Your Pregnant Body: What to Expect
Some women panic a little in early pregnancy when a favorite pair of jeans suddenly doesn’t fit anymore. The actual problem isn’t usually sudden weight gain, but a shift in your figure due to hormones.
Your Calvin Klein’s are rather unforgiving to childbearing hips; add to this fluid retention (sodium retention is caused by estrogen) and you’ll better understand your changing body shape.
Spider Veins (Spider Angiomata)
About two thirds of white women and 10 percent of black women experience spider veins during pregnancy, according to the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Urbana-Champaign. This pregnancy symptom is caused by an increase in the body’s level of estrogen. Spider veins usually disappear after childbirth.
Stretch Marks (Striae)
Although seasonal sun exposure can sometimes hide stretch marks, tanning beds and sunbathing can deepen the damage at the tearing level of the stretch marks. They can also cause dehydration, thinning your already stretched, damaged skin and worsening the situation.
While you can’t completely avoid stretch marks, you can decrease their appearance and multitude by maintaining a healthy diet, drinking plenty of water, keeping your skin moist with lotion and oil, and taking your prenatal vitamins.
While more an issue in the later trimesters, weight gain is not the harbinger of doom it once was. In the past, one out of every 200 C-section patients died, so it was in the patient’s and the doctor’s best interests to be militant about weight gain, a cofactor of risk for this mode of delivery. Now with fifth-generation antibiotics and improved surgical techniques, women seldom have even moderate complications to C-sections.
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