It’s normal to worry during pregnancy – so many changes are taking place, and you want to make sure everything goes smoothly. Well, good news is, it usually does. We’ve listed the top 7 pregnancy fears, and why you should not worry about it.
- Upcoming Labor – for most pregnant women, their biggest fear is labor. Most moms you know will be sure to tell you their labor horror stories, leaving you in fearful anticipation of childbirth. The first thing to know is that all labors are different, even in the same woman. All doctors and hospitals are different, too. You also have the option of different pain relievers, if you feel you cannot go through with it without them. Doctors are required to give you the medication if you request it, no matter what stage of labor you are in. Of course, for the baby’s benefit, and yours, too, it’s best to wait until your doctor feels your ready for it. It’s important to go to a labor-preparation class to learn all about what will happen when you’re in labor. Most hospitals offer a tour, too, so you can get to know the procedures you will be following.
- Miscarriage - many women, especially in the first trimester, worry about miscarriage. Your chances of having a miscarriage is not that high (less than 20%). The majority of that 20% ends in the first few weeks, before you even know you’re pregnant! Once the pregnancy is confirmed, and your doctor can hear a heartbeat, there’s approximately a 5% chance of miscarriage. You can lower your risk for miscarriage for staying away from alcohol and smoking, and limiting your caffeine intake (one cup a day is fine).
- Eating/Drinking Something That May Harm the Baby – your doctor will outline the foods to stay away from on your first visit, such as cold cuts, unpasteurized cheese and drinks, certain fish, etc. Otherwise, most foods are okay. And even if you forgot and ate something you shouldn’t have, most foods are restricted as a precautionary measure, so chances are everything is fine.
- Losing Baby Weight – every pregnant woman worries about getting their figure back. What can you do to lose the shed the pounds quickly? Try to keep a healthy weight during your pregnancy. The less weight you gain during pregnancy, the less you have to lose after delivery. Exercises that can be done during pregnancy will help keep off that excess weight. As soon as your doctor approves, start exercising. Breastfeeding uses a couple of hundred of calories a day, so nursing definitely helps women shed pounds naturally. Research has shown that the more sleep you get, the faster you lose weight – aim for 7-8 hours in a 24 hour period.
- Morning Sickness – Is My Baby Getting Enough Nutrients? – the answer is yes. Unless you are severely dehydrated, your baby will extract nutrients from any foods you eat, even if it’s just crackers or pretzels. Taking your prenatal vitamins, too, will help ensure that your baby has the nutrients he needs. Try to eat small meals several times a day to curb the nausea. See our article on morning sickness for more information.
- Embarrassment During Labor – many women worry about embarrassing occurrences during labor. First and foremost, remember that your doctor can deliver many times a day, and he’s seen anything that can happen in labor! He is not expecting any surprises. Plus, by the time you’re in active labor or pushing, you’ll only care about getting your baby out and seeing her.
- Birth Defects – it’s normal to worry about birth defects. Most babies, however, are born completely healthy, so you don’t need to worry that much. The chances of having a baby with a birth defect are as low as 5%. Even if a test comes back positive, there’s a big chance that everything is fine.