pregnancy, is what Dr Dhanu suggests.