Whether you are trying to get pregnant or are already expecting, there are many things that you must be doing to make sure that the baby that you have will be healthy. Use the guide below to learn what to expect while you are pregnant and how to prepare yourself for the pregnancy leading up to your new baby.
If you are trying to get pregnant, you should first see your OB to be sure that you are in good health. The doctor will do a thorough exam and likely run some blood work. They could also give you some suggestions as to how to go about getting pregnant and provide you with vitamins to begin taking. Folic acid is among the most important nutrients to get into your body even before the baby is conceived.
Start educating yourself. Reading books, joining forums or support groups may be valuable to you. The more you know before you get pregnant, the more comfortable you will feel after it happens.
The first trimester is commonly the most difficult for women. It comes with morning sickness, extreme exhaustion and hormonal changes that many people do not understand. You should know ahead of time that morning sickness is not a morning thing – it can last the entire day. You will be paying a visit to your doctor during this trimester and will likely have an ultra sound to determine if your baby is healthy and to verify the estimated due date. Your doctor will send you for blood and urine analysis as well.
The second trimester is likely going to be the most enjoyable. For most women, the morning sickness has let up and the exhaustion is not as bad. You will continue to see your doctor about once a month for weight, fundal height and blood pressure checks. You will also have another ultra sound and will have the opportunity to learn the sex of your baby. Oftentimes, your doctor will send you for glucose testing to be sure you have not developed gestational diabetes during pregnancy. It is a simple one hour test in which you drink a bottle of orange drink and an hour later have your blood drawn. It is important for the doctor to learn if you have diabetes so he can alter your care and you can alter your diet to maintain a healthy pregnancy.
As you reach the third trimester, you will begin to feel the discomforts of having a two pound baby in your belly. You will likely begin to suffer from heartburn, indigestion, gas and constipation. It will be difficult to get comfortable and you will begin to lose sleep. You will be making bi-weekly visits to your doctor for the first few weeks and then weekly as your due date approaches. Get plenty of sleep during this time as your body is going through a lot and needs the rest.
You have just learned the basics of what to expect while you are pregnant and how to prepare your body for the changes it is about to undergo. Enjoy this time and before you know it, you will be holding that precious bundle in your arms.