Pregnancy tips: Morning Sickness

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Morning sickness can often be first sign that you’re pregnant and is extremely common affecting over 80% of mums-to-be. Despite its name morning sickness can actually happen any time of day or night and does vary from person to person. So, what is the cause of morning sickness? Unfortunately there isn’t an answer to that question, Doctors still aren’t sure of a definitive cause however the most common theories would suggest:

• High levels of the pregnancy hormone HCG during the first trimester
• Elevated oestrogen levels
• Enhanced sense of smell during pregnancy

We have come up with some top tips to help you cope and minimise the unpleasant sickness in the first trimester of pregnancy.

1) Get plenty of rest – It is important to ensure you get a good night’s sleep, to help this try block out as much sunlight as possible by wearing a sleep mask etc. To ease the stomach and backache maybe consider purchasing a maternity body pillow to support you whilst you rest. In the morning take your time. Avoid rushing around and get up slowly.

2) Avoid certain foods – Try avoiding caffeine, fatty and spicy foods. Alternatively try eating a selection of nuts, salty crackers and citrus foods. It is very important to eat plenty of vitamins found in fruit and veg! If chocolate is a must, ensure it is a small amount of dark chocolate as it contains more nutrients and less sugar than white and milk chocolate.

3) Eat little and often – It is important to always have some kind of food in your stomach, as this will lower your chances of experiencing nausea. If the stomach is empty, the acids have nothing to work on, except for the stomach lining, resulting in worsening sickness.

4) Work in an office? Avoid computer monitor flicker – The rapid, almost unnoticeable flickering of the computer monitor could cause morning sickness. If you must use a computer, reduce the chances of nausea by adjusting the screen by making the fonts bold and larger and changing the background to a soft tan or pink colour reducing eye strain.

5) Fluids, Fluids, Fluids! – Being hydrated is crucial for good health, and is very important during pregnancy. It may seem hard to drink your recommended 8 glasses of water per day, especially if it feels your stomach disagrees. However, the more dehydrated you are, the more nauseated you will become. If drinking water is hard, it has been said flat decaffeinated Coca-Cola is a lifesaver, you could also try sucking ice cubes made from water or fruit juice is also an effective method. The colder the drink, the easier it is to consume.

6) Ginger – For many years, ginger has long been publicised as a stomach soother, and studies have shown that it may help relieve nausea symptoms. Sipping cold ginger ale, or adding a slice of raw ginger to water or tea may help sooth your stomach. Snacks such as ginger bread, or ginger cookies will all effectively help prevent nausea.

We would like to hear from you too!
Why don’t you send us your tips and help others

Email us at: [email protected]

This is my: Happy Summer Holiday Baby!

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Book a scan before the schools go back and take advantage of our Summertime Special Offer.
Upgrade from a 4D Growth to a 4D Well-being scan, or from a Growth Scan to a Well-being Scan at no extra charge.
Quote STS2016 when booking.

Terms and conditions of offer

1. This is my: reserves the right to withdraw, alter or decline this offer at any time without prior notice.
2. The STS2016 code (the “Code”) is valid for a single use only, cannot be exchanged for cash or gift vouchers, is not transferable, is not for resale and cannot be sold over the internet.
3. The Code is valid at any this is my: Ultrasound Screening Centre for a free upgrade either (i) from a 4D Growth Scan to a 4D Well-being scan or (ii) from a Growth Scan to a Well-being Scan.
4. The Code is not valid against any other scan or screen or other service offered by This is my:.
5. The Code must be quoted when booking your 4D Growth Scan or 4D Well-being scan (as appropriate). and the upgrade will be applied at the time of your scan.
6. The Code cannot be used with any other promotional voucher or discount.

Are you the Face & Belly of this is my?

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Do YOU want to have a full range of pregnancy ultrasound scans, including dating scan, gender scan, NIPT and even 4D scans?

Do YOU want to be the star of this is my:’s YouTube channel?

We are looking for someone in the very early stages of pregnancy to be in a series of videos showing what is involved with various baby scans that this is my: offers. In return, you get all the scans and your NIPT screen for FREE!

Ideally you will be less than [12] weeks pregnant,  and available to attend our Leeds clinic regularly during your pregnancy. If you are used to using Facebook and twitter, that’s even better!

If this sounds exciting, please fill in the form below and we will be in touch soon!

