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Planning to become parents for the first time? Here’s the checklist!



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Becoming parents is a big deal and if it’s for the first time, there is a lot of anxiety and anticipation that comes along with it too.

By pursuing good health and proper nutrition before conceiving, one can increase their chances for a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby. Dr Vaishali Joshi, Obstetrician and Gynaecologist at Kokilaben Hospital and Cloudnine Hospital Mumbai, shares: “Everyone is highly qualified and career-oriented and they want to decide when they want to have their baby. When you are making that decision then you should also decide when to have the baby because a healthy mother is a key to a healthy baby.”

With over 25 years of experience in managing early pregnancy problems, recurrent miscarriages and tubal and ovarian cyst problems, high-risk pregnancy with evidence-based medicine and thereafter promotes natural childbirth, Dr Joshi lays down various aspects a couple needs to keep in mind while planning a baby!

The ideal age to plan

Whenever you are ready! Gone are the days when the average age to get married was 20. Now as the average age of marriage has increased and women are getting more career-oriented, the right time would be when the couple is mentally and financially ready.

Ideally, a woman’s fertility declines after the age of 35 so the peak age of fertility and having babies nowadays is between the age of 27-32. Also, if you wish to delay you must also check with the doctor that how practical and feasible it is for your body and how much is your reserve for the fertility that can let you stretch or delay the pregnancy planning. That’s important. There is also something like freezing your eggs if not prepared at the right time. This will at least help to have your babies at a later stage even if your fertility declines with age. As the mother’s age increases the fertility of a woman goes down which is significant after the age of 35.

Visit a gynaecologist

Health is a priority and it’s always better to conceive naturally. Before a couple starts planning, it’s always better that they visit a doctor to see if there are any hidden health issues as not all the health problems manifest symptoms; like low haemoglobin, vitamin deficiency, thyroid or some hormonal imbalance. These are just some of the medical conditions that need to be addressed/tested by the medical professional or gynaecologist. Internal examinations or sonography is also carried out to see if there are any issues with the internal organs, uterus or ovaries. Sometimes women have cyst or fibroid, which can affect the ability to conceive sometimes, though not always. These are the kind of issues which one may not be aware of and needs to be investigated.

Medical conditions

If the woman has any medical conditions, we need to make sure that its safe for the woman to conceive. The conditions need to be under control, because if one conceives before this, the woman may develop serious complications. If someone is on medication like for instance has fits and is on anti-fits medicine or epileptic medicines then we would provide that medication with the least possible dose, rather than stopping the tablets so that the mother’s health doesn’t get affected; and at the same time she has a healthy baby. Such medicines can go across the placenta to the baby leading to developmental defects in the baby, the idea here is to protect the mother and the unborn baby as well and optimise the pregnancy outcome.

Medical insurance

While one needs to optimize the health, there are a lot of other factors that a couple/family needs to keep in mind like financial planning for the baby and financial security, health insurance and if it covers maternity or not.

Folic acid

It is advisable to start using folic acid to make sure that when you conceive the baby has an advantage of folic acid right from the time of conception because folic acid is very important for the baby’s development particularly neurological development.


If a couple has been using any contraception then this needs to be discussed with the doctor as to how soon it needs to stop before you start planning a family.

Lifestyle changes

It’s not only from the treatment point of view but one needs to improve their lifestyle, exercise, eat healthily and have a holistic approach before they start planning a family because you want to give your baby the best. This is similar in the case of a pregnancy. If the lifestyle involves smoking, alcohol, pan masala, gutka, indulging in recreational drugs …it will have an effect on the man’s sperm count and the sexual desire like libido and hence the sexual act.


Music symbolises collective strength during crisis: PM Modi

Lauding SPIC MACAYA for adding elements like literature, holistic food, nature walk and ”Naad Yoga” in its programmes for the ”Anubhav” series, Modi said that both Yoga and music boast of a power of motivation.




Modi PM

New Delhi, June 1 : Stressing that in trying times, music has always symbolised the collective strength of the people, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Monday that when the world is fighting an invisible enemy like the Covid-19 pandemic, writers, singers and musicians are playing their part to infuse confidence among the people.

“History and age-old tales are a witness to the fact that during wars, poets and writers would write literature that boosted the morale of the general population,” he said.

Speaking via video-conference during his inaugural keynote message for SPIC MACAY”s week-long special series ”Anubhav” that started on Monday, the Prime Minister added that just like music, which required a synchronisation of discipline and harmony, the same was needed for the fight against the pandemic.

“Every Indian is doing his bit in times of this crisis, and so are the artistes. We are witnessing classical artistes adopting newer technologies to reach the people, which is the need of the hour. With this, all barriers of region and language are being crossed, something which is empowering the idea of ”Ek Bharat, Shreshtha Bharat”,” he said.

The Prime Minister also said that in the Indian civilisation, music has always gone beyond personal happiness and has been a means to serve others. “We have witnessed some major musicians who have devoted their entire lives to serve humanity,” he said.

Lauding SPIC MACAYA for adding elements like literature, holistic food, nature walk and ”Naad Yoga” in its programmes for the ”Anubhav” series, Modi said that both Yoga and music boast of a power of motivation.

Recalling how during the initial days of the lockdown, the population came together to clap to motivate the country as one unit against the pandemic, the Prime Minister added, “As the population came together with similar emotions, what emerged was also music.”

