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Why is bed rest prescribed during pregnancy?

If you are pregnant, one of the things you may dread hearing from your Indiana doctor is that you have to go on bed rest. Bed rest is a commonly prescribed solution during pregnancy, and doctors require it for many reasons. According to the Mayo Clinic, bed rest is typically prescribed when there are issues with the placenta or are at risk of going into labor early. However, bed rest is no longer a standard of care used by most doctors.

The reason for this is that bed rest can do more harm than good. Plus, there has not been conclusive evidence that it actually helps to prevent problems in pregnancy, such as preventing early labor. In fact, lying in bed and not moving can increase your risks for blood clots, increase stress levels, lead to weight loss or gain and affect your overall health.

Instead of bed rest, most doctors now prescribe pelvic rest, which is simply avoiding activities that can increase pressure on the pelvis. This includes heavy lifting, excessive walking, sex and using tampons. You may also have to sit for a certain number of hours a day or rest throughout the day at prescribed times. However, complete bed rest is very rarely prescribed anymore.

If you are prescribed complete bed rest, it is a good idea to discuss the reasons with your doctor and question whether there is an alternative. Bed rest can cause issues that could further harm you or your baby, so going with an alternative treatment is often much better. This information is for education and is not legal advice.

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