Prioritize an aerobic exercise routine.One of the best things you can do for your blood pressure during pregnancy (and also for your overall health) is to prioritize an exercise routine.,
Stay as close as possible to your ideal body weight.Ideally, before becoming pregnant, you will already have been at your ideal body weight.,
Quit smoking.Smoking has been correlated to raising your blood pressure so, if you are worried about having blood pressure problems during pregnancy, now may be the time to quit smoking.,
Optimize the health of your diet.Prioritizing a healthy diet can have a noticeable impact on blood pressure.,
Reduce your stress.Psychological and emotional stress has been linked to high blood pressure; therefore, if you can take steps to stay as relaxed as possible during your pregnancy it will give you the best chance of maintaining a healthy blood pressure.,
Have your blood pressure monitored regularly.One key aspect of prenatal care is to obtain regular blood pressure measurements.,
Know which blood pressure medications are safe during pregnancy.There are a variety of different classes of blood pressure medications (in other words, there are many different drugs to choose from).,
Get tested for any other signs or symptoms that may occur concurrently with high blood pressure.,
Understand what defines gestational hypertension.Gestational hypertension is when you develop high blood pressure 20 or more weeks into your pregnancy (assuming that you were not diagnosed with high blood pressure prior to this point).,
Look out for signs of preeclampsia.Oftentimes preeclampsia is diagnosed by having both high blood pressure as well as protein in your urine; however, doctors have recently come to find that preeclampsia can be present even without protein in your urine if you display any other signs of potential organ damage.,
Be aware of potential risks to your baby.The reason that it is important to maintain good blood pressure control during pregnancy is to avoid possible complications to your pregnancy and/or to your baby’s health.
A simple way to start is to plan in at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise at least three days per week. Do exercises that elevate your heart rate, such as jogging, brisk walking, swimming, or cycling.
Exercise has multiple benefits for your health, not the least of which is having a positive impact on your blood pressure so that you minimize your chances of having any blood pressure problems during pregnancy.
Note that, if you are not already active, you should lightly ease into an exercise routine under the supervision of your doctor. Do not begin a new exercise routine suddenly without first consulting your doctor.;
, Your doctor can inform you of a body weight that is healthy and normal for someone of your height and build, should you have any questions about it.
Your doctor can provide you with guidelines as to the weight changes you should aim for as your pregnancy progresses, which will depend on how much you weighed prior to becoming pregnant.
If you are not yet pregnant, use diet and exercise to get as close to your ideal weight as possible before getting pregnant.
Losing weight during pregnancy is not recommended. Even overweight pregnant women are expected to gain weight during pregnancy.
, Quitting smoking will also have a noticeable impact on your baby’s health and wellbeing. Therefore, not only is it in the best interest of you, but of your future baby as well.
Your family doctor can help you with strategies to quit smoking, if you are interested.
Your doctor may offer you nicotine replacement as needed, and/or medications to help diminish cigarette cravings (such as Wellbutrin or Bupropion).
, It can certainly help to keep your blood pressure in a safe and normal range during pregnancy.
Avoid consuming too much salt or processed foods (which are high in salt); this will help to prevent blood pressure problems during pregnancy.
Also, opt for healthier foods overall, such as more fruits, vegetables, and whole grain carbohydrates.
This is better for your blood pressure than unhealthier alternatives such as refined carbohydrates, snack foods and junk food.
Consider seeing a counsellor or psychologist if you have elevated stress levels. They may be able to help you with coping strategies to reduce your stress.
You may also want to consider activities such as yoga, meditation, or relaxing walks in nature to help calm your state of mind.
It may also help to share your emotions with close friends and family as you progress through your pregnancy. It can be a challenging nine months and it can help to know that you are not alone.
, A normal blood pressure is below 140/90 (where the top number represents the systolic reading and the bottom number represents the diastolic reading). If your blood pressure is elevated above that point, your doctor will likely advise that you be treated with blood pressure medications to reduce it.
You can check your blood pressure on your own at a local pharmacy or big box store should you have any reason to feel concerned.
If not, your doctor will perform regular blood pressure checks at each of your prenatal visits, to ensure that there are no problems.
, Some blood pressure medications are safe during pregnancy, while other are not ideal for pregnant women.
Blood pressure medications to avoid during pregnancy include any ACE inhibitors (angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors, such as Ramipril and Captopril), any ARBs (angiotensin receptor blockers such as Candesartan), and any renin inhibitors (such as aliskiren). These drugs may cause birth defects or disease in the fetus.
Blood pressure medications that are recommended in pregnancy include Methyldopa and Labetalol. Calcium channel blockers such as nifedipine are also used frequently.
, The risk of high blood pressure during pregnancy often goes hand in hand with other symptoms, such as protein in your urine; therefore, if you demonstrate high blood pressure, your doctor will do a full evaluation of your health at this time.
, It may require treatment with a blood pressure medication, as well as continued monitoring to ensure that no further problems develop (such as preeclampsia).
, Preeclampsia is dangerous for you and your baby, and needs immediate medical treatment. If left untreated, it can lead to eclampsia, which is the onset of seizures. Potential signs of preeclampsia include:
Rapid weight gain due to swelling
Nausea and vomiting
See your doctor or go to the Emergency Room (if you cannot get a same-day appointment with your family doctor) if you notice the above signs or symptoms.
, Possible complications that may result from high blood pressure during pregnancy that is left untreated include:
A diminished nutrient supply to the placenta. With high blood pressure, less blood flow gets to the placenta which decreases the nutrient supply for your baby. This can lead to poor growth of the baby.
Placental abruption. Placental abruption is when the placenta detaches from the uterus wall as a result of the stress from untreated high blood pressure. This is an obstetrical emergency requiring immediate delivery of the baby.
Premature delivery. Your baby may need to be delivered prematurely if their wellbeing (or your own personal health) is compromised as a result of blood pressure concerns.