Ensuring proper prenatal development
Proper prenatal care is one of the most important aspects of a pregnancy. Expectant mothers can give their babies the best start possible by taking care of themselves and developing child all throughout their pregnancy.
Prenatal care is a process that involves you and your doctor. There are many procedures and prenatal testing measures that only your doctor can perform, but there are also monitoring steps you can take to ensure healthy fetal development.
Prenatal Doctor's Visits
Doctor's visits are essential during your pregnancy. A trip to the doctor might include many things, but two of the most important procedures are:
- Prenatal testing. Doctors can check for genetic conditions or abnormalities in the fetus as well as monitor the health of the mother.
- Ultrasounds. Having an ultrasound allows you and your doctor to take a look at the prenatal development of your baby. You can not only determine its sex, but also look at the health of the womb.
Home Prenatal Plan
In between doctor's visits, expecting mothers should always keep prenatal care in mind. There are plenty of things you can do to keep yourself and your baby healthy during your pregnancy, including:
- Take your vitamins. Prenatal vitamins are one of the easiest ways to ensure you're getting proper nutrition for both yourself and your baby. (Be sure to consult your doctor before taking any vitamins, however.)
- Pay attention to nutrition. A pregnancy isn't a license to eat whatever you want – good nutrition is more important than ever when you're pregnant, so be sure to load up on good foods. A doctor or nutritionist can give you advice on prenatal nutrition, including what to eat, how often and how much.
- Exercise. No, you don't have to pound away on the treadmill or pump iron, but a modified exercise plan is good for you and your baby. Talk to your doctor and fitness professionals about exercises you can do during your pregnancy.
- Have a prenatal massage. Being pregnant can put a lot of strain on your body. A pregnancy massage can help relieve tension and promote joint and muscle health in the areas where you need it most. Massage is generally safe during most pregnancies, but be sure you talk to your doctor and your massage therapist before you begin treatment.