Pregnancy and women Health

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Some pregnant women experience severe itching during the third trimester of pregnancy. This symptom can be due to a condition called intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy (ICP). Mild jaundice (yellow colouration of skin and eyes) can also occur in this condition. Both the itching and the jaundice occur because during pregnancy the liver becomes up to 30 times less efficient at getting rid of bile (a greenish-yellow fluid that is partly a waste product, and partly used to digest fat). Always speak to your midwife or GP if concerned about itching as this should binvestigated to eliminate ICP.9

Drinking juice is another way to make sure you get the recommended intake of eight glasses of water per day. Vitamin C requirements increase in pregnancy so a glass of fresh juice also helps to top this up.

A bacterium that during pregnancy can cause miscarriage, stillbirth or severe illness in the newborn. It is a very rare disease, occurring in about 1 in 30,000 births in the UK. However it is important to reduce the risk by avoiding soft cheeses made with mould or a rind, unpasteurised cheeses and any type of pâté. Also remember to wash fruit and vegetables thoroughly and re-heat ready meals or pre-cooked foods until they are piping hot.

Meat provides protein and iron but make sure you cook all meat thoroughly so that there is no trace of pink or blood and wash all surfaces and utensils after preparing raw meat. This will help to avoid infection with Toxoplasma, which may cause toxoplasmosis, which can harm the baby. Make sure that raw foods are stored separately from ready-to-eat foods; otherwise there is a risk of contamination. This is to avoid other types of food poisoning from meat (Salmonella, Campylobacter and E.coli 0157). Also make sure you use a separate chopping board for raw meats. Always wash hands thoroughly after touching raw meat and keep raw meat away from meat that is already cooked. Wash down surfaces and utensils after use.
Menstrual cycle
Breastfeeding delays your period. If you’re breastfeeding exclusively, day and night, it can take up to a year before your period returns. If you have a baby who sleeps through the night from an early age, your period will be likely to return sooner — typically in three to eight months. The same applies if you’re supplementing with formula. In other words, the more often your baby nurses, the longer it will be before you get your period again. However breastfeeding is not a reliable form of contraception so don’t rely on this if you want to avoid unexpected surprises!
If you are prone to getting migraines you may experience stronger headaches or you may find that they diminish whilst pregnant. Some women also experience a migraine for the first time when they are pregnant. Some studies have found a slight correlation between migraines and hormones. Common triggers may include but are not limited to.

There’s no need to switch from skimmed or semi skimmed milk to whole milk. The only nutrient whole milk contains that skimmed milk doesn’t is fat. And while fat is important during pregnancy, you’re probably getting enough unless you’re consciously eating a low-fat diet. To get adequate amounts of calcium and vitamin D during pregnancy, drink four 8-ounce glasses (32 ounces) of skimmed milk each day, or eat a variety of other calcium rich foods such as 1 cup plain skimmed milk yoghurt, 1 cup non-fat cottage cheese, and 1 cup calcium-fortified orange juice.
Minerals help your body use the energy provided by foods for both yourself and your baby. They also help repair and maintain cells and tissues. You can get most of the vitamins and minerals you need from a healthy diet. However women may find it difficult to get enough iron, folic acid and calcium from food and many choose to take a prenatal vitamin every day.
mood swings It is quite common to have fluctuating moods and emotions during pregnancy. Although progesterone and oestrogen are thought to be partly responsible, much of your moodiness is simply due to the fact that pregnancy is a time of tremendous change. About 10 percent of expectant women battle mild to moderate depression throughout their
pregnancies. If you often or consistently feel blue, you may fall into this category and it would be wise to consult your hakim.
Morning sickness
It is estimated that approximately 80 percent of pregnant women experience discomfort from the nausea and vomiting associated with pregnancy, which can actually occur at any time of the day. Most cases spontaneously resolve by the end of the third month of pregnancy, however one fifth of women experience nausea and vomiting for a much longer period of time. A small number may develop hyperemesis gravidarum (severe nausea, vomiting and dehydration) which requires specialist care. If you are at all concerned about morning sickness speak to your hakim or Midwife for advice. There are a great deal of theories on why women suffer from morning sickness during pregnancy, the most popular being.

Piles (haemorrhoids) are a common problem for pregnant women and are caused by the weight of the uterus pressing on major blood vessels. This leads to a pooling of blood and ultimately causes the veins to enlarge and swell. In addition progesterone relaxes the veins allowing the swelling to increase. Piles are best prevented by eating a high fibre diet accompanied by plenty of fluid. If you have problems with piles, please speak to your midwife.
The organ that nourishes the foetus by transporting nutrients from the mother’s blood and removing waste products.
Poultry is a food that unless properly handled can carry an increased risk of salmonella. Always store uncooked and cooked meats separately and check that all meats are cooked thoroughly (with no signs of pink or blood) before eating. Handle pre-cooked poultry with care. Only buy from a reputable source and ensure that it is kept thoroughly chilled and never eat if beyond its use before date.
The hormone that signals to the breasts to produce milk for the baby. Prolactin is stimulated by suckling and so frequent feeding on demand will help to get milk supply established
in the early weeks.

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