Help! I’m feeling nervous about my pregnancy. What can I do?
Also, learn as much as you can about pregnancy. Check out books from your library, explore reputable medical resources online, and be sure to speak with your doctor. “By educating yourself, you will know what to expect and feel more in control,” assures the OWH.
Do I really need to take a prenatal vitamin?
How many appointments will I need throughout my pregnancy?
Routine checkups usually occur:
- Once each month, from week four through week 28
- Twice a month, from week 28 through week 36
- Weekly from week 36 until you give birth.
How many ultrasounds will I have?
- The first test usually occurs during your first trimester as part of a biophysical profile (a prenatal ultrasound evaluation).
- The second is typically scheduled between 18 and 20 weeks, “to look for signs of problems with the baby's organs and body systems and confirm the age of the fetus and proper growth,” says the OWH.
When can I find out the gender of my baby?
Can I still exercise during my pregnancy?
To maximize the health benefits of working out during pregnancy, and to keep you and your baby safe, spread out your workouts throughout the week. “If you worked out regularly before pregnancy, you can keep up your activity level as long as your health doesn’t change and you talk to your doctor about your activity level throughout your pregnancy,” adds the OWH.
How much weight should I gain during pregnancy?
The government agency suggests women gain weight at the following rate:
- 1 to 4 pounds total during the first three months (first trimester)
- 2 to 4 pounds per month during the fourth to ninth months (second and third trimesters)
How will I know when it's time to go to the hospital?
“If you ever are unsure if contractions are true labor, call your doctor,” recommends the OWH. A quick phone chat will ease your mind and help you understand if you need to stay home and wait a bit longer, or jump in the car and head to the hospital.
About Our Experts
Part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Office on Women's Health provides leadership and coordination to improve the health of women and girls through policy, education and model programs.
American Academy of Pediatrics(AAP.org)
The AAP is medical organization composed of over 60,000 pediatricians committed to supporting and educating families with infants through young adults to better develop and maintain optimal physical, mental and social health and well-being.
U.S. Public Health Service( usphs.gov)
The Public Health Service is a government organization overseen by the Surgeon General that focuses on providing education and services to protect, promote and advance the health of U.S. citizens.
USDA Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion ( choosemyplate.gov)
The CNPP was established in 1994 to improve the nutrition and well-being of Americans; the USDA Food Guidance System is one of this government agency’s core programs.
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By Heather K. Scott, Tribune Content Solutions