High blood pressure (Hypertension) during pregnancy: Causes, risks, and preventive measures
During pregnancy, it's important to be aware of any potential health issues that may arise, including high blood pressure or hypertension. High blood pressure can be dangerous for both the expectant mother and the fetus if not managed properly. Here, you can read about the causes of hypertension, get advice on how to handle and reduce the risks for a healthy pregnancy.
3 min read
Verified by Jenny Jansson
High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, is a common condition that can affect pregnant women. It occurs when the pressure of blood in the body's vessels is too high. During pregnancy, it's especially important to monitor blood pressure regularly, as hypertension can have serious consequences for both the mother and the baby.
Causes of Hypertension during pregnancy
A common form of hypertension that can arise during pregnancy is pre-eclampsia. Pre-eclampsia is characterized by high blood pressure and protein in the urine. The exact cause of pre-eclampsia is not yet fully understood, but it's believed to be related to issues with the blood vessels in the placenta. Other factors that can increase the risk of hypertension during pregnancy include a history of high blood pressure, overweight or obesity, as well as certain medical conditions such as diabetes or kidney disease.
Hypertension during pregnancy can pose serious risks to both the mother and the fetus. For the mother, it can lead to complications such as kidney damage, liver disease, and preterm delivery. For the fetus, it can affect growth and increase the risk of preterm birth, low birth weight, and respiratory problems.
To manage and reduce the risks of high blood pressure during pregnancy, it's important to:
- Have regular appointments with your doctor or midwife: Your healthcare provider will monitor your blood pressure regularly and check for any changes or complications.
- Follow a healthy diet: Eat a balanced diet that is rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein sources. Avoid high intake of salt and processed foods, as these can increase blood pressure.
- Engage in regular physical activity: Consult your healthcare provider about safe types of exercise during pregnancy. Regular exercise can help lower blood pressure and improve overall health.
- Avoid stress: High blood pressure can worsen due to stress. Try to manage stress through relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, or yoga.
- Take medication as directed by your doctor: Some women may need medication to control blood pressure during pregnancy. Follow your doctor's advice closely and take the prescribed medication as directed.
- Rest and get sufficient sleep: Adequate rest and sleep are important for maintaining good health during pregnancy and can contribute to lowering blood pressure.
Verified by Jenny Jansson
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