If you have babies on your mind, consider having a preconception appointment with Women’s Care. Even if you aren’t planning to get pregnant until a year from now, it is still a good idea to put it on your schedule. Here is some idea about what to expect at a preconception appointment.
Primary Purpose Of A Preconception Appointment
Having a general check up before you get pregnant helps your physician to know if your body is ready for pregnancy. It is important to identify potential risks to the mother.
Medical problems like depression, diabetes, and high blood pressure all need to be under good control. It is best to strive to be at your ideal body weight. It is important to review your medications and make any adjustments for the safety of the baby. Now is a good time to discuss alcohol intake, smoking and any drug use and how this could impact a pregnancy.
A preconception visit is a good idea especially if you had any difficulties with previous pregnancies.
Review Your Menstrual Cycle & Gynecological Health
Your obstetrician at Women’s Care will want to know about your menstrual cycle, the regularity of your periods, and what type of birth control you have been using. Certain methods can delay your ability to get pregnant.
Your physician will want to know about how often you have a PAP smear and if you ever had a sexually transmitted disease (STD). Now would be the time to be screened if you or your partner have not been monogamous.
Other topics include the following:
- Previous pregnancies, including abortions or ectopic pregnancies
- Any miscarriages
- Complications with previous pregnancies
- How you delivered previously
- If you had any postpartum issues like postpartum depression
- Prescription or OTC drugs you take regularly
- Your vaccination history
The Benefits For You And Your Baby
Having a preconception appointment is the best way for you to protect yourself and your baby from any problems during pregnancy and after.
Education is an important component of the preconception visit. Discover how important folic acid is and how much you should take before you get pregnant and after. This valuable vitamin helps to protect you and your baby from birth defects. Commonly 400 micrograms is recommended each day starting as soon as possible.
Learn about the importance of vaccinations, nutrition, and weight management.
It can be possible to have several carrier screening tests for certain genetic syndromes, but they are your choice even if they are recommended. They may offer to check your blood to see if you carry genetic mutations for certain conditions like Cystic Fibrosis or Spinal Muscular Atrophy that could be passed on to a baby. If both you and your partner are carriers, this increases the chances your baby will be affected.