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 »
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A healthy pregnancy is accompanied by a healthy diet which is essential for your health as well as your baby's. Watch this video to learn about food for a healthy pregnancy.
Transcript: Now that you're pregnant you can eat whatever you want, right? Well-not quite! Keep watching for tips...
Now that you're pregnant you can eat whatever you want, right? Well-not quite! Keep watching for tips on keeping mom and baby healthy during pregnancy. Good nutrition is vital during pregnancy. Your baby needs plenty of vitamins and minerals to develop properly and you need them to stay strong - as you probably know by now, pregnancy is exhausting. Ensure your baby gets the food it needs! Most pregnant women need to eat only 300 extra calories a day. That's a healthy weight gain of about five pounds during the first trimester. While you're pregnant, try to eat three daily servings of protein to support the baby's rapid growth. Consider lean meats, eggs and legumes. Calcium also helps babies build bones. If you're not fond of milk, consider kale or edamame. Bold, colorful fruits and veggies contain the most nutrients to help your baby grow. Apples and iceburg lettuce are good for you, but mangos and romaine lettuce are even better. Of course, you'll need certain extras, too! Your pregnant body can't store essential Vitamin C. Get a fresh supply every day with strawberries, melon, tomatoes, and, of course, orange juice. Mineral-rich whole grain breads, cereals and pastas provide vital nutrients and can also combat pregnancy-induced nausea. To prevent anemia while pregnant, you'll need more iron. Spinach, soy products, dried fruit and blackstrap molasses are all great choices. To stay hydrated and healthy, aim for at least eight, eight-ounce cups of fluid daily. Water is best but milk, sugar-free juice and other liquids count, too! Fill in any gaps in your diet with a multivitamin formulated especially for pregnant women. While pregnant, you must remember that not every food is healthy for you and your baby. Alcohol is a no-no. Even moderate drinking can induce complications. Caffeine is OK in small doses, but stay below 300 milligram, or three cups, daily. That's because caffeine can counteract the benefits of calcium, and may increase the chances of miscarriage. Minimal unsaturated fats and salts are fine, but limit total fats to less than 30 percent of your daily calories. Also, avoid empty calories, like those found in processed and junk foods. You may love sushi, but pregnancy isn't the time to eat anything raw or undercooked. Cook meats until well done and fish until it flakes. Make sure that egg yolks are cooked through, and that all dairy products are pasteurized. Steer clear of herbal supplements and teas. They're natural, sure, but ginkgo biloba and St. John's Wort can have negative effects on a pregnant body. Of course, if you're pregnant, discuss any medications you are taking with your doctor. Many other natural therapies, like massage, meditation and acupuncture can relieve stress and ease the physical aches of pregnancy. Just be sure to tell any practioner that you are pregnant before beginning a session! The bottom line is that natural is better when you're pregnant. Always consult your doctor before trying a new diet or therapy.More »
Last Modified: 2013-04-15 | Tags »
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What is a 4D Sonogram? This can be simply described as a 3-dimensional picture created of your baby inside you during pregnancy. Find out more in this video.
Transcript: You may already be familiar with the sonogram pictures your doctor takes of your baby. Now, modern technology...
You may already be familiar with the sonogram pictures your doctor takes of your baby. Now, modern technology is taking the sonogram to a whole new dimension. A normal sonogram uses a probe to transmit sound waves into your belly. The probe then "listens" for an echoing sound, which it uses to create a three dimensional picture of your fetus. Recently, doctors have discovered an even more advanced viewing technology: The four dimensional sonogram. A 4D sonogram works in the same way as a 3D one, but adds a fourth-dimension-time-to the picture. The result is a live-action "video" of your baby in real time. With a 4D sonogram, you can watch your baby wriggle, smile, suck his thumb, and more. Doctors like 4D technology, too, because the movement patterns can help a doctor quickly discern how a baby is developing. The 4D sonogram is also a valuable diagnostic tool because it can identify problems with a fetus sooner than would otherwise be possible. After a 4D sonogram, your doctor can use a process called volume rendering to take moving images and compile them into still-frame photos. Because 4D sonograms are still relatively new, they are not available in all hospitals - nor are they necessary for most pregnancies. If you're interested in learning more about this viewing technology, talk to your doctor.More »
Last Modified: 2012-11-17 | Tags »
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First trimester sonogram can help a doctor determine the size of your baby and its growth. Find out what kinds of sonography procedures are used in this video.
