Anemia In Pregnancy: Know The Adverse Effect Of Maternal Iron Deficiency Anemia From Expert; Here Are Some Prevention Tips
Anemia during pregnancy can be harmful to the mother as well as the baby if not treated on time. Read here to know from gynaecologist the complications linked with this condition and how to fight this.
Anemia in pregnancy: Iron deficiency anemia can affect the healthy of the unborn child
- Pregnant woman should consume a healthy diet to prevent anemia
- Iron deficiency anemia is the most common type of anemia
- Iron supplements should not be taken without expert consultation
Anemia is a condition which not only directly complicates pregnancy but also predisposes pre-eclampsia (hypertension in pregnancy) and also lowers the tolerance to even normal bleeding during delivery. Iron deficiency anemia is attributed to about 80 % of cases of anemia in pregnancy. It forms a major chunk of nutritional anemia and is largely preventable. Low iron in the blood causes low hemoglobin. Low levels of hemoglobin than normal are classified as anemia which requires treatment. In this article, you will understand the effect of anemia on the pregnant woman and the unborn child. Also know some prevention tips.
What leads to anemia?
Iron deficiency anemia can be a result of medical consequences, inadequate intake of essential nutrients and much more. A diet deficient in iron and protein may lead to this condition. Malabsorption or intolerance to iron and worm infestation are some medical causes. Malaria, fluorosis, chronic infections and thyroid disorders can also contribute to iron deficiency.
Effect of anemia on pregnancy and the baby
Anemia can lead to several complications during pregnancy including pre-eclampsia, premature labour, infections, poor weight gain, low threshold for bleeding and haemorrhage, maternal exhaustion and ill health, poor wound healing, failed lactation and puerperal sepsis.
In severe cases, the woman is not able to withstand the changing hemodynamics of pregnancy and it results in cardiac failure leading to sometimes maternal death. Blood transfusion is required in cases of severe anemia to prevent such severe complications risks.
Effect on the baby
It usually results in low birth weight of the baby. It can also increase perinatal mortality and result in cognitive and affective dysfunction of the neonate.
How to fight iron-deficiency anemia?
Iron deficiency can be managed effectively if detected on time. Women should be encouraged for preconception check-up so that any pre-existing iron deficiency can be corrected before pregnancy.
A pregnant woman is advised to consume a diet rich in iron and protein. Avoid excessive tea and coffee as it retards the absorption of iron. Expecting mothers should also consume enough vitamin C for better absorption of iron.
Non-vegetarian food especially chicken breast and liver are good sources of iron. Halim prepared with lentil, rajgeera, dates, nuts, oilseeds, custard apple, Raagi dal and iron-fortified food are good vegetarian sources. Generally, vegetarian sources need to be ingested in a higher amount as absorption is less.
Also read: Planning Pregnancy? Here Are The 5 Things You Need To Keep In Mind
Iron supplements should be started from the first trimester till 6 months after delivery of pregnancy after consulting the doctor.
(Dr. Tripti Sharan, Sr. Conultant - Gynae & Obs, BLK Hospital)
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