POSTS WITH TAG: is it normal

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    Few sensations in a pregnant mom's life are as thrilling as feeling her unborn baby kick, roll, or otherwise bop around inside her body. Fetal movement generally begins at around 18 to 22 weeks, and it's considered a sign that a baby is likely in good health.

    But a mom who is used to her baby moving frequently can be in for a big shock when suddenly baby just isn't moving around as much as she's used to. Before you start worrying, know this: an ebb and flow in movement by your unborn baby is normal and usually nothing to worry about.

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    I've really enjoyed being pregnant. Up until month 7. That was when some really freaky and sometimes downright hellish things have begun happening to my body that are making me wish I could give birth tomorrow. When I became pregnant, I was well aware of what would take place during the first trimester -- morning sickness, fatigue, yada yada. And I knew the second trimester was going to be that glorious time when I resembled a goddess and could still run a marathon without breaking a sweat. But no one really told me about the third trimester. Back aches don't even begin to cover it. Here are 9 things that can happen any time between your seventh and ninth month -- don't say I didn't warn you. 

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    A 37-year-old woman from Brazil made headlines this week when doctors performed an emergency C-section on her only to realize she was not pregnant. The woman believed she was 41 weeks pregnant and was admitted to a hospital after complaining about abdominal pain. Not sure if her doctors gave her a sonogram or why they wouldn't after failing to detect a heartbeat, but they reportedly decided to perform a Cesarean because she looked pregnant and was experiencing some pregnancy symptoms, like nausea.

    This story sounds fishy, but the woman's actual condition isn't as odd as you may think. Docs say she had a "phantom" pregnancy, which is when women are so thoroughly convinced they are pregnant that they actually experience bodily changes that resemble those felt during pregnancy. 

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    There is rarely a day that goes by when we aren't bombarded with images of celebrities, models, or even fitness bloggers who gave birth three seconds ago and have already dropped all the weight and wiped out all evidence of stretch marks. Look, some women have secret tummy tucks and others are purely and truly genetically predispositioned to lose the weight quickly -- I don't feel there's anything wrong with their enviable selfies.

    But lest we forget that a great many women -- most, I'm going to say -- aren't going to have washboard abs one month postpartum, this amazing and brave blogger and mom of three is here to remind us that we shouldn't be ashamed of our real postpartum bodies. And she's willing to prove it by sharing photos of her own body 11 months after giving birth to twins. 

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    I absolutely love everything about the idea of giving birth to my third baby at home. Everything from having my two older children close to me to having a midwife who responds to me as a human being and respects the body and it's natural process is wonderful. I would recommend it to anyone.

    But it is a little weird. This is a fact my husband and I have been especially aware of over the past several weeks during which we have been procuring our very strange list of home birth supplies as provided by my midwife.

    The list might seem normal to anyone who has had a home birth, but my first two were hospital births and let me tell you, I needed NONE of these things. Here is a list of 7 of the weirdest parts of my home-birth list:

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    When is an itch not just an itch? When you're pregnant. An expecting mom with a severe itch found out the hard way that the unusual symptom can actually mean your unborn baby is at risk. When Magdalen Reece developed a severe itch around her abdomen at 35 weeks, she mentioned it to her midwife. She was told that itching was a normal part of skin stretching over a growing belly, and it is. But in Reece's case, it was a sign of something much more dangerous. Three weeks later, when her water broke, her baby was already dead.

    Those of us who've been pregnant are all too familiar with that mild abdominal itch. All you do is moisturize a little more and that usually takes care of it. But it turns out the more severe itch Reece had was a sign of a pregnancy-related disease called intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy (ICP). What is this disease, and what can you do about it?

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    Just when the nausea and fatigue of your first trimester wear off, a new pregnancy misery appears: Aches and pains in your belly and in your groin area. Congratulations, it's probably normal, and it's probably just round ligament pain. This is when the thick ligament that connects your womb to your groin area, and that supports your growing uterus, stretches and strains.

    It's another one of those pregnancy symptoms that feels like something is wrong, but actually means everything is proceeding as normal. But how do you really know when it's round ligament pain and not something more serious? Here are a few ways you can tell and how you can ease the pain.

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    What's the ideal age to start your family? Gallup asked 5,100 people this question, and the average turned out to be: 25 is the best age for women to have their first baby. This was a total jaw-dropper for a lot of us college-educated, big-city-living, media-working career ladies. Just looking around the Internet, there was a collective WTF?!? over the results of this poll. Just speaking for myself, I always thought I should be at least 30, maybe older. But it turns out, 25 is the average age American women have their first baby anyway (44 percent of you), so this will not be shocking news for the vast majority of women.

    So that got me wondering -- what do my friends and colleagues think? I took my own informal poll to find out what they think the ideal age for your first baby is, and at what age they actually did have that first baby. I was floored by the variety of responses.

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    When actress Busy Philipps recently commented about how she was unsure she could love her second baby as much as her first, it really hit home. As much as I hate admitting it, my husband and I often talk about how impossible we think it will be to feel the same attachment for our unborn baby as we do for our two-year-old daughter. I mean, we know our little girl really well by now. And she's awesome, most of the time. But who's to say our second baby will be just as wonderful? What if he's...well, what if he ends up being kind of a jerk? 

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    Pregnancy cravings can get us into a little bit of trouble sometimes. Am I right, Kim Kardashian? Those midnight meatballs and Mallomars can really take their toll. But trouble is relative. Have your pregnancy cravings ever landed you in the hospital with a heart condition? One pregnant woman's craving for baking soda went horribly awry. You can probably guess what happened based on what I wrote two sentences ago. I'll give you a hint: heart condition.

    Yes, it was pica. What else could lead a person to eat an entire one-pound box of baking soda every day through her pregnancy? No joke (I'm going to stop joking now), it was not just a quirky habit. It seriously damaged her health. Her symptoms at 37 weeks included dizziness, feelings of weakness, irregular heartbeat, and low levels of potassium.

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