Preventing Pregnancy Problems: 7 Really Important Prenatal Warning Signs to Look Out For by Linda Hanna, RNC, MSN/Ed., IBCLC

Preventing Pregnancy Problems: 7 Really Important Prenatal Warning Signs to Look Out For

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that 700 mothers die and 50,000 are injured each year from pregnancy or labor problems – and three-fifths of problems could have been prevented. How can women make sure they are safe and protected throughout their pregnancy?

I’m the co-founder of maternity health-tech company Mahmee along with my daughter, Melissa Hanna, and a health-care expert for many years who created the maternity and lactation programs at Kaiser Permanente and Cedars-Sinai. Having worked with so many mothers throughout my tenure, I’ve developed warning signs to watch out for during pregnancy

  • Back or Pelvic Pain: Your OB-GYN should always know about pain in the lower pelvic region or across the front of your belly above the pubic hair line. Back pain is sometimes a sign of uterine contractions and your provider will want to make sure the cervix is not opening prematurely.
  • Spotting or Bleeding: Some spotting is normal, depending on the weeks of pregnancy. Spotting or small amounts of blood stain on the pantyliner can occur with implantation of the embryo, but during the second trimester or third trimester any bleeding is particularly worrisome.
  • Fever: A higher than normal temperature, paired with body aches and flu-like feelings, is sometimes a sign of an infection that may require testing or medication. It’s important to catch this early.
  • Lightheadedness, Dizziness, Vomiting: These could be a hidden indicator of high blood pressure and preeclampsia later in the pregnancy.
  • Headaches: Headaches could be normal, but watch out for any unusual changes, like suddenly appearing migraines that you never suffer from. Some medications which are safe for pregnancy but must be prescribed by the physician. Headaches and changes in your vision can be connected to blood pressure issues.
  • Swelling: Any major changes in puffiness or if your hands and feet suddenly feel tight could signals of changing blood pressure or increased stress on the heart. Blood flow to the placenta and fetus can be monitored.
  • Rashes: Watch out for any changes in skin or unusual redness, rashes, hives, which can be connected to problems with the gallbladder, a disorder known as cholestasis. Sometimes conditions of the liver can present with rashes or hives.

Mahmee is a platform backed by Serena Williams and Mark Cuban that lets hospitals, health plans and their patients closely coordinate comprehensive prenatal and postpartum care so that no moms and babies fall through the gaps in the health-care system.

The content on is for informational and entertainment purposes only, and should not be considered medical advice. The information on this site should not be used to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease, and is not a substitute for professional care. Always consult your personal healthcare provider. The opinions or views expressed on do not necessarily represent those of 30Seconds or any of its employees, corporate partners or affiliates.

Take 30 seconds and join the 30Seconds community. Inspire and be inspired.

Related Products on Amazon We Think You May Like:

30Second Mobile, Inc. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.

Choosing an Obstetrician: Questions Every Pregnant Woman Should Ask When Picking an OB-GYN

Pregnancy Glossary: 122 of the Top Pregnancy Terms Pregnant Parents Need to Know

Pregnancy Weekly: Your Comprehensive Guide to Pregnancy From Week 1 to Week 40 and Beyond!

Baby Is the Size of a What?? Tracking Fetal Development in Pregnancy Weeks 4 - 40

So helpful, I didn’t know all this.
Elisa Schmitz
Wow, this is a very insightful list. Very informative and every pregnant mom needs to read it. Thank you, Linda Hanna, RNC, MSN/Ed., IBCLC , and welcome to 30Seconds. We look forward to learning more from you!
Dear Linda, I congratulate you for this article. I am very happy that there is content like this since many times we do not know this information. In addition, when we are pregnant we are always worried that everything will go well and knowing more about these symptoms in advance can help us to carry out appropiated controls.
Thanks a lot for this information.

join discussion

Please login to comment.

recommended tips

Newborn Baby FAQ: 4 Common Questions First-Time Parents Ask About Newborns

Breastfeeding FAQ: The Top 5 Breastfeeding Questions New Moms Ask

Worried You'll Spoil Your Newborn? Put the Baby Down & Read This!