Seek antenatal care

Antenatal Care: Increase Awareness.

Antenatal care (ANC) is the care provided by a skilled health-care professional to pregnant women to ensure the best health conditions for both the mother and baby during pregnancy (WHO, 2016). It comprises identifying risks, preventing and managing pregnancy-related or existing diseases, health education and promotion.

Every pregnancy carries an inherent risk to either the mother, baby or both. Many pregnant women experience uneventful pregnancies, but up to 15% of pregnant women suffer a potentially life-threatening condition during pregnancy (WHO, 2016).

About 94% of the 990,000 women who become pregnant in Uganda attend the first antenatal care contact, but 65% of those that live in the urban centres and 58% of those living in the rural areas attend four or more antenatal care contacts (Shallon and Mugisha, 2020). Regardless of any other impediments, some of these women don’t understand why they should attend and probably complete all the antenatal care contacts.

Antenatal care aims to provide support for the pregnant woman and her family to ensure safe delivery and recovery (). Antenatal care objectives aim to accomplish the above assertion, and they are the reasons why you (pregnant woman) should attend every contact.

When you attend antenatal care, you get an opportunity to interact with the health-care workers who provide advice, reassurance, education, and support for you and your family. Among the issues that the health-care workers enlighten you on, include folic acid supplement, food hygiene, and lifestyle – this entails smoking cessation, recreational drug use and alcohol consumption ().

Related article: Heptitis B Guidelines for pregnant women: Whatever it takes.

The health-care workers address all the minor ailments of pregnancy that may keep you awake at night. These include abdominal discomfort, heartburn, backache, haemorrhoids, nausea and vomiting, and varicose veins (). Pre-existing maternal conditions like diabetes, heart disease and infection are screened, diagnosed, and managed. Health-care workers continue to screen for these and other diseases like HIV even when you tested negative during the first antenatal care contact, for as long as you attend the subsequent visits.

Health-care workers can promptly identify and treat any new medical or obstetric problems that arise in pregnancy, and, where possible, they can prevent these from adversely affecting your health and that of the baby (). It can, however, only happen if you attend all the antenatal care contacts.

Lastly, health-care workers plan for your labour and delivery, care of the new-born and future and reproductive health. In an uneventful pregnancy, delivery plans commence at 36 weeks of gestation. You achieve this level of care when you attend antenatal care to completion.

Today’s article serves as a platform to create and increase awareness among elite women – they may take ANC contacts for granted. They either end up booking late or skip some of the visits; as a result, they suffer catastrophes that health-care workers could have identified and dealt with or even prevented during the pregnancy period.
Don’t forget to share this article among your peers.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts

Immediate Kangaroo Mother Care improves infant survival after delivery.

Immediate Kangaroo Mother Care improves infant survival after delivery.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends that all low-birthweight infants receive kangaroo mother care (KMC) after stabilisation. However, the effect of immediate kangaroo mother care intervention was elusive. The WHO KMC Study Group intended to establish this effect. So, they conducted a trial in five hospitals across Asia and Africa that involved low birth weight ...

Read More
Stethoscope

Stethoscope. An icon of the medical profession.

The stethoscope is an instrument used to listen and amplify the sounds produced by the heart, lungs, and other internal organs. As medics, we must have used the stethoscope on several occasions. Today, the stethoscope is the cherished image of the medical profession. René Laennec invented the stethoscope in 1816. While consulting a female patient, ...

Read More
Drugs like fentanyl alleviate labour pains.

Labour Pains and Analgesia: The Salient facts.

Annually, 218 per 1000 women conceive in sub-Saharan Africa: it implies that most of these women undergo labour at some point and experience the wrath that labour pains inflict on their well-being. Such women include your mother, wife, sister, and neighbours. Many women in remote and a few in urban settings still think it’s natural ...

Read More
Enable Notifications OK No thanks