Iron deficiency anemia means you don’t have enough hemoglobin in the red blood cells in your system. Hemoglobin carries oxygen from your lungs via arteries to the cells throughout your body.
If you have discovered that you’re pregnant, then you should be aware that you have an increased risk for iron deficiency anemia because your body is making several extra pints of blood. Red cells live for about three months, the amount of time reqired to make a new red cell. When you are pregnant, you need more blood to supply oxygen and nutrients to your baby and if you don’t have enough iron in store, you could develop iron deficiency anemia.
Iron deficiency anemia can make you feel weak and tired during your pregnancy even more so than normal pregnancy itself. While some anemia is normal for any pregnant woman, you can have a severe form of iron deficiency anemia from other factors.
What Are the Symptoms of Iron Deficiency Anemia?
The symptoms of iron deficiency anemia are similar to those of pregnancy, so be sure to tell your doctor if you have any of these symptoms:
- lack of energy,
- shortness of breath,
- paleness, and
- heart palpitations.
How Do You Prevent Developing Iron Deficiency Anemia?
To prevent developing iron deficiency anemia, you need to get enough iron in your diet. You should integrate iron-rich foods such as eggs, lean red meat, poultry, fish, red vegetables, like radishes, potatoes and fruits, like apples, raisons, prunes, plums, and red grapes. The red color comes from the iron.
Prenatal vitamins contain iron, so taking your prenatal vitamins regularly is important. If your iron deficiency anemia persists, your doctor may suggest iron supplements, but these are notorious for causing stomach upset and constipation. If iron supplements cause you problems, talk to your doctor. You might also get IV iron.
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