Whether it’s your first child or you’re adding to a growing family, you want your pregnancy to go as smoothly as possible. Of course, not everything is risk-free, which is certainly true when it comes to bringing a child into the world. That said, you can take certain steps to help keep you and your baby out of harm’s way.
At our practice, Dr. A Michael Coppa has extensive experience helping women in Cranston, Rhode Island, successfully navigate their pregnancies. Knowing that pregnancy can be one of the most exciting and rewarding journeys a woman will ever take, Dr. Coppa does everything in his power to help women enjoy this time without having the added worry of a high-risk pregnancy.
To that end, we’ve pulled together five tips to help you start your pregnancy right and avoid falling into the high-risk category.
1. Start with good health
If you have a pre-existing medical condition that can potentially affect your pregnancy, it’s important that you do everything you can before you conceive to make sure your condition is under control. As an example, if you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, and you want to get pregnant, your first order of business is to sit down with Dr. Coppa and come up with a plan to ensure that your glucose levels are properly regulated. Dr. Coppa may suggest that you also sit down with your primary care physician and let them know about your wishes to get pregnant.
The same holds true for other conditions, such as high blood pressure. Blood pressure numbers are well within your control to change, so if having a child is in your plans, start now on bringing those numbers down.
There are many other conditions that can affect your pregnancy, so be sure to discuss your plans with both Dr. Coppa and any other doctor you may have to optimize your health before getting pregnant.
2. Change your habits
If you smoke, quitting before you get pregnant is one of the best things you can do for both your health and the health of your future child. The same goes for excessive alcohol or drug use, and the sooner the better for all of them. These lifestyle choices can lead to miscarriage, premature delivery, and birth defects in your child and should be taken very seriously. Dr. Coppa is happy to help you kick these habits by recommending steps you can take to enter your pregnancy without the extra burden of these dangerous habits.
3. Learn from the past
If you had complications during previous pregnancies that led to miscarriages or premature deliveries, you should make sure that you and Dr. Coppa have a plan in place to avoid these same problems during a new pregnancy. Though these complications may have been out of your control, if there was something that caused them that you can correct this time around, Dr. Coppa helps you achieve this through comprehensive preconception planning.
4. Pare down
If you’re carrying extra weight, a good weight loss program before you get pregnant will help keep your pregnancy out of the high-risk group. Some of the more serious health risks when it comes to pregnancy and obesity include gestational diabetes, miscarriage, birth defects, and premature births.
To prevent your weight from becoming problematic, you can work with Dr. Coppa to lose just 5-7% of your body weight, which will make an appreciable difference in your health, and the health of your future child.
5. Stick with the program
Many pregnancies start out normally enough but end up falling into a high-risk category because of problems that develop over the nine-month journey. One way to avoid this is to make sure you stick to your prenatal schedule. These visits are terribly important as Dr. Coppa is able to closely monitor your health and spot any potential problems before they become major medical issues.
Although you can’t control everything in life, you can take steps to keep the risks to a minimum. If you’d like to learn more about avoiding a high-risk pregnancy, please give us a call, or use the online scheduling tool on this website to schedule a consultation.