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Everything You Need to Know About Prenatal Care

Choosing baby names and decorating the nursery are some of the most fun things on your pregnancy to-do list, but when it comes to your health and your baby’s, few things are more important than regular prenatal care.

Caring for yourself and your growing baby are important throughout pregnancy, and prenatal appointments are specialized visits designed to ensure that your pregnancy — and later, labor and delivery — go as smoothly as possible.

At Solace Women’s Care, Farly Sejour, MD, and our highly trained team are proud to provide personalized, comprehensive prenatal care. If you’re newly pregnant or trying to get pregnant, now’s the time to learn all about the importance of prenatal care.

Prenatal care in the first trimester

The first trimester includes weeks 1 to 13, but many women don’t know they’re pregnant in the first few weeks. We generally recommend that you schedule your first prenatal appointment as soon as you find out you’re pregnant, or around week eight.

At your first prenatal appointment, we start by estimating your due date and giving you a general overview of what you can expect over the next nine months. This first appointment is typically the longest, lasting about an hour or a little longer.

Dr. Sejour and our team take this time to review your medical history and perform a comprehensive physical exam to assess your health. Your exam may include a blood test, questions about pre-existing health conditions and your lifestyle habits, and other diagnostic tests. 

We use this information to better understand what your needs might be as pregnancy progresses. If you’re not already taking prenatal vitamins, we give you recommendations, as well as suggesting ways to address symptoms of morning sickness.

Prenatal care in the second trimester

Your second trimester marks weeks 14 to 27 of pregnancy. After your first prenatal appointment, you can expect to have one per month throughout your first and second trimesters. It’s important to attend all of your appointments, even if you’re feeling healthy, because regular prenatal checkups are the best type of preventive care for you and your growing baby.

At each appointment, our team checks your weight, blood pressure, and belly circumference, along with your baby’s heart rate. If your pregnancy is identified as high risk, you may need additional testing or more frequent appointments.

Make note of questions that come up between your appointments, and don’t hesitate to ask them at your prenatal visits. Prenatal care isn’t just about your physical health, and your appointments are the best time to get your questions answered.

Prenatal care in the third trimester

Your third trimester lasts from week 28 to week 40, or whenever your baby is born. Starting at week 28, you might have prenatal checkups scheduled every two weeks, then every week starting around week 36.

Pregnancy symptoms commonly intensify in the third trimester, and you’ll likely notice significant changes in the way your body looks and feels. 

As your due date approaches, our obstetrics team offers guidance when you’re creating your birth plan. Dr. Sejour and our team closely monitor your vital signs and check your baby’s position to help estimate when labor might start.

Solace Women’s Care gives women options when it comes to delivery. While most babies in the United States are born in hospitals, choosing to deliver at a birth center or at home are more appealing options for some women.

Getting regular prenatal care is one of the best ways to care for yourself and your growing baby. Whether you’re newly pregnant or considering getting pregnant soon, it’s time to learn more about the prenatal care available at Solace Women’s Care.

Call our Conroe, Texas, office at 936-441-7100 or send Dr. Sejour a message for more information.

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