During the week-long series, the participants, while sitting at home, will experience performances and workshops through virtual online platforms by leading exponents of Indian classical music, Carnatic and Hindustani, classical dance performances, folk performances by prominent artistes, theatre performances, lectures and interactions, cinema screening with discussions, a virtual heritage walk, virtual workshops in classical music, dance, crafts, and online Yoga sessions.

On the concluding day, a classical overnight concert beginning at 8 p.m. and ending at 6 a.m. will be organised.

Artistes who will be part of the series include Karan Singh, Pandit Jasraj, Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia, Vidwan Umayalpuram, K. Sivaraman, Vidushi Teejan Bai, Pandit Rajan and Pandit Sajan Mishra, Shyam Benegal, Ghulam Md. Sheikh, T.N. Krishnan, Prabha Atre, N. Rajam, L. Subramanium, Uma Sharma, Saroja Vaidyanathan, Padma Subramanyam, Javed Akhtar and Shabana Azmi.


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Furore over woman doc’s video lambasting Jamaatis, ex-MP seeks action

She argued that Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath should issue an order that no state manpower or resources should be used on the treatment of Jamaat members.



Corona India Tablighi Jamaat

Kanpur, June 1 : Even as a video clip showing Ganesh Shankar Vidyarthi Memorial Medical College Principal referring to Tablighi Jamaat members as “terrorists” went viral, a former Kanpur MP has demanded the woman doctor be removed from the post and a case be registered against her.

On the other hand, Dr Aarti Lalchandani said that she did make the remarks in the initial days of the coronavirus outbreak, but claimed that the video clip was “tampered” with and that she did not refer to any community or target the Muslims as a whole.

“We should not say this, but they are terrorists. And we are providing them VIP treatment, providing them food… exhausting our resources on them,” she allegedly said in the video clip, adding that the hospital was “wasting” PPE kits on the Jamaat members.

CPI (M) leader Subhashini Ali, who had earlier been an MP, demanded a probe into the video clip by the district administration. “If found guilty, the Principal should be immediately removed from the post and a FIR lodged against her,” said the leader.

In the video clip, Dr Lalchandani can also be seen and heard saying that instead of keeping such patients (Tablighi) in isolation wards and exhausting resources on them, they should be put in solitary confinement in jails or sent to the jungles and locked up in dungeons.

While the authenticity or timing of the undated video clip could not be independently verified, it appears that it was shot secretly by someone and showed Dr Lalchandani making unsavoury remarks seated in a room along with several persons.

She is also heard accusing the BJP government of “appeasement” and criticising it for “exhausting” the state”s manpower and resources on treating infected Jamaat members.

She argued that Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath should issue an order that no state manpower or resources should be used on the treatment of Jamaat members.

“Those who should be in jail, you are bringing them here for treatment, feeding them, getting others infected, wasting manpower and kits,” she is heard saying.

“They should be kept in solitary confinement in jail. You are keeping them in isolation ward,” Dr Lalchandani remarks in the clip.

“I said it in anger and frustration. I did not issue any statement. I said this but in those circumstances,” she said.

Dr Lalchandani said she was referring to the initial rush of patients to the hospital, including those of Jamaat members in March.

She said she would file a FIR against a reporter who allegedly leaked the conversation videotaped in a sting to “blackmail” her.

She alleged a local journalist had demanded issuance of tenders in his favour and outsourcing of hospital contracts from her.

“He is trying to instigate Muslims and disturb peace in society. Maybe, he is provoking riots,” she said.

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Lockdown 5.0: Delhi bars metro, malls, gyms, religious places

Also, it said, “all social, political, sports, entertainment, academic, cultural, religious functions and other gatherings and large congregations” will remain prohibited.



Arvind Kejriwal

New Delhi, June 1 : Starting Monday, the Delhi government gave some more relaxations in the lockdown 5.0, however, the educational institutes, malls, gymnasiums, swimming pools, metro and places of worship will continue to be barred in the city.

In an order, signed by Delhi Chief Secretary Vijay Dev, the Delhi Disaster Management Authority extended the lockdown period in the Containment Zones in the national capital up to June 30, while allowing some more relaxations across the city outside Containment Zones.

Dev, in his capacity as Chairperson, State Executive Committee, said a number of activities will continue to remain prohibited throughout the city, including the Metro Rail Services.

“All schools, colleges, educational training, coaching institutions etc will remain closed. Online and distance learning shall continue to be permitted and shall be encouraged,” the June 1 order said.

It said hotels and other hospitality services will also remain shut, except “those meant for housing health, police, government officials, healthcare workers or stranded persons, including tourists and those used for quarantine facilities, and running of canteens at bus depots, railway stations and airports.”

A large number of hotels in the city are currently being used as quarantine facilities for common man as well as for the frontline workers. Also, hotels in the city are being used as extended hospitals to deal with the rising coronavirus cases.

All spas, cinema halls, shopping malls, gymnasiums, swimming pools, entertainment parks, theatres, bars and auditoriums, assembly halls and similar places will also remain shut in the city, the order added.

Also, it said, “all social, political, sports, entertainment, academic, cultural, religious functions and other gatherings and large congregations” will remain prohibited.

“All religious places, places of Worship shall be closed for the public. Religious congregations are strictly prohibited,” it added.

The Central government last week adopted an exit step towards 67-day long nationwide lockdown, declaring that the restriction will be limited to only containment zones up to June 30.

However, certain activities were barred even outside the containment zones to check the spread of coronavirus infection.

The coronavirus cases in the national capital are approaching 20,000 mark.


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