Apps answer questions for moms-to-be - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

Apps answer questions for moms-to-be

(Source: Raycom Media) (Source: Raycom Media)

New apps are delivering details on pregnancy, covering everything from how to get pregnant, to preparing the parents-to-be on what to expect during pregnancy, to navigating life after the baby arrives.

Like many new moms-to-be, Tricia Huffman consults with girlfriends who have been there.

"The day that I found out I was pregnant, right away they were like 'download this app', so I've actually have been using actually apps since the moment I found out I was pregnant," Tricia said.

Just a few years ago, pregnancy apps weren't even an option. now, they're incredibly popular, according to Dr. Nathaniel DeNicola with the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

"The last estimate was a few months ago, it was that there was about 1800 OBGYN apps, just OBGYN," Dr. DeNicola said. "From apps that track ovulation to apps that track contractions, apps that tell you the best route to the hospital, apps that help you journal. It is wonderfully overwhelming."

Natalie Diaz is author of "What To Do When You're Having Two."

She believes the apps offer a new kind of convenience.

"Instead of having to ask an embarrassing question about like hemorrhoids or incontinence to your best friend, while I'm laying in bed, I can get the answers to those things during my pregnancy right away from my tablet or smart phone," Diaz said.

The options are endless.

"Full Term" tracks contractions and lets you upload and send them to your doctor.

"My Pregnancy Today" gives you day-to-day updates on what's happening with your body and the baby.

"What To Expect When You're Expecting" offers tidbits, tips and tricks similar to what you'd find in the best-selling book.

"What to eat or exercises or concerns you might have, all sorts of things…and it even gives you a weekly tip for dad," Huffman said..

"Baby Bump" provides a community forum where you can connect with other expectant mothers.

Then there's the WebMD pregnancy app.

"From, you know, a tracking feature, to a journal feature, to a what's happening this week feature, to a community feature," Diaz said.

Both experts stress that you should always use your phone to call the doctor instead of turning to an app when dealing with any medical concerns.

"These app developers and these app services, in some cases, really are providing medical advice, certainly it's some in the realm of medical counseling…and there are no, there's not much oversight on it," Dr. Denicola said.

Mom-to-be Tricia says consulting the apps leaves her feeling more informed and much less stressed.

"They probably make for a happier, healthier, more relaxed pregnancy," Tricia said.

Most of these apps are not approved or sponsored by medical professionals.

Dr. DiNicola suggests relying on apps with medical partnerships over others. He also says there are text-based apps that deliver info via text to you each day.

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