Do you have high blood pressure in pregnancy? Are you afraid you may have to go into premature labor? If you do, then you should know that there is a treatment for high blood pressure that many doctors will try to avoid calling it high blood pressure.
What is high blood pressure during pregnancy?
Hypertension or high blood pressure during pregnancy is actually when your blood pressure is measured 130/80 mm Hg or more or equal during pregnancy.
The normal blood pressure is 120/80 mmHg or anything less than. It is very important to keep an eye on your blood pressure during pregnancy to prevent any complications for both baby and the mother.
Your doctor can test you for hypertension before you ever get pregnant. It is estimated that almost half of all pregnant women have been tested for blood pressure at this time. Most of these tests have normal results, so your doctor will likely tell you that your test is normal.
Some people call this condition preeclampsia and although there is no clear proof of it.
What reasons can cause hypertension during pregnancy?
- If it is first time pregnancy
- Drinking alcohol
- Obesity or overweight
- Family history of hypertension
- Twin pregnancy or multiple pregnancy
- Autoimmune diseases
- Age if it is more than 35
- Sedentary or unhealthy life style
- Eating lots of junk food
There are many things that contribute to this condition such as being overweight. But, for some reason, Women that are overweight are more prone to this condition than other groups.
This condition usually occurs after the 20th week of pregnancy, which normally goes away after the delivery of baby. There are more chances of having gestational hypertension if it diagnosed before the 30 weeks of pregnancy and it can lead to more complication and preeclampsia.
When you give birth to your baby, your body will create a natural hormonal imbalance. This can cause your blood pressure to rise. Women that deliver babies early have less chance of having this problem.
It is believed that if you give birth to your baby after 37 weeks gestation, your baby will be in perfect health. If your delivery happens after the 37-week mark, there is a good chance that you may experience some issues with low birth weight or high blood pressure in your baby.
High blood pressure is defined when the systolic BP is 140 mmHg and the diastolic is 90 mmHg or more than that.
What test will your doctor recommend to diagnose high blood pressure?
- Many women that have high blood pressure in pregnancy are diagnosed by their OB-GYN during their initial visit.
- The doctor will take a look at the mother’s medical history, physical exam, and take a look at the pregnant woman’s urine test.
- Once this is done the doctor will likely do a urine analysis. A positive urine test will likely cause the doctor to run some tests to see if he can get a positive answer for Hypertensive Dependence Syndrome which is defined as having the condition when you are pregnant.
- In order to tell if you have Hypertensive Dependence Syndrome, a chemical imbalance will need to be addressed. To do this, a urinalysis will be performed. The urine sample will be sent to the lab to be analyzed for any deposits that could be of a cellular or protein type. Once you know if you are suffering from hypertension, it is important to address any underlying issues that may be causing it. Many people believe that being overweight can contribute to it but it is not the sole cause.
Other contributing factors for hypertension during pregnancy
Other possible causes of high blood pressure include preeclampsia and kidney failure.
Preeclampsia is a complication of pregnancy that occurs when the egg fails to be released throughout the menstrual cycle. When the egg does not release, the hormonal levels shift and cause the kidneys to fail.
When looking at the symptoms of preeclampsia, you may notice swelling of the ankles, legs, or feet, a visible fluid build up, and jaundice.
When looking at the symptoms of Hypertensive Dependence Syndrome, you will see swelling of the ankles, legs, and feet, a visible fluid build up, and jaundice.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you should contact your doctor immediately.
Your OB-GYN may also recommend that you go to the hospital to have your blood pressure checked. If you are having symptoms that you believe might be preeclampsia or another issue, your doctor will help you determine the best course of treatment.
What can be the possible complications during pregnancy with high blood pressure?
- Preeclampsia – This can be very dangerous condition also called toxemia, which can cause serious damage to kidney and brain. If this condition is with seizures can lead to eclampsia, which can be fatal if not treated in time.
- HELLP Syndrome – This condition associated with symptoms such as nausea vomiting severe headache and upper abdominal pain. This condition can be fatal HELLP syndrome is stand for hemolysis, elevated liver enzyme and low platelet count.
How you can prevent hypertension during pregnancy?
- Modifying your diet and daily routine
- Avoid smoking
- Quit drinking alcohol
- Limit your intake of salt and salty things
- Reduce stress by doing stress reduction techniques such as yoga and meditation
- Go for walk daily
- Consult with nutritionist for meal plan
- Regular medical checkup and blood pressure monitoring.
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I am experienced health professional (B.Sc. Nursing, P.GD Nursing). I am passionate to provide valuable information about Maternal and child Health. My goal is to provide the right and trustworthy information about pregnancy and baby care.