What is anaemia?

Anaemia is a shortage or dilution of red blood cells (oxygen carrying cells) in your blood. Iron is necessary for the production of red blood cells, and it is normal for your iron levels to fall in pregnancy because of the greater demand for it. Mild anaemia is common, and probably perfectly healthy in pregnancy; this is known as ''physiological anaemia''. More severe anaemia can make you very tired, lethargic, reduce your reserve at the time of delivery and sap your strength and energy when breast-feeding. Severe anaemia can also have a detrimental effect on the developing baby''s growth and health.
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