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Exercise in pregnancy ‘good for mum and baby

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Written by Catharine Paddock PhD

Published: Sunday 10 July 2016

The traditional view was that women should avoid exercise during pregnancy because of the risk of preterm birth. However, views have changed. Now, a new study that reviews and analyzes the evidence, confirms what many studies have found – exercise during pregnancy is safe and can benefit both mother and baby.
The researchers say their analysis reinforces the view that exercise is good for a pregnant woman and her baby and does not hold any increased risk of preterm birth.

The study is published in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

Senior author Vincenzo Berghella, professor at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, PA, and director of its Division of Maternal-Fetal Medicine, says:

“The thinking was that exercise releases norepinephrine in the body, which is a chemical that can stimulate contractions of the uterus, and thus lead to preterm birth.”

He and his colleagues pooled and analyzed data from nine randomized controlled studies.

Overall, the analysis included 2,059 women: with about half assigned to an aerobic exercise group and half assigned to a control group.

The women in the exercise group did aerobic exercise for 35-90 minutes, three or four times a week for 10 weeks – or up until their delivery. The controls did no exercise.

No increased risk of preterm delivery

The results showed there was no significant difference between the exercise and control groups in terms of incidence of preterm delivery (before 37 completed weeks of gestation).

However, there was a higher incidence of vaginal delivery (73.6 percent versus 67.5 percent), and a significantly lower incidence of caesarean delivery (17.9 percent versus 22 percent) in the exercise group than in the control group.

Also, the researchers found a lower incidence of gestational diabetes and lower incidence of high blood pressure in the exercise group compared with the control group.

Looking at the babies, the researchers found no differences in low birth weight and average birth weight between the exercise group and the control group.

All the pregnant women in the analysis were carrying a single baby – no twins – and they were of normal weight to start with. There were also no health problems that prevented them from exercising.

Support current guidelines for exercise in pregnancy

Prof. Berghella says the results support the current guidelines from the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), which follows the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendation that pregnant women get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity every week.

However, he also acknowledges that “there are many reasons women pull back on exercise during pregnancy – discomfort, an increase in tiredness and feeling winded by low level exertion.”

Aerobic exercise is activity that moves the large muscles of the body – such as those of the legs and arms – in a rhythmic way (for example as in swimming and walking).

Moderate intensity means the exercise raises heart rate and the body starts to sweat – “you can talk but you can’t sing” is a useful way to think of it.

Examples of moderate-intensity aerobic activity include swimming, brisk walking, and general gardening (such as raking, weeding, or digging).

However, the ACOG guidelines also recommend that even if they are healthy, pregnant women check with their doctor or healthcare team member during early prenatal visits and get their advice on what kinds of exercise are safe and fit their needs.

A person can achieve 150 minutes a week by doing 30-minute aerobic workouts on 5 days of the week. It is just as effective to do 10-minute bursts of equivalent intensity activity two or three times every day.

“This paper reinforces that exercise is good for the mum and the baby and does not hold any increased risk of preterm birth.”

Professor Vincenzo Berghella

Top tips on how to keep cool in the heat when pregnant.

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It is normal to feel hotter than usual when you’re pregnant due to the hormone changes and an increased blood supply in the skin, however being too hot isn’t good for you and your baby. We have come up with some top tips for staying cool whilst still enjoying the summer sun! Click here for further tips and hints.

  • Carry a fine water spray. This is a great way to cool down, the fine mist gives you a little burst of refreshment when you need it. Small plastic bottles with spray nozzles are available from most chemists. At home, store the bottle in the fridge for extra refreshment. For the best skin hydration you can even add a drop of moisturiser.
  • Buy a fan. Either a folding hand fan or a battery-operated one will work well. They’re particularly handy if you’re stuck in the heat on crowded transport or stuck in traffic!
  • Stay out of direct sunlight wherever possible. Be sure when out and about to find a shady spot under an umbrella or parasol. This is especially important when the sun’s at its highest, which is generally between 11am and 3pm for UK summers.
  • Drink plenty of fluids. You can dehydrate very easily when you’re pregnant, which can result in you feeling faint, tired and dizzy. To help avoid this, carry a bottle of water and take regular sips throughout the day.
  • Find time to go for a swim at your local pool to help refresh you on a hot day. Swimming is also an excellent form of exercise in pregnancy and may help reduce any swelling in your lower legs and ankles.



