While the term postpartum generally refers to the first six weeks after childbirth, post-delivery and after birth obstetric care may carry on much longer than those first few weeks. This period of time is a time to celebrate and connect with your new bundle of joy, but also a time to focus on healing and to take care of yourselves post-childbirth. At OBGYN Specialists of Columbus, we provide the women of the Chattahoochee valley total obstetrician care conveniently in one location.

Here are three things (that may seem small, but are HUGE) to remember during those first weeks post-delivery.  

Things to Remember During the Post-Delivery Stage

Adjusting to motherhood after childbirth, whether it is your first pregnancy or you have multiple children, may be challenging. Like every pregnancy, no postpartum and afterbirth experience is alike. That’s why post-delivery care is so important to not only the mothers but the baby’s health as well. We know this may sound crazy, but every other mother and doctor will tell you to rest. Seriously, do it. The female body goes through so many emotional and physical changes during the growing and birthing of a baby that often those six weeks postpartum your body is extremely fatigued and needs rest.

Firstly, ask for help! Asking for help during those first few weeks from your partner or family can be so valuable. If you can rest and focus on feeding your baby and taking care of yourself, your recovering may be easier. Secondly, sleep when the baby sleeps. This is something many new mothers hear and disregard. Your newborn will wake to feed anywhere from every two to three hours, but mostly they will be sleeping. Take that time to rest your body and your mind.

Nutrition is also a key factor to remember during the post-delivery and afterbirth period. For nine months a woman is feeding not only herself but a growing child inside. Often many women put their nutrition on the back burner after delivery, focusing solely on the newborn’s needs. However, concentrating on your own nutrition and maintaining a balanced diet will give you more strength to deal with those long nights. Whether you choose to breastfeed your baby or not, staying hydrated is also very important to your overall health and nourishment. 

Individualized Postpartum and Obstetric Care in Columbus, Ga

We understand that the postpartum stage may be a little overwhelming, after all, your body has just created a new life (or lives). Taking care of yourself during this time is crucial and we are here to walk you through every step of the process, from your first positive pregnancy test to your last postpartum visit and everything in between. At OBGYN Specialists of Columbus, we pride ourselves on the individualized postpartum and after delivery care, we provide all our patients.

Contact our office today if you have any questions or concerns about your post-delivery appointment

Becoming pregnant may be an exciting moment in a woman’s life but it can also bring along various health risks. Preeclampsia is a serious complication of pregnancy that often requires premature delivery to prevent serious life-threatening complications both for the mother and for the baby. Consequently, significant health care costs are associated with preeclampsia. 

Here are several things you should know about this pregnancy complication:

Who is at Risk?

Preeclampsia affects 2-8% of all women’s pregnancy worldwide. Usually, it occurs after 20 weeks gestation (somewhere in the late 2nd or 3rd trimesters) but can occur up to six weeks postpartum (after delivery).  In rare cases, it can occur earlier than 20 weeks. Maintaining proper prenatal care is imperative for the detection of preeclampsia as well as maintaining a healthy pregnancy for mothers. You may be at higher risk for preeclampsia if:

  • You’ve had preeclampsia in pregnancies
  • Pregnant with twins or multiples
  • Suffer from high blood pressure, diabetes, or kidney issues
  • Family history of the disorder
  • Are 35 or older
  • Have a BMI of 30 or higher

Preventing Preeclampsia: What works?

One strategy for preventing preeclampsia is the use of low-dose aspirin. Low dose Aspirin (81mg) started after the first trimester has been shown to reduce the risk of preeclampsia in high-risk women. Since not all women who develop preeclampsia have preexisting risk factors the question remains if low dose aspirin benefits even low-risk patients and would it be cost-effective. 

A recent study published in the August edition of  Obstetrics and Gynecology supports the use of low dose aspirin, even in women who have no risk factors for preeclampsia.  While further studies are warranted to directly compare outcomes with universal aspirin versus aspirin treatment restricted to high-risk patients it is reasonable to use low-dose aspirin in those women who would like to initiate such a preventative strategy.

OBGYN Specialist Prenatal Care

Let OBGYN Specialists of Columbus put your mind at ease during your pregnancy. Turn to our knowledgeable obstetric team and trust that Dr. Ruthann Rees will walk you through your pregnancy. Contact our office today if you’re interested in finding out more about our prenatal care services.

You’re pregnant, congratulations! But now what? Often the joy of a positive pregnancy test can cloud or clutter your mind with all sorts of excitement, questions, and concerns. At OBGYN Specialists of Columbus, we provide total healthcare during your pregnancy and beyond. Individualized care and years of experience are what set our team apart from the rest. So whether this is your first pregnancy or you have experienced this all before, we know you will have questions. 

Here are the top four questions you may want to ask your obstetrician.

