Top 10 Questions Pregnant Women Ask: A Cheat-sheet for Moms-to-be
Pregnancy can be both an exhilarating and scary time. You are bringing new life into the world, but you are also responsible for keeping that little human safe and healthy in your womb for the next nine months. It is a lot to think about!
In fact, according to a study on anxiety during pregnancy and postpartum depression, high anxiety yields a rate of 35% during the period of gestation.
Nevertheless, while it is completely natural to feel some level of anxiety during pregnancy, there are measures you can take to help ease your fears. One way to do this is to arm yourself with knowledge.
If you are pregnant and feeling overwhelmed, here are the top ten questions pregnant women ask along with their answers.
Questions Pregnant Women Ask:
Question #1: How will I know if I am pregnant?
Just missed your period. Been feeling a little off? A few early signs of pregnancy can give you a clue.
For most women, the first sign of pregnancy is a missed period. If you are sexually active and have a regular menstrual cycle, a missed period is usually a reliable indicator that you are expecting. This symptom is often accompanied by others, such as nausea, fatigue, and breast tenderness.
Despite experiencing such symptoms, however, the only way to be sure that you are pregnant is to take a pregnancy test and consult with your doctor. A drugstore pregnancy kit can usually detect human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) or pregnancy hormones in your urine about two weeks after conception. However, it is best to wait until you have missed your period to take a test as they are most accurate during this time, or opt for a blood test at your doctor’s clinic.
Question #2: When should I see a doctor?
If you think you might be pregnant, it is best to see a doctor as soon as possible. They can confirm your pregnancy and get you started on the appropriate prenatal care.
You can also start scheduling and attending maternity consultations with a pregnancy expert early on. These visits help to monitor your progress and the development of your baby, as well as prepare you for labor, birth, and motherhood.
Question #3: Should I consult a midwife or an OB/GYN?
This question is often top of mind for pregnant women, especially first-timers. The answer will depend on your specific circumstances and preferences.
If you are at minimal risk (i.e., you have no history of pregnancy complications, are carrying one baby, and are not expecting twins), then you may only need to see a midwife. On the other hand, if you are high-risk (e.g., you have a history of complications, are carrying twins, etc.), then you will need to see an OB/GYN.
Many first-time moms prefer to consult with both a midwife and an OB/GYN to get a second opinion and cover all their bases. These professionals are trained to deal with different scenarios and can offer you comprehensive care throughout your pregnancy.
Question #4: Is bleeding during pregnancy normal?
One of the scariest things that can happen during pregnancy is spotting or bleeding. Many women worry that this may be a sign of miscarriage.
However, it is important to keep in mind that some amount of spotting or bleeding is quite common during early pregnancy. In fact, about 1 in every 4 pregnant women experience this symptom, especially in the first trimester.
Nonetheless, it is always best to err on the side of caution and consult with your doctor or midwife if you experience any bleeding during pregnancy, even if it is light. This is to rule out any potential complications such as an ectopic pregnancy.
Question #5: Which foods should I avoid during pregnancy?
If you are a foodie or take pleasure in indulging in different cuisines, you may have to hold off on eating some of your favorites for a while. This is because there are certain foods that you will need to avoid or take caution with, as they may pose a risk to you and your baby. Here are some of them according to Healthline:
- Raw or undercooked meat
- Fish with high mercury levels
- Organ meat
- Unwashed and unpeeled fruits and vegetables
- Unpasteurized dairy products
- Caffeine and alcohol
- Junk foods
While not all these foods can directly affect your baby, they may increase your risk of food poisoning or other infections, which can then lead to complications during pregnancy. Therefore, it is best to avoid them altogether and have a healthy, balanced diet to keep both you and your baby safe and in good health.
Question #6: Can I still exercise while pregnant?
Yes, you can still exercise while pregnant! In fact, it is recommended by most healthcare professionals as it has a plethora of benefits for both you and your baby.
Some of the benefits of exercising during pregnancy include:
- Reducing your risk of gestational diabetes
- Lowering your risk of developing high blood pressure
- Helping you cope with the aches and pains of pregnancy
- Improving your mood and energy levels
- Promoting better sleep
- Preparing your body for labor and delivery
You should always consult with your doctor or trusted pregnancy expert before starting or continuing an exercise routine during this special time. They will be able to give you specific recommendations based on your health and fitness level.
Question #7: How often should I get prenatal checkups?
Prenatal checkups are important appointments that you should not miss. They allow your healthcare professional to monitor your health, the development of your baby, and the potential for any complications.
You will need to see your doctor or midwife once a month for the first 28 weeks of pregnancy. From week twenty-eight to week forty, you will need to go for checkups every two weeks. After week forty, you will need to go for checkups every week until you give birth. This is to ensure that both you and your baby are healthy, and to catch any potential problems early on.
Question #8: How do I avoid pregnancy complications?
