Archive for November 2013

How Body Changes Occur During Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a natural process that involves big changes in a woman’s body. It’s different for everyone. Some women have long, difficult, uncomfortable pregnancies that change their daily lives right from the start. Others have fairly easy pregnancies and their daily routines may not change until the last few weeks before delivery.

Pregnancy is a nine month journey for both you and your baby. During this time your own body will change, both internally and externally. Although a woman’s body was beautifully designed to give birth, this process may cause a woman some discomfort and impose some limitations. Usually, exercise and good nutrition can alleviate the minor discomfort of pregnancy.

Some women also may begin to feel a little nauseous, and her breasts may become more tender or may tingle somewhat.

By the end of the second month, the levels of progesterone and estrogen are increasing dramatically, which will generally lead to some pretty serious mood swings that start now and continue through her pregnancy.

During pregnancy, your hormones are changing. This may cause you to experience ups and downs. You may feel excited, tired, worried, or like you need to talk about everything that is happening to you.

A vaginal discharge occurs normally during pregnancy, because of hormonal changes. A yellow or cheesy white discharge that is accompanied by itching or burning is not normal and needs to be reported to you health care provider.

Folic acid supplements are recommended for women trying to conceive and during the first trimester of pregnancy. This is the time that the baby’s brain and nervous system are developing. Folic acid has been shown to reduce the chance of a baby being born with problems known as neural tube defects, such as spinal bifida.

Cardiac output increases approximately 40% during pregnancy, reaching its maximum at 20-24 week’s gestation and continuing at this level until term. The increase in output can be as much as1, 5L/min over the non pregnant level. Cardiac output is very sensitive to changes in body position. This sensitivity increases with lengthening gestation, presumably because the uterus impinges upon the inferior vena cava, thereby decreasing blood return to the heart.

Many pregnant women complain of dizziness and lightheadedness throughout their pregnancies. Fainting is rare but does happen even in some healthy pregnant women. There are many reasons for these symptoms. The growth of more blood vessels in early pregnancy, the pressure of the expanding uterus on blood vessels and the body’s increased need for food all can make a pregnant woman feel lightheaded and dizzy.

During your pregnancy, you might feel tired even after you’ve had a lot of sleep. Many women find they’re particularly exhausted in the first trimester. Don’t worry, this is normal! This is your body’s way of telling you that you need more rest.
Heat stress during exercise creates concern for two reasons. First, an increase in the mother’s core temperature (hyperthermia) can be harmful to the baby’s development. Second, loss of water in the mother (dehydration) can decrease the amount of blood available to the fetus and lead to increased risk of preterm contractions.

Acne will be another big concern for you during your pregnancy. No matter how bad they become, stay away from medications as they might affect the baby. Not all women have this problem and you may luck out and find that your skin clears up during pregnancy.