Checking Blood Pressure
- raised blood pressure can be a sign of toxaemia, a serious problem.
Pregnancy we are often tested for things without really knowing exactly why.
We take it for granted that the tests are for our benefit, and we may not want
to ask questions or 'bother-the-doctor'. But during a time when your body is going
through a whole host of changes it is only natural to wonder what exactly is happening.
Don't be afraid to ask as many questions, as you need to, especially if you are
a new mum - it's your baby and your body so you have a right to know! Some simple
tests you may encounter are very important we've listed a few and their relevance.
Urine samples - tested for sugar and
protein. Protein is often an indication of toxaemia and sugar can be a symptom
Blood tests -
these could be for anaemia, common in pregnancy or to make sure the placenta is
- excessive weight gain can be a sign of fluid retention, failure to gain weight
may mean the baby is not fully nourished.
Although these tests are considered
routine, they are important in the over all scheme and its vital not to skip any.
The aim of antenatal care is to product a beautiful baby and a healthy mother
and by monitoring the pregnancy and making routine checks, problems can be treated
as they arise.
- most of us suffer from chest pains
from time to time and although the pain can be worrying it is often due only to
indigestion, heartburn or muscular inflammation. However, persistent chest pain
should always be reported to a GP as should sudden pain accompanied with breathlessness.
A tight, vice-like pains if the centre of the chest, often spreading to the left
arm or up into the jaw could be an indication of angina. The pain is often accompanied
by nausea, sweating and breathing difficulties and is often brought on by exercise,
emotion or a heavy meal. Angina is a pain caused by the heart muscle not receiving
enough oxygen in the blood. The coronary arteries which carry oxygen round the
heart become clogged, making them unable to carry enough oxygen when needed. The
build up of waste products then produce pain. |
much can be done to alleviate the symptoms of angina, as with all medical condition
prevention is better than cure.
not only encourages the formation of blockages but also decreases the amount of
oxygen in the blood.
Keep an eye
on your weight - overweight people suffer additional strain to their hearts.
Take regular, moderate exercise - several
short periods of moderate exercise a week are more beneficial than sudden bouts
of strenuous activity.
Stick to a
low-cholesterol diet - it may be useful to know your cholesterol level to help
provide motivation when choosing food.
Drink alcohol in moderation as over-use of alcohol can also cause toxin build
If however, symptoms
persist into the next day a visit to the GP will probably be necessary. Remember
to take a sample with you as this will speed up full diagnosis. If you are a regular
sufferer, it is definitely worth discussing on-going treatment with your GP as
some medications are available to use on an 'as-and-when' basis and can help to
avoid really severe attacks.
is one of the most common disorders
of the urinary tract and causes thousands of women untold misery. It is caused
by germs multiplying in the bladder and can produce truly agonising symptoms.
Most of the germs that cause cystitis come from the bowel, hence the
advice of wiping from front to back.
Many cases can be treated at home
if caught early enough. The aim is to flush the germs out before they multiply
and really get a hold so at the first sign of stinging or burning it is recommended
that 4 pints of water are drunk within the hour and then as much clear fluid as
possible throughout the day.
Excessive or sudden weight loss can also delay
or halt periods. Crash diets are a common cause and those with anorexia nervosa
will almost certainly stop altogether.
a Period? Aside
from pregnancy and the menopause there are a number of reasons for missed periods.
Of course you must always consult your GP if you suspect pregnancy but here are
a few other cases of 'amenorrhoea'. |
women experience late or missed periods due to stress or worry. Paradoxically
many women who are worried about becoming pregnant after unprotected sex experience
a late period, as do women who desperately wish to become pregnant and await each
Over enthusiastic exercise can play havoc with your usual cycle as can the sudden
onset of strenuous activity if you are not used to it.
Early menopause is not common but can be due to family history. If you think this
may be the case discuss your cycle with your GP mentioning your close relatives
almost always cause irregularities and it is not uncommon to lose periods completely
for the duration of use. Cases have also been reported when using the 'mini-pill',
but if you are concerned then your GP would carry out a pregnancy test to allay
& Wellbeing Articles