What to do if you're pregnant with no insurance or healthcare resources.
Here at Fit Pregnancy, we've been getting some interesting emails and Facebook comments lately with a similar theme. Take this one, for example:
hi! im 7months pregnant. its my first pregnancy, im worried i havnt been visitn d doctor of the clinic. what can i do 2make my baby a healthy baby? and what are the consequences of not seeing the doctor? please i need help.
Or this one:
I'm still on da run en having ground since i was preggy! wat's da matter of taking care of a baby coz i really don't have a good check-up.
I'm thinking from the text-speak and dialect these women aren't Americans and they're facing issues most mothers don't have to deal with, but over the years I've heard from countless women who aren't getting prenatal care. Their wide reasons include:
- They can't afford it,
- They don't have transportation,
- There's no clinic nearby,
- They're afraid of doctors,
- It's against their religion,
- They're on drugs,
- They're prostitutes,
- Their husbands won't let them,
- Their doctor was mean to them,
- Their other children were taken away from them,
- They don't have insurance and no doctor will see them,
- They want a natural birth and their doctor isn't into that,
- They are traveling, relocating, hiding out…
The list goes on and on, but every woman who isn't getting prenatal care is, on some level, feeling frightened and worried; even those who intentionally avoid medical care. They all have one big wish in common - to have a healthy baby.
If they're writing us they know they should be getting prenatal care. They know some women and babies have health problems during pregnancy and they want to make sure they're not among those. It's easy to judge and shake a finger, but try not to. Prenatal care is easy if you have enough money, access to social services, insurance, transportation and all the other factors that get a woman into a healthcare practice. It's not easy if you're young, broke, uninsured, an immigrant, live in a rural area or have a troubled past and a few seriously bad habits.
So, how can women have a healthy baby if they don't get prenatal care? Of course, my first piece of advice is: GET PRENATAL CARE. Contact your county health department and ask where you can go. Prenatal care is available, even for uninsured women and it's a extremely important.
What do you have to do to be healthy? There's no mystery here:
Work the machine. Exercise often.
Respect your brain. It's the most sensitive, miraculous, fragile and intricate computer system invented, but it's delicate. If you overload it, it backfires as stress and disease. Protect it and give it the care and rest it needs, it will power your entire life. That means sleep, stress reduction, and periods of deep relaxation and meditation. That's not just some hippie-Zen-new-agey thing. That's a scientific fact. Stress Less: The truth about your top 10 pregnancy worries.