Medication questions are some of the most common questions we get from patients, family members, and even other health care professionals. It is very important to speak with an OB/GYN regarding your specific medication questions of prenatal safety as some areas are not black and white.
Below is a typical, non-inclusive, list of medications that should be avoided during pregnancy. However, prenatal safety profiles are constantly being modified as new research and information is available.
– Not all antibiotics are bad during pregnancy. Typically medications in the family of fluoroquinolones or tetracyclines are avoided.
Examples of these are Cipro and Doxycycline respectively.
– Non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID’s) should not be used during pregnancy.
Examples include, but are not limited to Advil, ibuprofen, Motrin, Aleve. A safe over the counter pain medication is acetaminophen (Tylenol).
– Prescription medications that have narcotics in them may be used but with caution as long term use can cause neonatal abstinence syndrome. Talk to your OB/GYN about this if you are concerned.
Examples of narcotics are codeine, oxycodone, hydromorphone, and morphine just to name a few. They may be named Tylenol #3, Percocet, Dilaudid, and many more!
– Blood pressure medications that are considered diuretics, ACE-inhibitors, or ARB’s should be avoided during pregnancy.
Examples of these are Lisinopril, Valsartan, and HCTZ
– If you are concerned you may be on an unsafe blood pressure medication, call your doctor right away and switch to something that is safer to use during pregnancy
– Certain medications that are used to treat seizures are known to cause birth defects such as Valproic Acid. If you are considering pregnancy or just recently found out you are pregnant, do not stop medications! Talk to your doctor immediately about your individual needs and if there is a safer alternative for you.
– If you are on a blood thinner called Warfarin (Coumadin), talk to your doctor about switching to a safer option like Lovenox or Heparin.
– Certain medications for depression have been associated with birth defects such as Paxil. Use caution and talk to your doctor!
Have questions regarding prenatal safety? Contact us today at 407-478-6249 (Winter Park OB GYN location) or 407-478-6250 (Lake Nona OB GYN location)!
Your search for the best birth control seems difficult with the current options available. You don’t have to make your choice alone. Your OB/GYN wants to help you find the best option. Before your next appointment, answer the following questions to help find the right fit for you.
Can you remember to take a pill every day?
If the answer is no, then the “pill” may not be the best option for you. The pill requires you to take it daily. Other great options exist that do not need you to remember something every day.
Do you need or want a hormone free option?
Hormone free options include natural family planning, condoms, or the copper IUD (Intrauterine Device).
Do you need something longer acting, but reversible?
Long-term and reversible options include Depo-Provera, IUDs and Nexplanon. IUDs such as Skyla, Mirena, or Paragard can last three, five or ten years. Nexplanon, an implant in your upper arm, lasts three years.
Do you have any medical conditions?
Your doctor will ask for your personal and family history. Many birth control options are contraindicated.
Are you sure you’re done with having children?
Consider minimally invasive ways to have permanent sterilization. Your options include Essure, tubal interruption, or a vasectomy (for him of course!). Ask your doctor for details about Essure and a tubal interruption if interested.
Have more questions about birth control? Give us a call at either of our locations!
Winter Park (407) 478-6249
Lake Nona (407) 476-0200
Are you pregnant and looking for a creative way to tell your partner? We sat down at our Winter Park OB GYN office, and came up with a list of creative ideas just for you!
Forget the wedding proposal, try a baby proposal! Find your ring box (or any jewelry box), put a pacifier in it, and get down on one knee to ask the very important question: “Will you have a baby with me?”
2) Plan a dinner
Make reservations at your favorite restaurant and let the staff know in advance. You can even ask the hostess or server to seat you as a “party of three”.
3) Make it official
Send him a “certified” letter in the mail with a poem you wrote or cute card telling him he’s “officially” going to be a dad
4) If it’s around the holiday, lucky you!
New Year: Buy sparkling cider and cheers to alcohol free celebration. Tell him it’s not your resolution…you’re pregnant!
Valentines: Get a box of chocolates and personalize the inside of the lid “Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get…boy or girl, you’re gonna be a dad!”
Easter: Prepare an Easter egg hunt and let him find the one you stuff telling him he’s going to be a dad!
July 4th: Buy fireworks and write a note to him saying these are to celebrate our country’s independence and ours in 18 years! Congratulations dad!
