Temporary Pregnancy Problems

It’s a known fact that pregnancy causes the body to go through some pretty major transformations like stretch marks, weight gain and breast changes. But some changes are not what most women expect to occur during pregnancy, and to make matters worse, many of them are never talked about. Know that if you encounter any, or all, of these pregnancy symptoms that their effects are usually temporary—after you deliver and your hormones stabilize, which can take a few months, they tend to disappear on their own. Below are some of the most common.

Bleeding Gums
Why they happen: Your gums may be swollen and bleed, especially when brushing your teeth. During the second or third month, the chance of pregnancy gingivitis increases because of a surge in hormones. There is also more blood flow than normal, and some of it gets redirected to the gums. “There is an excess of hormones and the gums can react differently to the bacteria in plaque, causing redness, bleeding and tenderness that can intensify throughout pregnancy,” says New York cosmetic dentist Irene Grafman, DDS.

How to correct them: You’ll want to visit your dentist for regular checkups and cleanings and have any gum inflammation treated. Try switching to a softer toothbrush, which will be less traumatic to your gums and teeth. Remember that bleeding gums, if monitored properly by your dentist, can be temporary—once your body normalizes, your gums shouldn’t bleed post-baby.

Your Nose Spreads
Why it happens: It’s an old wives’ tale that, if you’re having a girl, your nose will widen. But changes to how the nose looks can occur despite the sex of your unborn baby. According to West Palm Beach, FL, facial plastic surgeon Michael L. Schwartz, MD, rhinitis of pregnancy (a.k.a. a wide nose) is caused by elevated estrogen levels, which cause mucus linings to thicken, and excess fluid retention and weight gain. “A lot of women experience nasal congestion and blockage as well as ‘spreading,’” he says.

How to correct it: There’s nothing that can be done while you’re pregnant, so you have to wait until after you’ve delivered. “Just like other parts of the body, large weight fluctuations can result in loss of the underlying support. If the body does not recover properly, surgical correction may be required,” says Dr. Schwartz. Although rhinoplasty to correct nasal changes from pregnancy is quite rare, Dr. Schwartz points out that, when it does occur, it’s usually because of a pre-existing problem that was emphasized by the changes.

Hair Loss
Why it happens: While you’re pregnant, your hair may be at its thickest and grow fast. But, about six months post-pregnancy, you may experience isolated patches of hair loss. During pregnancy, the increase in hormones like estrogen prevents your hair from shedding and falling out and keeps the hair in the growing phase. But once your hormones balance out, which takes about three to six months, your hair’s normal growth pattern will resume, too. Any hair that didn’t shed during pregnancy will probably fall out, which is why it appears as if large amounts of hair are being lost.

How to correct it: Since pregnancy-induced hair loss is temporary, for the most part, the best thing to do is let nature take its course. Try not to wear your hair pulled back in tight braids or ponytails, which causes breakage, and make sure to eat a diet rich in fruits, vegetables and protein, which are essential for healthy hair. You can also use hair growth-stimulating products, like shampoos and special treatments that contain vitamins, minerals and other growth stimulators, to speed up the process.

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