Transcript: Quick - how is having a baby like submarine warfare? If you said that submarines and doctors both use...
Quick - how is having a baby like submarine warfare? If you said that submarines and doctors both use sonar technology, you move to the head of the class! An ultrasound is a procedure that uses high frequency sound waves to scan your uterus.Those waves are then translated into an image of your developing baby. This technology is very similar sonar, which is used to locate and map things which are underwater, like submarines or sharks. In the first trimester, your doctor may perform a traditional abdominal ultrasound... But more commonly, she'll place sound probes in your vagina for a transvaginal sonogram, which can provide a clearer picture early in pregnancy. During about the sixth week of your pregnancy, either type of ultrasound can confirm that you are indeed pregnant. Your doctor will be able to measure the baby's size at this point, and can therefore estimate its gestational age. If your baby's gestational age is a full 6 weeks, it might be possible to detect your baby's heart rate. This sonogram will also be able to check for an ectopic pregnancy, whereby a fertilized egg implants outside the uterus. During your eighth week, another sonogram is performed. By this time, you should see able to see the heart beating strongly. At any point during the first trimester, a sonogram may also be ordered to check for a suspected miscarriage. And while all of this can be scary, know that most babies are fine and there is no reason to believe that yours won't be, too!More »
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Second trimester sonograms will help your obstetrician make sure that your fetus is developing normally. Watch this video to find out what you and your doctor may see in your second trimester ultrasound.
Transcript: Youre about to enter your second trimester! So what does that mean for your ultrasound schedule? During...
Youre about to enter your second trimester! So what does that mean for your ultrasound schedule? During the last week of the first trimester of pregnancy, many women choose to have an ultrasound as part of a Nuchal Translucency Screening. This test can determine how likely it is that your baby has Down Syndrome or another chromosomal disorder. Whether it is a Nuchal Translucency Screening or not, the first ultrasound you have after week 12 will be able to tell youif youre pregnant with more than one baby. By week 15 or 16, your babys genitals will have formed enough to discern his or her sex. If you want to know what youre having, your next sonogram will be able to tell you with about 90-percent accuracy. Between your 18th and 20th week, youll have the first ultrasound in which you will really be able to see your babys bone structure. This is an important diagnostic sonogram because this is the first time that it will be possible to see structural abnormalities, like a cleft lip, as well as neural tube defects, like spina bifida. While you probably wont have an ultrasound at all of these times, your doctor will definitely be able to deliver a lot of information by your second trimesters conclusion!More »
Last Modified: 2012-09-25 | Tags »
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Gestational diabetes testing is recommended for all expectant mothers. Left untreated, the condition may cause harm to both mother and child. Watch this video to learn more about gestational diabetes testing.
Transcript: Between 2 and 5 percent of all pregnant women get gestational diabetes, which is why all pregnant women...
Between 2 and 5 percent of all pregnant women get gestational diabetes, which is why all pregnant women should get screened for it. Gestational diabetes occurs when a woman's hormones reduce the effectiveness of her insulin, which causes high blood sugar. This happens only in pregnant women and is usually diagnosed between the 24th and 28th weeks of pregnancy. If left untreated, gestational diabetes can result in high birth weight, low blood sugar, or respiratory difficulties in your baby. There is an entire video dedicated to explaining gestational diabetes, its potential consequences, and how to manage the illness, if you'd like to learn more about the condition itself. Because gestational diabetes has no discernable symptoms, it's important that every pregnant woman screen for the illness. To screen for the condition, your doctor will perform an oral glucose intolerance test, also known as a glucose challenge test. The test requires you to drink a very sugary liquid in about five minutes. One hour later, a blood sample will be taken to determine if your glucose levels are high enough to signal the possible presence of gestational diabetes. A positive result on this test - glucose levels above 140 milligrams per deciliter - does not mean that you necessarily have gestational diabetes. What it does mean, however, is that it is likely that you do, and that you'll have to undergo another test, called a glucose tolerance test. This screening requires you to drink a larger concentration of the glucose solution, and then have your blood tested every hour for three hours. If this test comes back positive, you do have gestational diabetes and will have to adjust your pregnancy diet accordingly. Luckily, the condition is entirely controllable, and, when taken care of, will cause no harm to your baby. You can find additional information on how to manage gestational diabetes in other videos on Pregnancy Health Guru dot com.More »
Last Modified: 2013-06-04 | Tags »
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Say goodbye to your morning sickness by learning about several morning sickness treatments you can try. Watch this video for details!
