Once you get pregnant, it is very important that you good care of yourself. This will help ensure not only a safe delivery but a healthy baby as well. For sure, before giving birth, you can get a wide range of health tips from your doctors, co-workers, experienced moms and even complete strangers. However, the will to be healthy and keeping a good health throughout the pregnancy will solely depend on you – the parent. Fortunately, several prevention methods can now be done before giving birth. In this article, we will share with you some helpful tips which you can do in order to prevent birth defects from affecting your newborns.
Prenatal health care – Prenatal care is a major key which can help you protect your child and lessen the risks of giving birth to a baby with birth defect. If you have a feeling that you are pregnant, take time to call your doctor and set an appointment. During the check-up, your doctor can identify possible birth defect causes and risks which can be a threat to delivering a normal and healthy baby. On the other hand, if the doctor thinks that you’re healthy, you will be required to see him every month until you reach the 28th year of your pregnancy; every 2 weeks until your 36th week; and, at least once every week until the day you finally give birth. Throughout your pregnancy, your physician will not only check your blood pressure or your weight but will also monitor the growth of your baby. While pregnant, you will also be asked to undergo urine tests, blood tests, cervical examinations and at least a one-time ultrasound.
Aside from undergoing pre-natal care, taking vitamins and food supplements before giving birth will also play a very important role in keeping your baby healthy. Now that you are pregnant, you’re not only eating for yourself but also for your baby. This is not the perfect time to limit your calorie intake. In fact, during the later part of your pregnancy, when your baby starts to grow very quickly, it is highly advised that you take at least 300 extra calories every day. To help maintain a properly-balanced diet, take time to eat lean meats, vegetables, citrus fruits, whole-grain breads and low-fat dairy products.
When you keep yourself healthy and when you maintain a balanced diet, you and your baby are more likely to get all the nutrients that both of you need. However, keep in mind that you will need essential nutrients like folic acid, iron and calcium more than what you needed before you got pregnant. Your doctor can help prescribe prenatal vitamins which you can take. Nevertheless, you have to remember that taking vitamins does not necessarily mean that you’re giving yourself a healthy diet. More than just that, it is also very important that you eat well throughout the span of your pregnancy. Keep in mind that prenatal vitamins are only meant to supplement the food that you eat and are not meant to be the main source of the nutrients that you need.
Keeping yourself healthy throughout the span of your pregnancy can be a difficult commitment but the rewards that it will give you the moment that you see your healthy baby for the first time is worth all the hard work.