What to Expect While Pregnant

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    Nov 22, 2012
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What to Expect When Pregnant
So, you are pregnant. Congratulations!!
You may be feeling overwhelmed, happy, scared and a variety of emotions all at once. At first you may feel no different physically, yet you may have some of the common pregnancy symptoms such as sore or swollen breasts, feeling crampy or bloated, a backache, feeling exhausted, spotting, feeling queasy, moody, faint and dizzy, constipated, have a heightened sense of smell or the dreaded morning sickness (which happens throughout the day not just in the morning).

You should begin to feel better after the first trimester has passed, the morning sickness should ease up and there is less risk of miscarriage. Expect your doctor to run blood and urine tests, check your weight, blood pressure, do a pelvic exam and discuss your general health.  An ultra sound will be performed, which will help estimate the age of your embryo, confirm the presence of the yolk sack, and cardiac activity. Depending on your age and/or history, you may opt to have additional tests to check for any chromosomal abnormalities. Some of these may include, amniocentesis, alpha-fetoprotein screening--including the more reliable triple marker blood test, also known as the multi-screen test, chorionic villi sampling.

Consider taking a prenatal class to prepare you for the changes in your body, the delivery of your baby and taking him or her home. This will also give you a chance to meet other women who are going through the same changes and emotions that you may be experiencing. It may help you form bonds and new friendships, especially if your friends are not yet having children.

As your body changes during the second trimester, lost energy may return, you may feel relief from nausea and have a heartier appetite. During your second or third trimester it will be time to have another ultrasound, this time, the technician will again check cardiac activity, placenta location, amniotic fluid volume, measure head circumference, femur length, estimate weight. Your baby and his or her movements will be evident on the screen.

When you are close to your due date, your doctor, midwife or healthcare professional will help you form your birth plan. You may choose to deliver your baby naturally, or by caesarean section, although in some cases the choice will be made for you by your baby and body. It is important to have the support of your partner, friends and family and have your bag ready to go to the hospital.

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