While you are attempting pregnancy, here are some tips to maximize your health and the health of your baby:
Prescription prenatal vitamins are a good idea, and the extra folic acid has been shown to diminish the incidence of spina bifida. Spina bifida is a birth defect of the spine that can affect the nerves of the spinal cord.
Since you could be pregnant in the second half of each menstrual cycle, we recommend no alcohol or recreational drugs during this time.
We recommend no more than two cups of coffee, tea, or other caffeinated beverages daily.
It is important not to smoke during pregnancy or during the time you are trying to conceive. It has been shown that smoking can cause a reduced chance of pregnancy and an increased chance of miscarriage, growth retardation and prematurity. If you are a smoker, we strongly advise you to take this opportunity to quit smoking, for your health and for the health and well-being of your baby. The Colorado tobacco settlement provides you with six free telephone counseling sessions. Call the Colorado Quitline at 1-800-639-Quit.
Headaches are common occurrences and may be treated with 1-2 Tylenol every 3-4 hours. If your headaches are one-sided, are associated with blurred vision, or are not relieved by Tylenol, please call the office immediately.
- Coughs and Colds
If you have cold symptoms, take Tylenol as outlined for headaches. If your temperature is over 100° F, please call the office. You may use Sudafed (plain) for a stuffy nose and Robitussen (plain) for coughs.
- Timing of Intercourse
Accurate timing of intercourse and inseminations is important to treatment success. This part of your treatment is individualized and will be reviewed with you at the time of your office visits. Please call if there is any confusion, or if you have questions about this important part of your treatment.
- Emotional Stress
During this period of intense focus on conception, you may face some difficult emotional times. Talking with a counselor can help tremendously. Below is a name of a counselor we recommend:
Barbara Hyatt, LCSW
Licensed Clinical Social Worker
950 S. Cherry Street, Suite 1004
Denver CO 80222
Avoid all herbs, including herbal teas.
- Raw foods
Avoid raw fish, meat and eggs. (Yes, this includes sushi and eggnog!)
According to the Food and Drug Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency, pregnant and lactating women should limit consumption of fish to 12 ounces (two servings) per week. Since you may be pregnant several weeks before a positive pregnancy test is achieved, plan to limit your fish intake also. Albacore “white” tuna has the greatest mercury content and should be limited to 6 oz per week. Light canned tuna is a better alternative because it contains 1/3 less mercury than albacore tuna. Avoid other high mercury content fish such as shark, swordfish, king mackerel or tile fish. Low mercury choices include shrimp, salmon, pollock and cat fish.
It is safe to utilize acupuncture in conjunction with infertility treatments. Many women report it is helpful with stress reduction. Avoid any suggested herbal remedies, however.
- Keep us informed
If the medical condition of either you or your husband changes, please let us know. It is especially important to inform us of any new medications that you or your husband are given.