The mother and baby can stay healthy:
§ eating nutritious food in sufficient quantity.
§ resting a lot every day.
§ avoiding chemicals, alcohol, smoking and the majority of drugs.
§ getting the care of a midwife or health worker who can treat health problems or help to address them.
§ receiving love and kindness.
Eat nutritious food in sufficient quantity
By eating a variety of nutritious foods, the mother will be strong and healthy and have the energy to give birth and care for her baby. If a pregnant woman does not eat sufficient quantities, it may be because she puts aside food for other members of the family or because a stepmother or girlfriend full of good intentions advised him to avoid certain foods or told her she had to stay thin to give birth more easily. Remember, a pregnant woman should eat enough for her and her baby, and so it must more food than other adults, not the opposite. Like everyone else, a pregnant woman needs a mixture of proteins, vegetables, fruits and starchy foods. And should eat more often, several small meals throughout the day.
Diversified foods allow the mother and baby to be healthy.
Anemia (not enough iron in the blood) is common during pregnancy. It causes fatigue. Anemia is especially dangerous for pregnant women because they lose blood during childbirth. Anemia is sometimes so severe that one can die. To prevent anemia, you must eat foods rich in protein and iron and take iron tablets.
Malaria and hookworm can cause anemia and must be treated immediately.
Pregnant women need iron-rich foods.
A lack of folic acid (folate) can cause deformities and disability in the baby. Choose an iron supplement containing folic acid or take a folic acid supplement.
Vegetables and orange and green fruits contain vitamin A, an essential nutrient for healthy eyes. A pregnant woman should eat more fruits and vegetables color orange and green because vitamin A that she eats will first cover the needs of the baby. Lack of vitamin A can cause night blindness or blindness in general.
We need to encourage family and neighbors to share the work and responsibilities of the pregnant woman. It should be reminded, especially when the pregnancy is advanced, it must rest and elevate his legs several times a day or lengthen the afternoon. The body works during pregnancy and needs rest.
Avoid hazardous substances
Cigarettes and tobacco
Cigarettes and tobacco are harmful to the lungs of the mother and can lead to cancer and death. Because of the cigarette, babies may be born too early, too small or being born dead. The mother and baby can even be bothered when other people smoke next to them. It should be recalled to the family and others not to smoke in the room or car in which there is a pregnant woman or children.
Alcohol and drugs
When a pregnant woman drinks alcohol, the baby also absorbs and it can damage the brain or body permanently. The more a woman drinks alcohol, the more it is likely to cause problems. Similarly, cocaine, methamphetamine, heroin and other drugs are dangerous for pregnant women and their babies.
Most drugs taken by pregnant women are also absorbed by the baby. And as babies are very small and under development, drugs that do not present a danger in an adult can cause defects or other problems in the baby. Pregnant women must avoid the majority of drugs. It should rest and drink – no drugs – to recover well when suffering from problems such as headaches, stomach aches and colds.
Unless they are not really necessary, it is best to avoid medications during pregnancy.
But some diseases are too serious not to be treated during pregnancy. Diseases are sometimes dangerous for the baby. Here are the diseases it should always be treated with drugs in pregnant women:
§ malaria. HIV and AIDS.
§ urinary tract infections.
§ sexually transmitted infections such as chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis.
To find out if you can safely take medication during pregnancy or breastfeeding, you have to put the question to an experienced health worker, check the pages on drugs at the end of this chapter or look in other guides medical. If the medicine we must take this danger, there are surely other that can be used instead.
Traditional medicines and herbal can also cause more harm than good.
Avoid sick people
There is nothing worse than getting sick when you are pregnant. So we no longer want to eat too, and we have more energy because we do not eat enough. Avoid sick people not to get sick yourself.
Rubella is a disease that is normally not a serious problem, but when it affects pregnant women, it can lead to deformities and disabilities for the baby she carries. To protect the baby, a pregnant woman should avoid people who have buttons, especially children, who often have these infections. Even own children a woman pregnant should be cared for by another family member or friend if they are sick. The best prevention is vaccination campaign for all women of the community.
The care of a midwife or other health worker
An experienced midwife or another health worker can advise a pregnant woman to take care of her and stays healthy, can cure its problems and discomfort, and know when to seek help from a hospital or medical center. During pregnancy, childbirth and weeks following, all women should be followed by a worker of the experienced and compassionate health.
Pregnant women should be vaccinated against tetanus as soon as possible at the time of pregnancy. It must receive a second injection 4 weeks later if vaccinations are not completely up to date. This protects both the woman and the baby.
Simple tests can diagnose most of the most dangerous diseases for pregnant women and their babies. These tests warn the mother and the health worker to begin treatment immediately, which will prevent serious problems during or after birth. It is prudent to test for:
§ anemia (with hemoglobin test or hematocrit).
§ malaria (using rapid tests in areas where malaria is present).
HIV testing should be available to all pregnant women. If a woman learns she has HIV, it can take medications that will allow it to stay healthy and protect the baby against the virus.
There are new tests that it is not necessary to send in laboratories and quickly performed using a swab at the mouth or vagina, or by taking a few blood by pricking the finger. We must ask the local health centre if these tests are provided by the government or a local organization offers them.