If you are thinking about having children and need guidance before pregnancy, you’ve come to the right place. We can explain and tell you what you need to know before becoming pregnant. All the advice and medical recommendations will be found here. It’s time to prepare and take care of yourself to have a healthy pregnancy for your baby to develop well.
Pregnancies usually occur about two weeks after the last menstrual period and before the next one. This makes the discovery of the pregnancy during the third week of gestation. That is why it is advisable to adopt healthy habits in the pre-pregnancy period and as soon as you make the decision to become pregnant.
Tips before pregnancy
Making a decision to have children is a big step in anyone’s life and a great commitment that carries many responsibilities. Here are some tips and factors to consider before pregnancy.
Reflect on your decision: When you're having children, there are usually two people involved, so talking and getting clear opinions and feelings of both sides is very important. Having an organized plan before the baby is born is a good idea to avoid any shock once the time has come. Know how to take care of child while working, locate nearby day care centers, be aware about the change your life is about to experience, for you and your couple these are the first steps in general.
Economic status: The expenses of a baby can be between 6,000 and 10,000euros, just during his first year of life. The first thing to determine is whether you can afford a pregnancy. Therefore, if the decision to have children is taken, it is always a good idea to start saving before the baby arrives.
Beware of stress: This makes getting pregnant more complicated and expensive. Do not obsess with your pregnancy process, you have to eliminate the most tension possible. Sports or relaxation exercises like yoga can be very beneficial to get rid of it.
Precautions to take before getting pregnant
Keep a gynecological control: Going to a medical expert is always necessary to make the most relevant tests, keep checking your health and get the tips every expectant mother needs. Preconception visits become the first step before pregnancy.
Stop alcohol and tobacco: Bad habits such as smoking, drinking or using any drugs can cause irreversible damage to the baby and affect his health for the rest of his life.
Do a medical review: This will rule out any infections that may affect pregnancy. In case of being necessary to be vaccinated for varicella or rubella. Also take into account dental health and go to a dentist.
Improve physical condition
Achieve the ideal weight: Those women who are very thin should try to gain weight, as those who are overweight try to get rid of it.
Practice sports: Getting in good shape is essential to have a healthy pregnancy. Start a type of physical exercise that you can continue doing in pregnancy. Sport also has psychological benefits, helps your mood and gives you quality sleep as well.
Keep a balanced diet: The doctor can advise you what diet to follow, but it is important to maintain it correctly. Any diet you choose should have the necessary calories, hydrates, proteins, minerals and vitamins suitable for pregnancy. Try to eliminate coffees, teas and stimulant drinks. Neither are refined sugars, fats or industrial pastries recommended. Eat foods rich in fiber, fruit, vegetables, water and juices.
Having enough folic acid before pregnancy
The usefulness of vitamin supplements in the future pregnant woman has been scientifically proven. In fact, the usefulness of folic acid to prevent neural tube defects is very certain. Several European countries give some recommendations for pre-pregnancy.
- A folic acid supplement of 0.4-0.5 mg per day for women who plan to become pregnant. Supplementation should be given at least one month before, ideally three months before.
- If there is a history of children with neural tube defects, supplementation would rise to 4-5 mg per day.
- A diet rich in folates is recommended. And if necessary add fortified foods in which the amount of folate has been artificially increased.
In Spain it is recommended that women at low risk consume 0.4 mg of folic acid daily, and those at risk increase the dose to 4 mg. Only two out of ten people in Spain consume folic acid supplements during pre-pregnancy, although it increases the chances of a healthy pregnancy and is recommended by specialists.
The folic acid intake before and during pregnancy also prevents malformations in the fetus such as spina bifida, cleft palate or cleft lip.
Food supplements to make pregnancy easier
There are food supplements that contain folic acid and are specifically designed for women that are looking for pregnancy. These products optimize natural capacities for women to procreate and ensure every nutritional status necessary for a proper development of the fetus.
Among the vitamins and minerals to put into a pregnancy diet, we have:
- Vitamin D: It is essential for calcium absorption and plays a role in the division of cells.
- Zinc: Works with the normal fertility and reproduction process.
- Iodine: Favors development of the fetus and its growth in general.
- Folic acid: It is necessary for cell division (and multiplication).
- Vitamin B12: It also has important functions related to cell division.