(BPT) - Oftentimes the joy and excitement of pregnancy is matched with feelings of uncertainty and doubt, especially when it comes to managing health issues during pregnancy. Between their own mothers, their friends and, at times, obtrusive strangers, women are frequently bombarded with conflicting advice, prompting soon-to-be moms to question what is accurate, relevant and safe for their own pregnancy. According to a recent Monistat survey, 84 percent of women who have been or are currently pregnant admit to experiencing doubts regarding the health choices they made during pregnancy.
To help moms-to-be fight the confusion, Dr. Alyssa Dweck, OB-GYN, author, expert on women’s health and Monistat spokesperson, shares a few tips to help expecting mothers make healthy choices for themselves and their little ones’ well-being.
1) Do your research.
While certainly well-meaning, the advice women receive from friends or loved ones may not necessarily be the most accurate or up to date. With advancements in medical research each year, health guidelines for pregnancy are often changing and that can lead to confusion for mom, especially when decades of great mothers before her likely weren’t privy to the latest guidance. Especially when it comes to health choices, it’s best to cross-examine pregnancy advice or recommendations from mothers, relatives and close friends with input from a medical healthcare professional or trusted medical website.
2) Take caution in how you treat common pregnancy symptoms.
While women often modify what they eat and change the household cleaning supplies they use while pregnant, many aren’t aware that treatment options for common health issues can vary for pregnant women. For example, vaginal yeast infections are up to 10 times more likely to occur during pregnancy. However, according to a 2019 Canadian study, women who take any dose of fluconazole (the leading prescription pill to treat yeast infections) during pregnancy are at an increased miscarriage risk and there may be a link between high levels of fluconazole and increased risk of heart defects in the fetus. Instead, Dweck recommends Monistat 7 for her patients with vaginal yeast infections, as it meets CDC guidelines for treating yeast infections in pregnant women. Nevertheless, women should always check with their own healthcare providers before using any treatment during pregnancy.
3) Eat and exercise wisely.
A pregnant woman is eating for both herself and her baby and with that responsibility come changes to her diet and exercise plan that can aid in a healthy pregnancy. Eating a healthy diet filled with fruits, vegetables, whole grains and foods low in saturated fat, as well as avoiding foods like raw meat, sushi and unpasteurized cheeses, can benefit mom and baby. Staying active while pregnant is key in controlling weight, and exercise can help reduce stress, improve circulation and mom’s overall well-being.
4) Sleep when you can.
As a woman’s body changes, her sleeping habits change too, with many often finding it difficult to either fall or stay asleep. However, sleep is crucial in helping moms-to-be feel their best. Dweck recommends women try to get at least seven hours of sleep by staying in bed a little longer, sleeping on their sides after 16 weeks, and taking smaller naps throughout the day to make up for any lost shuteye.
Though doubt and confusion can be present during pregnancy, trusted products and healthcare professionals can help expectant mothers determine what’s best for their own pregnancies. For more information on treating yeast infections during pregnancy, visit www.monistat7.com.