Trying to get pregnant? Make sure you know the bottom line on baby-making—what you don't understand can affect your bub-to-be's health.
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For some women, swollen and very tender breasts are the first clues they’re pregnant: Right from the start, they’re preparing for their job of producing milk. Here, Heather Weldon, M.D., an OB-GYN in Vancouver, Wash., answers some of the most common questions about your mammaries during pregnancy.
Q: How and when will my breasts change?
While your birth experience will be as unique to you as your new baby, the phases of labor and delivery are the same for everyone. During pregnancy the opening of your uterus, the cervix, is firm and closed. As your due date approaches, you may experience mild contractions that help prepare your cervix for delivery: It becomes soft, stretchy and thin, a process called effacement.
You may be hungrier than ever, but nausea, indigestion and the need to control your calorie intake can make it tough to get the nutrition you and your baby need. Our expert advice and satisfying recipes will help you overcome the challenges each trimester poses.
We all know that giving birth rarely happens like it does on TV shows: Your water breaks; you gasp, exclaim, “She’s coming!” Then, lipstick refreshed, you cradle your newborn as your handsome husband looks on. Alternatively, we hope your experience isn’t going to be fodder for reality TV: A swarm of doctors sprints into the delivery room, shouting, “Get the NICU team, STAT! We’ve got a quadruple nuchal and need a cold-knife section!”
It’s reader-question day. Patricia is six months pregnant with her first baby and has three great ones that a lot of women ask:
Does an epidural slow down labor? Does epidural medication reach the baby? I have a hunch I’m going to delivery early. Why doesn’t my doctor agree?
You'd probably do just about anything when you’re pregnant to keep your baby from developing food allergies. Avoid shrimp? Check. Stay away from eggs? No problem. Skip soy? Consider it done. Unfortunately, the advice on how to prevent food allergies keeps changing. So where does that leave you if someone offers you a peanut butter cookie?
When I found out I was expecting a baby in the fall of 2008, I remember feeling so thrilled and terrified at the same time. I was beginning the Traditional Authentic Pilates (TAP) certification program and was now faced with a difficult and unique set of problems: How would I complete such a physically and mentally intensive program with a pregnancy? How would I stay connected to my own body enough to dictate movements to clients?
With your due date finally just around the corner, you’re eager to hold that baby in your arms—and maybe nervous about giving birth, too. You enter the third trimester filled with energy, but as your body continues to grow and change, you may start to feel tired and experience new aches and pains. How much bigger can I get? you wonder. Let’s face it: You get a tad tired of being pregnant. But there are plenty of things to do to keep your mind off of your expanding figure and the annoyances that come with it. Just follow our guide to the exciting last third of pregnancy, weeks 29–40.
When Christina Carey, 40, imagined her baby’s birth, she pictured her husband by her side, lovingly supporting her throughout labor and delivery. But when showtime arrived, she was surprised to see an entirely different side of him.
Walking is the one workout that suits pregnant women of all different fitness levels. It’s as gentle or as challenging as you need it to be. It requires no investment (all you really need is a good pair of shoes and a water bottle). Plus, you can do it nearly anywhere, anytime. Excuses like “I hate the gym” or “I’ve never exercised before” just won’t fly.
A newborn is more likely to be healthy if the mom's pregnancy lasts at least 39 weeks, according to a wealth of recent research.
Before your baby is even born, it is very likely that you will need to make a decision about when, or if, you will be returning to work. Lots of moms return to work full time, but others opt for a part-time schedule, some work from home, and some forgo work altogether and become stay-at-home moms.