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6 tips for a smooth pregnancy

  •   by Medihelp
  •   12 February 2016
  •   829 view(s)
1. Get prenatal care as soon as possible
Early prenatal care is essential for good health during your pregnancy. It can help prevent foetal compromise from undetected problems such as diabetes and Rh immunisations. Late prenatal care can include blood tests, such as Hepatitis B and different immune tests. It is advisable to start taking prenatal vitamins as soon as you know that you're pregnant and to keep all your appointments with your doctor. Take your significant other or a close friend with you to ultrasounds.

2. Educate yourself
Go to libraries and thrift book stores, or ask for pamphlets on pregnancy, labour, and caring for infants. You can also sign up for classes within a local hospital, which may be free or have a small fee. Childbirth education classes teach you what to expect during labour and delivery, as well as techniques for easing the pain - information that could help you make good choices and possibly even avoid a C-section.

3. Stay healthy & hydrated
Pregnant women need a lot more nutrients, which means a bigger proportion of fruits and vegetables. Your caffeine intake should not be more than 300 mg a day; some professionals say you should avoid caffeine altogether. If you experience cravings, opt for healthier items: Instead of potato chips, eat carrot sticks or try chocolate flavoured cereal with skim milk instead of chocolate candy. Drink non-caffeine drinks and seven to eight glasses of water a day.

4. Join the Mom-2-be programme for support
Mom-2-be is customised to match your unique health profile, lifestyle and pregnancy. A detailed timeline helps you understand the progress of your pregnancy and shows you week by week how your baby is growing.
You can also diarise your doctors’ visits, upload pictures and access your preventive care benefits. The Mom-2-be programme also offers members double points at Dis-Chem and a toy box valued at R350.

5. Keep up your strength
Stay active, but know your limits. Regular exercise during pregnancy can improve your ability to cope with the pain of labour, and speed up your recovery afterwards. As long as your doctor approves, you should try to do 30 minutes of activity (such as walking, swimming or prenatal yoga) on most, if not all, days of the week.

6. Get ready for the unexpected
You may go into labour any time between 38 to 42 weeks and it may happen at the most unexpected time and place. Prepare a plan for how to get to the hospital. Pack a bag for you and your baby ahead of time. Make sure to include any items you and the baby will need. Don't forget the camera!

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