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Prenatal Screening at 9 weeks – Non invasive prenatal test (NIPT)

Pregnancy must be one if not the best time of my life. It’s a memory I always replay and retell to my family and friends. When my son was born healthy, two arms and two feet – I felt a huge relief because like most moms, our happiness & excitement are clouded with significant anxieties. One of which is the question, is my baby going to be healthy?


Chromosome map of a male with Down’s syndrome (Trisomy 21)

The good news is moms today now have the choice to determine the health of their baby as early as 9 weeks. This includes prenatal screening to detect gender, chromosomal abnormalities (i.e. Trisomy 21 aka Down’s syndrome, Trisomy 18, Trisomy 13 and sex chromosome abnormalities), and other birth defects.

This is through Panorama noninvasive prenatal testing (NIPT) that only involves blood being drawn from the mother like any other blood test. The blood is then processed for the mother’s DNA to be differentiated from that of the baby whose DNA is also present in the mother’s blood. From hereon, the baby’s chromosomes are screened with results being available in 9-10 days.

I first had my  prenatal screening/ congenital anomaly scan only at 25 weeks. This means I had more time to imagine and stress over things that could go wrong. You cannot blame mothers like me who like to be prepared for each & every scenario possible. Afterall, all of us want only the best for our children Рwhether they are still inside or outside of the womb.

During my 4D ultrasound, everyone was excited except me because my excitement was overshadowed by nervousness. It was only when the doctor said everything looks normal that I started to enjoy the process.

Maybe, if NIPT was available during that time I could have considered it given the budget. Imagine knowing your baby’s gender at only 9 weeks and having that peace of mind OR that opportunity to prepare for your baby’s healthcare in advance and make the right decisions (i.e. delaying immunization) once he is delivered.

Panorama is currently available at High Precision Diagnostics Clinics in the Philippines. This technology was only available in countries like Canada then. There are different packages available with the cheapest being around P11,000 for gender identification and P50,000+ for the full test which is suitable for mothers at higher risk of birth defects (34 and above).

If NIPT is not within your budget, the best thing that mothers can do is to take care of themselves by living a healthy lifestyle before, during, and after pregnancy. Plus, always follow your doctor’s orders :)

Related stories:
Oral Glucose Challenge Test (OGCT)

 

Mommy Lace is a blogger from the Philippines. She started this blog to share information on pregnancy, breastfeeding, childcare, family, and health.

The more the merrier?

Every time I think of my own sisters (we are three girls in the matriarch and I’m the middle child), I can’t help but feel the pressure of having another child. Ashton is just about to turn two next month and just like him, the baby oven is getting older. I’m just 27 but medically speaking, the prime time to bring kids to the world is 30 and below. I think about who would Ashton play with, who would he turn to when he’s having teen troubles, etc. Of course, as parents we are present but I grew up confiding with my siblings and doing almost everything with them.

My other sister, who’s now an Aussie alpha-mom was just thinking the same. In a perfect world where kids are born 100% healthy and where money is not an issue, we would both already be having kid number two. It being just a day after Easter, I want to think only God knows the perfect timing and I should worry less about my family’s current head count.

How do you know when you’re ready for kid #2 or what do you think about having only one child?

I wish I had more insights especially from adults who were an only child and how was it like growing up without siblings. While I’m thinking about this, it’s a good time for me to head now to mom forum and check for related discussions :) It’s an international mommy site I just discovered during my staycation and I actually wish we had more like this. I enjoy contributing to discussions if time is not an issue and when I need to relax, I still hop to forums like GirlTalk just to be “in the know”.

I kind of think that sisterhood is really important to women and I’m clueless of how guys actually feel about having brothers at all. What do you think?

Mommy Lace is a blogger from the Philippines. She started this blog to share information on pregnancy, breastfeeding, childcare, family, and health.

Maternity clothes – To keep or to give?

So it’s been about two years since I was pregnant and I badly miss the feeling, more so when my maternity clothes jump out of the closet. They no longer fit, obviously – and it would be such a waste if I try my zero sewing skills on them. Should I keep them inside a trove or simply give them away?

