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Is PROM bad when you’re full term? Not usually. In the next post we’ll talk about what it means and what we can do to try to decrease the risk of infection and variations of normal. In this one, we’ll be talking about what might be helpful to know while you’re pregnant to track to stack the odds in your favor for a lower chance of your membranes rupturing before contractions start.

This is part 2 of the PROM series. We walked about what PROM (Premature rupture of membranes) in Part 1 and how often it happens. Now I’ll be talking about what we can do to decrease the odds of PROM.

What can we do to prevent PROM prenatally?

1. Take Vitamin C

 Talk your medical provider about incorporating Vitamin C into your diet. Say whhhaaaat? The amniotic sac is made of different cells and collagan. There was a study where they compared the collagen presence between the sac that PROMed and the ones that didn’t. They found that the collagen content was significantly lower in the PROM group. (Here’s another updated study in 2005 that found similar findings.) Another study saw that premature PROM membranes were also lower in collagen content.

Collagen provide structure and strengthen in many of the body’s connective issues including in the amniotic sac. The thought is if there is a low concentration of Vitamin C in the amniotic sac membranes. Then it may make it harder for the collagen synthesis to do their job – help keep the membranes intact. Fascinating, right?

Evidence Based Birth addressed this! They compared a few studies. One should positive results (aka lower PROM rates) with supplements of a low dose Vitamin C and two didn’t show a better results. The problem with the second study was that it was a supplement of Vitamin C and Vitamin E (the PROM rate was higher). So… was it because the supplements were higher? Or was it because of the combination of Vitamin C and E? Hmm.

Any Nutritionist expert will say that getting vitamins straight from the source vs supplements is way better. The body absorb the vitamins better. So what are foods that naturally have Vitamin C? (Source: Harvard)

  • Citrus (Kiwi, Oranges, Lemon, Grapefruit)
  • Cruciferous Vegetables (Broccoli, Brussel Sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower)
  • Strawberries
  • Bell Peppers
  • Mangos
  • Papaya
  • Pineapple
  • Tomatoes
  • and the list goes on!

There’s definitely more studies needed on how much benefits someone gets from getting Vitamin C from a food source rather than supplements.

2. Proper Nutrition

Eating a healthy and balanced diet of food with a variety of nutrition can definitely help support the amniotic sac’s tissue health and elasticity – which we know can be a factor in PROM.

3. Get Informed & Talk to your Provider

Do research from quality sources. Know your options on vaginal exams prior to labor and membrane stripping/sweeps. Evidence show that one of the best way to prevent infection after your water breaks is to avoid cervical checks as much as possible.

Talk to your doctor by asking B.R.A.I.N. questions about different possible scenarios. Ask how long they recommend you can go with your water broken if PROM happens (some providers usually want a baby born within 24 hours). Evidence Based Birth found that if certain criteria is met, you can wait 2-3 days for labor to start on its own before getting an induction if it haven’t begun by then. Find out if that answer changes if you test positive for Group B Strep.

About the Author Kristen Schell

Kristen is a birth doula, photographer and childbirth educator. She wants to help families feel inspired by what birth can be. It can be beautiful, empowering, supported, and evidence based.

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