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When women are thinking about getting pregnant or first find out they’re pregnant, all kinds of thoughts, questions and worries might run through their heads. Even though they might have friends, sisters or mothers who’ve had children, this is the first time they’re really thinking about themselves and what to expect and what might happen to their body, their baby and how their life might change.
Jade Elliott sits down with certified nurse midwife, Emily Hart Hayes from Intermountain Healthcare, on this episode of the Baby Your Baby Podcast, to help allay some of those common fears that pregnant women have.
The statistics show that 96 to 97 percent of the time, babies are born normal and healthy
“Birth defects only occur in about 3 percent of births according to the U.S. National Institute of Health,” says Hayes. The US Healthy People 2020 initiative estimates that about 85 percent of pregnant women enter labor at “low risk” for problems. While complications can arise in pregnancy and birth, they are not the norm.
It’s common for women to worry about their health and their baby’s health during pregnancy
“Pregnancy is a normal, natural condition, but it can also be an uncomfortable condition. Women’s worries during pregnancy are often centered around whether what they are feeling is normal. Common worries include concerns about miscarriage, birth defects and preterm labor,” says Hayes.
Keep exercising – it’s good for you
One of the most effective ways you can help your pregnancy stay health and normal is to eat a healthy diet and get regular exercise. It’s best to start pregnancy at a healthy weight. Continuing to exercise will help you stay health and not gain too much weight.
Hayes recommends women avoid exercise that would increase the chance of a blow to the abdomen or a fall, such as contact sports, skiing, or horseback riding. During exercise, your heart rate should be such that you can you carry on a conversation. Listen to your body. Is it too much? If it doesn’t cause pain or exhaustion then it’s ok. If you’ve been a regular runner then you can continue, but you may find you need to adjust your routine as your pregnancy progresses. You may be more prone to injury. During pregnancy, your balance changes. Cycling could be an issue. You may want to look more to low impact exercise such as swimming. Don’t start a rigorous new sport or exercise program when you’re pregnant, but starting a low-impact program such as daily walks is not only ok, but it’s encouraged.
Be careful with your diet and weight gain during pregnancy
Gaining some weight during pregnancy is normal, but gaining too much or too little can increase risks of developing complications in pregnancy. To learn about the weight gain guidelines, click here.
For more information and resources, click here.
The Baby Your Baby program provides many resources for all pregnant women and new moms in Utah. There is also expert advice from the Utah Department of Health and Intermountain Healthcare that air each week on KUTV 2News.