If you’re a mom like I am, sentiments easily fill the house. I still have the belly belts, the wide shoes for women, and the XL under garments. So awhile ago I was devicing a way to get rid of them but not entirely, meaning I still get to see these momentous items. Giving them away to someone close is a great idea, especially this Christmas when I vowed to give “meaningful” presents instead of “new and expensive” gifts.

Remember, maternity clothes are normal clothes. It’s just that they are a size or two bigger than your ordinary clothings – so find someone of this size whom you know will appreciate them. I already have a person in mind and I am sure she will love them! I’ve barely worn my maternity dresses because Ashton came way too early.

What about you? Where are your maternity clothes now?

Mommy Lace is a blogger from the Philippines. She started this blog to share information on pregnancy, breastfeeding, childcare, family, and health.

Pregnancy: What clothes to wear?

I can’t live without house clothes or pambahay and I just remembered how differently I wore clothes when I was pregnant. Back then, I enjoyed cool sleeveless sleep wear all day. Not pyjamas but the girly-duster type. It was perfect for the warm weather and because my tummy shows more :)

If you’re pregnant now, here’s a list of the most comfy items you can wear:

– Duster dresses
– Your husband’s shirts and boxer shorts (no kidding!)
plus size intimate apparel
– Loose, old shirts (they’re breathable, soft, and easy on the tummy)

Not to be a kill-joy, you really don’t have to buy a ton of maternity clothes. Perhaps buy one or two for special occasions like if you have a baby shower or want to have a decent photo with your baby “still inside”.

Mommy Lace is a blogger from the Philippines. She started this blog to share information on pregnancy, breastfeeding, childcare, family, and health.

Pregnancy: Sick while Pregnant

Cough, fever, and flu are some of the illnesses that are easily caught by pregnant women. They can easily send you into panic mode once you feel the symptoms. Personally, I was always afraid of catching fever when I was pregnant with my son Ashton. I heard a lot about pregnancy side-effects of fever and especially measles. It also didn’t help that during the last few months of my pregnancy, a measles outbreak was reported. But we all know that panicking and stressing about these things will actually make you feel worse and recuperate longer. Here are some ideas for a speedy recovery:

1. If you are sick, pregnant, and working – get a leave from work. The home is the best place for you to recover where stress cannot access you. Turn off your mobile, etc. and notify your employer about your get well soon plan.

2. If you are pregnant and staying at home – isolate yourself in your bed room (otherwise you’ll catch yourself doing chores), drink plenty of fluids, get help for house work and ask your spouse to take care of you.

In any of these situations, remember that your baby is your priority – not your work, your to-do list, or anything else. Never push yourself too hard and do what you have to do to feel better. Yes, as simple as that. It’s your way or the highway ;)

Mommy Lace is a blogger from the Philippines. She started this blog to share information on pregnancy, breastfeeding, childcare, family, and health.

Pregnancy: Controlling your bladder

Let me recall one of the most memorable of pregnancy symptoms that I’ve encountered – difficulty in controlling my bladder. When you’re pregnant, it is likely you feel the need to pee every now or so. Your friends will call you the urinator and you’ll be tired walking in and out of the toilet. Some also experience constipation but I was lucky that I did not experience this part during pregnancy. Here are some tips to help ease incontinence:

1. Drink enough water, and on the right time – drink most when you are at home and don’t skip eight glasses of water. It will only lead to UTI which is common during pregnancy. So, when you are outside – try to drink in moderation and expect that about after 30 minutes of gulping, you’ll need to find the toilet.

2. Practice holding it by doing Kegel exercises

3. If incontinence is really bothering you, try incontinence products like adult pads but never use a tampon.

4. For constipation, eating Papaya fruit and lots of fiber should do the trick.

5. Avoid stress and relax :)

Mommy Lace is a blogger from the Philippines. She started this blog to share information on pregnancy, breastfeeding, childcare, family, and health.