Oligohydramnios – What Can You Do About It?

Are there ways to prevent oligohydramnios?

“Prevention is better than Cure”. This holds some truth in the prevention of oligohydramnios in few cases not all.

Let’s now see how it can be prevented:

  • Say NO to smoking and alcohol.
  • Take medications only after discussing with your doctor/gynecologist. Few natural compounds are known to cause dehydration (such as celery seeds, dandelion extract, parsley etc)
  • Have a healthy diet. Regulate your diet, especially if you suffer from a pre-existing disease like diabetes, hypertension
  • Stick to your prenatal visits religiously and keep a track of the important milestones. By doing so, your gynecologist can detect the first signs of concern and manage it promptly.

Is there a way that you can increase the amniotic fluid during pregnancy?

If you are full-term:

Delivery is induced if the baby’s vitals are normal with proper development

If you are NOT full-term:

The following medical treatments and interventions may be required:

  1. Fluid Replacement Therapy: IV and at times oral fluids (in mild oligohydramnios) are done to rehydrate the mother, thereby increasing the amniotic fluid levels.
  2. Amnioinfusion:  Where sodium chloride solution is infused into the amniotic sac ( using an intrauterine catheter). This procedure also reduces the chances of a C-section.
  3. Fluid injections:  Given via amniocentesis before delivery and its action is temporary( reverts back in a few days).
  4. Vesico-amniotic shunt: Done to divert the baby’s urinary outflow ( in obstructive uropathy).

What can YOU do :

To maintain the optimum water level in the body and to compensate the fluid loss, certain practices may be adopted:

Hydrate yourself:  A minimum of 8-10 glasses of water every day. The simple and one of the effective ways to maintain the amniotic fluid levels.

 Consume high water content foods: have fruits and vegetables like watermelon (91.5%), tomatoes(94.5%), muskmelons (90%), strawberries (90.5%), spinach (91.4%),cucumber (96.7%), cauliflower (92.1%), baby carrots (90.4%), radishes (95.3%), etc

Rest on Left: Resting on your left side helps the blood to flow smoothly through the uterine blood vessels, (maintaining a regular rate of fetal blood flow) thus increasing the AFI

Exercise Right: Under proper guidance, exercise increases the blood circulation to the uterus and placental regions, increasing the AFI. Walking, swimming, water aerobics etc are few options that you can consider. Please do it only after consultation with your gynecologist.

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Aishwarya

Dr. Aishwarya Rajeev has completed her MDS degree and is currently pursuing her PhD. She is an avid reader and loves to teach and write!

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