Your pregnancy is going smoothly, we all wish that. It is normal that during pregnancy you may have few discomfort that you can manage yourself and are not any life threatening. Here we would like to focus on some of the common problems that you might face during pregnancy and their management. If you think something might be going wrong, contact your doctor immediately.
Back Pain: Low back pain during pregnancy is quite common, especially after 28 weeks. Mild exercise, particularly stretching may relief pain. Massage, gentle heating pad and Tylenol can be used for mild pain. For severe pain muscle relaxants can be used.
Constipation: Some pregnant women complain of constipation during pregnancy. Taking more fluids particularly water should be taken. About 10-14 glasses of water per day may be taken. In addition stool softeners or bulking agents may help. Laxatives are usually avoided after 28 weeks due to premature labor.
Contraction: Irregular contraction may occur several times over days, but these may be normal. Dehydration may cause increase contraction so taking plenty of water and juice may help. Regular contraction occurs every 10-15 minutes and is sign of preterm labor and if it happens you should contact the doctor immediately.
Dehydration: Dehydration may occur as a result of less fluids intake, so excessive fluids diets are recommended.
Edema: Edema of feet and ankles may occur as a result of inferior vena cava and pelvic vein compression. Elevation of feet above the heart may help. This may be done by putting a pillow on the legs during sleep. Severe edema of face and hand may suggest pre-eclampsia and immediate visit to doctor is recommended.
Gastro esophageal reflux disease: Relaxation of lower esophageal sphincter and increase tone in stomach can lead to reflux and nausea. In this situation you may take some antacids or eat multiple small meals per day rather than taking large meals once. If your symptoms continue for days taking omeprazole may help.
Hemorrhoids: Due to compression of inferior vena cava and pelvic vein and increase abdominal pressure hemorrhoids may occur. These hemorrhoids are treated symptomatically for pain and swelling. Prevention of constipation with increase fluids and fiber diets and stool softeners may help suppress hemorrhoids.
Lower abdominal pain: Usually between 18-32 weeks you may have lower abdominal pain. This pain is due to rapid expansion of uterus and stretching of ligaments. This is often self limiting but may be relieve with heating pad or Tylenol. If you have severe pain there may also be other factors. In such case immediately contact your doctor.
Urinary frequency: During pregnancy the uterus compress the bladder as uterus grows resulting in urinary frequency. Urinary tract infection may also cause but is often accompanied by dysuria. Urine culture should be done. Remember to take plenty of fluids despite urinary frequency.
Varicose veins: In lower extremities or vulva may seen Varicosities during pregnancy. Elevation of lower extremities or use of pressure stockings may help reduce varicose veins. If they do not resolve after 6 months of delivery you must consult for surgical therapy.