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Pregnancy

Most asked questions

How to monitor mental health during pregnancy?

It is normal to feel emotional at times in pregnancy and/or have feelings of anticipation in pregnancy as you are coming closer to a new beginning to your life with the arrival of your baby.  It is also quite understandable to have some concerns about the baby, giving birth and how you will adapt to life with the new addition to your family.

It’s a good idea for all expectant parents to monitor their mental health and wellbeing and so if you are feeling sad, have lost interest or enjoyment in things that you once enjoyed or find yourself worrying over things to the point that it is causing you to feel distressed, this could be a sign of antenatal depression or anxiety . If you are concerned in any way, seek advice and help from your doctor or midwife.

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How much weight should I gain during pregnancy?

How much weight you should put on during pregnancy depends on your weight pre-pregnancy. There should also be considerations if you are carrying twins or triplets.

A healthy BMI range is 18.5 - 24.9. If you are within this range you should expect to put on between 11.5 and 16 kilograms.

If you have a low BMI, below 18.5, you should gain  between 12.5 and 18 kilograms.

If you have a high BMI, above 25, you should gain between 7 and 11.5 kilograms.

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Is it safe to take pain relief during pregnancy?

Paracetamol is considered safe to use during pregnancy to treat pain and high temperatures. As with all medications taken during pregnancy- take at the lowest effective dose for the shortest amount of time. If this is not effective to control your pain, you should speak with your health care professional for advice. 

Ibuprofen should not be taken during pregnancy.

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More questions

Should I be doing pelvic floor exercises?

Yes! It is recommended that all women exercise their pelvic floor every day throughout their lives to improve strength and prevent weakness.

The pelvic floor are a group of muscles and ligaments that support the bladder, uterus and bowel. It is important to keep these strong to prevent incontinence (leaking of urine or faeces) and prolapse. 

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Should I be doing perineal massage during pregnancy?

Perineal massage is preparing the vaginal outlet for birth in order to minimise risk of trauma.

Research shows that for women experiencing their first vaginal birth, perineal massage from 35 weeks of pregnancy have a lower risk of serious perineal tearing and episiotomy. 

 

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Can I use a spa when I'm pregnant?

It is advised not to use a heated spa during pregnancy as your core temperature may increase and risk overheating, dehydration and fainting.

Swimming in a pool however can be a great form of exercise as it makes you feel weightless whilst also increasing your circulation, muscle tone, strength and stamina. 

 

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What supplements should I take during pregnancy?

Folic acid should be taken during the first trimester of pregnancy. Folic acid is important in the prevention of neural tube defects such as spina bifida. 

Iodine should be taken the whole way through pregnancy and also when you're breastfeeding as it supports brain and nervous system development.

Your body's iron requirements increase during pregnancy however not all women will need supplementation. Your health care professional will check your iron levels throughout your pregnancy, it is important to eat foods rich in iron throughout pregnancy.

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Can I still get vaccinations when I am pregnant?

The influenza and pertussis (whooping cough) vaccinations are recommended during pregnancy. When you are vaccinated the antibodies cross the placenta to your baby, this means that they are also protected while they are too young to be vaccinated.

The influenza vaccination can be given at any stage during pregnancy. The pertussis vaccination is recommended between 20 and 32 weeks in every pregnancy.

 

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