Author: Emma Wilen

The Importance of Information During Pregnancy and the Role of Midwives

Today most women have access to the Internet. According to midwives Maria Bjelke and Anna-Karin Martinsson who presented their study at a session titled “Information / Education During Pregnancy”, 95% of pregnant women in the south of Sweden use the Internet to find information about pregnancy and birth. Of the women who turn to the Internet as a source, 64% experience anxiety after reading information online. According to a study carried out by Bjelke and Martinsson, there is a significant correlation between women accessing information about pregnancy and birth online and consequently contacting healthcare services. How should I, as a midwife work with this information? With the widespread access to the Internet, it is important for midwives to inform expectant mothers about reliable sources on the Internet that they can trust, and also to properly inform them that a lot of the information online about pregnancy and birth is unreliable and often simply untrue. I also believe it’s important to assure pregnant women of the fact that most women go through their pregnancy without complications and …

How Can Midwives Support Overweight Pregnant Women?

The first day of the Nordic Midwifery Congress in Gothenburg is complete. Health during pregnancy has been one of many subjects discussed and I had the privilege to be in the audience during this seminar. Overweight during pregnancy is a risk factor and presenters spoke about this growing problem in Sweden and the other Nordic countries. Overweight during pregnancy is associated with increased risk for both the mothers and child. It’s a risk for developing preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, gestational hypertension, increased emergency Caesarian sections and stillbirths. These risks increase with an increased BMI. One of the speakers, Anna Dencker, talked about Mighty Mums, which is a project in East Gothenburg that was started to help overweight pregnant women. The study presented was a follow-up of what had been helpful for these mothers. The women in the study have had a BMI of 30 or more during their pregnancy 3 years earlier. What they found were that during pregnancy, women are more motivated for making healthy changes. The main motivation is the child. Most pregnant women want to give their child the best …

Healthy Pregnancies: Midwives Need to Talk About Mental Illness

In the upcoming Nordic Midwifery Congress next week one of the subjects is health during pregnancy. I’m a Swedish midwifery student and I’m privileged to take part of the congress this year with Girls’ Globe. I think that good health during pregnancy is a human right. All pregnant women have the right to a healthy pregnancy and as a midwife-to-be, I believe that I have an important job to help pregnant women become and stay healthy. The International Confederation of Midwives’ (ICM) vision is a world where every pregnant woman has access to a midwife’s care, for herself and for her newborn. ICM ‘s mission includes keeping birth normal, and for me that means a healthy pregnancy –  without complications during pregnancy or labor, including the spontaneous start of labor, and with the outcome being a healthy mother and a healthy child. As a midwife it will also be my mission to help pregnant women to keep birth normal – to be aware of any symptoms and to have an open communication, so that women can trust me and tell me if anything is wrong. When it …