Pregnancy, (noun): A time of utter joy and a simultaneous worry of what might go wrong. Expecting moms and their spouses experience various forms of suspense in this period. Your anxiety is absolutely valid because of pregnancy complications.
Complications during pregnancy are health issues that women may be faced with before or during the gestation period. Though most women undergo childbirth without harm, almost 8% of women experience some form of pregnancy problems.
In this post of our series, LadiesAndBabies, we will discuss a variety of health problems during pregnancy.
Common Pregnancy Complications
Complications during pregnancy may involve the mother’s health, fetal health or both. These health issues may result in high-risk pregnancy for some. On that account, prevention, protection and management of these issues is a must.
Here are the most common pregnancy problems:
Preeclampsia is among the most troublesome pregnancy complications. It is a high blood pressure disorder, that lowers the supply of oxygen and nutrients to the fetus. If this ailment is not treated on time, it may lead to eclampsia when a pregnant woman suffers seizures or coma. This condition is also characterized by damage to other organ systems, mostly kidney or liver.
Symptoms: High blood pressure, blurring of vision, excessive nausea, extreme weight gain, abdominal pain, severe headache, and reduced urine.
2. High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure or hypertension is a very common heart health issue. It particularly affects women who are planning to get pregnant or are pregnant. High blood pressure before or during gestation puts the mother and her baby at the potential risk of diverse diseases.
These include preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, preterm delivery and placental abruption. Proper medications are needed to control hypertension during pregnancy. Gestational hypertension mostly affects women during the second half of the pregnancy. The good news is that it normalises after childbirth.
Symptoms: Decreased vision, nausea, vomiting, decreased platelets in the blood, shortness of breath.
3. Gestational Diabetes
One of the most common pregnancy problems is that of gestational diabetes. This disease is simply diabetes that occurs in women during pregnancy. This complication is by and large because of pregnancy hormones.
It is essential to manage and treat gestational diabetes to avoid other health issues. The risk of preeclampsia, cesarean delivery and more are increased due to this ailment.
Symptoms: Excessive hunger, increased levels of glucose, uncontrolled thirst, fatigue, frequent urination, infections.
To know more about Gestational Diabetes read our article Everything You Need to Know About Gestational Diabetes
Infection complications during pregnancy are very frequent. Fortunately, your body is capable of protecting the fetus from most infections. And if you practice a healthy lifestyle and maintain good hygiene, your odds of getting infections are minimal.
Some infections can be transferred from you to your baby during delivery. Most of these diseases during pregnancy are treatable or preventable. You can talk to your healthcare provider for vaccinations of such infections.
Symptoms: Itchiness, vaginal discharge, foul smell, pain or burning sensation in the vaginal region.
5. Preterm labour
The labour that is naturally induced before 37 weeks of pregnancy is termed as preterm labour. It increases the likelihood of health issues in the newborn.
Symptoms: Frequent sensation of contractions, abdominal cramps, persistent backache, vaginal spotting.
The loss of pregnancy due to natural reasons before 20 weeks is known as a miscarriage. It is one of the most major complications of pregnancy that affect maternal health.
Symptoms: Abnormal vaginal bleeding, spotting, the release of fluid from the vagina.
If the pregnancy is discontinued after 20 weeks, then it is known as a stillbirth. Problems in the placenta, infections, poor fetal growth are some causes of stillbirth.
Symptoms: No fetal movement, no kicks, bleeding.
Risk Factors of Pregnancy Complications
Pregnancy problems may occur at any trimester in any woman. Nonetheless, certain factors add to the risks. These include:
- Kidney problems
- Pregnancy at age 35 or later
- Pregnancy at a very young age
- Eating disorder
- Smoking and alcohol consumption
- Carrying twins or triplets
A worried mom (even an expecting mom) can do better research than the investigating authorities. Women should understand several pregnancy complications to avoid them. Complications during pregnancy can be managed if timely detection is done.
Talk to your healthcare provider/gynecologist about pregnancy problems if you see any unusual signs.