Emotions and Pregnancy
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Are you giggling one moment and sobbing the next? Welcome to pregnancy! Let's look at what you can expect emotionally during this time.
Transcript: While no two pregnancy experiences are identical, most women do find that their emotions and desires...
While no two pregnancy experiences are identical, most women do find that their emotions and desires suddenly feel a bit...random. If you're like seven out of ten moms-to-be, you're probably experiencing mood swings that won't quit! One minute you're thrilled about the new wallpaper in your nursery, the next you're crying because you can't fit into your shoes. It makes sense that you're so emotionally charged: You're going through HUGE physical and mental changes, and you're full of pregnancy hormones to boot! You'll be better able to deal with your mood swings if you accept them as normal, and allow yourself to laugh if you can! It may be helpful is to have a healthy snack, or take a catnap. Both will help keep your energy levels stable so your brain can follow suit. Did you leave your purse at the gynecologist? Or did your forget your appointment all together? If you're suddenly feeling absent-minded, you're not alone...most pregnant women experience forgetfulness. You can blame your pregnancy hormones again, and the fact that your brain-cell volume actually decreases during your third trimester. Don't worry, this is only temporary! In the meantime, it can help to write everything down in one place. On the other hand, maybe it's not your memory that's bothering you, but constant bouts of worry. You may be concerned that you won't be a good mom, that diapers will elude you, or that your little one's entrance will be painful. All of these...and a million more...are normal concerns. It may help to talk to moms who have already "been there, done that," and to read a baby book or two. Discuss your fears with your partner...he may share them! What about depression? Shouldn't you be feeling lighthearted and happy now that your little one is on the way? Not necessarily! One in ten women experiences depression while pregnant. Just as hormones can wreak emotional mayhem during your period, they can do so during your pregnancy. Mild depression will often go away with a reward or two...like getting a pedicure, or taking a mid-day walk in the park. But if you're feeling hopeless or generally disinterested in life, it may be time to talk to your doctor, who might recommend pregnancy-safe antidepressants, yoga, or therapy. Another emotional hurdle that you may experience is a constant fluctuation between intense desire for sex...and NO desire at all. Guess what? Both are completely normal! Almost all pregnant women...except those with high-risk pregnancies...will be given the green-light for sex right up until labor begins. If you receive permission, talk to your doctor about positions that may be comfortable AND safe. If you're not feeling particularly amorous, that's okay, too. Explain to your partner that your hormones are in charge now, and nourish your relationship in other ways. Pregnancy is an emotionally trying time! Remember, you're not alone: Your doctor, partner, family and friends are all there to share your joy (and those occasional tears!)More »
Last Modified: 2014-01-03 | Tags »
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Morning sickness is a relatively normal part of pregnancy. Checking out this video will help you in understanding morning sickness.
Transcript: If you're pregnant, you may find yourself bonding with the toilet more than with your baby-to-be. What's...
If you're pregnant, you may find yourself bonding with the toilet more than with your baby-to-be. What's the deal with morning sickness, anyway? First of all, remember that morning sickness is a normal part of most pregnancies, particularly in the first trimester. You're feeling nauseous and vomiting because your new pregnancy hormones, B. like progesterone, are elevated, a healthy sign that your pregnancy is progressing. But that's not to say you should worry if you're sailing through a pregnancy without being sick. Twenty-five percent of women are fortunate enough to avoid morning sickness. While that means that three-quarters of women do experience some morning sickness, it is usually more frequent and severe in women who...have experienced nausea while taking birth control pills...already suffer from motion sickness... are pregnant with multiple children at once...or who have first-degree female relatives who experienced morning sickness. If you're sick of being sick, however, you'll be happy to learn that some tried and true tricks can help ease this unpleasant symptom. Check out other videos in this series to learn about them.More »
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Morning sickness affects lots of pregnant women but it you don’t have to be one of them! Learn how to avoid morning sickness by watching this video.
Transcript: What if we told you it might be possible to prevent that unpleasant morning sickness while you're pregnant?...
What if we told you it might be possible to prevent that unpleasant morning sickness while you're pregnant? Some seventy-five percent of women experience morning sickness. And while you can't eliminate it entirely, a few smart dietary tweaks can help reduce nausea and prevent vomiting. For starters, never let yourself go hungry. When you're starving, your blood sugar dips, which can often contribute to feelings of nausea. In fact, that's probably why you feel worst in the morning-you haven't eaten in hours. Knowing this, it's smart to keep a box of crackers or loaf of bread by your bedside. Nibble first thing in the morning before you rise. In addition, try to eat five to six smaller meals each day, instead of the traditional three large ones. This will stop your blood sugar from spiking, which has a similarly negative effect on your well-being. And, of course, it's wise to avoid anything that smells very strong or is particularly greasy if you're prone to morning sickness. If all the prevention in the world still isn't enough to bypass pregnancy sickness, check out the other videos in this series for tips on finding fast relief.More »
Last Modified: 2014-02-03 | Tags »
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Say goodbye to your morning sickness by learning about several morning sickness treatments you can try. Watch this video for details!
