September 13, 2010 was almost coming close to my due date October 08, 2010 the concerns then were
1. Symptoms of Labor
Labor can start with backache (a sign of the prelabour cervical ripening), contractions, a mucous plug discharge (show) or leaking of fluid vaginally (ruptured membranes).
More on this subject can be found on my YouTube video and the webpage…
2. Whether music allowed in the labor room
Yes, of course. It’s an excellent idea to get music into the labour room – it is soothing and relaxing, which helps easy progress of labour. It gives you mental calm and strength to handle the pain / pressure waves. Also, the baby can hear the music and is born to this melody, a fulfilling experience indeed!
3. Baby Toiletries
In general, use toiletries from reputed brands and those with no added fragrance. Best to check with your paediatrician before using any products.
September 25, 2010 the frequency was increased to weekly visits and I was anxious about
4. White Discharge
This could be quite normal in late pregnancy as the cervix ripens prelabour. If, however, it is uncomfortable or itchy, then it needs to be checked and treated. Anti-fungal creams or vaginal tablets could be used.
5. Next appointment
Weekly schedule to check the cervix to guide you regarding the possible date you would labour! Also, to check whether the baby is moving well and all is well with you.
Mrs NR a 34 year old lady was referred to me by her close friend. NR had previously had 3 pregnancies, but they all had resulted in failure. She was clearly, therefore, anxious that this pregnancy should be successful.
Her first pregnancy was a missed abortion, wherein the heart beats of the fetus had stopped early at 8 weeks. The chromosomal testing of the fetal tissue was not done in that pregnancy. In the next pregnancy, when a similar situation occurred, a D and C procedure was performed and the chromosomes were tested. This revealed Down syndrome. In the third pregnancy, the heart beat did not appear at all by 6 weeks.
She was 16 weeks pregnant when she came to me in this, her 4th pregnancy, because her Obstetrician had recommended that she undergo the amniocentesis test to confirm normal chromosomes in the baby.
Since this was the first pregnancy that she had carried up to 16 weeks, she was very happy and yet, she was certain that she wanted to ensure that her baby did not have Down Syndrome. She was also very anxious about taking the Amnio test.
I offered her the Non-Invasive Prenatal Test, which involved taking her blood sample and getting the definitive result in 10 days. No amniocentesis meant no risks of miscarriage to the pregnancy, yet the assurance of normalcy.
She got a NORMAL report by 17-18 weeks and the sonography showed no fetal abnormalities. She was over the moon to continue her pregnancy with super confidence and excitement. Her baby is due anytime now…
Prenatal tests are designed to give that reassurance and pick up abnormalities, if any. Nevertheless, suspicion of any abnormality leads to considerable anxiety until the final diagnosis is conclusively reached. The detection of Down syndrome (Trisomy21), the common chromosomal abnormality is one of the important steps in prenatal screening.
The routinely used prenatal tests to detect Down syndrome are the ultrasound based tests (e.g. the Nuchal translucency test and the Anomaly scan) and blood tests (e.g. the Dual, Triple and Quadruple Marker tests). These are indirect measures to predict the presence of a chromosomal abnormality in the fetus (unborn baby).
However, none of these tests are 100% accurate, which means they can miss some cases of Down syndrome, even if they are performed with the best of expertise. Of course, this expertise is also not easily available in all clinics / cities.
There are some High Risk cases or situations when a higher degree of precision and accuracy is needed. In such situations, until recently, invasive testing such as Amniocentesis and Chorion Villous Sampling were the only methods of confirmatory diagnosis of these chromosomal abnormalities (such as Down syndrome). These tests carry a small, but definite risk of miscarriage due to the procedure, which involves introducing a needle into the pregnancy sac or placenta respectively.
Alzheimer's disease is a form of dementia. Dementia is a medical term for any kind of decline or loss of cognitive or intellectual abilities. Alzheimer’s is a neurological disorder, which causes degeneration and death of brain cells tissues. This results in memory loss and cognitive decline. Once the disease sets in, it keeps getting worse, and there is no known way to reverse it. This is why it is called a neurodegenerative type of dementia. This means that it is degenerative by nature. The initial symptoms are mild enough, and may seem more like mild memory loss or absent mindedness, but eventually it can get to be quite debilitating.
While some decline in brain functioning is seen in most people as part of aging, Alzheimer's is not a normal part of aging. Again, while most of the patients suffering from Alzheimer’s are 65 years or older, there is a smaller percentage of people who also suffer from an early-onset of the disease. Thus, it cannot be said that this is simply a disease of old age.
Causes of Alzheimer’s Disease
Lot of research has been done in the area of Dementia in general and Alzheimer’s in particular. Today, we know that Alzheimer’s is caused due to two primary reasons:
1. Plaques, or protein deposits that build up in spaces between nerve cells. Essentially, there is an excess of beta amyloid protein in these spaces.
2. Twisted fibres of yet another protein called tau that build up inside brain cells. These are called tangles.
Interestingly, with advancing age, most people develop these protein deposits in their brain. However, there is yet no answer to why people with AD end up having far too many of these deposits as compared to others, and why they impact important brain areas more than other areas. This buildup of protein blocks communication between the various cells of the brain, messing up with the brain circuitry and eventually resulting in cell death.
What are Some Symptoms?
Being a neurodegenerative disorder, symptoms of Alzheimer's worsen over time. As the disease advances, people may lose most of their memory, may not remember near and dear ones, and may even lose the ability to carry on a conversation and respond to their environment.
• Difficulty remembering newly learnt information –this is the first visible symptom
• Forgetfulness, misplacing things
• Disorientation, especially regarding time and place
• Loss of judgment
• Changes in mood and behaviour
• Personality changes
• Increased suspiciousness
• Difficulties with abstract thinking
• At advanced stages, difficulty in speaking, swallowing, and walking.
Can it be Cured?
As of now, there is no cure as such for Alzheimer's. Medical care is focused on treating and managing the symptoms. However, there are some medications that help in slowing down the memory loss. Often, patients with AD may also be given psychiatric medications; depending on the specific symptoms they may show (depression, agitation, aggression). There is a lot of research on alternative forms of treatment as well, but nothing has been seen to work conclusively.
Focus is also on helping people and caregivers of AD cope on a day to day basis. Some interventions that have been helpful are:
• Modification of the environment
• Psycho educating the care givers
• Creating a structured and predictable routine
• Creating a calm and soothing environment
By Ms. Samindara Sawant
Clinical Psychologist, Clinical Hypnotherapist, Crystal Healer, Reiki Practitioner
Director, Disha Counseling Center