The anxiety of having a healthy pregnancy can be overwhelming for some women. However, there are some things that you can do to lower your risk of developing complications during pregnancy.
Some of the things that you can do to reduce your risk of complications include:
- Eating a healthy diet
- Exercising regularly
- Getting enough rest
- Avoiding stress
- Visiting your doctor or midwife for regular checkups
- Communicating with your partner
Pregnancy is a wonderful and amazing time. However, it is also a time when your body is going through many changes. By taking care of yourself and following your healthcare professional’s advice, you can help reduce your risk of developing complications and eventually, give birth to a healthy baby.
Question #9: When is my due date?
We get it, you are excited to meet your little one and you want to know when they will finally make their appearance. Most healthcare professionals will give you a due date that is 40 weeks from the first day of your last period.
However, it is important to keep in mind that this is just an estimate. Only about 5% of babies are actually born on their due date. Most are born within a week before or after.
Question 10: What are the signs of labor?
As you get closer to your due date, you may start to experience some of the signs of labor. This can be both an exciting and nerve-wracking time for expectant mothers.
Some of the signs that labor may be starting to include:
- Water breaking
- Low back pain
- Bloody show
- Nesting instinct
- Diarrhea and nausea
These are just some of the signs that labor may be starting. If you experience any of these, it is important to contact your healthcare professional or midwife right away. They will be able to give you specific instructions on what to do next and when you should come into the hospital or birthing center.
Preparing for the Big Day
After having all these questions answered, you should feel more prepared for the big day. However, we understand how overwhelming and scary pregnancy can be despite all the information and support available.
Thus, here are some things you can do to further prepare yourself for labor and delivery:
Enrolling in Pregnancy Classes
It is only natural for first-time moms and couples to feel anxious and scared about what to expect during pregnancy, the whole delivery process, and parenthood in general. To help ease some of those fears, you and your partner may want to consider enrolling in pregnancy classes offered at a hospital, birthing center, or family or community center.
These classes usually cover everything from the things to expect during pregnancy and labor to what you need to know about caring for a newborn. There are diverse types of pregnancy classes tailored to fit your needs. These include natural childbirth classes, breastfeeding classes, and newborn care classes.
Regular Prenatal Checkups
With all the foods and activities to avoid during pregnancy and the constant worry about your baby’s health, it is easy to forget that you need to take care of yourself as well.
One of the best things that you can do for both you and your baby is to have regular prenatal checkups with your healthcare professional. These checkups give you the opportunity to ask any questions or concerns that you may have about your pregnancy. They can also give you the assurance that both you and your baby are healthy and progressing as expected.
Creating a Birth Plan
The success of any delivery depends on effective communication between you, your partner, and your healthcare team. To help make sure that everyone is on the same page, you may want to consider creating a birth plan.
A birth plan is simply a document that outlines your preferences for labor, delivery, and postpartum care. This can include everything from who you want in the delivery room with you to whether you want to have an epidural.
Having a birth plan does not mean that things will go exactly as you want them to. Sometimes, unforeseen circumstances can arise that require changes to be made. However, it can help to ensure that your preferences are known and respected by your healthcare team.
Packing a Hospital Bag
While this may seem like an easy decision, you would be surprised how many women wait until the last minute to pack their hospital bag.
Ideally, you should have your bag packed and ready to go by the time you are 36 weeks pregnant. This way, you will be prepared if you go into labor early.
Some of the things that you will want to consider including in your bag are:
- Insurance information
- Your birth plans
- Comfortable clothes to wear at home
- A going-home outfit for baby
- Nursing bras and pads
- Phone charger
- Chapstick for labor
- A blanket and pillow
Attending a Labor Rehearsal Class
A labor rehearsal class is another pregnancy educational course that is designed to help you and your partner prepare for the labor and delivery process. It is a private class led by a Lamaze certified childbirth educator (LCCE) and can take place during weeks 34 to 38 of your pregnancy.
During the class, you and your partner will learn different techniques that can help ease the discomforts of labor and practice various positions to know which ones work best for you.
Have a Support System
Apart from all these educational courses and specific preparation for labor and delivery, one of the most important things that you can do is to build a dedicated support system.
Whether it is just your partner or a group of close friends and family members, make sure you have people you can rely on for emotional and practical support. The whole experience of pregnancy and parenthood can be overwhelming, but it is a lot easier to get through it when you have people you know you can count on.
Welcome to the World of Motherhood!
From the time you have first missed your period or seen the two pink lines on the pregnancy test, your life has been full of questions. What do I eat? Can I exercise? What is going to happen to my body?
As a first-time mom, it is normal to feel overwhelmed and even a little scared about what is to come. But with the right information and preparation, plus a solid support system, you will welcome your healthy little one into the world with confidence.
Please contact Motherhood Center to help you get answers to your questions about Questions Pregnant Women Ask in Houston.
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