Your Prenatal Visit Checklist: How Best to Be Prepared

Congratulations! You’re expecting! Now the fun really begins with planning and preparing for your new baby. Having a healthy pregnancy is one of the best gifts you can give to yourself and your baby, and that’s why prenatal visits are so important.

At his practice in Burbank, California, Dr. Richard Bardowell has many years of experience caring for pregnant moms and welcoming healthy babies into the world. As a dedicated obstetrician and gynecologist, Dr. Bardowell provides this prenatal visit checklist so you can be best prepared for your appointments from the first through delivery.

Know your complete health history.

During your first prenatal appointment, be prepared to discuss your complete health history with Dr. Bardowell. He’ll also ask about any hereditary conditions or diseases that run in your family. This important information is the foundation for your journey through pregnancy.

If you have existing health conditions, it’s important to let Dr. Bardowell know at your first prenatal exam, so you can work together to manage them during pregnancy. Conditions like high blood pressure or genetic predispositions may play a role in how you manage your health during pregnancy.

You can also expect to have a pelvic exam, blood work, a pregnancy test, and any other tests Dr. Bardowell recommends in these first few weeks after conception.

Plan for at least 10-15 prenatal visits.

If you’re in good overall health, and your pregnancy progresses normally, expect to have a minimum of 10-15 prenatal checkups. After your first exam, expect another prenatal visit about a month later, so you can have your blood pressure and weight checked to ensure you and your baby are progressing on schedule. Typically, if you aren’t considered a high-risk pregnancy, your prenatal visits happen as follows:

At your eighth and ninth prenatal checkups, you’ll probably visit Dr. Bardowell every two weeks as you get closer to your due date. Finally, in the last four weeks of pregnancy (weeks 36-40), you typically come in weekly so Dr. Bardowell can monitor yours and your baby’s health as you inch closer to the big day.

Come prepared with questions.

As you navigate through your pregnancy – especially if it’s your first – you may have questions about what’s normal or how you should feel during each trimester. It helps to keep a list of questions or experiences you want to discuss at your appointment, so you can put any concerns to rest by bringing them to Dr. Bardowell’s attention.

At each appointment, you’ll undergo a series of tests as they apply to your pregnancy and overall health. Don’t be afraid to ask about each test so that you understand what’s happening and why you need a particular screening. Some examples of questions you may have include:

Remember, it’s important to ask questions so you feel comfortable with all the testing and examinations that take place between your initial prenatal visit and your baby’s arrival. Dr. Bardowell and his caring team understand your concerns and are happy to give you the individualized attention you need to understand your pregnancy; they’re with you every step of the way.

Whether it’s your first pregnancy or your third, each experience may be totally different from the others, so it’s important to attend your regularly scheduled prenatal exams. In addition to yours and your baby’s health and wellness, prenatal visits also help you form a trusting doctor-patient relationship. It’s extremely important to feel comfortable with Dr. Bardowell and his OB/GYN team, so when the big day arrives, you’ll feel confident that you and your newborn are in the best hands.

Are you pregnant or planning to be? Call the office to schedule a prenatal exam, or use the online booking tool. We look forward to taking this exciting journey with you.

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