DO take a prenatal vitamin and eat a healthy diet. Anything that has prenatal written on it will have at least the minimum amount of folic acid required for pregnancy.
DO continue to enjoy all artificial sweeteners except Sweet ‘N Low (a.k.a. saccharin). Although no harm to developing babies has been proven, Sweet ‘N Low crosses the placenta, so we prefer the use of the many other artificial sweeteners that do not cross the placenta and do not enter fetal circulation.
DO start over-the-counter medications for nausea in pregnancy before vomiting develops. Taking a prenatal vitamin once a day, ginger capsules twice a day, vitamin B6 25mg every 8 hours, and doxilamine 25mg before bed can prevent the progression to the very serious pregnancy complication of hyperemesis gravidarum.
DO continue to exercise unless your doctor tells you otherwise. The only restriction for exercise is that you don’t perform an exercise that could increase your risk of abdominal trauma (i.e. tennis, contact sports).
DO continue to enjoy sexual intercourse as you desire throughout your pregnancy.
DO continue to undergo routine dental care. Procedures may be performed with local anesthetics and X-rays are safe as long as your abdomen is shielded.
DO wear your seatbelt. It is safer for you to have a seatbelt injury than any other injury possible during a car accident that could occur when not wearing your seatbelt.
DO get your flu vaccine if it is flu season and get your Tdap vaccine in your third trimester.
DO continue to enjoy manicures, pedicures, and massages. Please let us know if you need a doctor’s note to have your massage.
DO know the signs of labor and call our office at any hour if they occur.
• Gush of fluid or a slow, steady trickle of clear fluid down your leg. If you are unsure you can clean up, put on a fresh pad, and check it in an hour. If the pad appears to be wet like an ice cube melted on it (absorbed in the pad, not discharge on the surface) your water may have broken.
• Painful contractions every 10 minutes for an hour when you are earlier than 37 weeks.
• Painful contractions every 5 minutes for an hour when you are 37 weeks or more along.
• Bleeding like a period.
DO your kick counts after 28 weeks if your baby is not moving like he/she normally does for that time of day. Go to a quiet room, lay on your left side, and only pay attention to baby. If you do not get 10 movements (even little wiggles or hiccups count) in 2 hours, please call our office.
DON'T schedule flights or travel greater than 2 hours from the hospital after 36 weeks.
DON'T take medications, even if they are over-the-counter medications, that include tetracyclines, Lisinopril, Paxil, Accutane, ibuprofen, naproxen, or weight-loss medications.
DON'T eat raw or rare-cooked meat, hot dogs or sausages that may contain animal liver. DON'T eat shark, swordfish, king mackerel, or tilefish. LIMIT white (albacore) tuna intake to 6 ounces a week. DON'T eat refrigerated smoked seafood. All other cooked seafood and fish are safe to eat in pregnancy but be sure to check advisories about fish caught in local waters.
DON'T eat the following foods because they increase your risk of getting
• unpasteurized milk
• hot dogs and cold cuts that haven’t been heated to steaming hot just before eating them
• refrigerated pate, refrigerated meat spreads, and refrigerated smoked seafood
DON'Tsleep on your back in the 2nd half of pregnancy. If you wake up on your back, don’t worry, you haven’t hurt your baby, but try to sleep on your side as much as possible.
DON'T expose yourself to extreme temperatures (greater than 102 degrees) in the first trimester (up to 14 weeks of pregnancy). Examples of things to avoid include heating pads, hot tubs, and saunas. All other bodies of water like lakes, pools, and the ocean are safe.