Maternal Health Content

Importance of Prenatal Care

Healthy lifestyle choices during your pregnancy will benefit you and your baby now and in the future. Prenatal care lasts throughout your pregnancy.

Making Healthy Lifestyle Choices

There are many ways you can make healthy lifestyle choices when you become pregnant. A few of those include:

  • Eating a wide variety of healthy foods such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains, reduced-fat milk and yogurt, red meat or tofu
  • Drinking plenty of water
  • Being active every day
  • Gaining a healthy amount of weight
  • Getting your updated vaccinations
  • Taking care of your mental health
  • Not smoking, drinking alcohol or using drugs
  • Starting a prenatal vitamin

It is important to take care of yourself both physically and mentally when you are pregnant.

Prenatal Care Checkups

Prenatal care checkups throughout your pregnancy help your provider spot health problems early and provide treatment options if necessary. You can also ask your provider any questions you may have or discuss any concerns you’re having.

Most pregnant women have regular checkups with their providers that follow this schedule:

  • Once a month during the first 28 weeks of pregnancy
  • Twice a month during the 29th to 36th week of pregnancy
  • Once a week from week 37 until delivery

During your first prenatal care checkup your provider will:

  • Check your overall health
  • Perform a pelvic exam and a Pap smear
  • Estimate your due date
  • Prescribe a prenatal vitamin

At your later prenatal care checkups, your provider will:

  • Check your weight and blood pressure
  • Check your baby’s heartbeat
  • Measure your belly to check your baby’s growth
  • Perform prenatal tests on you and your baby
  • Discuss your baby’s movements

Early and regular prenatal care is essential to a healthy pregnancy.

Call your Blue Cross Clinical Health Specialist today if you have questions about preparing for your pregnancy or prenatal care checkups at 888-759-2764.

Information provided is not intended to replace medical advice from healthcare professionals.