An Abuja based medical practitioner, Dr Chioma Ofoekii, has warned that excess heat could cause an underlying health danger to pregnant women if not properly managed.

Ofoekii made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Friday in Abuja.

“In pregnancy, there are natural physiological changes that alter the normal regulation of the body’s cardiovascular system.

“These include distribution of body fluids such that their blood pressure may be slightly lower during pregnancy.

“In cases of extreme heat, pregnant women are more prone to dehydration, which further reduces the amount of blood supply to the woman and the foetus and may manifest as lightheadedness or dizziness,” she said.

Ofoekii also stated that it was important for pregnant women to constantly take water during this period.

“Pregnant women should ensure adequate daily water intake especially during periods of hot weather conditions in order to prevent dehydration and ensure adequate blood volume and blood supply to the growing foetus.

“This will also prevent dizziness, and reduce potential harm to the mother and unborn child.

“A hot weather is not to be mistaken for fever. It is important for pregnant women to know that fever can occur under any weather condition, and report such to the hospital.

“Fever in pregnancy should always be managed by a qualified medical doctor.

“This is more important for women in their first trimesters, as they run a risk of spontaneous abortion if not properly managed,” she said