Transcript: Showing off your pregnancy? Not likely - you're too busy bonding with your bathroom. Here are some tips...
Showing off your pregnancy? Not likely - you're too busy bonding with your bathroom. Here are some tips to help purge morning sickness. If nausea and vomiting have you on your knees, you might want to give the ginger cure a try. Eat a few pieces of fresh gingerroot or take one gram of ginger in capsule form. The chemical compounds that give ginger its zesty taste-gingerol and shogaol-reduce intestinal contractions and inhibit the "vomiting" center in the brain. If you're willing to try a more alternative method, try acupressure to inhibit vomiting. Start by locating the point on your forearm about one and a half inches away from the base of your hand, dead center between the ligaments. Press down on this point with your thumb while you count slowly to ten. Repeat until nausea subsides. If you're still vomiting regularly, suck on ice chips or popsicles, or drink flat ginger ale to stay hydrated and replace lost sugar. And sip slowly! If you drink more than 2 ounces at a time, liquids will bypass your tissues and head to your bladder, sending you straight back to the bathroom.More »
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If you’re expecting twins or triplets, it is important that you eat healthy and regularly visit your doctor. View this video for information on multiple births.
Transcript: If you're expecting two...or more!...babies, you're not alone. Three percent of pregnant women in the...
If you're expecting two...or more!...babies, you're not alone. Three percent of pregnant women in the United States carry twins. This growing community of mothers of multiples means that you'll be able to reach out for support and advice during your pregnancy. Perhaps your first consideration when pregnant with multiples will be how much you should eat. The good news? It's more than your singularly pregnant sisters! Most doctors recommend eating 300 extra calories per fetus per day. That means that moms-to-be of twins get 600 extra, and moms expecting triplets get 900! But before you reach for the candy bars, remember that those extra calories should come from foods that will nourish your babies. Try to get additional servings of lean protein and dairy. You'll also need plenty of iron and magnesium when you're carrying multiples. Get iron from red meat and spinach, and try whole grains and green leafy veggies for your magnesium. You need that iron to prevent anemia, or your red blood cell count from falling, which is a common problem in multiple pregnancies. Magnesium will help build your babies' strong bones and regulate your blood sugar. Round out that healthy diet by drinking at least eight glasses of water a day. This will prevent dehydration, which can lead to dangerous preterm labor. A final hint on bulking up for your babies: You'll probably want to gain between 35 and 45 pounds, nearly twice as much as singleton moms! Most of this weight gain will occur during your second and third trimesters, when you're (hopefully) past that morning sickness phase! When you're pregnant with more than one baby, you need to take a careful approach to exercise. It is VITAL to get the green light from your OB-GYN before working-out. Then, it's okay to engage in gentle exercise, preferably the kind where you're off your feet and your body temperature doesn't raise significantly. Try prenatal yoga or swimming. While you're working out, know when to stop...now is NOT the time to push yourself too hard! If you begin to experience even mild discomfort, stop exercising immediately. A final consideration when you're pregnant with multiples is where and how your babies will be born. Some mothers will have a planned C-section, while others will aim for a vaginal birth. When birthing multiples, most doctors require an epidural, in case an emergency C-section becomes necessary. Most multiple births will take place in an operating room, rather than a standard labor-and-delivery room. This is normal and not cause for alarm! When you're pregnant with more than one, your doctor will want to see you regularly and will take frequent sonograms of your babies. While preparing for more than one baby may seem like twice as much work, keep in mind that the results will be twice as wonderful when they do arrive!More »
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Hormones can cause pregnant women to experience mood swings and temporary cognitive changes. Watch this video on emotions and pregnancy to learn more.
