Pre- Conception Care Is Very Essential
To have an uncomplicated pregnancy and a healthy baby, preparation is necessary that starts way before the pregnancy. Preconception care is becoming more important in Singapore, especially when many couples differ their age of child bearing to the early and mid-thirties. We are more aware that pre-pregnancy health status and lifestyles have a major impact on the progress and outcome of the pregnancy.
Methods of Pre-Conception Screening
Preconception care is described to be a set of interventions that aim to identify and modify biomedical, behavioral, and social risks to a woman's health or pregnancy outcome through prevention and management.
Pre-conception care involves:
The woman's risk is evaluated in several aspects. Her potential to inherited genetic diseases, her exposure to environmental toxins and teratogens, her nutritional adequacy, her use of tobacco, alcohol and recreational drugs are important. Similarly, her medical conditions, her exposure to infectious diseases and vaccination status, and her psycho-social concerns have to be considered.
A few visits to the obstetrician may be required to fully assess the couple. In the case of uncovering underlying medical conditions that may compromise the successful pregnancy, preventive medical treatment may instituted. The condition may take several months to stabilize before pregnancy is advised.
Antenatal Care Ensures Optimal
There is much joy and satisfaction in going through pregnancy. You will encounter changes to your body in every stage of the pregnancy. Some changes may become challenges as you cope with your other commitments. Understanding the pregnancy journey helps you to be in control and able to enjoy the baby as it develops.
Early Pregnancy Symptoms
The first trimester of pregnancy is peppered with nervousness and discomfort. As most women plan to have less than three children, their expectations are understandably high when they become pregnant. Pregnancy and its inherent fluxes of pregnancy-related hormones in the woman, causes many early symptoms, such as tiredness, morning sickness, listlessness, poor digestion, urinary frequency and changes in mood. The nausea, retching and sickness can be extremely distressing in a small group of pregnant women.
Early Dating Ultrasound Scan
Early urine testing may return ambiguous result, and the woman becomes exasperated when the faint second line disappears on repeat urine test. It may have been a biochemical pregnancy. The coincidence with mild pelvic cramp and vaginal bleeding/staining will drive up the fretfulness even more, as the doctor needs to exclude an ectopic pregnancy. This entails close clinical watch, careful ultrasound scan and assessment of beta HCG levels. The advancement in ultrasound technology has significantly improved the care in early pregnancy, giving us the tool to estimate the gestation of the pregnancy more accurately. The visual assurance of a normally developing fetus elicits instant emotional bonding. The early detection of twin pregnancy certainly helps in managing this high risk condition.
Nutrition & Supplements In Early Pregnancy
Some pregnant women are pre-occupied with nutrition matters and vitamin supplements. There is definitely a role to increase the intake of folic acid (folate), iron and calcium during pregnancy. There are also evidence-based food precautions and lifestyle changes to ensure adequate fetal growth. Many pregnant women subscribe to a host of food advice given by well-meaning friends and relations, including types of food to avoid, and not surprisingly, this public domain information has no scientific basis.
Antenatal Pregnancy Care Important In Managing Pregnancy-Related Medical Conditions
Pregnancies usually progress uneventfully. However, there will be few who are afflicted by low blood count, diabetes, high blood pressure, asthma, migraine, thyroid gland disorders and fibroids. These medical and surgical ailments arise, or are made worse during the pregnancy and their management is complicated by the fetus on board. Good antenatal care includes individualizing it to the woman, and contextualizing it to her home and work environment, and anticipating possible pregnancy related issue that may derail the course.