Pregnant woman with husband sitting on floor, holding hands on belly
Pregnant woman with husband sitting on floor, holding hands on belly

Planning a baby is never an easy task. Sapna Sarfare asks doctors to give in some advice to help remove any confusion and let couples become happy parents

It’s one of the most important decision in any couple’s life and yet most of the time, they pass through its various stages without any planning or expert inputs. Planning for a child can be a deep decision for any couple. Thousands of questions run through their minds, from the right time to have sex up to ways to make things successful. This is where doctors can come in to remove any issues.

This most important decision is based on emotional and physical readiness. Dr. Shelly Singh, MD, Senior Consultant, Gynaecologist and Obstetrics, Primus Super Specialty Hospital, reveals, “When a couple decide to have a baby, they are mentally and emotionally all set to shoulder the responsibility of a young life and to welcome this happiness in their lives.”

Dr. Anil Kumar Varshney, who is an Urologist and empanelled member of Docplexus.in, too feels that once the decision is made to have a baby, the couple should be prepared mentally and physically for both pregnancy and parenthood. “It’s an added responsibility for a couple to have a baby in current scenario. Mostly parents insist on, while the couple is busy in pursuing career objectives. For women, having preparing physically is little more advisable since the nourishment to the foetus and then the baby is primarily hers. Also, they need to be prepared for childbirth which itself causes lot of trauma to the body. For men too, it is important to remain healthy.”

According to Dr. Sagar Mundada, Psychiatrist and Empanelled member of Docplexus.in, when one speaks of emotional readiness, it means that the expecting parents should plan every step carefully. “They should give their full commitment to the care of mother in pregnancy”

These days, generational differences set in amongst people. You can see the subtle changes in the way they see parenting, parenthood and even having children. Dr. Varshney sees the newer generation under stress. “In addition, the planning also starts little later especially in urban youth. The age of having a child is medically very significant. While few years ago we used to get more questions regarding pregnancy itself, now days we are finding that, questions are more related to failure to conceive. Parents today are better informed and are more calculative than being emotional.”

Dr. Singh reveals, “Parents these days are much more informed, more net savvy and well read. We see many more couples who come for pre-conceptional counselling, that is, to know what tests to be done, precautions to be taken, what to be eaten and avoided, how to time intercourse to achieve a pregnancy etc. Overall, a lot more aware and sometimes more stressed out too for the same reasons.”

In any cases, questions are usually posed by parents regarding planning a baby. Dr. Varshney reveals, “As an andrologist, when we get male patients consulting us for conception, their questions are quite pointed. Most of the time patients read somewhere about sperm count, sperm motility and erectile dysfunction issues. The majority of the sources often give conflicting information and their importance in conceiving. Most questions are quite personal and so we take time to understand each patient’s physiology and psychology.”

People are renowned to err. In fact, at times, children are out of mistakes. Jokes apart, even while planning for a baby, most couples do have share of mistakes. Dr. Singh tells, “Couples are too stressed these days and actually have little time to invest in their relationships. There is hardly any time to enjoy each other and on a regular fun filled sex life. Often sexual intercourse is scheduled according to the prescribed fertile period making it mechanical and boring. A few failures in achieving a pregnancy and they come rushing tearfully to the gynaecologist.”

Dr. Varshney reveals that quite a few men mistakenly believe that their better-halves can conceive any time. “Similarly smoking, alcohol consumption and unhealthy stressful lifestyle are the major concern. Men also need to understand that they will also have to participate in raising child and perhaps tend to ignore it.  Men and couples in general seem to be little careless about timing of sex and local hygiene.”

It’s time to get down to medical suggestions to have kids. Dr. Singh suggests, “I tell couple that intercourse must be regular and carefree and not timed and stressful. The best time for getting pregnant is from about the 12th to 18th day of the cycle (though I don’t promote scheduled intercourse alone). Get the relevant blood tests and an ultrasound done and do not to get worried if a few months do not yield results. I tell couples to quit smoking or at least cut down and have a healthy lifestyle. Meditation and regular physical activity is always good for the couple desirous of a pregnancy. If some couples are overweight, I ask them to lose weight and also ask them to control medical diseases before planning the pregnancy. A proper family history is also taken to be aware of those illnesses which could have a genetic bearing on the offspring. I advise adequate rest and sleep and a carefree attempt at achieving a pregnancy. I also prescribe folic acid prior to conception and also go into the history of medication being taken; any medicine that is not safe in pregnancy is stopped and safer options given if required.”

Dr. Mundada gives a sound advice when he says it is vital to think about settlement and stability in financial and interpersonal professional aspect of life before taking this decision. Dr. Varshney feels that lifestyle balance is a must. “Similarly, it is always advisable for couples over 30 to have some preliminary tests done in order to avoid any complications. On the basis of the report, customized advised is given.”

With sound advice doled out, it won’t be long for couples to plan their babies with more ease.

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