• Zika Virus: What Expectant Moms Need to Know About Traveling

    Are you planning to travel this holiday season to visit your loved ones? If so, you may need to take extra precautions if you’re expecting. Talk to your midwife in Arlington Heights about whether it’s safe for you to travel. The safety concerns associated with air travel during pregnancy aren’t the only issues you should consider. Depending on your destination, your midwife may recommend changing your plans to reduce the risk of your exposure to Zika virus. pregnancy - health

    Understanding the Zika Virus

    The Zika virus, which currently has no vaccine or cure, is spread primarily through mosquito bites. It can also be spread from person to person during sex. Most people who develop Zika experience a mild illness that generally resolves within a week. The major concern with Zika is the potential for the virus to be transmitted to a fetus when the mother becomes infected. Zika has been known to cause severe brain defects, including microcephaly.

    Researching Current Location-Specific Risks

    The geographical spread of Zika is subject to change over time. Your midwife can check the current risks of Zika in the area where you plan to travel. Zika has been confirmed in many locations, including the Bahamas, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Brazil, the Dominican Republic, and others. Closer to home, Zika has also been confirmed in Florida.

    Considering a Change of Plans

    If you are already pregnant, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that you do not travel to any areas in which Zika has been confirmed. Consider asking your loved ones if they would be willing to travel to your home instead. If you’re not yet pregnant, but you are trying to conceive, talk to your midwife about whether restricting your travel would be wise. The CDC advises against nonessential travel for women who are trying to conceive. If your partner travels to these areas, you’ll need to take precautions to guard against Zika transmission during sex. Your midwife can advise you of how long you should wait to have unprotected sex after your partner has potentially been exposed to Zika.

  • Is a Healthy Pregnancy Possible with Epilepsy?

    Epilepsy is a serious disorder that will almost certainly cause a pregnancy to be labeled as a high-risk pregnancy. However, it is indeed possible for epileptic mothers to deliver healthy babies, as long as they receive the proper prenatal care. If you have epilepsy and you wish to grow your family , consult an obstetrician in Arlington Heights before you try to conceive. You can also watch this featured video to learn about the precautions your obstetrician may take.

    This video follows the story of Susie and Steven, who originally hadn’t planned on having children because of Susie’s epilepsy. But when Susie turned 35, she realized that she wanted to try for a baby. Thanks to the careful planning and monitoring of her obstetrician, the couple finally welcomed a healthy baby boy.

  • Signs of Menopause

    Menopause is a natural and inevitable transition for every woman, but it is often accompanied by unpleasant side effects. Women in Arlington Heights who are of menopause age often experience hot flashes and night sweats during perimenopause. These problems can interfere with healthy sleep and daytime comfort. Women may experience unusual changes in mood. The recognition that menopause is occurring can cause some women to experience anxiety or depression.

    Additionally, menopause is typically accompanied by vaginal dryness, which can cause painful intercourse. Some women may experience frequent or occasional urinary incontinence due to the loss of elasticity in the urethra and the weakening of the pelvic floor muscles. Urinary tract infections (UTIs) may occur. A woman’s hair can become drier and some women report the loss of scalp hair. These health issues can be troubling, but a doctor or midwife can provide effective menopause management guidance. Throughout perimenopause, it’s common for women to experience irregular periods. They may only occur every two to four months for some women. Menopause has officially begun when menstruation has ceased for 12 consecutive months.

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  • What to Expect During the Essure® Procedure

    There are many types of birth control available to women, but most of them are temporary and rely on the use of hormones. If you’re looking for a non-hormonal, permanent type of birth control, consider talking to your doctor in Arlington Heights about family planning with Essure®. Essure® is a safe, effective alternative to tubal ligation for women who are positive that they do not wish to have children. It’s a nonsurgical procedure that hundreds of thousands of women have already undergone. birth - control

    Preparation

    Before deciding whether Essure® is right for you, you can consult your doctor to learn more about it. You should be aware that this procedure is irreversible. This birth control procedure involves placing a small, flexible insert into each of the fallopian tubes. This causes a natural barrier to develop around the inserts, which prevents sperm from fertilizing an egg . Your doctor will need to review your medical history to make sure it’s safe for you to receive this type of birth control. Women who have a nickel allergy may have adverse reactions to the insert material. If you decide to go forward with the procedure, you’ll schedule an office appointment for a day not long after your period ends.

    Procedure

    Essure® can be placed in the healthcare provider’s office, since it is a nonsurgical procedure. Your doctor will insert a hysteroscope into the vagina, through the cervix, and into the uterus. The hysteroscope allows your doctor to see the openings of the fallopian tubes. The Essure® inserts are then passed through the device and into the tubes. You may experience some mild discomfort or cramping during and after the procedure. Women often describe the side effects as being similar to what is normally experienced during menstruation.

    Recovery

    The recovery period for Essure® placement is minimal. Most women can return home in about 45 minutes and they usually return to their normal activities within one to two days. Protection against pregnancy does not occur immediately with this procedure. It takes time for the scar tissue to form a natural barrier against sperm. You’ll return to the office in about three months and your doctor will use X-rays or ultrasound images to confirm whether you are protected from pregnancy. Some women may need a second confirmation test at the six-month mark.