3.5

Fetal Growth and Development

by Maxine
Posted July 7 2010 12:03pm

Pregnancy is an exciting time for parents-to-be and their family and friends.

Pregnancy is an exciting time for parents-to-be and their family and friends. It’s also a time when you might have more questions than answers about how your baby is developing. In an effort to help you find the answers you are looking for, we have provided a link to one website we believe offers a clear and concise overview of the different stages of your baby’s development, week by week, trimester by trimester:  Pregnancy.org

As each week of your pregnancy unfolds, Pregnancy.org provides detailed descriptions and pictures of real embryos and fetuses to bring the experience of fetal development to life and help you better understand your baby’s growth.

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Breast Changes

by Guest
Posted August 9 2010 03:04pm
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Many women notice changes in their breasts during pregnancy. Breasts will change in size and colour and you may also notice a secretion or liquid seeping from her nipples.

During the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, the area around your nipples, known as the areola, will darken due to the hormones in your body. Small lumps will also appear on the areola. There is no need for concern; they are perfectly normal. These lumps, called Montgomery's tubercles, are simply the glands that lubricate the areola.

After week 16, more visible veins will appear on your breasts and a watery liquid known as colostrum may leak from her nipples.
All of these changes are normal. Wear a good support bra during the day. Wearing a bra at night might provide some comfort, as well. Use cotton or disposable breast pads to absorb the liquid and prevent colostrum from leaking through clothing.

Breast Tingling & Tension
This is another discomfort you might notice during pregnancy. Don't be alarmed if you feel a tingling sensation in your breasts; this is also normal. Your hormones are simply changing your breast tissue in preparation for nursing.

Wearing a bra that has good support will generally give you some relief.

Also see Breast Discomfort After Birth.

 


If you're pregnant or thinking about having a baby, check out www.welcometoparenting.com. These interactive, online prenatal and parenting classes will provide information on pregnancy, labour and delivery, your relationship and a community of expectant and new parents just like you! Watch the overview video!

 

 

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Do's and Don't's of Exercising While Pregnant

by Guest
Posted August 10 2010 11:38am
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Here are some helpful guidelines that you should follow when exercising. It’s important for you to know what you can and can’t do when it comes to exercising during pregnancy.

DO

 

  • Do get medical clearance before starting or continuing any exercise program.
  • Do try to exercise at least three times per week in the beginning; gradually increase to four to five times per week, depending on your fitness level.
  • Do start aerobic exercise with 15 minutes of gentle activity to gradually warm up your muscles. Stretching or doing energetic activity with cold muscles can give you aches and pains or injuries to muscles and ligaments.
  • Do gradually increase your workout by two minutes each week until you reach a maximum of 30 minutes at the target heart rate.
  • Do take 10 to 15 minutes to cool down by working at less intensity until your heart rate returns to normal.
  • Do drink plenty of water before, during and after your exercise session. To check if you are drinking enough, monitor your urine. Its colour should be clear or a light yellow.
  • Do take rest breaks when you feel like it.
  • Do use caution when doing sports that require balance and coordination, such as bicycling. Your center of gravity changes as the uterus and baby get bigger and you may be more prone to falling. Stationary cycling is safer after your second trimester as Mom does not need to balance the stationary cycle.

DON’T

  • Don’t exercise strenuously for more than two days in a row.
  • Don’t try any exercise that causes you to hold your breath and bear down at the same time. This includes heavy weight lifting.
  • Don’t try activities where you may be hit, such as soccer, hockey or racquet sports.
  • Don’t do activities that require sudden changes of movement, like racquet sports. Absolutely do not do these activities during the last trimester, as there may be a greater risk of joint injury or falling, due to changes in Moms center of gravity.
  • Don’t work out at a level that leaves you exhausted, thirsty or too hot. Animal studies show that a sudden rise in core body temperature during the early weeks of pregnancy may harm your baby.
  • Don’t start exercising during the first trimester if you were inactive prior to pregnancy.
  • Don’t exercise in hot, humid environments or expose yourself to hyperbaric (Hyperbaric is a condition where pressure is created that is above atmospheric pressure.) conditions, such as scuba diving.
  • Don’t do sports that require balance and coordination. Your centre of gravity changes as the uterus and baby get bigger, making you prone to falls. Dont perform any stomach exercises in a full reclining position, especially after the first trimester. Don’t over-stretch your ligaments and tendons, which may be more flexible because of hormones.

If you experience any of the following symptoms, stop exercising and contact your doctor or midwife:

  • Pain
  • Abdominal cramping, persistent contractions or pain or pressure low in the pelvis
  • Light headedness, dizziness, nausea or faintness
  • Vaginal bleeding or fluid leaking from the vagina
  • Cold and clammy feeling
  • Sudden swelling in your ankles, face or hands
  • Shortness of breath
  • Any absence of fetal movement
  • Irregular beating of your heart or your heart rate becomes more rapid and rises above your target heart rate
  • Difficulty walking


For More Information: The Exercise & Pregnancy Helpline 1-866-937-7678

Acknowledgement

Adapted from Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada SOGC. Healthy Beginnings © 2005, Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada

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Can My Family Doctor Deliver My Baby?

by Maxine
Posted July 27 2010 12:04pm

A family physician is a licensed medical doctor with extra training in the area of basic care. This includes uncomplicated pregnancy, childbirth and postpartum. A family physician can offer care for the entire family, including infants and children. However, not all family physicians are willing to perform deliveries. In such cases, they provide the bulk of the pre- and post-natal care, and the obstetrician or midwife takes over the care at the end of pregnancy and delivers the baby.

Family physicians can admit patients to one or more hospitals. They may practice with a group of physicians or in a solo practice.

Regarding labour:

Your family physician may or may not deliver your baby. If your family physician is in a group practice, the group shares being on call at the hospital. This may mean that your family physician will not be present for your labour and delivery and one of the partners or the doctor on call at the hospital will deliver your baby. OHIP covers the family physicians’ services. Family physicians may consult with an obstetrician if a problem arises in pregnancy or labour. If the labour turns into a high risk situation, family physicians call in an obstetrician to take the lead.

Regarding delivery:

Your family physician may or may not deliver your baby. If your family physician is in a group practice, the group shares being on call at the hospital. This may mean that your family physician will not be present for your labour and delivery and one of the partners or the doctor on call at the hospital will deliver your baby. OHIP covers the family physicians’ services.

Regarding postpartum:

Most family physicians check on mom and the baby regularly at the hospital, as this type of doctor cares for the whole family. Maternity nurses help mom through her time in the hospital after birth. Family physicians see new moms and their babies (and often dads) for a postpartum check-up in their offices during the first week after birth.

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