Archive for the ‘Pregnancy’ Category

Pregnancy Cramps – When Should You Worry

Pain or cramps in the abdominal area during pregnancy are very common with many women experiencing cramps at some stage during their pregnancy.  Generally cramps that occur with no other symptoms are not serious and maybe eased by moving to another position.  When a women is pregnant especially in the last couple of months of the pregnancy the baby puts a fair amount of pressure on muscles, ligaments, tendons and internal organs so it is no surprise that pain around the abdominal area is a common thing.

Intense pregnancy cramps that occur with other symptoms such as spotting, bleeding, tenderness, a lot of pain or vaginal discharge can be caused by more serious problems and if you suffer any of these it is advised that you see your doctor.  It is also recommended that you see your doctor if the cramps are frequent or they don’t subside after a few minutes.

Some of the more serious problems that cause pregnancy cramps include things such as an ectopic pregnancy, signs of an early miscarriage, signs of a late miscarriage and also premature labour.  An ectopic pregnancy is quite serious and occurs when a fertilized egg has been implanted outside the uterus usually in the fallopian tubes.  Tenderness and cramping that starts on one side of the abdomen and then spreads across the whole abdomen can be a sign of an ectopic pregnancy which can be life threatening if left untreated.  Early and late miscarriage can also cause cramps associated with bleeding and also lower abdomen pain.  In the event of a miscarriage it is advised that you call your doctor and head to the nearest emergency hospital.  Pregnancy cramps when experienced with an increase in vaginal discharge, lower abdominal pressure, backache and regular contractions may indicate premature labour.  This can occur anytime between 20 and 36 weeks and can be brought on by things such as illness or stress.

If your pregnancy cramps are not caused by a serious underlying problem then there are a few things that you can do to alleviate the problem at home.  Throughout the pregnancy you may experience cramps from stretched ligaments which can be treated by lying down with your feet up, cramps from being in the one position for too long and pre-labour cramps in the last few weeks of pregnancy.  These cramps are all part of the pregnancy and if they occur without other symptoms then it is best to relax and manage the discomfort in a way that works for you.

How to calculate Ovulation

Understanding your menstrual cycle and being able to calculate ovulation is key for women who are trying to conceive.  Ovulation is the time that a mature egg is released from the follicle of an ovary and is the most fertile time during a women’s menstrual cycle.  Once the egg has been released from the follicle it has an approximate life span of about 24 hours.  This part of women’s menstrual cycle is the time when conception is most likely to occur.  For couples who are trying for a baby, calculating when ovulation will occur gives the female a better chance at conception.

Generally, ovulation takes place around the 14 day mark after the beginning of a women’s menstrual cycle.  Mostly women do not feel or notice this part of the menstrual cycle but it can cause some pain in the abdominal area which can last for a few seconds to an hour.  There are several different methods for predicting and calculating ovulation which include Basal Body Temperature, the Cervical Mucus Method, keeping an Ovulation Calender and also using an Ovulation Predictor Kit.

The Basal Body Temperature method is quite easy and requires an accurate measurement of body temperature each day at the same time.  An increase of progesterone in the system causes a small thermal change in the body.  The raise in temperature will occur at the start of ovulation as the body creates a warm and fertile environment for the fertilised egg.

Another common method used to calculate ovulation is the Cervical Mucus Method.  This looks in detail at the changes in consistency and the amount of cervical mucus that is present.  Increases and decreases of mucus mirror the fertility patterns.  Cervical mucus will increase and become clear just prior to ovulation and this is an indication of fertility.

Calculating Ovulation can also be done using a calendar.  This method works by charting your fertility and being able to recognise the various cycles and menstrual periods.  If you are going to use this method it is important to have an understanding of menstrual cycles and that you don’t forget to mark things down on the calendar.

It is also possible to buy ovulation tests or predictor kits which can accurately predict when a women is at her most fertile.  These kits can be very accurate and generally work by detecting the amount of LH (Luteinizing Hormone) in the system.  There is a surge in LH during ovulation.

Pregnancy Spotting Why and How

Spotting of blood from the vagina during pregnancy is similar to what happens during a period however the amount of blood is much lighter.  Spotting is also characterised by blood that varies in colour from a reddish colour to brown.  The occurrence of spotting or light bleeding from the vagina is common especially with women who are in the first three to four months of their pregnancy.  Up to 25 percent of pregnant women experience spotting and this is generally during the first trimester.

Pregnancy spotting should not be considered as normal or ignored as light bleeding could be warning from your body that something more serious is going on.  It is important to get in contact with your doctor as there are many problems that can cause pregnancy spotting which could potentially put you and your pregnancy at risk.  Any bleeding or spotting especially if it keeps occurring should be checked by a doctor as soon as practical.

There are a large range of factors that cause bleeding or pregnancy spotting some of which are serious and other causes that are not so serious.  One of the most common causes of spotting or bleeding is called Breakthrough Bleeding which occurs usually around the time of your regular period.  What occurs is the hormones that look after the menstrual cycle are activated and cause some bleeding to occur.  Women who have spotting that is caused by this breakthrough bleeding generally experience some spotting more than once throughout their pregnancy.

The other most common cause of spotting or bleeding during pregnancy is what is termed ‘Implantation Bleeding’ which involves the fertilized egg.  The spotting or bleeding occurs when the fertilized egg attaches itself to the uterus wall.  The bleeding in this case generally only lasts up to three days.

Some of the more serious causes of pregnancy spotting or bleeding include irritated or an inflamed cervix, an infection of the vaginal area, an inherited bleeding disorder, molar pregnancy or an ectopic pregnancy.  Spotting or bleeding can also be the result of trauma such as a fall or car accident.

It is important to see a doctor if you experience any bleeding or spotting as you may need a vaginal examination, an ultrasound or blood test to determine if the spotting is caused by anything serious.  Using an ultrasound is a great way for the doctor to check the progress of the pregnancy and determine if everything is normal.

An Ayurvedic Pregnancy Guide

The practice of Ayurvedic is a holistic tradition and those who practice this tradition take the preparation for pregnancy very seriously.  The preparation for an Ayurvedic pregnancy involves both partners and each must observe specific steps to ensure that the males sperm and the women’s ova are ready and that the women’s body is also ready for the pregnancy.  Both partners in the relationship take part and the belief is that following these steps before and during conception will ensure the overall well being of the baby during the pregnancy and after the child is born.

Before conception there are certain guidelines that a women must follow to ensure the health of her eggs.  This tradition requires that the woman observe rest and self healing during her period of menstruation and also practise meditation and relaxation.  As well as this part of the tradition it is also important for the woman to eat a nutritious and balanced diet before conception and ovulation.

As well as the practices involving meditation and nutrition it is also important to practitioners of Ayurvedic that both the female and the male are healthy to ensure that the pregnancy and the child has optimum health.  If the women has had any infections or diseases or the male has had any diseases it is important that these are cleared up well before conception occurs.

Ayurvedic teachings also require both partners to take part in a practise called pancha karma which is completed to bring each body into a balanced state.  Both the man and the woman are also encouraged to visualize and fill their minds with positive thoughts and feelings that will be transferred to the child at conception.  Teachings also stress the importance of conceiving at the right time to ensure that there is balance and that this sense of balance is passed on to the child when it is born.

Once the couple have observed the previously mentioned teachings they are then ready to make love and to conceive a child.  This act of making love to conceive a child is a sacred act in Ayurvedic practice and it is important that both partners have a peaceful and loving emotional state and not be under the influence of any drugs or alcohol.

Following an Ayurvedic pregnancy guide can to some people seem complex and confusing however the steps followed and the rituals observed in this practice can provide a good foundation for the conception and birth of a child and also the relationship between the parents.

Ideas for Inexpensive Maternity Clothes

When it comes to buying maternity clothing women generally fall into one of three groups.  The first group of women are the ones that fully embrace their pregnancy and enjoy shopping for new maternity clothing so they look stylish throughout their pregnancy.  The next group of women are very much the opposite and may only buy a few essential items of maternity wear to get them through the pregnancy without spending too much on clothing that will only be worn for a short length of time.  The last group falls in between these two extremes and includes women who wish to look stylish and beautiful during their pregnancy but want to do this without having to spend a fortune on clothes they will wear for only a short period of time.  The following are ideas that women can use to look great throughout their pregnancy without having to spend a fortune.

One of the ways that women can save money when it comes to maternity clothes is by purchasing some of the accessories that are available which turn your regular clothing into maternity clothing.  Accessories such as elastic bands that go around your waist and also extension pieces that extend the waist of your pants are great as they allow you to wear your regular clothing for longer during pregnancy.

During the last months of your pregnancy you will need to be wearing maternity clothes as this time is when your baby bump will be at its largest size.  A great way to save some money on maternity clothing is to borrow or share outfits with friends or relatives.  Depending on what maternity clothing you can borrow you may need only buy a few items of clothing yourself which can save you significant money.

Another great idea for inexpensive maternity clothing is to shop around at second hand stores.  Second hand stores can be great for maternity clothing as people generally donate clothing because they don’t plan on having any more children rather than because the clothes are worn out or out of fashion.

Shopping for inexpensive maternity clothes can also be done easily over the internet.  Maternity clothing available through online stores is much less expensive as the sellers have less costs to cover when compared with retail stores.  Buying a few different items from an online store and mixing and matching items as well as adding accessories can provide you with many different looks at a much cheaper price than you will find in the shops.