In this health-conscious time, a smoking preggo is viewed as an image of bad motherhood. Their doctors don’t agree with it, their neighbors don’t agree with it, and their families don’t agree with it. It’s like the mother is viewed as a potential murderer of her own child.
But why do doctors, health enthusiasts, and concerned citizens fuss so much about pregnant smokers?
First, because it’s bad for the woman’s health. Second, because it’s extremely bad for the baby she’s carrying.
Tobacco smoke (direct and secondhand) carries many toxic chemicals like nicotine, tar, carbon monoxide, cyanide, and lead. All of these toxins are absorbed in the mother’s bloodstream and are consequently delivered all throughout her body and to the placenta, the baby’s only source of nourishment. Now, when these chemicals are fed to the baby, they cause a greatly negative impact on baby’s growth and development:
- Low birth weight and size
- Premature birth
- Underdeveloped bodies
- Weak lungs
- Congenital heart defects
- Learning disorders and low IQ
- Behavioral problems
- Increased risk of SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome)
- Higher risk for stillbirth and miscarriage
All of the probable effects mentioned above are primarily caused by tobacco smoke’s effect on the mother’s circulatory system. When she smokes, her blood vessels (including those in the baby’s umbilical cord) tighten and become narrow, and carbon monoxide is absorbed and carried by her red blood cells instead of oxygen. It’s like intentionally depleting the baby’s supply of oxygen, the most important nutrient babies need in order to grow and develop properly.
I’ve always imagined that my first baby would be a boy. My partner also wants a baby boy. Hmmm… I wonder if such a mutual desire could actually influence my conception. Would our wishes ever prevail over nature?
Such curiosity made me prowl the internet for quizzes and predictors that could assure me and my partner about our baby’s gender. The process was fun and exciting, and the results made me curious all the more. I couldn’t wait until our 4D ultrasound next month!
I don’t want to stick with the baby boy concept, though. My baby could also probably be a girl. That’s what most of my friends predict! Because they say that when a mother has this “glow,” the baby is more likely a girl. And when a mother doesn’t look so good during her pregnancy, the baby is more likely a boy. However, when I search the internet for those “old wives’ tales,” I always get to read the opposite.
According to the many sources I read, when a mother is glowing and blooming like a “magical pregnancy unicorn,” the baby is more probably a boy. When a mother, on the other hand, loses her glow during pregnancy, the baby is more likely a girl because she’s stealing the mother’s beauty for her to grow beautiful too.
There are also lots of other weird stuffs that couples all over the world are trying just to figure out what their baby’s gender would be. I read some of those stuffs here.
I also saved screenshots of the results of the quizzes I took:
Boy or girl, I know my baby’s going to be perfect no matter the gender! Of that I am very sure! 🙂
Folate (synthetic: Folic Acid) is a powerful B-vitamin that prevents Neural Tube Defects (NTD) in babies when sufficiently taken in the pre-pregnant and ante-natal stages. NTDs are birth defects that affect the formation and development of the brain and spinal cord. These may cause permanent physical and mental disabilities and even death or still birth in babies, depending on the type and severity.
A Quick Look at NTDs:
Spina Bifida – a part/parts of the spinal cord protrude through a gap in the backbone.
- Meningocele – a fluid-filled bulge under the skin along the backbone.
- Meningomyelocele – part of the spinal cord itself is herniated through the backbone gap.
Encephalocele – a hernia of a part of the brain though a skull defect.
Anencephaly – a part/parts of the brain and skull are missing.
Dietary Sources of Folate:
Legumes – beans, peas, and lentils.
Green and Dark Green Vegetables – spinach. malunggay, Romaine lettuce, broccoli, asparagus, okra, Brussels sprout, etc.
Citrus and Other Fruits – orange, ponkan, papaya, grapefruit, avocado, strawberries, cantaloupe.
Seeds and Nuts – peanuts, almonds, sunflower seeds, flax seeds.
How I Get My Folate Fix:
Maternity milk – Anmum Materna, 2 glasses a day (approx. 340 mcg per glass)
Pre-natal vitamins – Sangobion Pre-natal FA, 1 capsule a day (1.5 mg per capsule)
Citrus fruits – one orange or ponkan, or 1 cup of grapefruit a day
Legumes and leafy greens – at least 1 cup of lentils or kidney beans and 1 cup of green veggies a day
Hard-boiled eggs – at least 1 egg a day
Fortified cereals – at least 1 cup a day
Almost 16 weeks, according to my OB and my pregnancy mobile app. 4 months pregnant, 1 month unemployed. That’s the present statistics.
I already spent almost two weeks browsing the internet for jobs that may suit me and even emailed a few to inquire about their posts and vacancies–none had replied yet. I was also hoping for and waiting on the “job slot” my former manager promised me before the separation from our previous company; however, my slot was marked as “declined” without me even knowing (someone just recently informed me). Oh well, maybe they find their friends more convenient than a casual workmate (this is just a hunch, ok?).
Then again, I’m totally back to zero. The initial plans I made have to be tossed away and I’ll have to come up and proceed with alternate plans. I’m a registered nurse, really, but I’m just not into Nursing right now. I want to work on a flexible schedule, i.e., to work at my own pace and in my own time, with my laptop alone. 🙂
Bossy and lazy, eh? Come on, I’m only pregnant for several months. Can’t I enjoy and laze around like any normal and happy preggo?
I just sleep, eat, watch movies, eat, nap, browse for jobs, sometimes go out on dates with my partner, eat, walk for a while, shop, eat, and so on. Gosh, how my life makes me so hungry right now! And my savings are running low, very low. (*Sighs and eats a bowl of fruit salad.)