Ask Sofia: What is the Latest with Zika?
Zika made headlines last year with news out of Brazil, where some women who’d contracted the virus while pregnant gave birth to babies with smaller brains due to a condition called microcephaly. In addition to brain damage, microcephaly has been linked with feeding issues, developmental delays, seizures, hearing and vision loss, and more.
Recently, federal health officials have fanned the flames around Zika even higher – noting that Zika exposure can lead to miscarriages and stillbirths as well as other complications throughout the entire pregnancy – rather than just the first trimester. And while Zika’s effects in non-pregnant adults were previously considered mild, several cases have shown more severe effects from infected mosquito bites, including brain inflammation and temporary paralysis.
When to See a Doctor about Infertility
ccording to the National Center for Health Statistics, 6.7 million U.S. women ages 15-44 have difficulty conceiving or carrying a baby to term, and 1.5 million married women are unable to get pregnant after at least 12 months of unprotected sex with their partner. Nearly 7.5 million U.S. women have used infertility services.
Painful menstruation. Low back or abdominal pain. Pain during sex. Endometriosis, a disorder where the tissue that lines the inside of the uterus begins to grow outside of the uterus, often makes itself known through pelvic pain. The tissue attaches to other organs and acts as normal – which means breaking down and bleeding during each period. However, the tissue lacks a way to leave the body, which can lead to severe pain.
While there is no specific scientific evidence on the benefits of placenta encapsulation, some moms report that it aids in recovery, reduces the baby blues, increases energy and even enhances milk supply. The placenta contains both hormones and iron, which leave the body with childbirth, and proponents of placenta encapsulation believe that the pills can support more balanced hormone levels, leading to faster healing and decreased stress.
Ask Sofia: How Worried Should I be about the Zika Virus?
The Zika virus is transmitted by infected mosquitoes, which generally breed in warm climates. For most adults, the symptoms are relatively mild and short-lived; they can include headaches, fever, red eyes (conjunctivitis) and joint pain. However, the virus can lead to microcephaly in babies, a condition where the head is smaller than expected, and babies with microcephaly often have smaller brains due to lack of development during pregnancy. Microcephaly has also been linked to seizures, developmental delays, hearing loss, feeding issues and vision problems.
Ask Sofia: Should I Take Folic Acid?
he longer answer is that if you are trying to get pregnant or are pregnant now, folic acid is more important than ever.
A B vitamin, folic acid is needed by every single cell in the body for growth and development. Before and during early pregnancy, folic acid can help to prevent birth defects, specifically neural tube defects of the brain and spine – it might also serve to prevent cleft lip and palate and heart defects in babies.