5 Commonly Googled Pregnancy Questions {Answered by OB/GYN and Expectant Mom Dr. Arelis Figueroa}

Disclosure :: this post is sponsored by Touro Infirmary

5 Commonly Googled Pregnancy Questions {Answered by OB/GYN and Expectant Mom Dr. Arelis Figueroa}

Every mom-to-be has questions regarding the changes she’s going through and what to expect throughout her pregnancy. Some women will ask friends, family or their doctors, but many women turn to the internet to find answers. Touro’s OB/GYN and fellow mom-to-be, Dr. Arelis Figueroa, answers commonly “Googled” questions related to pregnancy.

What should I expect from my first prenatal checkup?

Your healthcare provider evaluates the health of your pregnancy. The provider will calculate a “due date” that gives an estimate of the delivery of your baby. Lab work or an ultrasound may be performed at this visit. Your provider will share prenatal education with you and answer any questions you may have. Through prenatal visits, the progress of your pregnancy is checked, which includes your baby’s growth, fetal heart rate, changes in your weight and blood pressure, and your overall health and comfort.

What exercises can I do during pregnancy?

Regular exercise can help you adapt to the changes your body is going through during pregnancy. Even if you didn’t exercise before pregnancy, it is not too late to start. Choose an activity that you like and that fits your lifestyle. Begin slowly and build up a little at a time. Exercising may help you relax, boost energy, promote better sleep, prevent postpartum depression and prepare you ready for labor and delivery. Talk to your healthcare provider about the kinds of activities you can do.

How to prevent and get rid of stretch marks?

pregnancyAlthough most women expect to have some stretch marks on their belly with pregnancy, many are surprised to also find these pink or red stripes on their breasts, buttocks, and thighs.

In fact, stretch marks can happen anywhere there is rapid growth and stretching of the skin. Unfortunately, no methods are proven to prevent or erase stretch marks. And this is in spite of the abundance of lotions and creams advertised. However, to reduce the appearance of stretch marks we still recommend to control your weight gain during pregnancy by eating a balance diet, staying hydrated and moisturizing the skin daily.

The marks will fade over time and any irritation can be reduced by using a moisturizer.

How to sleep during pregnancy?

As your pregnancy progresses and the size of your uterus increases, you may find it harder to get comfortable in bed. Early on in pregnancy, you can sleep on your stomach. Eventually, that position can become uncomfortable. But it’s OK to sleep on your stomach if it is comfortable. Lying on your back is not recommended because of pressure on the inferior vena cava. That is a major vein that returns blood from the lower body to the heart. The increased pressure on the back and intestines can also cause discomfort.

The best sleeping position during pregnancy is on your side. The left side is especially good because it lets the most blood flow to the fetus. It also improves your kidney function. One choice is to place a pillow between your knees and one under your abdomen. This can create enough of a tilt to help you sleep more comfortably on your side. You might also find it helpful to put a pillow behind your back for extra support.

How do I know if I’m in labor?

Signs of labor vary from woman to woman because each woman has a slightly different labor. Some common signs of labor are:

  • Bloody show. A small amount of mucus slightly mixed with blood may come out of the vagina.
  • Contractions (uterine muscle spasms) occurring at intervals of less than 10 minutes are often a sign that labor has started. Contractions may happen more often and get stronger as labor progresses.
  • Rupture of amniotic sac (bag of water). Labor sometimes starts with amniotic fluid gushing or leaking from the vagina. Women who have a rupture of the amniotic sac should go to the hospital right away and contact their healthcare provider. Most women go into labor within hours after the amniotic sac breaks. If your labor still has not started, you may need to stay in the hospital to have labor induced. This step is often taken to prevent infections and delivery problems.

If you begin to have any of these signs of labor you should contact your healthcare provider.

For more information on pregnancy and other frequently asked questions, visit our website HERE.

About Dr. Figueroa:

Dr. Arelis Figueroa specializes in obstetrics and gynecology at Crescent City Physicians, Inc., a subsidiary of Touro Infirmary. She earned her medical degree from the University Del Caribe Escuela De Medicina and completed her residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology LSU Health Sciences Center in New Orleans. A native of Puerto Rico, Dr. Figueroa speaks Spanish and English, working with patients whose language barriers might have otherwise kept them from getting care.


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