Thanksgiving: If you’re cooking, tell him you didn’t buy any bread because you already have a bun in the oven
Hanukkah/Christmas: Wrap 4 gift boxes that contain the letters B-A-B-Y in them and have him open them individually until he realizes that it spells “Baby”
If he loves coffee, pour him a cup and when he finishes, the bottom of the empty mug will read “Hope you enjoyed your coffee daddy!” Apply the same concept to a beer label, plate of food, etc…)
6) Or…just keep it simple! Give him a big hug and kiss and tell him you’re pregnant
Have questions regarding pregnancy? Contact us today at 407-478-6249 (Winter Park OB GYN location) or 407-478-6250 (Lake Nona OB GYN location)!
Photo Courtesy of Janine / Flickr Creative Commons
While some women may be able to get pregnant on the first try, for many, conceiving a child can be a disheartening experience. If you’re having trouble conceiving, tracking your fertility can be a great way to get the ball rolling on expanding your family. Fertility charting, also known as Natural Family Planning (NFP), can help pinpoint the days of the month you’re most likely to get pregnant.
Here are a few tips on how to maximize your chances of getting pregnant using fertility charting.
Get the right tools
At a minimum, you will need a calendar or planner to start tracking your menstrual cycle. There are also several online tools and apps you can use to record your data electronically. Fertility Friend is an online resource for fertility planning and tracking that offers users educational videos and a personalized hormonal profile to determine your fertility window. It even analyzes your data and provides an accurate interpretation of your fertility signs.
Start monitoring your cycle
The first day you should plot on your calendar is Day 1 of your period. This will mark the beginning of your menstrual cycle. When your period ends, your body begins the process of producing a new set of eggs in the ovaries. After about 14 days, ovulation begins and the eggs are released from the ovaries. It is during this time your chances of pregnancy are the highest.
By knowing your ovulation schedule, you can better plan when to get the “process” started. The most fertile days for pregnancy are from three days leading up to ovulation through the day of ovulation. What does that mean for you? It means you can actually work with Mother Nature to get pregnant successfully.
Track signs of ovulation
In addition to charting your menstrual cycle on a calendar, you should have a separate notebook to keep track of ovulation signs. Common signs of ovulation include changes in cervical fluid, basal body temperature and cervical position. Make note of these signals every month until you can confidently identify when you’re ovulating.
Include the day (Day 10, Day 14, etc.) of your menstrual cycle and the change you noticed that indicated your body could be ovulating. Go back and mark this day on your menstrual cycle calendar. In the beginning, you may find it useful to keep an ovulation predictor kit handy. You could opt to primarily use these kits, however, this option can get a little expensive.
Interpret your results
After charting your menstrual cycle for a month, it’s now time to interpret your results. Even if your charting didn’t result in an immediate pregnancy, what can be deduced thus far is the length of your menstrual cycle. If your menstrual cycle is less than 21 days or more than 35 days apart, you should consult with one of our Winter Park OB/GYN doctors. An abnormal menstrual cycle could indicate you are ovulating inconsistently.
Knowing the length of your menstrual cycle will take most of the guess work out of determining when ovulation begins. Although the average start of a woman’s ovulation period begins on Day 14 of the menstrual cycle, it can begin as late as Day 21. If for example your menstrual cycle is about 29 days, mark days 11-16 on the calendar as your ideal fertility window.
It’s always a good idea to make an appointment with your OB/GYN if you are having trouble getting pregnant. Our Winter Park OB/GYN doctors can provide you with additional support and resources needed during the pregnancy process. To schedule an appointment, contact Contemporary Women’s Care at 407) 478-6249 or use our online appointment scheduler.
Image courtesy of: David Castillo Dominici @ Freedigitalphotos.net
Having a baby is one of life’s greatest gifts. Although pregnancy comes with frustrating symptoms – morning sickness, fatigue, breast tenderness – the health benefits gained from pregnancy more than make up for the negative side effects. The changes your body goes through during these next nine months will be worth it when your baby finally arrives, and the health benefits last long after childbirth.
Pregnancy Produces Healthier Habits
With a little one on the way, your priorities change, and so do your habits. Becoming a mother encourages you to evaluate your life and make healthy changes, because now the way you treat your body directly affects the growing baby inside you.
A poll by BabyCenter asked over 20,000 moms about how motherhood has impacted their habits, and the results showed that pregnancy has a way of rearranging one’s priorities:
- 83% now eat a healthier diet, or takings steps to do so.
- 69% have stopped putting their mental health on the back burner.
- 65% are getting active again, or trying to. (For something low-impact with proven benefits for pregnant women, try prenatal yoga.)
- 52% ditched unhealthy habits completely (or at least cut back on them) and started making their health more of a priority.
