Real Alternatives provides pregnancy and parenting services in the states of Pennsylvania, Indiana, and Michigan. Pregnancy counselors with Real Alternatives connect pregnant woman with an assortment of supportive services and resources, including information on the stages of pregnancy. The following are four health tips for the first trimester:
1. Find a primary care doctor. Regular visits to a prenatal care doctor throughout the duration of your pregnancy are essential to your health and the health of your baby. Take the time to find a quality prenatal care provider. You can ask family and friends for recommendations, or search online for top-rated doctors in your area.
2. Learn about prenatal nutrition. Talk to your doctor about proper prenatal nutrition, including which foods to eat and which to avoid. In addition, consult with your doctor about prenatal vitamins.
3. Cease alcohol and tobacco use. The use of alcohol and tobacco during your pregnancy poses significant risks to the health of your unborn child, including the potential for prenatal complications and premature birth. Research also indicates that smoking and alcohol consumption can inhibit fetal growth and increase the risk of stillbirth.
4. Stay hydrated. Increase your intake fluids over the course of your pregnancy. Consult with your doctor about how many ounces of water you need to consume per day.
Operating in Indiana, Michigan, and Pennsylvania, Real Alternatives provides expectant mothers with helpful resources and pregnancy support. The Real Alternatives website helps visitors understand sexually-transmitted diseases (STDs) and points to chlamydia as the most common STD in the United States.
According to a 2015 report published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), chlamydia affects approximately 1.5 million people every year. A bacterial STD, chlamydia affects both men and women and is often symptomless. However, if left untreated, it can cause a burning sensation during urination and abnormal genital discharge in both genders. Further, women may experience pelvic inflammatory disease, which is a leading cause of infertility and ectopic pregnancies.
Happily, chlamydia can usually be completely cured through a program of antibiotics. The most common antibiotics for chlamydia treatment are doxycycline and azithromycin. When treated with azithromycin patients take a one time dose of 1000 mg whereas those treated with doxycycline complete a course of treatment that requires taking 100 mg twice a day for one week. Sexual partners should also be treated to prevent reinfection. Doxycycline should not be taken during pregnancy but azithromycin is safe during pregnancy.
Launched in 1996 through a state-sponsored initiative to lower abortion rates, Real Alternatives originally served women through 72 centers across Pennsylvania.