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1. I was told that perennial Artemisia warms up your uterus so I’ve been taking them in tablets. Do they really help?
Out of all the herbs, mugworts still create much controversy. It all boils down to the conclusion that they should be refrained from before and during gestation, scientists say. Apart from pregnancy, if you suffer from cold hands and feet, the mugwort pack is recommended by oriental doctors. At any rate, women preparing to get pregnant shouldn’t take perennial Artemisia and other mugworts.
2. I hear that a couple trying for a baby should both take folic acid. Is there a folic acid supplement specifically designed for men?
Childbirth plan is about planning to have a child (or not) and taking an action to achieve your goal.
Unplanned pregnancy is prone to premature birth or low birth weight.
It is a pity that there are no supplements for men in their reproductive period in Korea. There are several multi-vitamins including folic acid on the market. Consult your doctor for a specific product.
3. When should I start planning the next gestation after a miscarriage?
Expert opinions are divided on the right time to plan pregnancy after an artificial abortion. But most of them view that a period that’s 1.5 times to twice longer than the previous gestation period is sufficient. So, if you had your abortion 3 months ago, you will want to take about 5 to 6 months off before planning your next pregnancy. Couples should take nutrients, build good habits and exercise and consult with a doctor during the period to find the right contraceptive method.
4. What precautions should I take as an older mother-to-be (P.116~117)?
Up until so far, women’s age was the only consideration when it comes to gestation, but their husband’s age must be considered, too. The older a man gets, the weaker their genitals become, deteriorating their ability to get their wives pregnant. When a woman is older than 35, it is considered elderly pregnancy. Women at the age of 35 have half the childbearing ability of 25-year-old women. It also increases the likelihood of fetal deformation, miscarriage and other obstetric complications. In particular, it is highly likely that they experience obstetric hypertension, fetal growth restriction (low birth weight), obstetric diabetes, placental abruption, or placenta previa. Additionally, they tend to give birth to a premature baby, hampering the newborn’s health conditions. The C-section is a common option in elderly pregnancy. Hopefully, you can have a healthy pregnancy and childbirth if you acknowledge the possible risks and make the necessary preparations. Don’t panic and receive a perinatal examination on a regular basis.
5. Is obesity a negative factor that causes subfertility?
Obesity affects the inseminating ability of women and men. The most scientific way to measure obesity based on height and weight is the body mass index, or BMI. It is defined as the individual's body weight divided by the square of his or her height. Set your BMI between 20 and 25. Measuring obesity varies slightly between countries but most of them adopt the following criteria.BMI range below 19.8: Underweight. You should gain more weight to increase your childbearing ability. BMI range from 19.8 to 25: Normal weight. You are in the ideal weight range for natural pregnancy. BMI range from 25 to 29: Overweight. BMW less than 27.5 doesn’t have that much of an impact on childbearing ability but BMI between 27.5 and 29 is not. In this case, you should lose some weight for your natural gestation. BMI range above 29: Obese. Your weight is affecting not only your childbearing ability but also your overall health. You must try to lose weight gradually. Change your regimen to include less fatty foods and more fresh fruits and vegetables full of fiber. Start working out, too.
6. I’m preparing to get pregnant. Is a vaginal sanitizer really needed?
I suggest that you avoid using the vaginal sanitizer. Just clean running water is enough and wash only the exterior area. Do not try to wash inside the vagina. That’s the best option. If it feels itchy, smelly or your vaginal discharge changes in color, do not use a sanitizer but go see a doctor to figure out what caused it. The vagina has the ability to self-purify. Its resiliency should get itself back to normal. No need for sanitizers.
7. I’m worried about my menstrual period getting shorter and shorter. Is it a symptom of menstrual irregularity?
What you should understand is that menstrual irregularity is not a disease, but a symptom. Women menstruate about 400 times during their whole lifetime. 90% of women at the age of 21 to 45 have a menstrual cycle of 25 to 46 days, averaging 28.1 days. Physiologically, 28 days of menstruation is seen as normal. But only 15% of women have that cycle, and it is extremely rare to find a woman who has that exact same cycle for their entire lifetime. Even 20% of women with regular period experience irregularity from time to time. Also, the period varies as they get older. The menstrual period becomes the shortest for those in their 30s and it becomes longer again after the age of 40. Put simply, there are no women who maintain the same menstrual period their whole lives. Too often, many women tend to easily think they’re experiencing menstrual irregularity. But rarely is it the result of a serious problem in your period.
