A healthy baby starts with good health habits before pregnancy, also called preconception care. Our OB/GYNs are all board certified by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, which provides some helpful guidelines for good health before pregnancy begins.
Some of the things you can do to plan for a healthy pregnancy are:
If you use alcohol, tobacco, or drugs, now is a good time to quit. If you need help, tell your health care provider. Your partner should also quit using harmful substances. Some studies have found that if your partner smokes, drinks, or uses drugs, it can lower his fertility, damage his sperm, and have a harmful effect on the fetus. Living with someone who smokes also means that you are likely to breathe in harmful amounts of secondhand smoke.
Prenatal care is the health care you get while you are pregnant. Take care of yourself and your baby by:
Prenatal care can help keep you and your baby healthy. Babies of mothers who do not get prenatal care are three times more likely to have a low birth weight and five times more likely to die than those born to mothers who do get care. Doctors can spot health problems early when they see mothers regularly. This allows doctors to treat them early. Early treatment can cure many problems and prevent others. Doctors also can talk to pregnant women about things they can do to give their unborn babies a healthy start to life.
Women in every state can get help to pay for medical care during their pregnancies. This prenatal care can help you have a healthy baby. Every state in the United States has a program to help. Programs give medical care, information, advice, and other services important for a healthy pregnancy.
To find out about the program in your state: