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Pregnancy Bliss | Reproductive Health Hub

Low amniotic fluid in mid-pregnancy

Question:   Hi, i had my 20 week scan on the last week. I’m 22 weeks and have been told i have low amniotic fluid but my child’s growth heart and kidneys are all fine. no rupture has been fine. could you please tell me what this means and what the out come is as I’m worrying meself silly. K (UK)

Answer: Reduced amniotic fluid is not an uncommon occurrence in the later stages of pregnancy but that does not tend to be the case at such a relatively early stage. I would assume you have had a detailed ultrasound scan to have a close look at the baby. It would be inappropriate and potentially misleading if I were to pretend to know what might be going on in your case. Reduced amniotic fluid at the mid-way stage or earlier does legitimately raise concerns about possible chromosomal or genetic abnormalities. This is where a detailed scan comes in and, where appropriate, an offer of an invasive diagnostic test via amniocentesis. Another area that sometimes requires investigating is the possibility of a variety of viral infections. I do hope your doctors have gone through all this in detail. Please bear in mind that it is entirely possible that there is nothing at all wrong and this is one of the many cases of unexplained and probably temporary reduced amniotic fluid.

Head engagement

Question:  My baby’s head has been in and out of engagement for a week or so,how can i get it in and to stay in engagement? R. (UK)

Answer: You have not said whether you are at the end of pregnancy (Term) or farther back. However, it is important to know that head engagement is not at the control of the mother or the doctors. You cannot control the position of any part of the baby in the womb. This applies to engagement as well. If the head of the baby keeps going in and out of the pelvic cavity at Term, it may signify that there is probably excessive amount of amniotic fluid thereby giving the baby a lot of room to move about. A baby changing position far from Term is normal and should not unduly concern the mother.

Recurrence of twin pregnancy

Question:  I previously miscarried a set of monozygotic twins at 16wks, after twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome complications. What is the likelihood that a pregnancy in the future will be twins again? L. (South Africa)

Answer: Twin pregnancy can run in families but this applies mainly to non-identical twins. Monozygotic (identical) twins tend to be sporadic and are not normally familial. I am saying ‘not normally’ because there has been cases of monozygotic twins where there has been strong circumstantial evidence of a genetic component. This is admitted rare. By all intents and purposes therefore, advice to parents who have monozygotic twins is that recurrence is very unlikely. I would assume this is the advice your doctors have given you

Teeth whitening during pregnancy

Question:  Is it safe for me to have a teteeth whitening toothpaste in pregnancyeth whitening procedure. I’m five months pregnant and my teeth have bothered me foe a while. I don’t even smoke!! I’ve used tooth whitening toothpaste for several months but I cannot see any change. Please help, I’m desperate!! G. (UK)

Answer: If you talk to any respectable dentist, they will tell you the so-called teeth whitening toothpastes are a con. They just don’t work so your experience is not unique. Teeth are brushed for an average of 2 minutes at a time, two or three times a day. This means, the total duration the teeth are in contact with whatever bleaching chemicals are in the toothpaste is far too short. You may have seen the specialist gels which are used for this purpose advertised. Even these are supposed to remain in contact with teeth for a minimum of one hour at a time and, in fact, for some brands, the gum-tray containing the gel is supposed to be worn overnight.

These have to be used daily for a few weeks to show real results. Now, regarding your main question on whether you can use this type of treatment during pregnancy, I am not in a position to give you an answer one way or the other. It really depends on the type of the active ingredients contained therein and these differ from brand to brand. The best thing for you to do is to ask your attending dentist with regard to the specific preparation that they are proposing to use. My view, however, is that the safest and foolproof strategy will be to put this whole exercise off until you have had your baby.

Using sunscreen during pregnancy

Question:  Please, I would like to find out how safe it is to use sunscreen during pregnancy . O.

Answer: There is no known harm to the mother or baby in the womb from the use of sunscreen preparations during pregnancy. Havsunscreen mainly safe in pregnancying said that, it is common sense to observe the common advise in pregnancy that you should use any chemicals, oral or topical, only when absolutely necessary. This applies to sunscreen too. The usual advice to avoid the midday sun, to keep in the shade or wear a hat and avoid prolonged exposure to the sun whenever possible. Another measure you can observe is to use sunscreen whose active ingredients do not penetrate the skin (Zinc oxide and/or Titanium dioxide). These should be shown on the label. If a sunscreen does not show its active ingredients, don’t use it.

Bleeding in early pregnancy

Question:  Hello doc, my pregnancy will be 2 months by 7th of sept.  Just this morning i saw little blood, what do i do? G.D. (UK)

Answer: Vaginal bleeding in early pregnancy should always be regarded as threatened miscarriage until proven otherwise. Let me add that 9 out of 10 cases of threatened miscarriages do resolve successfully and spontaneously. Depending on the type of service available in your area, you need to contact your GP or the local hospital’s early pregnancy assessment unit where a scan will be arranged to verify what is going on. Best wishes.

...whatever brand they may be, ‘teeth-whitening toothpastes don’t live up to their promise.