Posted on 03/29/2017 in Infertility

Pregnancy After 35

How Can I Increase My Chances of Having a Healthy Baby?

 Preconception checkups and counseling. When you decide that you are ready to have a baby, it is important to take some steps prior to conception. See your doctor for a checkup to make sure your are healthy prior to conception.

Get early and regular prenatal care. The first 8 weeks of your pregnancy are very important to your baby's development. Early and regular prenatal care can increase your chances of having a safe pregnancy and a healthy baby. Prenatal care includes screenings, regular exams, pregnancy and childbirth education, and counseling and support.

For instance, your age may increase your risk for gestational diabetes and preeclampsia, a condition that causes high blood pressure along with protein in the urine. During prenatal visits, your doctor will check your blood pressure, test your urine for protein and sugar, and test your blood  glucose levels.

Consider optional prenatal tests for women over 35. Your doctor may offer you special prenatal tests that are particularly applicable for older moms. These tests help determine the risk of having a baby with a birth defect.

Take prenatal vitamins. All women of childbearing age should take a daily prenatal vitamin containing at least 400 micrograms of folic acid.

How Can I Lower My Risk for Pregnancy Problems?

Taking care of yourself will help you manage any existing health problems and protect you from pregnancy-related diabetes and high blood pressure. And the healthier you are, the better it will be for your little one.

Maintain a healthy, well-balanced diet. Eating a variety of foods will help you get all the nutrients you need. Choose plenty of fruits and veggies, whole grains, beans, lean meats, and low-fat dairy products. You should eat and drink at least four servings of dairy and other calcium-rich foods every day.

Gain the recommended amount of weight. Talk with your doctor about how much weight you should gain. Women with a normal BMI should gain between 25 and 35 pounds during pregnancy.

Exercise regularly. Regular exercise will help you stay at a healthy pregnancy weight, keep your strength up, and ease stress. Just be sure you review your exercise program with your doctor.

Stop smoking and drinking alcohol.

Ask your doctor about medications. Talk with your doctor about what meds are safe to take during pregnancy and while breastfeeding. This includes prescription and over-the-counter medicines, supplements, and natural remedies.

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