Hypnobirthing workshop

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this is my is excited to announce their first 90 minute ‘mini hypnobirthing workshop held by Birth-Happy.

Katie is the founder of Birth Happy, which specialises in one day hypnobirthing workshops using Natal Hypnotherapy, The UK number 1 hypnobirthing method used by over 100,00 women. Katie is a fully accredited Natal Hypnotherapy Practitioner who was trained personally by Maggie Howell, the founder of Natal Hypnotherapy. Katie excelled in her training and Natal Hypnotherapy examinations and went on to launch Birth Happy, bringing hypnobirthing to Leeds!

Prior to having her own family, Katie was a senior Physiotherapist in the NHS. However, having had three children using hypnobirthing, she had a secret she wanted to share! She wanted to share the secret that with proper preparation, everyone has the potential to have a really positive birth experience. Everyone has the potential to enjoy the build up to the big day they meet their baby, feeling calm and confident. Everyone has the potential to give birth without fear, feeling calm and in control.

Katie left her physiotherapy career behind to follow her heart and belief in Natal Hypnotherapy. She aims to empower women with sound knowledge and understanding of the labour and birth process, and provide techniques to help manage labour pain, to allow more women to have really positive experiences of birth, as she did herself.

When not at work, Katie is a family lady. She loves nothing more than a day spent in the great outdoors with her husband and three young children, followed by a lively family teatime!

The mini workshop will include: The science of hypnobirthing and how it can help you during labour, practical hypnobirthing/relaxation session, hypnobirthing breathing skills and rapid relaxation tricks to reduce pain during labour.

This workshop will run Monday 9th May from 6pm and includes a voucher for a half price wellbeing scan, to book your spot call us on 0113 262 1675

NIPT Services are still only available from private providers in the UK

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Non Invasive Prenatal Testing

Non Invasive Prenatal Testing (NIPT) is available to pregnant women but as this article says, at present it is still only available via private providers or as part of a research implantation study where a patient has been given a high to medium risk result.

Many of these studies have or are reaching a conclusion and the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has been taking evidence and considering advice in order to give their recommendations for its introduction on the NHS. We still await their announcement. This may well be too late for many pregnant women, especially those who have been given a high screen result or who just want the best screening test available for their pregnancy.

At this is my:, we have been offering ‘Gold Standard’ Chromosomal screening for Down’s syndrome and other chromosomal abnormalities for over 13 years, backed by a team of experts including Professor Howard Cuckle, a leading expert in the field of genetic screening. Being constantly at the forefront of screening we have introduced developments from the early days of just biochemical marker screening, through to the addition of ultrasound markers, to what we now know today as the new Gold Standard – NIPT technology which has a detection accuracy of over 99% for the 3 most common trisomies, Down’s, Edwards’ and Patau’s syndromes.

This is my: Health Screening and Ultrasound Centres constantly strive to offer screening which is affordable to as many as possible. Currently today we offer a comprehensive screening package from 10 weeks including ultrasound and NIPT for £395.

For further information by visiting our Non Invasive Prenatal page here

Concerns over NIPT Prenatal Tests

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Prenatal Tests

Non Invasive Prenatal Tests have been available at this is my for 2 years.
Lots of parents choose the option of finding out the sex of their baby but the main reason they attend our centres seems to be more for the genetic information.

I am unaware of any of our clients using the test for pure gender selection.
If a woman or couple want to know the sex of their unborn baby for the purpose of gender selection I am sure there is no way of stopping them if they are that determined.

In my view, we should not allow the few who may wish to misuse the results of the test to stop it being offered for the purpose of what it is truly there for. Please click here for our NIPT Prenatal Tests.

Published Study using Premaitha Health IONA Non-Invasive Prenatal testing (NIPT) demonstrated 100% accuracy.

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Published Study using Premaitha Health IONA Non-Invasive Prenatal test demonstrated 100% accuracy.
The results of a study which was undertaken by a team led by Professor Kypros Nicolaides with Dr Liona Poon as the lead author at the Harris Birthright Research Centre for Fatal Medicine, King’s College Hospital, London, has been published in the Journal of Ultrasound in Obstetrics and Gynaecology.

