Unplanned Pregnancy, Healthy Habits, and Medications to Avoid


Medications and Your Unborn Baby

Sometimes life takes us by surprise. You may not have planned to become pregnant, but now is the perfect time to begin caring for your unborn baby. Let’s explore some ways you can provide a healthy start for your child.

Healthy Habits During Pregnancy

First and foremost, you must find an obstetrician or other pregnancy healthcare provider who you trust. Ann Arbor Adoption can direct you to the appropriate resources if you feel you can not parent. For the duration of your pregnancy, you will need to have regular medical checkups to ensure that you are healthy and your unborn baby is thriving.

It is more important than ever that you eat a healthy diet and drink plenty of water. Listen to your body’s hunger cues, and eat regular meals and snacks. Whenever you can, choose fresh fruits and veggies, whole grain carbohydrate sources like beans, and lean proteins like skinless chicken breast.

Pregnancy can be tiring throughout all three trimesters. Get adequate rest. If possible, go to bed and wake up at consistent times each day. Whenever you have the chance to catch a quick nap, take it! As contradictory as it may seem, exercise can actually help you get better sleep. If your doctor approves, aim to get in 30 minutes of exercise at least three times per week.

Reduce stress as much as you are able. Take time to relax and let yourself have “the little things.” For example, you may like to fill the tub with warm water and soak your feet. You can ask a friend to paint your toenails. (This is especially helpful in the third trimester, when many expectant mothers cannot reach their toes!) Enjoy your favorite meal. Visit a location that soothes you, such as your favorite park, library, museum, or place of worship.

What to Avoid

You may already know the basics: avoid alcohol, tobacco, drugs, and risky activities like contact sports. But did you know there are some medications you should avoid during pregnancy?

Several potentially harmful and confirmed dangerous drugs during pregnancy are as follows:

Proton Pump Inhibitors – Gastric problems like acid reflux are very common in pregnant women, with 30–50% suffering from heartburn. In order to relieve this discomfort, you may reach for an over-the-counter Proton Pump Inhibitor (PPI) medication like Nexium, Prilosec, or Prevacid. However, know that there is insufficient research to confirm the safety of these medications during pregnancy. While they could be safe, your doctor may encourage you to use an alternative method for heartburn relief, like chewing antacid tablets or drinking a glass of milk. (Always ask your doctor before you use any medication during pregnancy, even antacid tablets.)

Retinoids – Acne medications like Accutane are among the most dangerous drugs to use during pregnancy. They can cause severe birth defects in your unborn baby. Never use oral or topical retinoid medications while you are pregnant. If you suffer from acne during pregnancy, talk to your doctor about safe ways to reduce this problem, such as non-medicated face washes.

SGLT2 inhibitorsInvokana and other SGLT2 inhibitor diabetes medicines lack adequate research to determine safety. Animal studies indicate that these medicines could impact your baby’s kidney development. If you have diabetes, talk to your doctor about the best way to control your blood sugar during your pregnancy. Only your doctor can decide if SGLT2 inhibitors’ benefits would outweigh their risks for you.

Some antibiotics – These powerful infection fighters should only be used with caution during pregnancy. Tetracyclines like doxycycline and minocycline should never be used while you are pregnant, since they can damage your liver and discolor your unborn baby’s teeth. Studies have shown that some other antibiotics such as trimethoprim and sulfamethoxazole may cause birth defects. Always consult your doctor before using an antimicrobial.

 

As you continue your pregnancy, remember that your baby’s health must remain your top priority until you give birth. Whether you choose to experience the joy of parenting or the joy of adoption, you will reap the rewards of caring for your baby.

 

Sources:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4495872/

 

http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/pregnancy-week-by-week/expert-answers/antibiotics-and-pregnancy/faq-20058542
Sarah Teach regularly contributes to DrugWatch.com, along with other publications. Her natural curiosity and childhood dream of becoming a writer propelled her to earn a degree in writing, rhetoric and technical communication from James Madison University.

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What is Open Adoption? And What is it Like?


Open adoption is a type of adoption in which birth and adoptive families have some form of initial and/or ongoing contact. Contact may begin with a meeting between an expectant mother and potential adoptive parents. Sometimes, an expectant parent may choose the adoptive family based on such a meeting or other communication. After placement, birth mothers and/or fathers and members of their extended families may interact in various ways with the adoptive parents, as well as with the adopted child or youth.

