Pregnancy and high blood pressure is a very common condition in many women, but it isn’t necessarily dangerous. However, high blood pressure commonly referred as hypertension require care and attention. Although hypertension can affect almost anyone, pregnant women are unfortunately more at risk. High Blood Pressure affects about 6 to 10 percent of the pregnant women population.
Are you pregnant and suffering from hypertension? Then you must be constantly looking for ways to manage, and reduce high blood pressure. Listed below are remedies to manage high blood pressure during pregnancy effectively.
Read More: Postpartum Preeclampsia : Causes, Symptoms & Treatments
Different Types of Blood Pressure in Pregnancy
Women can suffer from various types of high blood pressure in pregnancy, some of them being:
- Preeclampsia: A complication in pregnancy that is characterized with very high blood pressure. This can also damage other organs in your body.
- Chronic hypertension: Present before conception or during the first 20 weeks of pregnancy.
- Chronic hypertension with superimposed preeclampsia: This condition occurs in pregnant women who are already suffering from chronic blood pressure.
- Gestational hypertension: This is a condition that develops after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
High blood pressure in pregnancy adds stress to the kidneys and heart which in turn increases risks of heart diseases, and kidney disorders. Additionally, it can also cause complication to the fetus such as preterm delivery, placental abruption, and fetal growth restriction.
11 Ways to Manage High Blood Pressure During Pregnancy
During pregnancy, it is important to continuously monitor blood pressure levels in the body. Managing high blood pressure helps you a healthy delivery and healthy baby. Ultrasound examinations should also be performed frequently to check the growth and development of the baby inside. Following are some ways to manage high blood pressure during pregnancy:
1} Monitor Salt Intake
High blood pressure is often linked to salt consumption. It is a proven fact that reduction in the intake of dietary salt reduces high blood pressure. Pregnant women are advised to add little salt in their food while eating to help manage high blood pressure. Additional spices and herbs can be added for flavor and taste.
2} Practice Controlled Breathing
Breathing and meditation is a very famous relaxation technique that anyone can perform. During pregnancy, deep breathing helps reduce stress and lower blood pressure. Deep breathing increases baroreflex sensitivity and reduces high blood pressure.
3} Make Walking a Habit
Pregnant women who are inactive are at a higher risk of developing hypertension. Do you feel lazy and tired? Even though you are suffering from blues, it is a good idea to step out and walk a bit. Walking is considered one of the best cardio exercises for women who are pregnant. A brisk walk of 30 to 45 minutes daily is known to effectively reduce high blood pressure.
4} Increase Potassium Intake
Potassium is an integral and crucial mineral during pregnancy. Potassium helps maintain electrolyte and fluid balance. It also helps in contraction of muscles, release of energy, and transmission of nerve impulses. A diet rich in potassium helps reduce high blood pressure in pregnancy.
5} Magnesium Rich Foods
Deficiency of magnesium is the most common cause of high blood pressure in pregnancy. Including magnesium rich foods in your diet help dramatically reduce high blood pressure levels in the body. This important mineral also helps prevent premature uterine contractions and build strong bones of developing fetus.
6} Prenatal Yoga
Prenatal yoga is one of the best form of exercises during pregnancy. Prenatal yoga prevents stress, low birth weight, and premature birth. Yoga is known to have immense beneficial effects on reducing blood pressure effectively. It also reduces lower back pain and improves sleep patterns.
Read More: 11 Yoga Poses to Improve Fertility
7} Weight Control
Although sudden weight gain is normal in pregnancy, it is important to monitor weight gain. Being over-weight and obese is a warning sign can be detrimental to blood pressure. Additionally, excess weight gain can cause leg cramps, diabetes, aching joints, heartburn, back aches, leg cramps, and exhaustion.
8} Listen to Music
Music is very soothing to the mind and body. Listening to music can be extremely beneficial for you during pregnancy. Music helps deals with anxiety and stress that is responsible for causing high blood pressure in pregnancy. Since stress is not good for you and your baby, it is very important to control it. Listening to music for at least 20-30 minutes every day can significantly reduce your high blood pressure.
9} Monitor Medications
Certain medications can lead to hypertension as a side effect. It is important to monitor and seek advice from your doctor to change your medications if required.
10} Eat Whole Grains
Whole grains are rich in dietary fiber which is known to reduce hypertension. During pregnancy switch to whole grains like bread, whole wheat pasta, and brown rice. Ensure that you eat at least 8 servings of whole grains throughout the day.
11} Avoid Caffeinated Drinks
Caffeinated drinks besides being harmful for you and your baby, also has a negative impact on blood pressure. Caffeine consumption leads to reduced placental blood flow and a risk of miscarriage. Hence, avoiding caffeinated drinks helps keep a check on high blood pressure.
- If medications are required to reduce blood pressure, ensure that you take them regularly.
- Those suffering from preeclampsia, taking a low dose aspirin can help control reduce and prevent blood pressure. Ensure that you consult a doctor before taking it.
- Lead an active life. Making some simple lifestyle changes can help keep blood pressure under control.
If high blood pressure in not handled in time, it can pose several risks and complications during pregnancy. Additionally, it can also harm your unborn baby and cause premature birth. Effectively handling blood pressure in pregnancy ensures you have a healthy and smooth pregnancy. If you have been diagnosed with blood pressure before or after pregnancy, immediately contact your doctor. Your doctor will advise you to take a few medications and follow some simple lifestyle changes to handle blood pressure.
Are you too suffering from high blood pressure? Follow the above mentioned remedies to keep your blood pressure under control.