Transcript: Showing off your pregnancy? Not likely - you're too busy bonding with your bathroom. Here are some tips...
Showing off your pregnancy? Not likely - you're too busy bonding with your bathroom. Here are some tips to help purge morning sickness. If nausea and vomiting have you on your knees, you might want to give the ginger cure a try. Eat a few pieces of fresh gingerroot or take one gram of ginger in capsule form. The chemical compounds that give ginger its zesty taste-gingerol and shogaol-reduce intestinal contractions and inhibit the "vomiting" center in the brain. If you're willing to try a more alternative method, try acupressure to inhibit vomiting. Start by locating the point on your forearm about one and a half inches away from the base of your hand, dead center between the ligaments. Press down on this point with your thumb while you count slowly to ten. Repeat until nausea subsides. If you're still vomiting regularly, suck on ice chips or popsicles, or drink flat ginger ale to stay hydrated and replace lost sugar. And sip slowly! If you drink more than 2 ounces at a time, liquids will bypass your tissues and head to your bladder, sending you straight back to the bathroom.More »
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The most telling sign of pregnancy is a missed period, but there are other common pregnancy symptoms you may look for. Watch this video for details.
Transcript: You're pregnant! And if you had any doubt that that little baby is really in there, get ready for your...
You're pregnant! And if you had any doubt that that little baby is really in there, get ready for your body to make it very clear. Although some women sail through their pregnancies, most experience a host of physical symptoms over their 40- week journey. While a missed period is often the very first physical sign of pregnancy... some women experience another, even earlier symptom - implantation bleeding. This occurs when an embryo burrows into the uterine wall, causing light, irregular spotting, before the period is even due. After a woman knows she's pregnant, her next symptom is often morning sickness, which affects 75 percent of all moms-to-be. Morning sickness is characterized by nausea and vomiting, but don't be fooled by its moniker: Morning sickness often lasts all day. The good news is that you'll probably experience a huge reduction in morning sickness after your first trimester-although many moms do experience the symptom again later. During the second half of pregnancy, many women experience severe heartburn, or acid reflux. This is due to high amounts of the pregnancy hormone progesterone, which relaxes the valve separating the stomach from the esophagus. Add in a growing baby, which crowds the stomach cavity, and digestive acids often seep up into the throat, causing that burning sensation. Pregnancy heartburn can be painful, but it's safe to take an over the counter antacid, like Tums or Rolaids to ease the ache. Later in pregnancy, as they get larger, many pregnant women also have to deal with achy or swollen body parts. The body parts most commonly affected are the back, breasts, head, and ankles. Towards the end of pregnancy, some women get stretch marks on their breasts or stomach, or experience melasma, a darkening of certain parts of the face. Some moms-to-be even find that their feet go up a whole size while pregnant, and stay that way postpartum. Emotionally, pregnancy can be a roller coaster ride. Pregnancy hormones may make a woman sad, elated, or anxious - and the emotional experience can change rapidly. Pregnancy affects the libido, too, sometimes fueling an insatiable sexual desire, while other times decreasing sex drive. Each woman will react in her own way, and may also react differently at different times in her pregnancy. Pregnancy symptoms do vary from woman to woman and even from pregnancy to pregnancy. If you're dealing with an unpleasant issue, talk to your doctor about treatment options.More »
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During pregnancy, your health can affect the health of your fetus, whether you're coping with depression or just a fever. Find out why a sick mom may mean a sick fetus, too
Transcript: Are you running a fever? Are you depressed? If you're sick, you'll understandably worry about your baby....
Are you running a fever? Are you depressed? If you're sick, you'll understandably worry about your baby. The good news is that the majority of illnesses that can befall a pregnant mother, if treated, won't harm her fetus. Similarly, most medications that you might take to treat an illness will be far less damaging to your baby than being sick. If you're running a fever, it's true that both you and the baby will burn off oxygen and calories faster than normal. But, while this may cause brief stress to the baby, it's not generally harmful in the long term. The exception to this is a fever above 103 degrees, particularly during in your first trimester, which could lead to neural tube defects in your baby if not monitored. Meanwhile, if you're suffering from depression while pregnant, your baby will be fine- as long as you take care of yourself. That means going to counseling to sort through your emotions, and being proactive about prenatal care. Your doctor may even recommend an anti-depressant, as most physicians agree that this is less hazardous to your baby than the risks of the disease itself. When in doubt, remember to be gentle on yourself and to talk to your doctor about safe healing.More »
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Pregnancy can change a lot of things about a woman's body, including her teeth. Watch this video to find out more about what happens to tooth health during pregnancy.