Making these changes early on can set the stage for a healthy newborn. If your healthy eating habits stick with you post-pregnancy, you’re more likely to encourage your child to eat healthier as he or she grows up.
Pregnancy Lowers Your Risk of Cancer
Studies have shown that breastfeeding and the number of children a woman gives birth to can lower a woman’s risk of developing breast cancer. Pregnancy and breastfeeding both reduce women’s exposure to ovarian hormones associated with increased breast cancer risk.
Additionally, women who reach full-term pregnancies experience reduced risk of ovarian and endometrial cancer. The risks lower each time a woman has a full-term pregnancy.
Pregnancy Offers Relief from Menstrual Pain
If you suffered from severe menstrual cramps before pregnancy, you’ll be pleased to know that menstrual pain decreases after giving birth. It’s unknown why women experience fewer cramps post-pregnancy, but one theory is that childbirth eliminates some of the prostaglandin receptor sites in the uterus. These hormones tell the uterus when to contract during labor as well as during your menstrual cycle.
Pregnancy Fights Heart Disease
Did you know that heart disease is the main cause of death in the US for women? It leads to approximately 600,000 deaths per year. However, studies have found that women who have been pregnant multiple times have a lowered risk of developing heart disease or experiencing strokes. Researchers say it could be due to the higher levels of estrogen present during pregnancy, since low estrogen levels can lead to heart disease.
Scientists speculate that the oxytocin released during breastfeeding also helps keep your heart healthy. Besides hormones, having little ones around to provide support and social interaction can ward off heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
Image courtesy of: hayleesherwood @ Flickr
Some women discover inner strength they didn’t know they had after going through labor. It’s great to know that our bodies reward us for being so strong during the process.
If you’re thinking about starting a family, or if it’s simply time for your check-up, schedule an appointment today with one of our Orlando Obstetricians. Call us at (407) 478-6249 for our Winter Park office, (407) 476-0200 for our new office in Lake Nona or visit our website for more information.
Expecting a baby? Your body will experience many changes during the course of your pregnancy. You probably have tons of questions regarding how these changes will affect you. We’ve provided a breakdown of what to expect during each month of your pregnancy.
During the first week of month 1, you may not even know you’re pregnant. Women usually ovulate evenly in between your period (about 14 days from your menstrual cycle), which is when conception should occur. During the fourth week, women generally take a home pregnancy test that indicates whether you’re pregnant or not.
Your baby is still tiny and you may not be showing. However, your baby’s heart, brain, spinal cord, muscle, and bones are beginning to develop. By week 6, your doctor may be able to hear a heartbeat during an ultrasound. During the second month, you begin to feel physical changes in your body. Morning sickness, tender breasts, moodiness and queasiness are all typical symptoms during this phase of your pregnancy.
At this point, you may feel yourself gaining weight and feeling more comfortable in looser clothes. Unless you shared the great news with others, they won’t notice your weight gain. You may be experiencing food cravings, nausea or indigestion at this point. By the end of the third month, your baby has developed arms, hands, fingers, feet and toes. Your baby also begins to develop its reproductive organs. However, it is too difficult to determine gender on an ultrasound. Now that your baby has experienced the most critical part of development, your chance of having a miscarriage decreases significantly.
You are now entering the second trimester of pregnancy. Morning sickness begins to subside and you may start feeling more energetic. Your baby’s bones are hardening and its facial features begin to form. With limbs moving and a functioning nervous system, your baby is now responsive to interactions outside the womb. For example, if something pokes your belly you may feel your baby try to move away. Your health care provider may now be able to use an ultrasound to see the gender of your baby.
Your baby is growing significantly and is learning to breathe and hear. If an ultrasound could not determine the gender of your baby in the previous month, it should be able to now. Weight gain and an increase in appetite are typical during this time period. The rapid growth of your baby may cause some abdominal aches, dizziness, swelling of ankles or backaches. The best thing to do is relax and move slowly when changing positions (i.e. sitting down, getting up).
This month marks the halfway point in your pregnancy. You’re finally showing and by the end of the month, your baby should be almost fully formed. You may be able to feel your baby hiccup and your partner can hear the baby’s heartbeat.
Now that you are entering your third trimester, you may feel growth changes for you and your baby. Your baby’s hearing is fully developed hearing, can cry and actively sucks his or her thumb. Typical pregnancy symptoms for this point include leg cramps, swelling of ankles and feet, difficulty sleeping, shortness of breath, lower abdominal aches, or Braxton Hicks contractions.
