Top four heart health concerns for moms-to-be
Pregnancy is a really special time for a woman – after all, you’re growing a new life inside you! It’s definitely a moment to be cherished, but also a time to start thinking more carefully about your heart health and the heart health of your little one.
During pregnancy, your body is working much harder than normal – with hormones, weight gain and another life to support all creating additional demands on your heart.
Qardio’s top 4 heart health concerns will help give you the knowledge you need to enjoy your pregnancy with peace of mind – so here are our top tips, helping you to stay healthy during this exciting time and beyond:
Pregnancy induced hypertension pre-eclampsia
More than 5% of women develop pre-eclampsia during their pregnancies – it’s a serious condition which affects your health as well as that of your baby. It typically starts in the later stages of pregnancy, and the symptoms include high blood pressure, swelling of the hands and feet, severe headaches and vision problems.
During pregnancy, it’s important to start measuring your blood pressure frequently to monitor for pre-eclampsia. QardioArm could help – it’s more of a pregnancy accessory than a conspicuous piece of medical kit, and allows you to easily share your data with your doctor or a partner so you can build a supportive network around you.
The majority of women will gain weight during their pregnancy, but its important to know how much weight gain is healthy and ensure you’re not gaining too little or too much.
If your pre-pregnancy weight was in the healthy range (a BMI of 18.5 to 24.9), you should expect to gain between 1 – 5lbs in your first trimester. Some expectant mothers even lose weight at the beginning (usually due to morning sickness). As your second and third trimesters approach, 1 pound per week is the optimal growth rate for you and your baby.
QardioBase, our smart scale designed for mums to be not only helps ensure that you gain weight in a safe manner but also helps you lose it once your baby is born. It even has a special Pregnancy Mode, which gives you valuable feedback throughout your journey and beyond.
Swollen ankles, feet and hands
It’s normal to experience a little swelling in pregnancy – especially towards the end. Your body is retaining more water than usual, which tends to gather in the lower parts of your body. Some of the discomfort can be relieved by putting your feet up, ditching high heels and avoiding prolonged standing, as well as incorporating gentle exercise and moderate walking into your daily routine.
Changes to the heart and blood vessels
It’s not just visible changes that are happening during your pregnancy – there are many occurring inside you as well! These changes put extra stress on your heart, which is now working even harder than before.
During the first trimester, the amount of blood you produce increases by 40 – 50%, which demands much greater cardiac output. It’s also normal for your heart rate to increase and for your blood pressure to decrease due to the high volume of blood in your system. All these changes occurring in your body might cause fatigue and shortness of breath – so it’s important that you rest well during this time and monitor your health closely along with your doctor or obstetrician.
Do you have any questions about heart health during pregnancy? Or would you like to share your own story or experiences? We would love to hear from you! Talk to us at www.facebook.com/getqardio or @getqardio.