8. My hands, feet and whole body are so cold, so I’ve been massaging and using hot packs from the point of menstruation period to ovulation. Is this okay?
If your body is cold, insemination can be a long shot. You should keep yourself warm before gestation. But, hot packs are not recommended from ovulation to the first trimester. In addition, the heat from sauna during pregnancy is not good at all, which is likely to cause hypoxia in the fetus.
9. When should I try to get pregnant after being vaccinated for cervical cancer?
Six months of vaccination (0, 2, and 6th-month or 0, 1, and 6th-month) must be completed before pregnancy. If you’re done with it, you can always try for gestation. But if you happen to get pregnant during vaccination, postpone the vaccination until after childbirth.
10. My husband has been taking a prescription medication for his acne (pills and unguent). Will the acne medication cause fetal abnormalities?
Of course, the medications your husband takes can be problematic. It is best that your husband quits taking all medications 3 months before your gestation.
11. I’m preparing to get pregnant but have been visiting the dermatologic clinic for laser skincare. Is that okay?
Laser treatment is not much of a big deal in the process of preparing to get pregnant. But if you do get pregnant, you want to refrain from it because your skin will show symptoms of pigmentation (e.g., freckles), which is normal, due to increased estrogen during pregnancy, and you can’t expect much result from those skincare technologies. Freckles generated during pregnancy disappear once you give birth to your child, so you don’t need further treatment just for your skin.
12. I plan to go through conscious sedation endoscopy. How long should I wait to get pregnant afterward?
Just avoid the very day the conscious sedation endoscopy was performed on you. Once the intravenous injection passes through the half-life period of an anesthetic agent, you can feel relieved. Anesthetic agents have a shorter half-life period and disappear from the body entirely in about 2 to 3 days. So it’s best if you wait about 2 to 3 days before trying to get pregnant.
13. I have hypothyroidism. How will it affect my attempts at getting pregnant?
Hypothyroidism is seriously detrimental to the fetus in the first trimester. Until the fetus develops the ability to generate thyroid hormones on its own (3 months), it has no other way but to get it from the mother. If you get pregnant without treating hypothyroidism, you’ve just heightened the risk of miscarriage, toxemia, congenital deformation, premature birth, low birth weight, or stillbirth. In particular, it does hinder your fetus’ intellectual development, therefore you must have hypothyroidism treated through medication if you’re pregnant. Luckily, the medication for hypothyroidism doesn’t affect your pregnancy.
14. Is taking an excessive amount of beta-Carotene before and during pregnancy okay?
Retinol is an animal vitamin A. It should not be taken when you’re preparing for gestation, let alone during pregnancy. But beta-Carotene as a vitamin A is okay. Still, you don’t want to take more than 500 IU of it in total. Some doctors recommend taking less than 3,000 IU when you’re trying to get pregnant.
15. Is it okay for me to get a perm or change my hair color while preparing to get pregnant?
Many women often ask if it is fine to get a perm immediately before or during pregnancy. They’re worried about the toxin matters used in those solutions. In brief, you should have it done before gestation, not in the middle of it. Nevertheless, have it done at a clean beauty salon that is well ventilated and make it quick. As for beauticians, they experience prolonged exposure to such substances and it affects their ability to get pregnant naturally. So they need to consult their obstetrician.
16. I’m not married and have visited the obstetrician’s for an examination of atypical bleeding. I went through anal ultrasonography and was told that I have a uterus bicornis. The doctor told me to come in for a regular checkup, but I’m concerned.
A severe case of uterus bicornis that may cause fetal deformation occurs at a probability to 10% or less. It doesn’t affect your menstruation and pregnancy. But, if you experience miscarriage more than twice, more precise analysis and diagnosis are required. If you get married and plan for gestation later on, go to a general hospital for a more detailed examination.
17. I’ve been trying to get pregnant for over four months now. But I need to have my teeth checked out. Is it okay if I take an X-ray when my gestation is not confirmed?
Always remember that X-rays must be taken when you’re not pregnant. Let the staff at the dental clinic know of your pregnancy plan and they’ll put you in the appropriate protective gear.


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