The experience of pregnancy is quite different for every woman. Certain associated symptoms that seem normal for some could be a cause for serious worry for others. There will be a plethora of advices and possible causes from friends of family and not knowing what to accept and what not to accept can be nerve-wracking. The best thing to do will always be to check with your doctor without living with the anxiety.
Let’s look at some commonly seen issues during pregnancy and the signs of how you can ascertain if it is normal or serious enough to get medical intervention.
Bleeding – Any bleeding during pregnancy can be somewhat alarming for the mother-to-be. Minimal bleeding is fairly common and about 40% of women experience minimal vaginal bleeding during their first trimester. Implantation, sexual intercourse, an internal exam by a doctor or hormonal changes could be the reason for this. Talk to a doctor if bleeding happens after the first trimester.
Bowel problems – All organs in the woman’s body will undergo changes as a result of the pregnancy. Frequent urination, stomach upset, gas, constipation, haemorrhoids are a common occurrence. To counter this the best thing to do is drink plenty of water, eat a diet high in fibre like fresh veggies and fruits and get ample rest. If things seem to be excessively uncomfortable speak to your doctor.
Swelling – The major hormonal and anatomical changes happening will also mean that circulation in the body will get affected. With the woman getting bigger it is normal for the fluid retention to increase as well. Putting up your legs, reducing salt intake and not shying away from drinking water should be helpful. But if swelling is prolonged without it coming down or if it has migrated to fingers and face it could not be a good sign. If such problematic swelling is accompanied with headaches, it could be a sign of pre-eclampsia.
Contractions – In preparation for the labour the body could engage in some practice contractions along with the loosening of the ligaments and joints in the pelvic area. These contractions are called Braxton-Hicks. These can be quite powerful sometimes. The difference from the real contractions is that they usually slow down and stop altogether once laying down and resting. They do not occur at totally regular intervals, nor do they continue to increase in strength or duration and these contractions can begin as early as 5 months. But if you experience more than 4 in the same hour accompanied by cramping or lower back pain or with some bleeding then see a doctor right away.
Apart from these pregnancy issues there are some signs of preterm labour to watch out for like vaginal bleeding or spotting, unusual fluid discharge, lower abdominal cramping, lower back pain, or regular contractions that doesn’t go away. Other problems can be burning while urinating with a fever, high temperature could be harmful for the baby, sudden and unusual swelling in the face or fingers, severe headaches, unusual rash, dizziness, severe nausea or vomiting.
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