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mommyagain

I Feel Lightheaded... Should I Call Ob?

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I woke up this morning with EXTREME lower back pain, almost couldn't walk. It subsided a bit after I used the restroom (just pee) and then a bit more after I took a shower. Then I had breakfast (Van's gluten-free waffle with apple butter and 2 small turkey sausage links). I walked upstairs to wake up my daughter and felt lightheaded when I reached the top. Felt okay after a few minutes and was able to help her get dressed and back downstairs for her breakfast. After she ate we went back upstairs to brush her hair and teeth. I felt lightheaded again. I sat down in the bathroom while she did her teeth. Felt a little better, but still shaky. Got to work, another flight of stairs, almost didn't make it to the 2nd floor. Sat down at the top of the stairs for a few minutes, then walked to my desk. After an hour or so, I had to go downstairs for something, got lightheaded on my way back up. My back still hurts, but not like it did this morning. Also, I've got a mildly throbbing headache (the kind where you can feel your heart beat). I don't know if the back pain, headache, and lightheadedness are related or not.

I am 13 weeks pregnant (had an ultrasound yesterday, baby is fine). I have been gluten free for ~7 weeks and as far as I know, I have not been glutened in over a month. Up until today I had been feeling pretty good.

I am prone to hypoglycemia, which usually results in my being lightheaded and passing out, but this doesn't feel the same. First of all, that almost never happens right after I eat. Also, the usual course for the low blood sugar for me is I feel slightly lightheaded, then suddenly get very hot and sweaty, then nauseated and sometimes sudden diarrhea. Today, I'm just lightheaded.

Also, I normally have very low blood pressure (85/50 is normal for me), and when that drops too low, I sometimes get lightheaded. But, the last time I had my blood pressure taken, it was 115/65. I thought that was high... but apparently it's normal.

Finally, I don't know if I'm anemic or not. When I had my blood tests done, my OB said "almost everything is low, but not dangerously low". She has me taking an extra prenatal vitamin every other day, so it doesn't make sense that I would suddenly be having problems. If anything, my iron levels should be going up.

So, should I call my OB? I'd rather not take any more time off from work, but if something is actually wrong, I wanna catch it early. Thanks.

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Guest Doll

You could be simply dehydrated (all that peeing!;)) and hormonal, BUT with all the above problems you have mentioned, you should run it by your doctor. He/She can check your BP to make sure it's not too high or low, check your iron levels, and also your blood sugar. If you regularly have levels that are off, you can get equipment to check yourself at home (i.e. BP Monitor and Glucometer) so you will know when to act.

When pregnant, it's always better to be safe than sorry. Your doc may want to run some other tests as well. Best to check in with your OB. :)

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I asked my OB about the dizziness last week when I went in for my normal appointment. She kind of laughed it off and said that it's just part of being pregnant! At that point it wasn't as bad as it had been, so I figured it was fine.

Today has been REALLY bad. Every time I stand up (even slowly) I get dizzy. I decided that I needed some answers so started researching. I kept finding references to salt and caffeine causing an increase in BP... well, guess what has decreased in my diet since I became pregnant? Salt and caffeine!!!

My celiac is mostly non-symptomatic when I'm not pregnant and I had always heard the "eat what you want, as long as it doesn't make you feel bad" line. So, I was not gluten-free until I got pregnant. We used to eat a LOT of "box meals" that are VERY high in sodium. Now, I eat very little pre-packaged food and don't add salt to anything, so my sodium intake has probably decreased by at least half. I still drink caffeinated beverages, but I've cut down by about a third, replacing it with plain water.

I'm thinking that the combination of decreased sodium, decreased caffeine, and increased blood volume has caused my normally low blood pressure to periodically drop even more, causing me to be dizzy. Any thoughts on this? I figure if I start adding a little salt to everthing (including my plain water), it may help.

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