Transcript: While no two pregnancy experiences are identical, most women do find that their emotions and desires...
While no two pregnancy experiences are identical, most women do find that their emotions and desires suddenly feel a bit...random. If you're like seven out of ten moms-to-be, you're probably experiencing mood swings that won't quit! One minute you're thrilled about the new wallpaper in your nursery, the next you're crying because you can't fit into your shoes. It makes sense that you're so emotionally charged: You're going through HUGE physical and mental changes, and you're full of pregnancy hormones to boot! You'll be better able to deal with your mood swings if you accept them as normal, and allow yourself to laugh if you can! It may be helpful is to have a healthy snack, or take a catnap. Both will help keep your energy levels stable so your brain can follow suit. Did you leave your purse at the gynecologist? Or did your forget your appointment all together? If you're suddenly feeling absent-minded, you're not alone...most pregnant women experience forgetfulness. You can blame your pregnancy hormones again, and the fact that your brain-cell volume actually decreases during your third trimester. Don't worry, this is only temporary! In the meantime, it can help to write everything down in one place. On the other hand, maybe it's not your memory that's bothering you, but constant bouts of worry. You may be concerned that you won't be a good mom, that diapers will elude you, or that your little one's entrance will be painful. All of these...and a million more...are normal concerns. It may help to talk to moms who have already "been there, done that," and to read a baby book or two. Discuss your fears with your partner...he may share them! What about depression? Shouldn't you be feeling lighthearted and happy now that your little one is on the way? Not necessarily! One in ten women experiences depression while pregnant. Just as hormones can wreak emotional mayhem during your period, they can do so during your pregnancy. Mild depression will often go away with a reward or two...like getting a pedicure, or taking a mid-day walk in the park. But if you're feeling hopeless or generally disinterested in life, it may be time to talk to your doctor, who might recommend pregnancy-safe antidepressants, yoga, or therapy. Another emotional hurdle that you may experience is a constant fluctuation between intense desire for sex...and NO desire at all. Guess what? Both are completely normal! Almost all pregnant women...except those with high-risk pregnancies...will be given the green-light for sex right up until labor begins. If you receive permission, talk to your doctor about positions that may be comfortable AND safe. If you're not feeling particularly amorous, that's okay, too. Explain to your partner that your hormones are in charge now, and nourish your relationship in other ways. Pregnancy is an emotionally trying time! Remember, you're not alone: Your doctor, partner, family and friends are all there to share your joy (and those occasional tears!)More »
Last Modified: 2014-01-03 | Tags »
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The most telling sign of pregnancy is a missed period, but there are other common pregnancy symptoms you may look for. Watch this video for details.
Transcript: You're pregnant! And if you had any doubt that that little baby is really in there, get ready for your...
You're pregnant! And if you had any doubt that that little baby is really in there, get ready for your body to make it very clear. Although some women sail through their pregnancies, most experience a host of physical symptoms over their 40- week journey. While a missed period is often the very first physical sign of pregnancy... some women experience another, even earlier symptom - implantation bleeding. This occurs when an embryo burrows into the uterine wall, causing light, irregular spotting, before the period is even due. After a woman knows she's pregnant, her next symptom is often morning sickness, which affects 75 percent of all moms-to-be. Morning sickness is characterized by nausea and vomiting, but don't be fooled by its moniker: Morning sickness often lasts all day. The good news is that you'll probably experience a huge reduction in morning sickness after your first trimester-although many moms do experience the symptom again later. During the second half of pregnancy, many women experience severe heartburn, or acid reflux. This is due to high amounts of the pregnancy hormone progesterone, which relaxes the valve separating the stomach from the esophagus. Add in a growing baby, which crowds the stomach cavity, and digestive acids often seep up into the throat, causing that burning sensation. Pregnancy heartburn can be painful, but it's safe to take an over the counter antacid, like Tums or Rolaids to ease the ache. Later in pregnancy, as they get larger, many pregnant women also have to deal with achy or swollen body parts. The body parts most commonly affected are the back, breasts, head, and ankles. Towards the end of pregnancy, some women get stretch marks on their breasts or stomach, or experience melasma, a darkening of certain parts of the face. Some moms-to-be even find that their feet go up a whole size while pregnant, and stay that way postpartum. Emotionally, pregnancy can be a roller coaster ride. Pregnancy hormones may make a woman sad, elated, or anxious - and the emotional experience can change rapidly. Pregnancy affects the libido, too, sometimes fueling an insatiable sexual desire, while other times decreasing sex drive. Each woman will react in her own way, and may also react differently at different times in her pregnancy. Pregnancy symptoms do vary from woman to woman and even from pregnancy to pregnancy. If you're dealing with an unpleasant issue, talk to your doctor about treatment options.More »
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Your third trimester ultrasound will help you and your doctor prepare for delivery. Find out how by watching this video.
