Obesity during pregnancy can lead to complications like gestational diabetes. You should attend all your prenatal appointments to ensure that your team monitors your health and the health of your baby.

Your weight during pregnancy

Do not attempt to reduce your weight while pregnant if you’re obese. You may be at risk for complications.

Your baby’s health and well-being is your top priority. You should go to all your antenatal appointments. This will allow you and your doctor to discuss any concerns and help prevent them from becoming serious.

Eat right and do some exercise

A healthy diet, exercise and a balanced lifestyle are important. A referral should be made to a dietitian for help with healthy eating habits and exercise. Your baby will benefit from your physical activity during pregnancy.

Consider eating healthy (including learning about what foods you should avoid during pregnancy), and taking up walking or swimming.

It’s best to check with your doctor or midwife if you weren’t active prior to becoming pregnant.

Your care in pregnancy

A test for gestational Diabetes will be given if your pregnancy is characterized by obesity.

An anaesthetist may be recommended to you to help with pain relief during labor. It is more common to deliver via an instrument (ventouse, forceps, or caesarean), so it may be harder to get an epidural.

Discuss your options with your doctor or midwife about birth. Discuss with your doctor if you have any safety concerns about giving birth in the pool or at home.

It may be recommended that you give birth at a hospital with easy access to any medical attention if necessary. 

Possible problems if you’re overweight in pregnancy

You and your baby are more likely to experience complications if they’re overweight. Higher BMI means greater chances of complications. You have a greater chance of getting complications when you are:

  • Miscarriage
  • gestational diabetes
  • Pre-eclampsia and high blood pressure
  • Blood clots
  • The baby’s shoulder becomes’stuck” during labor
  • After the birth, there is more bleeding than usual.

Also, you are more likely to require an instrument delivery (forceps/ventouse) or emergency caesarean section.

You could pose a problem for your baby if the weight of your pregnancy is too high

Your baby’s premature birth (below 37 weeks) and stillbirth can cause problems.

You also run a greater chance that your baby will have an underlying health condition such as spina bifida or a neural tube defect.

Obesity can increase the risk of developing these issues, but most pregnancies result in healthy babies.

Source: NHS