Highlights of chat with Dr Ragini Agarwal: Antenatal and Post-natal care – Part 2

Q. How to improve back pain after delivery? And does epidural have any side effects on the back?

A. For the back pain, I would recommend exercise and physiotherapy as a first step, along with continuation of iron, calcium and vitamin D and maintaining a correct posture. No, Epidurals have no side effects on the back.

 

Q. What's the ideal weight gain in pregnancy?

A. Ideal weight gain in pregnancy, is anything between 8-14kg. If a woman is overwight then it is better not gain more than 8 kg during pregnancy. For an average weight gain of 10-14kg is okay. For an under weight, a further gain of 2-3 kg beyond 14kg is okay. Hope that answers your question!

 

Q. I want a home birth. Is it safe?

A. An interesting question and very much in current debate. Yes, home birth is safe TILL you don't land up with some emergency, which is unpredictable in every pregnancy, regardless of how low risk it is. You have to consider, other factors for home birth- suchas training and education of your birthing attendant. Availability of medical help at the time of emergency, like excessive bleeding after delivery or if you land up with non-progress of delivery, distance from the hospital, other medical conditions etc. So it is very difficult to say how safe it is in today's Indian scenario. Happy & safe pregnancy!

 

Q. Does Non-veg food or anything specific in it cause any problems during pregnancy or in the couple of months after childbirth?

A. No you can take all types of non-vegetarian food. Till it is not very spicy and fried and it is fresh. The only concern is fatty fish which contains higher lead content due to contamination of water. So it is better not to take more than twice a week.

 

Q. Suggest precautions on thyroid and pre-diabetes in pregnancy. Both are under control. However, the diabetes is not established. it's just on high alert?

A. The only precaution for thyroid disorder is continuation of the medicine to maintain appropriate thyroid level in your blood. If thyroid level is in order, then continue your pregnancy without any stress or fear. As far as high blood sugar is concerned, you have to maintain a normal sugar level throughout the pregnancy since high sugar level can cause lots of defects in the baby and complications in pregnancy. The diet and exercise is the mainstay of gestational diabetes. Only if you are not able to control during pregnancy by medical nutrition therapy, then only medication will be given by your ob-gyn. So please follow the instructions of your doctor and ensure you diet is strictly maintained as per instructions of your healthcare provider. Avoid meda (refined flour), sugar (jaggery is also a kind of sugar), fruit juices, fried food and fruits like banana, sapota (cheeku), mango etc.

 

For many other interesting questions answered, Read: Part 1, Part 3, Part 4

To consult Dr Ragini Agarwal in person, click here.

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