Transcript: Congratulations, you've hit the final stretch! Here's what your sonogrammer will be looking for this...
Congratulations, you've hit the final stretch! Here's what your sonogrammer will be looking for this month. By week 24, your doctor will be able to use a sonogram to determine how your placenta is positioned. In most pregnancies, it will be high in the top of the uterus. Sometimes, however, a placenta will be "low lying," which can be a concern. That's because, if the placenta does not move up from the bottom of the uterus, it can cover the cervix and make delivery difficult. This is known as placenta previa. During the last trimester of your pregnancy, a sonogram will also be able to determine which way your baby is positioned. This is important in the weeks leading up to pregnancy, as the baby should be resting with his or her head down. A sonogram can confirm that this is the case, and can also show if the baby is breeched, or lying feet first. During the last trimester, though, sonograms will mostly be used to determine that the baby is growing appropriately. However, if your delivery is overdue by a week or more, a sonogram can also be ordered to confirm the well being of your baby.More »
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Are you worried about those ugly stretch marks on your body? There are a number of ways in which you can get rid of these marks. Watch our video to learn more.
Transcript: Having a baby may be your biggest accomplishment yet, but that doesn't mean you'll want a physical reminder...
Having a baby may be your biggest accomplishment yet, but that doesn't mean you'll want a physical reminder of the experience! During pregnancy, the skin on your belly is stretched and pulled to accommodate your growing baby. Skin does not bounce back if it's been stretched by rapid growth due to pregnancy, weight gain, or extreme weight loss. But there are other factors that affect the integrity of the skin, like: genetics, nutrition, overall health, and whether or not you are a smoker.Instead, it can become decorated by a form of scarring called stretch marks, or striae. Stretch marks often start off as reddish or purplish in color, and then fade to glossy skin that appears streaked in silver or white.Research has shown that the formation of stretch marks begins with a breakdown and stretching of collagen located beneath the top layer of skin. When a person experiences the skin being stretched over a short period of time, the natural order of collagen fibers is disrupted. The fibers are stretched, and we see what we know as stretch marks--small, depressed streaks on the skin, which affect more than 50% of pregnant women. While most women notice them on their stomachs, you may also see stretch marks on your buttocks, hips, thighs, or breasts. Although the marks initially appear pink, reddish or dark brown, they WILL start to fade within 6 to 12 months of your baby's birth. Unfortunately though, stretch marks never COMPLETELY disappear, which may be why so many women seek to prevent them in the first place. While there is no proven way to do so, it can help to not gain excessive weight during your pregnancy, and to make sure to drink a lot of fluids and to exercise regularly. Some women also swear by over-the-counter stretch mark prevention lotions, like Reviva, while other women rave about cocoa butter and Vitamin E oil! Please remember though, that there is no conclusive scientific proof that any of these creams work. Still, rubbing lotion into your belly each night WILL prevent itching, and may improve elasticity! Several factors play into the development of stretch marks. So even your best attempts to prevent them, after you have already become pregnant, may minimize, but not completely avoid this issue. Luckily, you may be able to reduce the appearance of the scars by applying a topical ointment, like Retin-A, post-pregnancy. But be sure to discuss this with your doctor if you're breastfeeding.And if your stretch marks REALLY bother you, you might consider laser treatments to help restore skin's elasticity and alter the color of the marks to better match your skin. But because these costly treatments are considered to be cosmetic, they are rarely covered by insurance. That's why most women choose to let time do its effective fading work on their stretch marks.More »
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