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JENNY SMITH MIDWIFE CHAT: Monday 19th April 12-1pm



  • Firstly can I just say how lucky we are to have you hear to ask these questions, thank you for your time Jenny.

    Mine is pretty simple, 30 + 4 into my second pregancy and I have SPD, had it right at the end with first pregnancy but had it this time from around 20 weeks. Can I just ask, when labour starts does the pain of SPD tend to get worse and throughout labour? I don't recall it happening the first time but with it going on for much longer this time I wondered if it was something that had been reported by other mothers?

    I have physio booked but not until I am 34 weeks, will this really be enough time to benefit me, seeing as I have had it for 10 weeks already?

    Thanks again for your time.

    NJ x
  • Dear babymay2010, The good news is its not too far to go. Swelling can be very uncomfortable and my suggestions are as follows: try to reduce white bread, pasta and high carbohydrates as they can increase the amount of fluid in your tissues and bowel. I think it important to be referred to a physiotherapist to give you some exercises for your wrists and ankles. If nerves are compressed on your wrists you can get something called carpal tunnel syndrome which can be very uncomfortable and they can give you a risk support for this. I have found if women put their hands in hot then cold water simultaneously this can be helpful and to keep their hands up on pillows above their heart at nights. During the day to elovate the ankles above the level above your heart will help venus return and swelling. Flight exercises, wriggling your legs will be helpful and elasticated stockings called TEDS can improve circulation however will be hot in this weather. it's important for you to go frequently to urine and blood pressure check ups as pre eclampsia can come at anytime later in pregnancy.
  • dear Bluegecko, SPD gets worse with increasing weight of baby. it is very important to keep your knees together as much as possible particularly when getting out of the car as any wear and tear on the cartilage at the front of your pelvis will make it worse. Do not life heavy things and when bending always bend knees first. Some women find pilling in their tummy muscles as they walk very helpful and trying to keep their posture straight. Some physiotherapists may recommend a corset but even with this it is important to pull tummy muscles in. i recommend you see a physio at the maternity unit who can see how far you can extend your knees to advise birth positions. Also an obstetrician who can assess your severity to assist in the planning of your birth. There is a good website on google for symphysis pubis dysfunction. Put a pillow between your knees at night and try to keep legs together and as straight as possible.
  • Dear ilovemygeek2, If you have had a previous history of post partum haemorrhage or retained placenta there is a risk of reoccurence in this pregnancy and it is therefore recommended by all obstetricians that you give birth in a maternity unit that has the necessary emergency resources to deal with this. However it is your choice if you wish to have a home birth but it is important to realize this is a recommendation by the midwife/obstetrician. I am sure your midwife will have advised you that if you did have a haemorrhage it would be a blue light ambulance rushing you to hospital. Of course there are many women in which all preparations are made and they do not have another haemorrhage or placenta. My advice is to have your baby in a birth centre environment on a labourward with obstetricians near by and your community midwife who would not need to continuously monitor the baby if there was no problems and could encourage you to be mobile, keep the lighting dimmed, use bean bags mats etc and could in advance prepare all equipment if a problem arose.
  • Dear tink21, it is very difficult to know if you are pregnant or not as the pregnancy would be so early and you have not missed a period yet. However i have known women who just know that they are pregnant even at a very early stage so maybe it's happened. Look after yourself well and eat small amounts frequently and drink lots of water.
  • Dear little_bo_peep, sometimes the early weeks of pregnancy are difficult to judge as not all women have a lot of symptoms. Often women can just feel very tired and sometimes have tingly breasts. If you have no bleeding or cramping feeling this is usually a good sign. I would suggest you book in your pregnancy and have a scan at 12 weeks however if you are worried before then with any bleeding you can get your GP to refer you earlier for another scan to check the pregnancy is normal.
  • It has been great talking to everyone. Apologies for not finishing the last couple of questions. I will do them offline for you. Very best wishes.
  • Hi, I'm 27+3 and have an anterior placanta. I have been feeling a lot of movement lately but yesterday I felt nothing at all. I've only felt 2 slight movements today. Should I be worried and how long should I leave it before I tell my midwife?
  • Dear lisaleigh, from my own experience babies can become unsettles having previously been absolutely fine. Obviously they enjoy the kisses cuddles and warmth of the parents but to establish calm again it is very important that you remain completely calm and snuggle her against you speaking softly and calming slowly snuggling her back in the cot. Sometimes leaving a little light on dimly in the room is helpful or a favourite blanket or teddy but it is just a firm ( keeping her in her own bed) but very gentle approach that usually works. Some parents will resort to co-sleeping as another option and then when your baby goes back to sleep gently place her back in her cot.
  • Dear Juniemummy, keep really positive. Try to join up with your friends and go to the park together where you can have the other mothers to help you or sit in a garden if you have one. Try to do only the things that are absolutely necessary and ask your husband or mother in law to help with housework. Heavy lifting of hoovers or scrubbing floors will increase the problem. Try to de-clutter your house to make it easy as possible to clean and get a little bit of help from your five year old who could bring you things. I know from my personal experience that you can feel like a squeezed out jay cloth by the end of every day but these gorgeous babies as they grow older do get easier and the home from chaos can become normal again after some years. Best of luck.
  • squeezed out J-cloth sounds about right! My eldest (4 1/2) is a little star. Thankyou for your advice
  • Dear Rache-g, trying to wind the baby more frequently during feeds may prevent so much wind going down. Doing gently circular movements of your hand over tummy after feeds can sometimes help the wind comes out. A slight elovation of the babies cot mattress which must be done under the mattress and not under the baby's head can help. There are various preparations to help colic in babies which some mothers have found helpful but they do require regular usage. it is best to inquire at your pharmacy for exact doses and products. Generally things with get better with colic however if things get worse it is important to discuss with your GP to give further advice. further changing of the milk will not necessarily make the situation any better as your baby seems to be doing well with actimel.
  • Dear Nickij01, in labour its very important that you do not abduct you knees too far. Positions such as having your baby in left lateral, or all fours position will allow you to keep control of deflexion of your knees and also control the pain. often in labour women do not complain of so much the symphesis pubis as the contractions are more overwhelming but careful positioning in labour will reduce the pain your experience following the birth. Its important following the birth to not over stretch as the pregnancy hormones are still in your body until six weeks.
  • Dear Pinknic, if your placenta is anterior it means that it is infront of your baby which means that sometimes at this stage depending on the position of your baby the movement are not felt as strongly as the baby kicks the placenta. What is suggest is prod your womb with your fingers drinks a hot then cold drink one after the other and this should make your baby move more. You have felt the baby move today but if you notice that you are feeling less movements pop in and see your midwife when you can for further reassurence.
  • Today's webchat has now finished. Thank you Jenny Smith for staying online to answer as many questions as possible.

    We see Jenny's midwife advice is becoming more and more popular so we will endeavour to arrange another soon so watch this space.

    Many thanks to all involved.
  • hi can anybody help me ?? i am 7 weeks but im bleeding. done 6 pregnancy tests and they all are positive and the result is coming up straight away . do you think i should worry . x
  • im 18 and found out i was pregnant yesterday.. what do i do next? should i be taking vitamins? thank you

  • im 18 and is 13 weeks pregnant on today.I have been prescribed vitamins iron and antiboitic pills what will happen if i never take them?


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