4 Questions to Ask at Your First Obstetrician Appointment 

  • What pregnancy symptoms are normal and what is an emergency? During the first trimester, women may experience various levels of nausea, fatigue as well as breast soreness, or tenderness. That being said, if you experience extreme nausea to the point of not being able to keep any food or liquids down, heavy bleeding, or severe cramping you should call your doctor. If you ever feel unsure do not hesitate to give our office a call.
  • What medications can I take during my pregnancy? Whether you are currently taking prescriptions or are curious about which over-the-counter medications you can take during your pregnancy, discussing prescriptions and medications with your obstetrician is imperative. Your OB should know all the medications you are prescribed at your first appointment. While the list of over-the-counter medications is limited during pregnancy it is important to know what is safe and what you will want to stay away from for the next nine months. Contact your obstetrician with any questions regarding medications before you take it during your pregnancy. Here are a few over-the-counter medications that are commonly on the “safe list” for pregnant women:
    • Acetaminophen (Tylenol) for headache/pain/fever
    • Vitamin B6 for nausea/vomiting
    • Chlorpheniramine and tripelennamine for cold and allergy symptoms
    • Fiber supplement for constipation
    • Saline nasal spray for allergies
  • Do I need to change my workout routine or eating habits? To have a healthy pregnancy, we suggest staying active. As always listen to your body. If you were a runner prior to pregnancy keep running. We don’t suggest picking up marathon running if you were not highly active previously. Some adjustments to your workout routine may vary further along in pregnancy. Talk to your doctor if you ever question specific activities. As far as diet, there is no need to “eat for two” maintaining healthy eating habits is important to your baby’s growth and development. Raw fish and fish high in mercury are both diet items you will want to stay clear. 
  • Who will deliver my baby? Dr. Ruthann Rees OB patients are able to call her personal cell phone number for after-hours emergencies or urgent questions that cannot wait for regular office hours. Dr. Rees knows how important it is to have your own doctor attend your delivery. In the past 10 years, Dr. Rees has attended the delivery of over 99% of her Obstetric patients, so it is safe to say she will be there for you. 

Obstetric Care You Can Trust

Dr. Ruthann Rees and her team at OBGYN Specialists of Columbus are ready to walk you through this incredible journey of new life. Conveniently located in midtown Columbus, Georgia our office is here for you and your growing family. Contact us to schedule your first obstetrician appointment today. 

Are you pregnant or know someone who is? Here are eight things you need to know about Pertussis and the Tdap Vaccination. Below are the most common questions we are asked here in the office.

What is Pertussis?

Pertussis, also known as whooping cough, is a highly contagious respiratory tract infection marked by a severe hacking cough that is followed by a high-pitched inspiration that sounds like a “whoop.” The incidence of whooping cough has increased over time likely due to vaccine-related immunity that wears off over time. From 2000 to 2014 there were 277 recorded pertussis-related deaths in the united states and about 87% (241 cases) occurred in infants under the age of 3 months.

How Pertussis Spreads?

Like the common cold, pertussis is spread by respiratory droplets –coughing, sneezing, breathing. The germs are expelled into the air where they can be easily inhaled by others. Pertussis is highly contagious and according to the CDC, almost everyone who is not immune will become sick if exposed to the bacterium. Whooping cough is most contagious in the early days of infection.

What Symptoms Should You Look For?

Not everyone will experience a “whooping cough” and other symptoms often include a runny nose, low-grade fever, and a mild occasional cough. Later symptoms may include extreme tiredness and coughing fits that may end in vomiting or exhaustion. Babies may also even stop breathing for short periods of time.

Symptoms in Babies Are Often Different

Babies younger than 6 months old with pertussis do not have a typical cough. They may gasp, gag, feed poorly, turn blue around the mouth, or even stop breathing. Symptoms can progress very quickly, and babies often require hospitalization.

How To Protect Your Baby?

As an adult, you may catch whooping cough due to your own childhood vaccination wearing off. You should receive a pertussis booster shot (Tdap) with every pregnancy regardless of receiving a previous Tdap vaccination. The vaccination should be administered between 27 and 36 weeks pregnant. By protecting yourself from the vaccination, you will also protect your baby. Some of the antibodies can help protect the baby during the first few months of life before they can receive their own vaccinations. If there is an outbreak of pertussis in the community, it is ok for a pregnant mother to receive the vaccination prior to 27 weeks.

Why Must I Receive the Vaccination with Each Pregnancy?

The amount of whooping cough antibodies in your body decreases over time. That is why the CDC recommends you get a Tdap vaccine during each pregnancy. Doing so allows each of your babies to get the greatest number of protective antibodies from you, thus getting the best protection possible against the disease.

How Others Can Help Protect Your Baby?

You should ensure that anyone that lives with your baby or anyone who helps take care of your baby receives the Tdap vaccination prior to the birth of your baby.

Treat Whooping Cough Early

You should call your doctor immediately should you, a family member, or your baby begins to exhibit any of the symptoms of whooping cough. Antibiotics may be prescribed to keep you from getting sicker, and to prevent you from spreading the disease to others. Antibiotics may also be given to babes and other household members to protect them from becoming sick.

Contact us if you have more questions and would like to schedule a visit.