The first three months are delicate. The risk of miscarriage is indeed higher (about 34% at 40).
From 0 to 3 months: take care of yourself!
- First of all, favor a healthy lifestyle. Stop smoking and alcohol.
- Take part in physical activity, in particular to improve venous circulation. A little walking, swimming, water aerobics … To read also: What sport to practice during my pregnancy?
- Benefit from a rigorous medical follow-up. Consultations closer than usual make it possible to assess the risks in order to prevent possible complications. On the ultrasound side, two rather than one. This is not systematic, but some doctors ask for an early ultrasound “to reassure” before the mandatory twelve weeks. At this term, the possible presence of several embryos (frequent case) is also sought.
- Book your maternity ward without delay. The choice is made on its notoriety and the proximity of the domicile. No need to rush to an over-medicalized maternity hospital! If necessary, transfer to an appropriate structure is systematic.
Also watch: Three ultrasounds during pregnancy to screen for abnormalities
Screen for Down’s syndrome
The risk of Down’s syndrome must be mentioned, because it rises statistically with maternal age. It is around 1/100 at 40 years, against 1/900 at 30 years.
Screening for trisomy 21 is not mandatory, but it should be offered to all pregnant women. An ultrasound is performed to measure the clarity of the fetal neck and the craniocaudal length. This screening is accompanied by an assay of maternal serum markers.
In the event of abnormal results of these examinations, the risk of Down’s syndrome is assessed and, if this risk is high, an amniocentesis is performed.
From 3 to 9 months: rest!
You are advised take iron and vitamin D. And to rest, but very often pregnancy will not prevent you from living normally, or even from continuing to work. Uterine contractions may be more frequent after six months.
Read also: 10 nutrition tips to recharge your iron
Any change in the cervix or uterine contractility requires resting, because they represent a threat of premature delivery. Sometimes drugs are also prescribed. It is recommended to avoid traveling far after six months.
Parameters to be monitored as a priority
- Blood pressure. It can cause risks for the child (low weight, placental abruption, growth retardation). It is systematically checked every month during the visit to the gynecologist and more closely in the third trimester.
- The presence of sugar and albumin in the urine. It is checked monthly at the doctor using test strips. From the age of six months, the woman can carry out these tests herself every week.
- The level of sugar in the blood (blood sugar). It is controlled by a blood test taken on an empty stomach. It is supplemented by another blood test after absorption of sugar (provoked hyperglycemia test). This for diagnose possible diabetes (increased blood sugar). In this case, a stricter diet is recommended.
To read also: Gestational diabetes: is it serious?