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Click on the links below to jump to the month you are in, or read straight through to see everything the second trimester has in store.
Don’t be surprised! Your first prenatal visit is very important and will take a considerable amount of time. Your doctor has to collect as much information as possible about you and your body in order to track the changes that will occur. After confirming your pregnancy, your provider will record necessary information about you, including weight, height, blood pressure, etc. The doctor will then make arrangements to receive your medical history. This history will be used to detect any complications, irregularities and prevent harm to you or your developing baby. Your visit will include a pap smear, HIV and STD testing, a urinalysis, a pelvic exam and blood tests.
At Greenville OB/GYN, you will have your choice between our skilled, accredited midwives or six doctors to take care for you throughout your pregnancy. Which one you choose will depend on your personal outlook on your pregnancy.
Our physicians rotate call throughout the week. Therefore, we ask that you schedule at least one appointment with each of our physicians to ensure a high comfort level on the day of your delivery. A doctor will set up monthly appointments with you in order to monitor your baby’s development. Held in the privacy of our clinic, your doctor will perform various tests to keep track of your baby’s growth, health, and your own progression. All of our physicians are Fellows of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology and are active members in the community.
Contrary to common belief, our Certified Nurse-Midwives do not deliver babies at home or in our office. However, they do offer a more individualized approach to delivery by means of various relaxation techniques that allow the woman to focus on the wonderful experience of childbirth. Our CNMs provide prenatal education after hours to our patients and offer a variety of healthcare seminars in the community. You would meet with a midwife just as you would meet with a doctor, setting up weekly and monthly appointments. These women are skilled in recognizing the need for medical attention and will recommend treatment if necessary.
Specific drugs are off-limits during pregnancy, especially drugs and alcohol. Other medication is allowed only if the mother’s health would be compromised without the drug; for example, HIV treatment. Over-the-Counter drugs such as Regular Strength Tylenol (325 mg) and Sudafed are safe for minor pains and allergies.You must consult your doctor before taking any other medications.
The first trimester is the most critical time for the health and development of your baby. Therefore, it is very important that you eliminate the use of alcohol, drugs, and tobacco products in any form. Also, places where you may be exposed to second-hand smoke should be avoided and caffeine intake should be limited.
What you eat is crucial to the healthy development of your baby. Try eating cheese, eggs and drinking more milk to get the calcium and protein you both need. You can also take a calcium supplement if you are lactose intolerant or do not care for dairy. The healthier you eat, the more likely your baby will have well-developed bones and organs. On average, a woman will gain 25-35 pounds throughout her pregnancy, but since you will be staying active while pregnant, you will want to continue that pattern of good health after your baby is born.
Morning sickness is a feeling of nausea or vomiting most likely caused by rising hormone levels as well as your body adjusting to being pregnant. Just because it is called morning sickness does not mean that morning is the only time you will feel nauseous. It can occur at any time of the day or night. In most cases, morning sickness will only occur in the first trimester and in some cases, it does not occur at all. Dehydration can occur, so be sure to drink plenty of water whether you are experiencing symptoms or not. Ginger can also help with nausea and calm your stomach.
It is of the utmost importance that you do not drink alcohol. There is no safe level of alcohol consumption at any time during your pregnancy and the consequences are severe. Alcohol use is the primary cause of retardation and birth defects, including spontaneous abortion, stillbirth, and fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS). FAS is a serious disease that can cause your child to have decreased motor skills, behavior problems, deformities, as well as hearing and vision problems. It is best for you to avoid alcohol at all times and consult your provider before consuming anything containing alcohol.
Smoking during pregnancy results in consequences such as low birth weight, premature labor and delivery, and increases your baby’s risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) after birth. If you are a smoker and find it hard to quit or simply don’t think you’re going to quit, inform your provider immediately. Smoking fewer cigarettes will not decrease health risks to your baby and it is best that you quit completely.
Your body is going to go through all kinds of changes during this period. It is important that you take preventative measures to avoid colds and exposure to people who might be contagious. Here is a list of medications approved by your Greenville OB/GYN health care provider. They are also listed on the back of the emergency card you received on your first visit.
Folic acid helps new cells to grow and therefore, is essential for your growing baby. These supplements will help your baby’s brain and nervous system develop in the best possible way. It has just the right amount of Vitamin B, which drastically decreases the risk of neural tube defects, meaning the brain and spine, and is found naturally in foods such as broccoli and spinach. There are also benefits for you because folic acid keeps hair and skin healthy. Many multivitamins are available with folic acid, but pregnant women should consider the amount of other vitamins to avoid an overdose.
Throughout your pregnancy, you will have blood, urine, and cervical tests. These show your doctor any deficiencies or abnormalities that may exist. A blood test will check on antibodies, hemoglobin and hematocrit levels, and STDs. It can also tell you about your baby’s development, fetal blood levels, and catch whether your baby has any birth defects. Your doctor will perform a urine test at the beginning of each office visit. These results show sugar and protein levels and any possible infections. The cervical exam will involve a Pap test and monitor any changes to your cervix. There are a few other tests that may be performed but this is nothing out of the ordinary. Prenatal care is different for every woman and you may need tests which your friends or family did not have.
Exercise is sure to help ease the pains associated with pregnancy and give you a healthy, stronger baby, too. And now, your morning sickness has probably faded so you feel like doing some moderate exercise. Try at least 30 minutes of stationary biking or walking to get your heart rate up. Remember to stay as cool as possible by staying hydrated and taking breaks. There is no reason for you to try to lose weight right now. You are pregnant and your baby needs healthy food and room to grow! Also, the more you exercise now and get your heart rate up, the less your baby will stir when you are trying to sleep. They will be sure to get a workout whether you have one or not!