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Pregnant in a wheelchair

By June 29, 2015No Comments
Pregnant and in a wheelchair. 

Your dream of being a mother can be a reality despite being  a wheelchair user. Pregnancy might be a little tougher on your body than on an able bodied woman but it could be well worth it in the end – to hold your little bundle of joy.

Conceiving

If you cannot conceive yourself, trying IVF is an option or perhaps go the surrogacy route. There is loads of research and information out there on both options. Adoption is also another route to have a child, the child might not be a biological child of yours but that child will still be all yours to bring up and love.

Before trying to conceive always visit your healthcare professional about medications you might be on, and see a disability specialist.
What to expect when pregnant

Mothers to be in wheelchairs can face different conditions due to their physical disabilities. These include; urinary tract and kidney infections, trouble determining when labour has begun, low blood pressure and pressure sores.


Breathing might become a problem due to the fact that women in wheelchairs can already have reduced pulmonary functions.

You may experience difficulty in your ability to perform daily activities such as dressing, transferring, bathing or driving due to baby bump growing. A pregnant women might need to use a larger wheelchair during the later stages of pregnancy because a small wheelchair can lead to nasty pressure sores and just plain discomfort.

A pregnancy support belt can help support the back and abdominal muscles. Adapt your household with the needed adjustments to help caring for your baby less hassle free such as the height adjustment diaper changing tables and cribs in the easily accessible nursery room.

It is a good idea to find the right specialized obstetrician for you and your growing baby, with knowledge on both pregnancy and disability.
Birth

Make sure that there is a roll in shower at the hospital, a shower seat and anything else that you will find comforting or might need for when you are in hospital.

If a woman has multiple sclerosis being in hot environments can bring on uncomfortable effects, a fan in the hospital room can help to ease this.
The two options for giving birth are either a caesarean or natural birth. A caesarean is more than the likely the option most people see as the only to give birth to your bundle of joy but it can be done naturally if the circumstances are 
right.

Having a physiotherapist visit you during labour and after birth can aid in the level of comfort. Perhaps staying in hospital for a few days longer than an able bodied woman would for added support can help a great deal.
Jen Goodwin. 

Uplifting story of wheelchair mothers

Jen Goodwin was left paralysed in a horrific experience but went on to give birth to a healthy baby boy this month! Read her inspiring story here
‘Paralyzed and Pregnant’ is a series on Michelle Cartson bound to a wheelchair after an accident. She went on to have a healthy boy in 2005. Watch the series on her experience through pregnancy and her happy life with her son.
An informative guide to disability and pregnancy

For details on pregnancy for women with disabilities, not just exclusive to pregnancy for wheelchair users, but also for women with other physical disabilities as well as mental disabilities, click here.

‘’The life of a mother is the life of a child – you are two blossoms on a single branch.’’
                         ~ Karen Maezen Miller
                                                    
-Keira