So you are planning to get pregnant. Congrats and welcome to the most beautiful time of your life. It is important to undertake some preparation to increase your chances of a healthy pregnancy and that you enjoy your pregnancy. Also some preparation is important for conceiving faster and delivering a healthy baby.
Below are the 8 most important points to remember even before you start planning for a pregnancy.
Stop the contraceptive pill
This is the first major step to be taken if you are planning to conceive anytime soon. And not just one month or two month before. As commonly it takes more than 6 months to 9 months before your hormones come to normal and your reproductive system start working normally. Though the contraceptive pills are largely safe now, but still it may take some time before your can conceive naturally. So it would be wise, if you can leave off the contraceptive pills atleast 6 months before you plan to conceive.
Second most important thing to do is to stop partying completely if you wish to conceive naturally. There is not one but four major reasons to stop partying. Its safe to stop any type of alcohol smoking & drugs if you wish to get pregnant, prevent miscarriage and have a healthy baby. Smoking cigarettes, even socially, can affect your egg quality and your hubby’s sperm — not to mention increase your risk of birth defects, miscarriage, preterm labor, and other conditions after you become pregnant. It’s estimated that up to 13 percent of fertility problems may be caused by tobacco use
There can be no compromise on these. You will get varying views on these from different sources about the quantity of alcohol and frequency of smoking allowed while planning and during pregnancy. Buy you owe it to your baby to give it a healthy environment to grown in. If at all, you conceive while on alcohol or smoke, its very unlikely that you would ever deliver a healthy baby.
Stoping to party will also allow a good night sleep. 7-8 hours of sleep is very much necessary for normal working of your reproductive system.
Third most important thing to do is to control your weight. Now if you are suffering from thyroid issues or PCOS, there are high chances that you may not loose a lot of weight. But it can not be stressed enough that you should cut on carbohydrates, dietary products and refined sugar. Brisk walking three times a week is enough for a healthy weight and natural conceiving. Controlling weight also helps in improving all metabolic activity of your body and this help in improving other body functions.
You may need some supplements during your pregnancy, but there are few nutritional supplements that are required for conceiving naturally. Most important being Folate ( Folic Acid ) & Iron. Folate is crucial for the development of the baby’s ‘neural tube’, the part that becomes the baby’s brain, spinal cord and surrounding bones. This neural tube is formed and closed in the first four to six weeks of pregnancy. Given that most women do not actually discover they are pregnant until at least six weeks of pregnancy, it is important not to wait until then to take the supplements. Iron supplements are most required for women from Indian sub-continent. Your doctor would be able to prescribe right quantity of supplements for you and any additional supplements that you may need. During pregnancy you may need calcium and Vitamin D3 supplements. But its not yet clear if they help in natural conceiving. Along with these, checking your free thyroid hormones and TSH is also important and starting appropriate thyroid replacement medication if required.
Iodine supplementation is also important since the thyroid gland requires iodine to make thyroid hormones, which are essential for the development of the baby’s brain and nervous system both before and after birth.
Getting enough of this B vitamin before and early on in pregnancy can reduce brain and spine birth defects by up to 70 percent.
Visit a doctor for check-up
A general check-up from your family physician is very important before you plan your conceiving. Your doctor can assess you, talk through any particular concerns you may have as well as organise appropriate tests and vaccinations. Your doctor can check your immunity to such infections as rubella and varicella (chicken pox). If you (or your partner) have any family history of heritable or genetic diseases that might affect your future offspring, now might be a good time to discuss these with your GP who can, when appropriate, refer you to a genetic counsellor or geneticist.
A regular physical can help ensure he has no chronic conditions or is taking medications that may affect sperm count or cause other fertility problems.)
Catch as many movies on the big screen as you can. Once you’re pregnant, sitting still in the same position for a couple of hours — combined with having to pee constantly — can get uncomfortable. Having crazy-high stress levels can delay your ability to get pregnant (by making ovulation wacky, or by interfering with an embryo’s ability to implant in the uterus).
Visit your dentist
More and more research links oral health to a healthy pregnancy; women with unchecked gum disease are more prone to miscarriage, preterm birth, and preeclampsia. Having your teeth examined now gives you time to get gingivitis (inflammation of the gums) under control and get x-rays (which should be avoided during pregnancy) if you need them.
Plan mentally, visualise.
Now is the time to plan mentally and visualise how you are going to spend you pregnancy and first few years after your baby comes in this world. Plan your job,plan the place you would stay. Getting settled — ideally, somewhere you want to be for at least a couple of years — and feeling good about your home will help you feel more prepared for pregnancy. It’s nice not to have to deal with moves, renovations, lawyers, and closings once you’re pregnant (no one wants to be packing at 8 months along).
Visualising plays a very important part in conceiving and having a healthy pregnancy. Just visualise how you plan to spend time with your child and how you would make it fun for your new born.
You can visit one of our Welling clinics to meet our experts for any clarification or any advise before you plan to get pregnant. We have speciality treatment to help you with healthy pregnancy so that you deliver a healthy baby.