If you are pregnant. you're most probably in a high risk of getting anemia. Anemia in pregnancy is a normal condition that most women will go through. But there are precautions to follow and things you should know about anemia.\r\n\r\nAnemia is a condition in which there is a deficiency of red cells or haemoglobin in the blood, resulting in pallor and weariness.\r\n\r\nHaving anemia during pregnancy will cause your body tissues and baby get insufficient oxygen.\r\n\r\nWorrying that you might be one of the pregnant mom with this condition? Let's go through one by one about anemia and how to prevent them in a healthiest and safest way.\r\nAnemia During Pregnancy\r\nDuring pregnancy, you body will need to produce more blood to support the growth of your baby.\r\n\r\nYour body will eventually not get the enough amount of blood to support your body and baby, if you are having iron deficiency.\r\n\r\nIt's normal to have mild anemia when you are pregnant. But you may have more severe anemia from low iron or vitamin levels or from other reasons.\r\n\r\nAnemia can leave you feeling tired and weak. If it is severe but goes untreated, it can increase your risk of serious complications like preterm delivery.\r\nType of anemia in pregnancy\r\nThere are three type of anemia usually will occur during pregnancy. Each of them happen for a different reason.\r\n\r\nIron-deficiency anemia.\u00a0Adequate amount of hemoglobin occur because of the iron-deficiency that take place in the body.\r\n\r\nIt is the main protein in red blood cells. It helps carrying oxygen from lungs to the rest of the body.\r\n\r\nIron-deficiency is the common cause of anemia in pregnancy. It causes the blood to have difficulties in carrying oxygen to tissues passing by the body.\r\n\r\nAs a result, iron deficiency anemia may leave you tired and short of breath.\r\n\r\nFolate-deficiency anemia.\u00a0Folate is a kind of vitamin that are found in certain natural food like green leafy vegetables. It is a type of vitamin B. The body usually needs folate to produce new cells to support your body, including healthy red blood cells.\r\n\r\nDuring pregnancy, women need extra folate. But sometimes they don't get enough from their diet.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nWhen that happens, the body can't make enough normal red blood cells to transport oxygen to tissues throughout the body.\r\n\r\nWith the deficiency of folate in your blood cell, it will contribute to certain type of birth defects. You might go through neural tube abnormalities or also know as spina bifida. Even might cause low birth weight for the baby.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nVitamin B12 deficiency. The body can't produce enough healthy red blood cells due to the insufficient vitamin B12 in a pregnant woman's body.\r\n\r\nThe body needs vitamin B12 to form healthy red blood cells. Women who don't eat meat, poultry, dairy products, and eggs have a greater risk of developing vitamin B12 deficiency.\r\n\r\n\r\nThis could contribute to birth defects such as neural tube abnormalities and also preterm labor.\r\n\r\n\r\nEven a blood loss during or after pregnancy can also lead to anemia.\r\nFactors for anemia in pregnancy\r\nEvery pregnant women will undergo the risk of brcoming anemic. That's because they need more iron and folic acid than usual. But the risk is higher if you:\r\n\r\n \tPregnant with twins or more than one child in a time\r\n \tHad your second pregnancy very soon after the first\r\n \tVomit a lot because of morning sickness\r\n \tGet pregnant in a very young age (teenage)\r\n \tEating less food that contain high value of iron\r\n \tAlready an anemic before getting pregnant\r\n\r\nSymptoms of anemia in pregnancy\r\nThere are certain symptoms that you can feel by yourself during pregnancy that indicates anemia in your body.\r\n\r\n \tYour skin, lips and nails looks pale\r\n \tEasily getting tired or become weak\r\n \tAlways feel dizzy\r\n \tHas a difficulty to breathe\r\n \tRapid heartbeat\r\n \tBecome less concentrated\r\n \tFatigue\r\n\r\nIn the early stages of anemia, you may not have obvious symptoms.\r\n\r\nMost of the symptoms are ones that you might have while pregnant even if you're not anemic.\r\n\r\nSo be sure to get routine blood tests to check for anemia at your prenatal appointments.