Transcript: Hearing the old wives' tale, "You lose a tooth for every pregnancy" may make you reconsider this whole...
Hearing the old wives' tale, "You lose a tooth for every pregnancy" may make you reconsider this whole baby thing! Luckily, the adage isn't true...but here's what is. Pregnancy is a trying time for your whole body, and your teeth are no exception. While you're expecting, the likelihood of developing gingivitis, or inflammation of the gums, rises dramatically. Unfortunately, gingivitis has been linked to premature labor and low birth weight in babies. The disease can often be avoided, however, when you take extra steps to care for your pregnant teeth. Start by flossing daily, even if you don't usually do so. This promotes strong, healthy gums. Continue brushing three times a day,More »
Last Modified: 2013-10-02 | Tags »
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Alcohol and pregnancy do not mix. Drinking alcohol while you're pregnant puts your fetus at risk for serious health complications. Watch this video for details.
Transcript: Fast fact: More than 10 percent of women in the U.S. drink during pregnancy. Here's why that's harmful....
Fast fact: More than 10 percent of women in the U.S. drink during pregnancy. Here's why that's harmful. An unborn baby and booze don't mix, and you'd be hard pressed to find a doctor to disagree. When consumed during pregnancy, alcohol travels through your blood to your placenta and reaches your baby. Because a fetus breaks down alcohol much more slowly than an adult, it will often have higher blood alcohol levels than its mother. As a result, a baby that is given alcohol in the womb is more likely to develop any number of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders. In fact, the Center for Disease Control lists exposure to alcohol as the number one most preventable risk for birth defects. The most severe illness that can result from in utero exposure to alcohol is Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, a lifelong condition characterized by...poor growth (both in the womb and after birth), abnormal facial features, mental retardation, behavioral problems and delays in development. Even when Fetal Alcohol Syndrome doesn't occur, alcohol exposure can still lead to miscarriage, very early birth and a host of other mental and behavioral problems. If you're pregnant, it's important to stop drinking as soon as you find out-your child's future depends on it.More »
Last Modified: 2013-06-07 | Tags »
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Smoking during pregnancy will harm your fetus's health. Watch this video for details on cigarettes and pregnancy.
Transcript: Up to 13 percent of women still smoke during their pregnancies. Cigarette smoke contains over 4,000 chemicals,...
Up to 13 percent of women still smoke during their pregnancies. Cigarette smoke contains over 4,000 chemicals, all of which enter the blood stream and head straight for your baby. Two of these in particularcarbon monoxide and nicotinenarrow the blood vessels in the umbilical cord. Since this is the babys source of oxygen, when this happens it becomes much harder for him to breathe. Oxygen deprivation in the womb can lead to stillbirth, premature delivery, low birth weight, learning disorders and a lower IQ. If youre a non-smoker, but your partner lights up, your baby is still subjected to serious risks. In fact, the CDC says that women exposed to secondhand smoke have a 20 percent greater chance of delivering underweight babies than women who arent exposed. Even women who spend a great deal of time around wood fires may experience similar negative effects due to inhalation of carbon monoxide. This risk, however, is smaller than the risk of smoking, and not something to be worried about if it occurs in moderation. If youre pregnant and cant stop smoking, talk to your doctor about quitting. If you can do so by week 14, youre about as likely as anyone to have a healthy baby!More »
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All you want is sleep, right? But you want to sleep safely for the little one your carrying. Check out this video to learn more about safe sleep during pregnancy.
Transcript: Forget ice cream, you just crave sleep! Here, tips to make snoozing safer for your little one. It is...
Forget ice cream, you just crave sleep! Here, tips to make snoozing safer for your little one. It is most commonly recommended that a pregnant woman sleep on her left side. This position improves the flow of blood and nutrients to the placenta. It also helps your kidneys efficiently eliminate fluids from your body. In turn, you'll sidestep some swelling in your feet and ankles. During the first twenty weeks or so of pregnancy, it's ok to sleep on your back. After that though, you should try not to, because the weight of your uterus could press on the artery which leads from your legs to your heart, resulting in reduced blood flow to your baby. You can also sleep on your right side, or your stomach, if that is comfortable for you. But by the third trimester, most women would rather sit up than lie on their bellies! Regardless of the position you sleep in while you are pregnant, if you're cold at night, you may wish to use an electric blanket. This is fine as long as you don't allow your body temperature to rise above 103 degrees, which can harm your baby. No matter how you sleep, make sure you do. Growing a baby is a lot of work!More »
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Are you having trouble sleeping during pregnancy? Find out more about pregnancy sleep aids by checking out this video.
