Cigarettes and Pregnancy
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Smoking during pregnancy will harm your fetus's health. Watch this video for details on cigarettes and pregnancy.
Transcript: Up to 13 percent of women still smoke during their pregnancies. Cigarette smoke contains over 4,000 chemicals,...
Up to 13 percent of women still smoke during their pregnancies. Cigarette smoke contains over 4,000 chemicals, all of which enter the blood stream and head straight for your baby. Two of these in particularcarbon monoxide and nicotinenarrow the blood vessels in the umbilical cord. Since this is the babys source of oxygen, when this happens it becomes much harder for him to breathe. Oxygen deprivation in the womb can lead to stillbirth, premature delivery, low birth weight, learning disorders and a lower IQ. If youre a non-smoker, but your partner lights up, your baby is still subjected to serious risks. In fact, the CDC says that women exposed to secondhand smoke have a 20 percent greater chance of delivering underweight babies than women who arent exposed. Even women who spend a great deal of time around wood fires may experience similar negative effects due to inhalation of carbon monoxide. This risk, however, is smaller than the risk of smoking, and not something to be worried about if it occurs in moderation. If youre pregnant and cant stop smoking, talk to your doctor about quitting. If you can do so by week 14, youre about as likely as anyone to have a healthy baby!More »
Last Modified: 2013-04-11 | Tags »
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Are you ready to begin a family? Keep in mind that preparing to conceive a baby may not be as easy as you think. Watch this video for more information.
Transcript: Congratulations! The decision to have a child is an exciting one. Surprisingly, prepping for the healthiest...
Congratulations! The decision to have a child is an exciting one. Surprisingly, prepping for the healthiest baby starts not in the bedroom, but with some lifestyle changes. It is vital to start by meeting with your ob-gyn for a preconception appointment. This checkup allows your doctor to uncover any health problems you may have that could affect a pregnancy, or your baby's development. At this appointment, your doctor will be looking for anemia, diabetes, kidney disease, genital infection, high blood pressure and immunity to rubella. Your doctor will also advise you of your optimal weight right now, and will discuss the amount you should gain during a pregnancy. If you are underweight, you are more likely to give birth to a low-weight baby, which can cause difficulties after delivery. If you are overweight, you are more likely to have complications, and you will have a higher chance of having a baby too big to pass safely through the birth canal, a condition known as macrosomia. Proper diet and nutrition are essential to your preconception health. You should never diet while trying to conceive, and always avoid eating undercooked meat and raw eggs. So, watch that ceaser salad dressing! Doctors also recommend taking prenatal vitamins prior to conception. This prepares your body for pregnancy and helps to fill in any dietary gaps you may have. Folic acid is arguably the most important prenatal vitamin for women. Folic acid can lower the risk that your baby-to-be will develop neural birth defects. And don't forget to exercise! Engaging in a cardiovascular activity that gets your heart pounding, like running or biking, will keep you fit and healthy, increase blood flow to the uterus, and will help prepare your body for conception. It is also recommended that you cease certain unhealthy habits before you conceive. Smoking, drinking, and recreational drug use are among these no-nos. It is also advisable to limit your caffeine consumption. Finally, be sure to ask your doctor about any prescription medications you take that could be harmful to your baby once you conceive, or which could make it difficult to conceive in the first place. Taking positive steps to ensure a healthy pregnancy (before it even begins) will help ensure a smooth ride for both you AND your baby-to-be. Remember to talk to your doctor before attempting to conceive!More »
Last Modified: 2012-11-17 | Tags »
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If you were drinking before you knew you were pregnant, you may be concerned about your fetus's health. Learn more about the effect alcohol can have on your fetus.
Transcript: Your whole alcohol MO has to change once you're pregnant. But what if you were drinking before you...
Your whole alcohol MO has to change once you're pregnant. But what if you were drinking before you knew you had a passenger? Whether you're the daily cocktail type or you only imbibe on special occasions, you may accidentally consume alcohol during the early weeks of your pregnancy. If this happens, you shouldn't be too hard on yourself - after all, you didn't even know you were pregnant! Fortunately, it is usually the case that when you drink alcohol at this stage of the pregnancy, it's too early to negatively affect the fetus's organs. This is because there isn't a strongly established blood connection between you and your baby during the time when you ovulate and the end of the month. Of course, this "safe window," is short! Once you know you're pregnant, or even suspect that you may be, you should stop drinking. There is, after all, a risk of fetal alcohol syndrome when you consume any amount of alcohol during pregnancy. But don't worry, you'll have plenty of time for a glass of wine after the baby is born. If you are breastfeeding, though, you'll have to wait until the baby is no longer nursing to enjoy that cocktail.More »
Last Modified: 2013-04-15 | Tags »
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Many women wonder what's safe to drink during pregnancy. Check out this video to learn about drinking dos and don’ts during pregnancy.
Transcript: You know that alcohol is a no-go while you're expecting, but what about your morning java jolt? With...
You know that alcohol is a no-go while you're expecting, but what about your morning java jolt? With a few exceptions, most pre-pregnancy drinks are also just fine during pregnancy. So have your fill of milk, water, juice, and decaffeinated sodas, coffees and teas. While some women worry that tap water isn't safe for a baby, this commodity is regulated by the government, ensuring chemicals are present in very trace amounts, if at all. Other moms-to-be are concerned about drinking milk from cows that have been given hormones. But the FDA asserts that these BVF hormones do not harm humans, particularly in the very teeny amounts found in milk. When it comes to drinking soda, some women worry about the artificial sweeteners found in diet brands. But aspartame, the sweetener used in diet drinks, is certifiably safe for fetuses. Most herbal teas are also fine, as long as you avoid those that contain ingredients with pharmacological uses, like kava and St. John's wort. Aside from alcohol, which is definitely not OK, caffeine is the most hotly debated drink during pregnancy. Until very recently, about 300 milligrams a day of caffeine were seen as being safe for baby-that's the equivalent of about three cups of coffee or five cans of soda. But a recent study found that pregnant women who had just 200 milligrams of caffeine were twice as likely to miscarry as women who didn't consume caffeine. While this knowledge advises caution, most doctors still believe that controlled amounts of caffeine are probably safe with baby on board.More »
Last Modified: 2013-06-13 | Tags »
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