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These questions were answered by Dr Goh Shen Li, a senior consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist at S L Goh Women’s Clinic at Mount Alvernia Medical Centre. Got a question? E-mail us at

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I had some spotting during the first trimester of my pregnancy. Would resting more have prevented it?

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Bleeding in early pregnancy is a common occurrence, affecting about 20 to 25 per cent of expectant women.

It may be associated with abdominal pain, and sometimes not. Take heart that it doesn’t always mean that you’ve lost your baby, though.

It may be due to implantation bleeding (when the developing embryo sticks onto the womb lining to grow) or threatened abortion (the pregnancy is growing, but there is higher risk of impending miscarriage).

It may also be due to an ectopic pregnancy (when the fertilised egg does not implant in the correct position in the uterus) or that a miscarriage has already occurred. Other non-pregnancy related causes, such as a cervical polyp or haemorrhoids, may also be possible.

Depending on the cause, having sufficient rest may not prevent the bleeding. Some women continue to remain very active in the first trimester.

See your gynae, as she will need to examine you and do an ultrasound scan to make sure you and your baby are healthy.

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Is it safe to take over-the-counter medication when I have a fever during pregnancy?

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Fever in pregnancy could be associated with illnesses, such as common colds or a urinary tract infection. If your temperature exceeds 38.5 deg C, it is safe to take paracetamol at the normal dosage.

A persistent high fever can harm your developing baby. If your temperature doesn’t come down in one to two days, you need to see your general practitioner.

It is common for the immune system to weaken when you’re pregnant. To keep yourself healthy, try taking a 1g Vitamin C supplement daily. Having a balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables will help, as well. Make sure you don’t cut down on your usual duration of sleep.


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