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Planning Pregnancy? Take Note Of These Tips From Our Expert

A couple has several questions and doubts before planning pregnancy. Here are answers to some of these common questions straight from our expert.

Planning Pregnancy? Take Note Of These Tips From Our Expert

There is no stringent restriction in diet during pregnancy, says expert

In the first trimester, anything too hectic is banned. Don't travel and avoid exercising as miscarriage rate is as high as 15 to 20% in this period. After the sonography and check up in the fourth month, depending on the nature of the pregnancy, travel and light exercise is allowed. If the pregnancy is of a sensitive nature, then complete rest is advised. In the last two months, take care and limit the amount of physical stress you should undergo.

Let's clear some doubts around pregnancy for expecting mothers.

Women tend to feel nauseous, how can that be handled?

This happens mostly in the first trimester, slight lifestyle changes can help. As soon as you wake up, before even getting up or brushing your teeth, have a dry cracker or biscuit, and then stay in bed for another half an hour. Also, eat every two hours and avoid eating spicy and oily food.

What are the other physical precautions women should take?

Don't travel in two wheelers or autos and don't lift heavy things. If you have low placenta, complete rest is advised.

What are the dietary precautions?

There is no stringent restriction in diet. People say don't eat hot things like Papaya and Mango as they can cause miscarriages. But medically speaking, you can eat everything as long is there is moderation. Make sure you don't drink water that is not boiled and raw vegetables or fruits from outside, because coping with jaundice is harder when you are pregnant. Also have enough milk and fruits.

Also how does one emotionally prepare oneself?

If a would-be mother knows what is going on, and what to expect, she is pretty much prepared. You won't feel anxious if you know the changes affecting your body, and all the possibilities that may occur. Just be well informed.

Mood swings are common, how can these be addressed?

Mood swings do occur as hormonal changes are bound to happen. If your surroundings are pleasant and calm, and support system is string, you will get through it.

Working women are at an increased risk of stress, how can they tackle that and what can be the side-effects?

We have all learnt how to deal with stress, unless it's related to something very serious like losing somebody close to you. Other than that, just being well informed is enough.

If you already have a child, how do you make sure he/she does not feel ignored during pregnancy as well as after the birth of the second child?

Children have to be told about the pregnancy from day one, so that they can get excited about it as well. The most important thing is to have patience. Also, try and give them equal attention.

Precautions to be taken within the first couple of months after child birth?

That is a difficult period as the baby keeps the mother awake most of the times, and many mothers deal with breastfeeding problems. Attend a pre-natal class which will give advice on how to deal with breastfeeding, and how to prepare your breast by applying some oils. Also, eat well as you are going to be busy with the child.

(Dr Rishma Pai is a Consultant Gynaecologist attached to Jaslok & Lilavati hospitals in Mumbai)

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