‘Will I have a healthy baby?’ pregnant moms worry all the time. Most of the time, yes. But there are health risks that can cause pregnancy complications. Here are some things that can help allay your concerns
Ask for a test
Regular visits to your obstetrician can also help detect congenital defects. Concerned moms can ask for tests, especially if you have a family history. You can have ultrasounds or an amniocentesis. Here, the doctors collect fluid from the amniotic sac, and check for birth defects. It can detect chromosomal disorders like Down syndrome. Accuracy rate is between 99.4 and 100 percent. Because amniocentesis can accidentally trigger labor, doctors usually don’t perform this test unless an ultrasound or the parents’ risky genetic history give adequate reason to believe that the baby may have the disorder.
Newborn screening tests, on the other hand, can detect types of abnormalities related to a baby’s metabolic process as well as some inherited disorders. During newborn screenings, the baby’s blood sample is extracted 48 hours after delivery. The blood sample is sent to the Department of Health or the World Health Organization, and the results are forwarded to the baby’s pediatrician, who give them to he parents.
Eating healthy food, relaxation, and light exercise can pave the way for a healthy delivery. One simple step moms can make: take folic acid. Help prevent brain and spinal cord defects, especially during the crucial first trimester. Women planning to conceive should take at least 400 micrograms of folic acid daily, starting three months before pregnancy to the delivery. Folic acid is available in multivitamins, folate-enriched milk, and through foods like cereals, dried beans, leafy greens, and fresh orange juice.
Stop smoking and drinking alcohol. Pregnant women who smoke risk giving birth to babies who are premature or have low birthweight. It also increases the baby’s chances of later developing bronchitis and asthma. The risk for heart, brain, and face defects also increase.
Drinking alcohol, on the other hand, alarmingly leads to Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS), a collection of deformities that includes facial deformities, reduced growth, a small head (and therefore a small brain), and abnormal behavioral development.
Also read on the essentials of a healthy pregnancy.
Photo from all4mommies.com