Premaitha Health, based in Manchester, is the latest to offer a Non Invasive Prenatal Test (NIPT) screen to assess the risk of a foetus being affected with Down’s syndrome and other serious chromosomal conditions such as Patau’s and Edwards’ Syndrome.

The study assessed the potential performance of Premaitha’s IONA test in using cell-free DNA analysis of 242 maternal blood samples to screen for Down’s syndrome (Trisomy 21), Edwards’ syndrome (Trisomy 18) and Patau’s syndrome (Trisomy 13).

Samples were obtained from pregnant women at 11 to 13 weeks gestation. The maternal plasma samples were then analysed in Premaitha’s laboratories using the IONA test.

The IONA test measures the relative amount of chromosomes 21, 18 and 13 in the maternal plasma sample to calculate a likelihood ratio to predict the presence of a trisomy.

That data is coupled with the background risk associated with maternal age to determine an adjusted probability of the foetus having a trisomy.

Of the 242 samples:

35 were trisomy 21

4 were trisomy 18

2 were trisomy 13.


The IONA test detected 100% of all trisomy’s with a false positive rate of 0%.

Prof Nicolaides said: “I am very impressed by the accuracy of the IONA test.”

Dr Poon said: “I hope the new technology used in the IONA test will allow easy implementation of cfDNA testing in the screening for major foetal aneuploidies.”

Premaitha chief medical officer Dr William Denman, said: “These results confirm what our customers have already reported; that the IONA test is a highly accurate, robust and simple screen for Down’s syndrome and other serious genetic conditions.

“It is a great endorsement of the test that Prof Nicolaides and his team have chosen to verify it. We believe this should encourage broader and appropriate uptake of NIPT, benefiting pregnant women and their families through the increased accuracy, especially the reduction in false positive results that the IONA test provides.”

The IONA test will give a result within just 3-5 working days on receipt of the sample in its distributor laboratories.

Thisismy is delighted that it can offer the IONA Non Invasive Prenatal Test to its clients at all our centres across the UK. More information regarding the test can be found by following the link below. Additionally please feel free to give us a call on 0113 262 1675 and one of our expert advisors would be happy to help answer any questions you may have.


NIPT Down Syndrome testing took the fear out of my pregnancy.

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Gill Rodgers is one of many women who are told every year to come into hospital for tests to find out if their unborn baby has Down’s syndrome.  As expected being told something like this can cause great amounts of fear and uncertainty.

Gill aged 41, along with many other older pregnant women, knew there was a higher chance than average of her child being born with Downs Syndrome – a genetic condition that is caused by an extra chromosome.  Usually it can be diagnosed through a highly invasive test known as an “Amniocentesis needle test”. This test can cause harm to an unborn baby and carries a 1% chance of miscarriage.

Fortunately for Gill she became the first woman in the UK to be offered a revolutionary Non-Invasive prenatal testing (NIPT) blood test on the NHS. Non-Invasive prenatal testing (NIPT) testing has enhanced accuracy and carries no risk of miscarriage. The test works by detecting DNA in cells from the foetus found in the mothers blood and can spot evidence of chromosomal abnormalities in these cells. Next generation sequencing technology is used to count the fragments of chromosomes in the blood which indicate downs along with other genetic conditions.

She spoke of her “fear evaporating” after being told she would have access to the Non-Invasive prenatal testing (NIPT) test rather than the amniocentesis test. Although the outcome of the test can’t be controlled, knowing the slight risk of miscarriage has been removed brings unprecedented relief too many women who may require a test for Down Syndrome.

Not only does Non-Invasive prenatal testing (NIPT) testing remove the risk of miscarriage but it is also has a much higher rate of accuracy and can help bring down the number of false positive results which occur following the current 11 week combined screening test offered on the NHS. Currently around 4% of women are told they are high risk. The vast majority will agree to the invasive amniocentesis test and 1% will lose their baby. This equates to around 400 miscarriages per year, something which can be avoided through Non-Invasive prenatal testing (NIPT) testing.

Thisismy offers Non-Invasive prenatal testing (NIPT) testing from  IONA,  NIFTY, Genesis Serenity and Harmony and is proud to be one of the leading providers of Non-Invasive prenatal testing (NIPT) testing in the UK.

All our staff are extremely knowledgeable on the subject and are always happy to help with any questions you may have. Additionally you can find detailed information regarding the tests here.

Article from The Express – Read More >