Transcript: You'd sacrifice anything for a good night's rest...except the safety of your baby. According to the FDA,...
You'd sacrifice anything for a good night's rest...except the safety of your baby. According to the FDA, there are currently no sleep aid medications that are 100 percent risk-free for an unborn child. But there are several meds that-based on animal studies-are presumed safe for unborn babies. Called Class B drugs, these include Benadryl and Ambien. Most doctors say that the occasional use of a Class B sleep aid poses little risk to your infant. Other sleep-aids, like Lunesta and Sonata, are Class C drugs, which mean animal studies have shown potential risks to a fetus. If you're not willing to take any chances, though, ginseng supplements have been shown to help ease stress and regulate sleep, ...and the herb is safe for use during pregnancy. Also, certain foods, like milk, honey and turkey, may increase your body's supply of sleep-inducing tryptophan. When you're pregnant, however, remember that just because something is "natural" does not always mean it is healthy for your baby. You should avoid potentially dangerous sleep aids like melatonin, kava kava, and valerian. Keep your baby safe. Talk to your doctor before you start any kind of new medication, natural or no.More »
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Although pregnancy can be a time of cravings and indulgences, pregnant women should be careful about what kinds of foods they're consuming--seafood especially. Learn more about seafood during pregnancy by watching this video.
Transcript: With all of the alarming news about mercury, pregnancy diet decisions can be difficult for a girl who...
With all of the alarming news about mercury, pregnancy diet decisions can be difficult for a girl who likes her seafood. How's this for confusing: The omega-3s provided by seafood have been shown to help your baby's developing brain thrive. But eating fish contaminated with mercury, PCBs, dioxins and pesticides has been shown to cause pre-term labor, miscarriage and birth defects. Before you fret, know that most doctors agree that the benefits of eating some seafood-up to 12 ounces weekly-far outweigh the risks. To be safe about what you consume, take high mercury fish like shark, mackerel, swordfish and tilefish off your plate for now. However, lots of fish are relatively pollutant-free. You can enjoy scallops, shrimp, flounder, sole, clams, oysters, tilapia, catfish, crayfish, whitefish and sardines with relative safety. Tuna can be safe, but some forms are safer than others. For example, tuna steaks are high in mercury, and should be avoided, but canned light tuna is ok, as long as you limit yourself to six ounces a week. It's smart to vary what you eat while you're pregnant-don't have any one type of fish more than once a week. In addition, because most fish have a high concentration of toxins in their skin, it's beneficial to remove the skin before cooking, and you can remove even more toxins by always cooking the fish all the way through. Unfortunately, the possibility of raw toxins does mean that sushi is off the good list for now-so why not enjoy a sardine snack in the meantime?More »
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Mercury can be extremely dangerous for your unborn baby. Find out more about this by watching this video on pregnancy and mercury.
Transcript: You love tuna and other fish dishes, but, oh mercy, the mercury! Mercury compounds, like methylmercury,...
You love tuna and other fish dishes, but, oh mercy, the mercury! Mercury compounds, like methylmercury, are chemical byproducts dumped into our oceans and rivers, which can contaminate some of the fish we eat. While mercury hasn't yet been shown to significantly harm adults, it can be extremely bad for babies. When a pregnant woman ingests mercury from fish, it can pass easily through a mother's body into her baby's placenta. This metal is toxic to a baby's nervous system and can result in disabilities ranging from cerebral palsy to mental retardation. For this reason, it is wise to avoid large, high-mercury fish while pregnant, including: shark, swordfish, king mackerel and tilefish. Another worrisome fish is tuna, which tends to have a moderate level of mercury. Tuna isn't completely off-limits, but pregnant women should limit their consumption of it, and avoid tuna steaks and filets, which have been shown to be high in the toxin. Instead, stick to light, canned tuna, and don't consume more than six ounces of it a week. You can feel safe about consuming smaller fish, like sardines, catfish and tilapia. Most shellfish is fine, as well, with the exception of lobster, which, like tuna has moderate mercury content. Unfortunately, methylmercury remains in your system for up to a year after it is consumed. A. Because mercury consumed even prior to pregnancy can harm a fetus, B. it's wise to minimize dangerous fish if you're trying to conceive. However, if you became pregnant unexpectedly and know that you've consumed large amounts of mercury, don't panic - it most likely won't have any consequences. However, you should stop eating fish that have mercury, and talk to your doctor. If you are concerned, you can always have a test performed to ascertain the level of mercury in your system. Today's pregnant woman needs to be very careful to minimize her mercury intake, but remember, just because mercury is bad for you doesn't mean you should stop eating fish.More »
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