29 Nov 2022 | 2 min Read
Dr Punam Dixit
Author | 2 Articles
An individual is said to be anaemic or have anaemia if his/her haemoglobin is less than 11 grams per liter. The most common form of anaemia seen is iron deficiency anaemia.
Women who suffer from anemia during pregnancy tend to face uneasiness, fatigue or tiredness, and shortness of breath. A severe case of anemia during pregnancy might also lead to pregnancy complications like growth restriction of the fetus, premature delivery, a low-weight baby, and so on.
It’s important that you take enough iron from your diet as well as through supplements, especially during pregnancy. Iron supplements are prescribed to pregnant women because the iron that one gets from the diet isn’t sufficient to meet the increased demand during pregnancy. The ideal time to take this iron tablet (supplement) is after dinner at night. Also having vitamin C-rich food like lemon juice or orange along with iron supplement (tablet) helps better absorption.
Besides iron deficiency, another cause of anaemia is thalassemia. To rule out this possibility during pregnancy an early screening for thalassemia should be carried out. Haemolytic anaemia, folic acid deficiency anaemia, and anaemia caused by excess blood loss (eg. In piles) are also a few other types of anaemia found in an individual.
Knowing the outcomes and complications linked to anaemia during pregnancy it’s very important that a woman does not miss out on her iron supplements. On the other hand, when a pregnant woman suffering from anaemia needs a higher dose of an iron supplement than normal. These iron tablets at times can lead to constipation which can be managed by taking vitamin C along with iron supplements or taking iron supplements with intermediate gaps (alternate days) as per the doctor’s advice. Also, the women who aren’t able to take oral iron supplements or do not have good iron absorption when taken orally are given intravenous iron.
Lastly along with iron supplements make sure you include foods like meat, dates, banana, pomegranate, etc., maintain a protein-rich diet and go for a regular investigation to keep a check on your heamoglobin levels.