Communication may happen through letters, emails, social media exchanges, telephone calls, or visits. While some families may exchange brief notes and photos, others may spend more time together and celebrate birthdays or holidays together. The type and frequency of contact will be decided by the people involved and can range from several times a month to every few years. Contact often changes as a child ages or as family members’ needs and wishes change.

Most domestic adoption these days have some degree of openness. (more information on types of adoption)

Michelle and her family are hoping to grow again through adoption. Below is her experience with open adoption.

Each relationship and each adoption is different.

 

Our adoption is open, but to this point we haven’t had much of a relationship with our son’s birth mother.  Our son was an immediate placement and we met his mother briefly in the hospital room.  In the hospital we riddled each other with questions and exchanged contact information. We had one lunch meeting before the adoption was finalized, but otherwise we have communicated through emailed updates.  Her responses have been sporadic, which could be for any number of reasons.  We don’t judge that or make assumptions.  We have made sure to make it known that the door is always open for contact and communication.

 

It is not about me, my husband or even the wonderful mother who placed with us…. it is about our son and whatever is best for him.  To me that is our job, to support and empower him to grow into the man he wants to be.

To learn more about Michelle and her family click here.


Open Adoption, Teen Pregnancy, and Placement


After our interview with The Ann, my friend shared with me the below Facebook post. I knew instantly that I needed to tell Erin that her post spoke to me. I already knew Erin a little bit. I was a major fan girl of her Studio West fitness classes.

Erin shared her story of teen pregnancy, giving birth to a baby girl May 4th, 1994.  (My son was also born May 4th.) She is a strong and successful woman, amazing mother, fearless entrepreneur, and fitness superstar. Erin is also on a mission to help others with her story. She gave me permission to share it here.

Many of my friends know my story, and many of my friends don’t. Here it is: May 4th, 1994 (22 years ago today) on one hand feels like yesterday, and on the other, feels like a lifetime ago. I was 16 years old, a Junior in a Catholic, all-girls high school, facing something no other 16 year old I knew was. I was having a baby. Yes, I was pregnant and in labor with a baby girl. My high school sweetheart and I had gotten in over our heads with something we knew very little about. We ourselves were babies yet faced with a huge decision that would impact our lives and the lives of many others forever. We KNEW we did not have what it took to be the parents this baby girl deserved. We KNEW we weren’t ready to grow up yet. We KNEW there were many people in the world unable to have children. We KNEW (thanks to the awareness from my mom’s new volunteer position at a teen pregnancy crisis hotline center-ironic or miraculous?!) there was another way. We were so scared, but with the support of our amazing families, friends, and teachers, we KNEW would get through it.
When I was 5 months pregnant we were introduced to open adoption at Catholic Charities in Louisville. We were counseled through the process then hand selected from portfolios a couple we wanted to meet to possibly adopt our baby. We were so blessed to have staring back at us the perfect couple who would later end up adopting and raising this precious baby they named Sarah.
While this decision was so completely heartbreaking and difficult, it was the BEST decision we could have made. Sarah turns 22 today, is graduating from college this weekend, and is such an AMAZING and beautiful woman inside and out. Her parents, Bob and Marianne, have done such a wonderful job raising Sarah and giving their daughter the best life. Unselfishly, they have let our families be involved throughout Sarah’s life with tons of visits, phone calls, cards, etc.
I love my relationship with Sarah today. I love our trips together, our texts, our visits. I love her relationship with my husband (who told me he knew he wanted to marry me when he heard my story), her relationship with my kids, her relationship with her parents. We have been so blessed.
I am sharing this with you today because I want to create awareness. Teen pregnancy happens…and it is not prejudice. It can happen to anyone putting themselves in the situation. There are so many wonderful people out there yearning for babies to love. While open adoption was the right decision for us, I am not saying it is the best decision for everyone. I am, however, more than happy to talk to ANYONE (parents, teens, family members and friends) out there who may find themselves in a situation like mine. I am happy to answer questions about open adoption, about dealing with pregnancy as a teen, or anything else relating to this subject. If I can help even just one person by sharing my story, my mission is complete.
I love you, Sarah!! Happy 22nd Birthday, sweetheart!! 💗💗💗

I look up to Erin; First for her bad ass workouts and now for creating a life and world that would not exist without her. She’s a big deal. You can contact Erin here.