What To Do And What Not To Do
If you are planning to have a baby, then it’s very important to get ready and plan everything before you get pregnant. Planning not only gives you peace of mind and not rushing for everything at the last moment but also you will deliver a healthy baby. For some women, getting ready for pregnancy, their body might take few months to few weeks. Preconception health and the correct bodyweight are very essential for a smooth and happy pregnancy. Preplanning not only applies to your first baby, it should also be followed every time you want to get pregnant. It can be your second, third, or fourth child.
Here are some tips to follow before getting pregnant:-
1. Visit your doctor:- It is very important to go on a full checkup of your body before conceiving. Your doctor will study all the reports and tell you if you might need any vitamin tablets or if you have any other diseases which should be treated before pregnancy. You can gain so much knowledge with your doctor on some topics like a healthy pregnancy, birth defects, health issues during pregnancy, and how to maintain a healthy weight and diet. Your doctor will discuss with you if you had any previous pregnancy problems, medical history of your family, mental health, pregnancy history, vaccinations, medicines which you are taking now, and what steps you can take before pregnancy to decrease birth defects in your newborn.
2. Maintain a correct bodyweight:- Women who are overweight or underweight can face many problems during pregnancy. Overweight women have a high risk of complications in pregnancy, diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancers. Visit your doctor once and seek advice on how to maintain a healthy weight before getting pregnant. You have to change your lifestyle by walking, exercising, swimming, bicycling, and eating healthy food and drinks. You can also take prenatal exercise classes. Get in the correct shape to make your pregnancy and labor easier.
3. Write down a plan:- If you want a baby, plan when to conceive. On which year or month. If you are using birth control methods, then stop using them. Take genetic counseling too with your doctor. You have to know about your family history of genetic diseases which can pass on to your baby too. Make an appointment with a dentist too. As you will have teeth and gums-related issues during pregnancy you need to maintain proper oral hygiene from now on. Get pre-pregnancy care if you have certain diseases like:-
- History of miscarriage, stillbirth, and birth defects.
- High blood pressure, thyroid, and diabetes.
- Family history of genetic disorder and HIV.
- Age above 35.
- Overweight or Underweight.
- Sexually transmitted diseases.
- Urinary tract infections.
4. Talk with your partner:- It is very important for both the couple to be engaged and plan accordingly for a new life to come in. You two have to discuss with each other how you’re going to welcome and share space with a newborn. Because taking care of a newborn is not so easy. It is not only the mother’s task to take care of the baby all by herself. Fathers also have some responsibility to help the mother and take care of both the mother and the baby. The couples should start talking about their priorities, fears, and expectations throughout pregnancy and birth. Also, talk with your mom or other family members about their pregnancies and gain more knowledge.
5. Plan a budget:- Of course, a newborn baby has so many things to do which costs money. From diapers, food, car seat, stroller, swings, bed, toys, bottles, formulas, clothes, to school and university. So plan before itself how to save money from your livelihood. Make a list of all these items and start looking to buy them. Buying in bulk will reduce your cost of buying. Shop your maternity clothes too.
6. Eat Healthily:- Your body will need so many nutrients, iron, folic acid, and calcium during pregnancy. So focus on nuts, vegetables, fruits, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, and green leafy vegetables in your regular diet. Avoid packaged foods, junk foods, soft drinks, sodas, and chips. Stay mentally strong and positive about everything.
7. Take medicines:- Only after consulting your doctor you can take vitamin tablets to get ready for pregnancy. Folic acid is very important as it prevents serious birth defects. Folic acid is present in many foods like green leafy vegetables, beans, and citrus foods. But still, nowadays every doctor is recommending folic acid tablets throughout pregnancy as many pregnant women don’t eat the right healthy food. You can also start multivitamin tablets daily before conceiving.
8. Working women:- If you are working daily in the office, plan your maternity leave and check with your company if they can give you home-based work after your maternity leave which will be very easy for you and your baby. Check your health plan and insurance given by your company and see which hospitals it covers. Getting your pregnancy treatment there can save you a lot of money.
9. Spend some me-time:- Since you will not be able to travel with your baby bump everywhere you can plan a vacation or a trip to some of your favorite places. Go to movies and parties. Enjoy your me-time alone or with friends and family. You really deserve it. This can make your mind fresh and happy.
10. Quit Smoking and Alcohol:- Smoking, drinking, and having drugs and steroids can cause some serious health problems to the mother and the baby during pregnancy. Premature birth, infant death, and birth defects can also occur. Limit caffeine intake. No more than one cup of coffee a day.
Correct Time For Getting Pregnant:-
The best time a woman falls pregnant is when her egg releases the time when the sperm enters the uterus through conception. The release of an egg by the ovaries is called ovulation. Let’s first understand what is women monthly cycle or menses and how ovulation occurs:-
It occurs every month in every woman and it lasts for 3 to 7 days. Ovulation occurs if the egg released from the ovaries is not fertilized by the male sperm. More than one egg is released by the ovaries after 24 hours of the release of the first egg. When the egg releases, the lining of the womb becomes thick for implantation to take place and the mucus of the cervix becomes thinner for the sperm to pass through the uterus very easily. If the couple had sex at the time when the egg is still traveling in the fallopian tube then there is a 90% chance that the sperm can fertilize the egg very easily. Once the egg is fertilized, it travels through the fallopian tube and implants in the lining of the uterus and hence pregnancy occurs. If fertilization doesn’t take place then the egg along with the thick lining of the womb comes out of the body through the uterus in the form of menses. There will be a gap of 28 days between every menses. Some women have shorter cycles and others have longer. Ovulation occurs on the 14th day of the 28-period cycle.
If you have sex within a day of ovulation you are more likely to become pregnant but this can be hard to tell when will the egg release from the ovary. Once released, the egg can survive only for 12 to 24 hours. But sperm can survive for up to 5 days in the women’s body. If the ovaries release the egg within these 5 days, the sperm fertilizes and hence implantation occurs.