\r\nRisk of anemia in pregnancy\r\nSevere or untreated iron-deficiency anemia during pregnancy can increase your risk of having:\r\n\r\n \tA preterm or low-birth-weight baby\r\n \tA blood transfusion (if you lose a significant amount of blood during delivery)\r\n \tPostpartum depression\r\n \tA baby with anemia\r\n \tA child with developmental delays\r\n\r\nUntreated folate deficiency can increase your risk of having a:\r\n\r\n \tPreterm or low-birth-weight baby\r\n \tBaby with a serious birth defect of\u00a0the spine\u00a0or\u00a0brain\u00a0(neural tube defects)\r\n\r\nUntreated vitamin B12 deficiency can also raise your risk of\u00a0having a baby\u00a0with neural tube defects.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nTests for Anemia\r\nDuring your first prenatal appointment, you'll get a blood test so your doctor can check whether you have anemia. Blood tests typically include:\r\n\r\n \tHemoglobin test. It measures the amount of hemoglobin, an iron-rich protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen from the lungs to tissues in the body.\r\n \tHematocrit test. It measures the percentage of red blood cells in a sample of blood.\r\n\r\nIf you have lower than normal levels of hemoglobin or hematocrit, you may have iron-deficiency anemia.\r\n\r\nYour doctor may check other blood tests to determine if you have iron deficiency or another cause for your anemia.\r\n\r\nEven if you don't have anemia at the beginning of your pregnancy, your doctor will most likely recommend that you get another blood test to check for anemia in your second or third trimester.\r\nTreatment for anemia\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nIf you are anemic during your pregnancy, you may need to start taking an iron supplement and\/or folic acid supplement in addition to your\u00a0prenatal vitamins.\r\n\r\nYour doctor may also suggest that you add more foods that are high in iron and folic acid to your diet.\r\n\r\nIn addition, you'll be asked to return for another blood test after a specific period of time so your doctor can check that your hemoglobin and hematocrit levels are improving.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nTo treat vitamin B12 deficiency, your doctor may recommend that you take a vitamin B12 supplement.\r\n\r\nThe doctor may also recommend that you include more animal foods in your diet, such as:\r\n\r\n \tmeat\r\n \teggs\r\n \tdairy products\r\n\r\n\r\nPreventing Anemia\r\nTo prevent anemia during pregnancy, make sure you get enough iron. Eat well-balanced meals and add more foods that are high in iron to your diet.\r\n\r\nAim for at least three servings a day of iron-rich foods, such as:\r\n\r\n \tlean red meat, poultry, and fish\r\n \tleafy, dark green vegetables (such as spinach, broccoli, and kale)\r\n \tiron-enriched cereals and grains\r\n \tbeans, lentils, and tofu\r\n \tnuts and seeds\r\n \teggs\r\n\r\nFoods that are high in\u00a0vitamin C\u00a0can help your body absorb more iron. These include:\r\n\r\n \tcitrus fruits and juices\r\n \tstrawberries\r\n \tkiwis\r\n \ttomatoes\r\n \tbell peppers\r\n\r\nTry eating those foods at the same time that you eat iron-rich foods. For example, you could drink a glass of orange juice and eat an iron-fortified cereal for\u00a0breakfast.\r\n\r\nAlso, choose foods that are high in folate to help prevent folate deficiency. These include:\r\n\r\n \tleafy green vegetables\r\n \tcitrus fruits and juices\r\n \tdried beans\r\n \tbreads and cereals fortified with folic acid\r\n\r\nFollow your doctor's instructions for taking a prenatal vitamin that contains a sufficient amount of iron and folic acid.\r\n\r\nVegetarians and vegans should talk with their doctor about whether they should take a vitamin B12 supplement when they're pregnant and\u00a0breastfeeding.\r\n\r\nREMINDER!\r\n\r\nAs the world are in the outbreak of\u00a0Covid-19, make sure you stay safe inside. Never get too exposed in the public and make a direct contact with anyone.\r\n\r\nDon't forget that you aren't alone, there is a baby in your stomach that are eagerly waiting to see the world. Be extra careful with yourself and every family member that are staying with you.\r\n\r\nMake sure to keep your immune system strong. Hold on with all the baby shower and baby-moon that you have been planning from the first day of your pregnancy.\r\n\r\nIt is not the best time to go for a vacay or have any occasion at this moment. Your safety is much more important for now. Stay safety and healthy mommies!\r\n\r\nStay updated with us regarding your pregnancy and all other information just at Motherhood.com.my.