Your OB-GYN is the best resource for foods you should eat or avoid during pregnancy. They may recommend you avoid foods such as raw seafood, processed meat such as hot dogs, fish with high mercury, raw sprouts and drinking alcohol. So, no sushi till after the baby is born!
3. How much weight should I gain during my pregnancy?
First, it's more about health than the scale. Your doctor can help keep you on the right track regarding your weight during pregnancy. Healthy weight gain during pregnancy is dependent on your pre-pregnancy weight. Gaining weight during pregnancy is absolutely typical and expected. However, coupled with your medical history, gaining too much weight can put you at risk for gestational diabetes, among other ailments.
4. What pregnancy symptoms are typical? And which ones are not?
Morning sickness and back pain are common symptoms during pregnancy, but your doctor can give you insight into what may not be the norm. Suppose you are experiencing high blood pressure, swelling, vision issues, protein in your urine, severe pain, headache, or nausea. In that case, it is an early sign of preeclampsia, a complication of pregnancy that can lead to severe and fatal complications for a mother and her baby if left untreated. Be sure to inform your doctor of everything you are experiencing so they can attend to those complications before they get too serious.
5. What physical exercises are safe to do?
Staying active during pregnancy keeps you and your baby healthy and relieves pregnancy symptoms. Most physical exercises are safe except abdominal exercises or exercises that keep you lying flat on your back for long periods. Ask your doctor to refer you to a physiotherapist or personal trainer for a second opinion and safe pregnancy exercises.
6. Is travelling during my pregnancy safe to do?
In most cases, travelling during a pregnancy is relatively safe to do. Most doctors would recommend that you stop travelling from 37 weeks onward, but some people still travel late into their pregnancy. There are many perspectives on this, so don't hesitate to ask your doctor what they recommend.
7. Will I be able to work during my pregnancy?
Depending on the nature of your work, in most cases, you can continue during your pregnancy until closer to your due date. If any complications arise, your doctor might advise that you work from home for the remainder of your pregnancy or even commit you to bed rest to encourage a safe delivery.
8. Should I take prenatal classes?
Prenatal classes are a great way for you and your partner to prepare even more for your new addition. Not everyone takes advantage of these classes, but they are worth a try, and your doctor would not dissuade you from going either!
9. What should I expect from labour and delivery? Should I have a birth plan?
As you get closer to your due date, you'll think about what labour and delivery would be like, especially if this is your first pregnancy. Do you want a natural birth? Or a scheduled Cesarian section? To get an epidural or not to get an epidural? These are all important questions that you can ask your doctor. Consider creating a birth plan with your doctor and partner to give you peace of mind and a plan or any possibility.
10. How often should I have my appointments with my OB-GYN?
You must have regular appointments with your doctor during your pregnancy. For a somewhat normal pregnancy, it's recommended that you see your doctor every 4 weeks from the time you find out up to 28 weeks. Then every 2 weeks from 28 weeks and then weekly from week 37 until you give birth. Your doctor might want to see you more frequently, especially if you've been experiencing complications throughout your pregnancy. To help ease your mind, create a prenatal care plan with your doctor during the early stages of your pregnancy, including postnatal care.
You'll have many questions for your OB-GYN or midwife throughout your pregnancy, but the point is not to be afraid to ask. Your doctor or midwife is a part of your birthing team and is there to help you have a safe and happy pregnancy, delivery and beyond. Write your questions down so it's easy to remember when you're with your practitioner. There are no stupid questions regarding an event as complex as pregnancy. Ask away!