Pregnancy news, 22/11/2018
This week, the Royal College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology (RCOG) updated their guidelines about the care and advice that should be offered to overweight women before and during pregnancy.
The RCOG recommend that all overweight women who are at an age where they could become pregnant are advised about:
- the safest way to manage their weight before pregnancy
- the risks of obesity to mum and baby during pregnancy and birth
- how losing weight before conception or between pregnancies will increase their chances of having a safer and healthier pregnancy.
They also recommend that women with a BMI over 30 take a 5mg folic acid supplement when trying for a baby and during the first trimester of pregnancy.
Read more about weight, fertility and planning a pregnancy.
Try our planning for pregnancy tool for non-judgemental, personal advice.
The RCOG also included what care and support should be offered to women during pregnancy if they are overweight. The types of support they suggest includes:
- dietary advice about what foods to try and what foods to avoid during pregnancy
- a chat about the risks of obesity in pregnancy and how to reduce them.
They confirm that the focus should be on eating healthily, rather than dieting to lose weight or setting weight targets.
What are the risks?
Being overweight or obese during pregnancy increases the risk of:
- baby loss
- premature birth
- gestational diabetes
- a larger than average baby (fetal macrosomia).
Read more about the risks of being overweight and pregnant.
Information if you have a low BMI
Being underweight can also affect your fertility and poses different risks to mum and baby during pregnancy.
We have information about being underweight and planning a pregnancy.
Read the RCOG guidelines
The NHS is taking urgent action to protect expectant mums from a black, Asian and ethnic minority (BAME) background during the coronavirus crisis, as new research shows these women face an increased risk.
Group B Streptococcus (GBS) is a type of bacteria carried in the body. Carrying group B strep is usually harmless, but sometimes it can infect a baby during labour. Fortunately, most group B strep infections in newborn babies can be prevented, simply and safely, when pregnant women carrying group B strep are offered antibiotics in labour.
You should feel that your needs and wishes are being listened to during labour, particularly around pain relief. Every labour and birth is unique and care should be tailored to you.
I put on a brave face and watched her walk through the doors into the unknown all on her own. This was heart breaking and I’ve never felt so helpless. My wife is my best friend. Whatever life throws at us we handle it together.