A high-risk pregnancy does not indicate that anything bad will happen to you or your fetus. According to the Capital Women’s Care team, a high-risk pregnancy means that you are at a higher risk of developing pregnancy complications because of your existing medical condition or any other determining factor. Whether you know you are at risk of high-risk pregnancy or want to minimize your risks, it is essential to work with your gynecologist.
Why would your doctor consider your pregnancy high-risk?
Various factors might force you to have a high-risk pregnancy. They include:
- Pre-existing medical conditions
Medical conditions you might have before pregnancy likely to pose risks to you and your unborn baby include:
- Autoimmune diseases
- Heart, lung, or kidney complications
- High blood pressure
- Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)
- Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)
Besides the medical conditions, you may also be at risk if you have a history of miscarriages or have genetic disorders. Therefore, you must consult with your gynecologist if you have existing conditions and wish to get pregnant.
- Medical conditions during pregnancy
Despite your health status before conception, you may develop, or your healthcare provider might diagnose you with a condition likely to threaten your life and that of your baby. Some of the common pregnancy-related complications include:
- Gestational diabetes
- Maternal age
Your age before conception can also play a significant role in your health and that of your unborn child. You are at a high risk of a high-risk pregnancy, especially if you are under 17 years or above 35 years compared to a teenage mom or an individual in her early 30s. Additionally, your risk of miscarriages and genetic defects increases after 40 years of age.
What are pregnancy-related complications?
Your gynecologist will classify a high-risk pregnancy because of issues arising from the pregnancy and a smaller percentage of your health. The complications might include:
- Multiple births
- Premature labor
- Fetal problems
- Placenta previa
To check on your fetus’ health and condition when you have a high-risk pregnancy, your doctor might suggest a biophysical profile (BPP). BPP involves the combination of an ultrasound and a nonstress test (NST). However, the medical professional can only recommend the test after 28 weeks of pregnancy.
On the other hand, an NST prompts your doctor to place a fetal monitor on your abdomen to interpret the fetal heart rate. The test that takes approximately 30 minutes checks for your baby’s heart rate in response to his movements.
What should you do when you have a high-risk pregnancy?
When your gynecologist identifies your pregnancy as high-risk, the medical expert will help you design a prenatal plan that might help minimize you and your baby’s risks. The plan is likely to include:
- Healthy diet
- Healthy weight
- Minimizing your caffeine consumption
- Quitting smoking, illegal drugs, or any other intoxicating substances
- Additional tests, ultrasounds, and appointments
- No exercise or an exercise routine
- Bed rest (for exceptional or except cases)
A high-risk pregnancy can make you feel anxious or scared. Fortunately, your gynecologist can help you find ways to minimize the stressors to allow you to enjoy pregnancy. Consult your doctor for help if you have a high-risk pregnancy.