As you enter the final stages of pregnancy you are most likely anticipating the birth. Your baby continuously grows and should measure at about 18-20 inches and weigh about 4-5 pounds. This stage and the following weeks mark significant growth for your baby – your baby will gain most of its weight at this time. Now is the time to consider options for childcare, whether you plan on breastfeeding and if you wish to return to work after birth.
While you’re in the home stretch of your pregnancy, you may feel some discomfort. You may experience difficulty sleeping, pain in the buttocks and pelvis, and contractions. At this point you should visit your doctor weekly. Be sure to have a packed bag filled with all necessary items for when you go into labor.
At Contemporary Women’s Care, we care about our clients and their families. We are the leading Board Certified Winter Park OB GYN and Orlando OB GYN practice. Book an appointment with us today at our Lake Nona or Winter Park office.
One of the most exciting parts of your pregnancy is finding out the gender of your baby. And perhaps even more exciting is revealing whether you’re having a boy or a girl to your friends and family. With a little planning and creativity, your reveal can have the anticipation and suspense of an awards show and the elegant design and craftiness that would make Martha Stewart proud.
Try a cake with a blue or pink inside, like this one from Betty Crocker. The icing keeps the color (and the gender!) a secret until the cake is cut. All you need to make this adorable surprise is cake mix, frosting and blue or pink candies or food dye. The same concept can even applied to cupcakes! If you want to find out with your guests, have your obstetrician give the gender to a bakery and they can make the tasty surprise without you knowing ahead of time. When you cut the cake, the look on everyone’s faces will be as delicious as the dessert.
If you’re having an outdoor party or don’t mind making a mess for your big reveal, Silly String, glitter, and confetti can add additional excitement and fun. Try pink or blue Silly String with paper wrapped around the can to conceal the color. Have guests spray each other for the big reveal. Or guests could fill their hands with glitter and have everyone blow in their hands for the “pixie dust” effect. A balloon or piñata filled with pink or blue confetti or candy that’s ready for popping is always a good bet for a fun group surprise.
If you’re not the party type, perhaps a creative photo-shoot is more appropriate. Balloon reveals are really popular. You and your partner can either take a photo letting balloons go, holding balloons or popping the color that doesn’t correlate with your baby’s gender. The same concept can also be applied to bubble gum. One of the more creative ideas is to dip the palms of your hands in either blue or pink paint and then place them on your baby bump. Take a before picture with just the hands and then reveal to show the colorful handprints for an after-shot.
For all your obstetric care, visit the Contemporary Women’s Care website or call our Winter Park OB GYN office at 407-478-6249 to schedule an appointment.
Having a good pregnancy doesn’t have to be left to chance. Being happy, healthy and informed makes a world of difference toward ensuring both you and your baby cruise smoothly from conception to delivery. And with the help of your obstetrician or OB GYN, you’ll be prepared for any unexpected surprises that may arise.
Scheduling a pre-conception appointment with your obstetrician before you get pregnant helps you make sure you’re in the right place physically and emotionally to make the most of your pregnancy. A pre-conception appointment can include obstetrical education, information on high-risk pregnancies and even genetic screenings. If you’re thinking about having a baby, contact your Orlando OB GYN sooner rather than later to schedule your pre-conception appointment so you’re prepared right from the start.
Diet and exercise
Nutritious eating habits, routine exercise and healthy body weight promote wellness and reduce your susceptibility to disease, both of which positively affect your pregnancy. Think of it this way: the healthier you are, the healthier your baby will be.
Maintaining a balanced diet before conception will help your body meet the nutritional needs of your developing baby. It’s also a fact that women who are physically fit before becoming pregnant feel better and have more energy throughout pregnancy. At least 30 minutes of exercise several times a week helps ensure good health for the long-term.
The Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada (SOGC) suggests working toward maintaining a Body Mass Index (BMI) below 30, and ideally between 20 and 25. “Women who have BMIs over 30 when they conceive are at increased risk for complications during pregnancy.”
Beauty products like hair dyes and skin creams can affect your developing baby without you even knowing. To avoid any complications caused by your beauty regimen, avoid hair dyes, hair straightening chemicals and acrylic nails during your pregnancy as their fumes could prove harmful to the developing baby during the first trimester. Rubbing vitamin E on the areas affected by stretch marks helps bring your skin back to its youthful, supple appearance.
For more information on how you can prepare for a happy and healthy pregnancy, visit the Contemporary Women’s Care website or call 407-478-6249 to schedule an appointment.
When a couple decides to have a child, it can be an exciting and beautiful experience. Sometimes though, the process doesn’t go as planned and couples just can’t get pregnant no matter how hard they try. If this is happening to you, don’t worry; it’s a common frustration many couples experience. Thankfully, there are a few things you can try in order to increase your pregnancy chances.
