How to deal with four common pregnancy complications

August 10, 2018

By: Brooklyn White

Being pregnant is a magical, glorious time for many women. You get to spend nearly a year bonding with yourself and your unborn child. Truthfully speaking though, not everyone has a flawless experience with pregnancy.

When I went in for my first OBGYN appointment as an expectant mother, I was told that there was a cyst on my umbilical cord and that I would need to start seeing a high-risk doctor.

It was horrifying and made me realize that there are certain health complications one can experience while being pregnant. Even huge stars, like Remy Ma, have dealt with complexities – in early 2017 it was revealed that she had suffered a miscarriage and would not be able to carry children again.

The key to coping with pregnancy complications is being well versed in how to deal with them and keeping a strong spirit. Following, I will share a few common obstacles and shed light on what to do if you encounter them.

Premature birth

Carrying your child to term is usually the goal, but sometimes, it just doesn’t come to fruition.

The American Pregnancy Association says that any baby that comes before the 37-week mark is considered to be premature. Having a premature little one can create more health issues for them, like jaundice and lung problems. With all of that, it’s crucial to know that sometimes, it has nothing to do with the mother, the baby just decides to come early.

Bleeding, early ruptures, and a weaker cervix can be among the concrete causes for an early birth. If you end up bringing your bundle of joy into the world ahead of schedule, you have to consider exactly how early they are and consult with your doctor. Of course, professional physical care for your child will be a part of the process, but maintaining your emotional and mental wellbeing matters too. Journaling, a support system, and therapy can help.

Gestational diabetes

During my third trimester, I was told I would need to be tested for gestational diabetes. I freaked out because I knew my diet had been different over the last several months and that I had been eating more than usual.

Basically, gestational diabetes has to do with how your cells use sugar, according to MayoClinic. If your blood sugar is too high, it can affect your health, as well as your child’s.

Black women are more at risk for this form of diabetes, along with Asian, Latina, and Native women. Thankfully, this condition isn’t permanent, although it can lead to type 2 diabetes. It can be managed by diet, exercise, and regular testing.

Anemia

Anyone can experience anemia, “which is when there aren’t enough healthy red blood cells to carry oxygen to the tissues”. It can be especially harmful to someone who’s expecting though since there’s more blood in your body to assure the baby gets the nutrients they need.

As seen on the site [B]aby[C]enter, you need to have a certain amount of iron in your blood, or you’re at risk for anemia. Cases of severe anemia will show themselves through symptoms such as dizziness and headaches.

If you have anemia, your doctor will advise you to take iron-rich vitamins. Preventative measures include having a diet that includes a fair amount of iron. A few foods to munch on are leafy greens, cashews, and whole grain breads.

High blood pressure

Maintaining a healthy blood pressure that’s lower than 140/90 mm Hg can be a task, and it can be truly difficult if you’re stressed, inactive, or carrying multiple children. It can also tie into your family’s history.

High blood pressure can transition into preeclampsia. This is a sudden spike in blood pressure after the 5-month mark in pregnancy and it’s not good for mama or the baby. There’s no cure for preeclampsia, but you can do certain things to help lessen your chances of high blood pressure or lower it. Decreasing your sodium intake, exercising, and finding your personal method of dealing with stress can make a serious difference.