Preconception Health – Preparing Your Body for Pregnancy

Preconception Health – Preparing Your Body for Pregnancy

Prepare your body for pregnancy with preconception health! Explore proactive steps to enhance your well-being and fertility. Empower your journey toward parenthood with insights into optimizing preconception health.

Preconception health refers to preparing your body for pregnancy before trying to conceive. This involves taking a daily multivitamin with 400 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid, maintaining a healthy weight and engaging in moderate daily physical activity such as regular exercising.

Additionally, sharing your family medical history with healthcare provider helps identify potential conditions or risks that could have an effect on you or your baby.

1. Get a Physical

Preconception checkups consist of an in-depth examination and review of your health history. Your physician will look at everything from past pregnancies, medications taken and vaccinations needed, to any necessary surgical interventions or immunizations that might be required before pregnancy can occur.

Similarly, if you have diabetes, high blood pressure or other medical issues which need to be managed prior to pregnancy, such as high blood pressure or autoimmune disorders, your physician may advise taking folic acid supplements and refraining from smoking or misusing street or prescription drugs.

Your doctor may suggest genetic testing based on your family history and individual risk factors, for example if there is a family history of sickle cell disease or Tay-Sachs they may recommend carrier screening tests to identify whether you and/or your partner carry genes for these conditions.

If you aren’t immune to rubella (also known as German measles), your doctor may advise getting vaccinated against it prior to trying for a baby. The rubella vaccine protects against viral infections that cause serious birth defects in babies – blindness, deafness, heart defects and musculoskeletal issues are among them. They’ll also order complete blood count and antibody titers tests in order to check for diseases like Hepatitis B & C virus infections, HIV as well as uterine cavity tests to make sure everything is healthy!

2. Eat Healthy

If you’re trying to conceive, it is wise to begin making changes in your lifestyle to prepare your body for pregnancy. Working with a health care provider, they can assist with developing a preconception health plan and ensure you’re ready to get pregnant. At an in-person preconception checkup appointment, your provider may perform physical examination and blood testing as well as pelvic exams (also called “pap tests”).

Your healthcare provider can advise on how medical conditions, such as depression, diabetes, high blood pressure or being overweight/overweight can influence fertility and pregnancy outcomes. They will also be able to advise whether any medications (prescription, over-the-counter and herbal/dietary supplements) you take may affect fertility or pregnancy negatively.

Your provider can offer advice for following a healthier diet, including cutting back on empty calories, artificial sweeteners and caffeine and eating up to three servings per week of fatty fish. They might also advise taking a multivitamin with 400 micrograms of folic acid each day which could prevent major birth defects of the brain and spine (known as neural tube defects) and cleft lip and palate conditions.

3. Exercise

When trying to conceive, it’s essential that your body be prepared for the physical exertion and significant changes of pregnancy. Exercising before conception is one way of doing just this.

Regular exercise can improve a woman’s fitness level, reduce gestational diabetes risk, prevent hypertension and enhance her quality of life during gestation. Plus, its benefits extend into postpartum health as well.

CDC guidelines suggest women get at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise each week, which could involve anything from walking to taking yoga classes. If you already have an established exercise routine, your doctor can tell if it’s safe to continue as long as intensity of workout is modified; for instance if you run, they will tell you to slow down pace or avoid high intensity workouts; also avoid mercury-rich fish like swordfish, tilefish and king mackerel and start taking prenatal vitamins (with folic acid included) ASAP.

4. Get Vaccinated

When contemplating pregnancy, it’s essential that you visit a healthcare provider and undergo a preconception exam to make sure that your body is prepared. A provider can treat or prevent health conditions that might interfere with conception. They may also advise you on things to do prior to conception such as stopping certain forms of birth control and managing preexisting health conditions.

For instance, if you haven’t received all three HPV (human papillomavirus) vaccine shots yet before trying to conceive, it would be prudent to get them. Doing so could protect against viruses that could lead to cancer for both you and your unborn baby. Your doctor can also screen you for other conditions like chlamydia, gonorrhea, HIV, hepatitis A and B virus infections that could be present in your bloodstream.

Your doctor may order antibody titers to assess if you are immune from rubella and chickenpox, both of which can lead to serious birth defects in an unborn baby. They may also advise women who haven’t already received Tdap to get it as this will protect both themselves and their unborn children during delivery and early infancy when their babies are at greatest risk for whooping cough.

5. See Your Doctor

Health care providers will conduct a detailed medical history review that takes into account any conditions like diabetes, thyroid disease or epilepsy that could affect pregnancy. They’ll ask about your current medications, vitamins and supplements; additionally, they may stress the importance of taking folic acid preconceptionally; this supplement can prevent major birth defects of the brain and spine.

Doctors may order various blood tests during your pregnancies, including antibody titers that assess immunity to infections that could harm you during gestation, like rubella and chickenpox. They can also perform a complete blood count that measures red and white blood cell counts along with your Rh factor which determines compatibility issues between you and the baby during birth.

Couples might also choose genetic testing, including carrier screening. This test uses blood samples taken from both partners to assess if either has genetic markers that could cause diseases that could pass down to their children, making this step even more essential if your ethnic background puts you at increased risk of certain genetic disorders.


Related Articles

Strategies to Improve Egg Quality

Strategies to Improve Egg Quality

Elevate your fertility journey with strategies to improve egg quality! Explore insights into enhancing the quality of your eggs for a healthier conception process. Empower yourself with proactive measures and personalized approaches.

Am I pregnant?

Am I pregnant? Understanding Early Pregnancy Signs

Decode the early signs of pregnancy! Explore the indicators that may signal the beginning of a new chapter. Empower yourself with insights into understanding the early signs of pregnancy. Navigate the excitement of potential parenthood.

Vitamin D

The Role of Vitamin D in Fertility

Illuminate your fertility journey with Vitamin D! Explore the crucial role of Vitamin D in reproductive health. Empower your path to conception with insights into how this essential nutrient can enhance fertility.