Health Steps to Take Before Getting Pregnant

2 cells… 38 weeks… full size, brand new, cutest baby…

Isn’t that miraculous?! Is it that simple though?

A healthy pregnancy starts well before the actual pregnancy happens.  As a future parent-to-be, you would probably want to give the best start for your future baby.  That would mean taking the best care of you.

Here are a few things to consider if you are planning a family:

  • Food is not just food; it’s the only source of nutrients for your health and future baby. Make sure that you eat colorful nutrient-dense food that is high in protein, fats, fiber, minerals, vitamins, and phytonutrients. Don’t be afraid of fats because they are essential for hormone production, cell communication, and brain development; salmon, sardines, seeds, and nuts can be a perfect source of essential fatty acids.
  • Our bodies need movement for healthier minds, healthier pregnancies, and healthier babies. We recommend physical activities from moderate to intense aerobic and strength-conditioning activities for at least 30 minutes, 5 days a week, before, during, and after pregnancy. Some examples are walking, swimming, jogging, strength training (safe and effective for healthy pregnant women) yoga, Pilates, etc.
  • More than 7 hours of sleep nightly is essential to promote optimal health. We advise focusing on a sleep time from 10-11 PM every night. Sleep is essential for optimal detoxification, hormone balance, and cellular repair.
  • Stress is a normal part of life but how you cope matters. 20 minutes of relaxation and even less can help you to shift your stress response. Men and women need equal support during this transition time. Sleep, movement, time with pets, breathing exercises, yoga, and massage, all can be a source of relaxation.
  • See your primary care practitioner for a preconception office visit. Your doctor can review your medical history to minimize any potential risk for future pregnancy. Prenatal vitamins can be recommended too.

The perinatal period represents a unique opportunity for real change in lasting health outcomes. There is no more amenable phase in the human lifecycle for introducing habits that will lead to healthier lives for mothers and their babies.

From a musculoskeletal point of view the woman’s body will go through challenging and equally fascinating changes and adaptations. The spinal curves and the pelvis will suffer the necessary modifications to accommodate the fetus. For some women these changes happen smoothly and  they will not experience pain or any major discomforts however, some women can find it very challenging.

pregnant

The most common complaints and dysfunctions while pregnant are:

  • Lower back pain and sacro-iliac joint pain
  • Pubic pain
  • Neck pain with tension headaches
  • Thoracic spine pain and lower ribs pain
  • Pelvic pain
  • Bladder dysfunctions (example: incontinence)

These are generally related to the adaptations the body goes through to accommodate the baby’s growth and development.

 

How can you manage/minimize these symptoms if you happen to experience them while pregnant?

  • Visit an osteopath/physiotherapist with experience in treating pregnancy related issues.
    • You will receive a gentle treatment customized to your symptoms
    • Advice on pain management
    • Advice on footwear
    • Advice on exercise depending on your fitness levels
    • Advice on the use of sacro-iliac belt should you need one
  • Visit a physiotherapist specialized in pelvis and bladder issues if you experience pelvic pain or incontinence
  • Join pregnancy exercise groups and social media groups who you can share your experience with and exchange ideas on how to get along this unique experience.

Although pregnancy can be a challenging experience for many women, these challenges can be kept under control from an early stage if the right treatment and advice is sourced for. And it’s important to keep in mind that you are not alone in this journey… 🙂

Our team of world class practitioners can guide you through this beautiful journey, call us at 04 348 7366 or email info@osteopathydubai.com to book an appointment.