Pregnancy Information

Pregnancy Information: What to Expect Image

If you are pregnant, you will be facing a series of physical, hormonal, and lifestyle changes over the next nine months. Besides going to the doctor and getting the necessary prenatal care, you may find yourself wondering what is and is not safe for you to do. This section will help you understand how to adapt your lifestyle to accommodate and nourish a growing fetus.

Pregnancy Symptoms and Tests

Missing a period, known as amenorrhea, is generally the first sign a woman has that signals she is pregnant. However, other, more dramatic symptoms may be a woman’s first indication: while some first experience morning sickness, others only realize they are pregnant when they feel the fetus first move.

Given these initial signs, a home pregnancy test is usually the next step. With a test strip and a urine sample, a home pregnancy test will report results with 99 percent accuracy, if it is used prior to its expiration date. After receiving a positive home pregnancy test, the next step is to get an ultrasound from an obstetrician. An ultrasound can confirm the home pregnancy test’s result while also detecting the age of the baby and any possible abnormalities.

Prenatal Care and Other Pregnancy Information

Prenatal care includes a combination of regular doctor’s visits, proper diet, and avoidance of certain things, like alcohol and caffeine. The frequency of obstetrician visits depends on the trimester: one visit per month in the first trimester, two per month in the second trimester, and one per week in the final trimester. Regular visits to the doctor are crucial to monitoring normal fetal development and catching any potential complications early on.

Along with proper medical care, doctors recommend that pregnant women eat a healthy diet, low in salt and sugar but high in protein. Iron, calcium, and folic acid supplements are also strongly encouraged. On the other hand, smoking, consuming caffeine and alcohol, and taking drugs will cause serious health complications and, consequently, should be avoided.

Exercise has no known benefits for the developing fetus but can significantly promote the mother’s health. Pregnant women who exercise moderately experience less trouble sleeping and less overall discomfort.

Abortion Facts: Ending A Pregnancy

Abortion is another major consideration that comes with pregnancy. According to statistics, nearly five million pregnancies per year are unplanned. Whether birth control has failed or sexual abuse has occurred, abortion is a viable, yet serious option. Nevertheless, abortion is a personal choice: knowing the abortion facts will help you know if abortion is the right decision for you.