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Quick Tips: Healthy Pregnancy Habits

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Obstetrics Portland, Oregon | How to have a Healthy Pregnancy Image

   The following are ways you can take care of your health and your baby's during pregnancy 


     See your doctor or midwife regularly

  • Visit your doctor or midwife as soon as you suspect you are pregnant.

  • Keep regular appointments for prenatal checkups and care.

  • Get treatment for all infections. If you have signs of an infection during pregnancy, such as fever or unusual vaginal discharge, call your doctor or midwife.

     Eat a balanced diet

  • Eat a balanced diet. Remember that your nutritional needs increase during pregnancy. Eat from each food group—grains, vegetables, fruits, milk, and meat and other proteins, including beans. If you are not sure about what or how much to eat, talk with your doctor or midwife.

  • Get enough folic acid. Women who are planning to become pregnant or who already are pregnant should take daily vitamin supplements containing 0.4 mg to 0.8 mg (400 mcg to 800 mcg) of folic acid. 

     Be active

  • Women who have uncomplicated pregnancies are encouraged to get regular aerobic and strength-conditioning exercise. Swimming, walking, and arm exercises are the safest activities.  However, activity should be maintained at previous levels and encouraged in uncomplicated pregnancies.

  • Don't exercise if you are not feeling well or if the weather is very hot. Do not participate in dangerous sports like horseback riding or motorcycle riding, waterskiing, or scuba diving.

     Get plenty of rest

  • Go to bed earlier than usual and get up later, if possible. Take naps, unless napping makes you sleepless at night. If you can't sleep, try reading, writing a letter, or doing another quiet and restful activity.

  • Put your feet up and rest as often as you can during the day. Share housework and other duties with your partner whenever possible.

  • As your pregnancy advances, it is best to lie on your left side. Placing a small pillow under your belly for support may increase your comfort. Have your partner roll another pillow in the small of your back. A third small pillow can be placed between your knees.

     Think twice about medications

  • Talk to your doctor or midwife about medicines that you use, including nonprescription medicines. Some medicines have been linked to birth defects.  It is also possible that some medications which are safe in early pregnancy are not as safe late in pregnancy.

  • Discuss chronic medical problems with your doctor or midwife and learn what you need to do for a healthy pregnancy.

     Stay away from harmful substances

  • Do not smoke. Smoking increases the risk of low birth weight and fetal death. If you smoke, talk with your doctor about ways to quit.

  • Don't drink alcohol. No amount of alcohol has been studied and proven to be safe during pregnancy.

  • Avoid certain chemicals and ensure proper ventilation if around chemicals.

  • Think about risks when traveling. The Zika Virus poses a great threat to pregnancies and is prevalent in much of South America at this time.

     Think safety first

  • Take care to avoid falling. Unstable joints, your expanding belly, and your altered center of gravity can make you more likely to fall. Consider activities like bicycling and in line skating and even walking across ice in the winter to be risky for falls.

  • Avoid climbing on ladders or standing on anything that is high, unstable, or wobbly.

  • Always wear your seat belt when driving or riding in a motor vehicle or plane.

  • Avoid roller coasters and other theme park rides that are fast or jarring. Rides that quickly start, stop, turn, or drop could jolt the uterus. 

How to have a healthy pregnancy - OB/GYN Doctor in Portland, OR
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