Dr. Natasha Jeter at the office

Feathering your nest

Pregnancy is filled with new and exciting times. You’re preparing to have a new member join your family, your body is rapidly changing, and you are adapting a healthier lifestyle with the help of your obstetrician, Natashia Jeter, MD.

Dr. Jeter is located at Medical Group of the Carolinas (MGC) OB/GYN—Union. As a board certified gynecologist and obstetrician, she helps moms through the physical and emotional changes of pregnancy, from feeling nauseous to cupcake cravings.

“I want all mothers to know that pregnancy is not a disability and you can continue your normal routines,” Dr. Jeter said.  “It’s an exciting time, and it’s so important to take care of yourself to protect the new baby. Often times I see pregnant women who are not focusing enough on themselves. Make sure to take care of both your body and mind.”

Dr. Jeter has been serving the Union community since 2012. At MGC—OB/GYN—Union, she offers prenatal care for both routine and high-risk pregnancies.

“The most common mistakes I see are in prenatal care. As soon as you find out that you are pregnant, you need to make an appointment,” Dr. Jeter said. “Pregnancy can be stressful so make sure to get lots of rest, relax or even get a baby sitter if you have other children.”

Often times, women also take “eating for two” a little too far. Gaining too little or too much weight during a pregnancy can add risks for both mother and baby.

“Women really only need about 300 more calories each day when they are pregnant,” Dr. Jeter said. “Women also should know that alcohol and smoking are off limits during this time.”

Here are some tips from Dr. Jeter to make those nine months a little more comfortable before your bundle of joy arrives:

  1. Get early prenatal care. This will allow you to get screened for potential complications and conditions, and also work out a healthy pregnancy plan that is right for you. Once you are pregnant, make sure you know when you to call your doctor if you are having any issues such as bleeding, lack of movement from your baby or dizziness.
  2. Take prenatal vitamins. Vitamins with B12, folic acid, calcium and iron are all important nutrients for you and your baby. Iron reduces the risk of anemia, which is common during pregnancies. Even before conceiving, it’s a good idea to prepare your body with prenatal vitamins.
  3. Exercise to reduce stress and to keep your health up. This can vary from a walk in a cool area to prevent overheating or a pregnancy exercise class. Regular physical activity can help you feel better, sleep better, prepare your body for birth and help you get back to your pre-pregnancy weight sooner. However, talk with your physician what exercises are safe for you.
  4. Wear comfortable shoes and put your feet up several times a day to prevent exhaustion and swelling of the feet, legs and ankles. Due to your weight gain, you are putting extra pressure on your feet. Retaining fluids can also cause feet and ankle swelling. Some expectant moms find they need a larger shoe size.
  5. Sleep at least eight hours a night. The high levels of pregnancy hormones in your body will make you tired. If you can, try getting a short nap during the day or at least putting your feet up to relax for 30 minutes.
  6. Eat healthy fiber-filled foods—like vegetables and whole grains—and eat healthy snacks—such as low-fat yogurts and drink eight to 10 glasses of water each day. While you may indulge in cravings, make sure to eat healthy and well-balanced meals. The nutrients from these foods help your developing fetus get all substance it needs.
  7. Don’t smoke or drink alcohol. Alcohol and tobacco can increase your baby’s risk for problems such as fetal alcohol spectrum disorders and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
  8. Cut back on caffeine. Some studies have shown that too much caffeine can increase the risk of a miscarriage. Not only is soda, tea and coffee high in caffeine, but so is chocolate, so be aware of what you are eating. Healthcare providers often suggest limiting caffeine intake to a 12-ounce cup of a coffee a day.
  9. While you focus on your physical health, be sure to also focus on your mental and emotional health. Pregnancy can make your emotions feel like a roller coaster. Use this time to relax and de-stress, which will also be good for your baby.

Expectant mothers can also receive specialized obstetric care from Medical Group of the Carolinas (MGC)—OB/GYN—Union. From prenatal care to high-risk pregnancies, the staff is experienced in all walks of the nine-month gestation period.

Following quality prenatal care at MGC—OB/GYN—Union, Spartanburg Medical Center is prepared to welcome your new baby. Within comfortable birthing units, certified lactation consultants help start your breastfeeding journey with your baby. Before and after your birth, Spartanburg Medical Center offers classes on birth basics, breast feeding, new-baby care, infant CPR and has support groups for moms.

After you bring your new baby home, your hometown obstetrician, Dr. Jeter, will work closely with you through adjustments or difficulties you may be having with your body after giving birth.

To schedule an appointment with Dr. Jeter, please call 864-427-8380. For information about childbirth and parenting classes at Spartanburg Medical Center, please call 864-560-BABY