Mamas on Bedrest: PublicHealth.org’s Prenatal Care Guide

October 6th, 2014

Good Monday Morning, Mamas!

Today’s post is a review of the prenatal care guide published by PublicHealth.org. PublicHealth.org is an organization that works to provide the public information about a variety of health care issues. They research their topics and try to provide the most current data and additional, useful information for both consumers and researchers alike. They asked me to share with you their resource on prenatal care and so here is my review on the guide.

Now you may be reclined in your bed thinking, Darline, why the *&^( do I need a guide on prenatal care?? I’m already pregnant and on bedrest for heavens sake! Well, I decided to share this guide with you all because many of you will go on to have subsequent pregnancies after this one and it is critical that you prepare your self-physically and emotionally-for that pregnancy.

At first glance, I find that it has a decent overview of things to be on the look out for before, during and after pregnancy. They broke the guide down into

  • Provider options
  • Nutrition and lifestyle changes
  • First, Second and Third Trimester Changes
  • Newborn Care
  • Post partum care

However, this guide is more like a checklist of things to be on the lookout for, to talk with your provider about and some things that you can do for yourself than an actual, practical guide. While the information provided was useful, I personally didn’t feel like there was enough explanation or information provided for most of the topics listed.  And I feel many topics, very important tops, were omitted.

Now admittedly, I am a self professed data (and detail) head, so I more, “the meat of the matter”. But (for example) to list the recommendation for folic acid and not give even a brief explanation as to why folic acid is important (for the prevention of neural tube defects {holes along the spinal column} or Spina Bifida) I feel is incomplete information. I find it frustrating to have something mentioned, but no explantation given about it’s use or function. Much of the information provided is in this format. But providing a list without much explanation really isn’t very helpful.

Another example. They have a section, “What foods should Pregnant mothers avoid” and they gave a brief list of foods to avoid. But what about foods mothers should add or increase. like foods high in Calcium and iron? What about talking about eating several small meals a day to help ease nausea? There was no mention on this aspect of nutrition.

As a public health organization, I would have expected a discussion of taking the flu shot while pregnant, genetic testing and more on the prenatal tests already being done.

And the biggest negative for me: NO MENTION OF BED REST!!!

But this guide (to my understanding) is free and as such, isn’t an awful starting point for mamas to begin learning what to expect during their pregnancies. However, it really is just a starting point. I would highly recommend mamas who are serious about taking extremely good care of themselves through the prenatal period take a look at this guide, but them continue their research with books like, “What to Expect When Expecting” “Our Bodies Ourselves: Pregnancy and Birth”, Henci Goer’s “The Thinking Woman’s Guide to Childbirth”, “Optimal Care in Childbirth” and others provide (Like our blog!!) much more information so that mamas can make informed healthcare choices for themselves and their babies. 

So do take a look because I feel that there are never too many resources. However, know that as you read through this guide, you are likely going to have more questions and will need to seek out other, more complete resources, for answers.

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