First, it is imperative to know when ovulation and the fertile period occur. The best time to try to get pregnant is within three days before ovulation, though it is possible up to six days. Your gynecologist will be able to determine day of ovulation, however, you can also monitor your temperature from your own home. Body temperature drops slightly as it approaches ovulation and spikes immediately after. Tracking temperatures can help you calculate the best time for conception more accurately and increase your chances of success.
Decrease stress levels
You can also increase your pregnancy chances by simply relaxing. It’s natural to feel anxious about conceiving, especially if you’ve been trying for a while. Stress, though, can decrease your chances and hamper the process. It affects the hypothalamus, the gland in the brain that regulates appetite, emotions, and most relevantly, the hormones that control egg release.
Stress can delay ovulation or stop it all together. Additionally, “sudden” stress is more detrimental than “constant” stress; that is, stress from sudden, unusual, or traumatic events have much more impact than every-day, common stressors, though the effects vary from person to person. It is important to remember that stress can also be positive.
If you’re excited or especially happy about something, that can affect ovulation as well. While stress doesn’t directly changed your chances of getting pregnant, it can throw off your body’s natural timing. Reducing stress and relaxing can greatly help.
Change your diet
Changes in your diet and lifestyle can affect fertility as well. For women, alcohol and caffeine can have a negative effect on conception. While your daily cup of coffee or occasional glass of wine shouldn’t affect conception, studies have found that consuming the caffeine equivalent of around five cups of coffee or two alcoholic beverages a day can decrease fertility.
Men who drink daily or use tobacco or recreational drugs can experience reduced testosterone and sperm count in addition to damaging existing sperm. Too much heat can also cause damage so avoiding hot tubs and saunas is recommended. Ensuring you get enough of certain nutrients, such as zinc, folic acid, calcium, and vitamins C and D, can prove beneficial.
Seek help from your OB GYN to increase your pregnancy chances
While there is plenty of information available online, the best advice will come from your gynecologist directly. Six out of ten couples conceive within three months. After that, depending on your age, you may need to seek the opinion of an OB GYN. If you’re over 40, you’ll want to see a professional right away. If you’re 35-40, six months without success should warrant an appointment. If you’re under 35, you can probably try for a year before seeking help.
If you would like advice or assistance, contact Winter Park OB GYN Contemporary Women’s Care to schedule an online appointment or call (407) 478-6249 today.
Gender Neutral Nursery Decorating
Decorating a nursery without knowing your baby’s gender can be difficult. However, with a little creativity and a push in the right direction, you can have a phenomenal result. Here are a few tips and tricks that will help guide you to creating the perfect gender-neutral nursery for your little one.
Gender Neutral Colors for Nurseries
The traditional pink for girls and blue for boys likely won’t work if you want to stay gender neutral. To shy away from the norm, you just have to be a little more inventive. You don’t want to pick a color that either screams masculinity or is too feminine. Finding a middle ground is the best option when deciding color schemes. Tonal greens, yellows, whites, grays and wood tones are great choices.
Most nurseries have a theme tied to the room – whether it’s Winnie the Pooh, Disney princesses, or sports. To come up with a theme without defining the space as a boy or girl’s space, start with something neutral. Animals, numbers, letters and even nursery rhymes work well for either gender. Then, once you learn the gender, you can become more specific or adjust the theme to your liking.
When purchasing furnishing for your nursery, there are many options to suit your personal style. You can look for modern furniture to pair with playful and bold accents. White furniture allows for colorful accent pieces with wall décor and decorations. Don’t be afraid to mix in fun patterns and textures. You can even switch things up by hanging pictures on the wall with white frames and then using a bright red crib as your accent piece (as shown here).
It’s also helpful to choose convertible furniture that can be used down the road. A crib that turns into a day bed will save some money and will make the transition from infant to toddler that much simpler!
After Baby’s Arrival
Once you bring your newborn home you can incorporate personalization into the room. A monogrammed quilt or large wooden letters will add your child’s identity to the room. For a focus piece in the room, take your baby’s handprint or footprint and hang the framed picture to draw the eye when you walk in the room.
Whatever direction you choose to take, the most important thing is to create a comfortable space for you and your baby. You’ll be spending a lot of time together in that nursery, so make sure that it’s a room you’ll love.
Getting ready for your bundle of joy? Call the expert OBGYN team at Contemporary Women’s Care at 407-478-6249 or schedule an appointment online