Schedule for a Healthy Pregnancy
Be sure to stick to the schedule that your doctor suggests — even if life gets hectic. Prenatal care is important for both your health and your baby’s health. In fact, when a mother doesn’t get prenatal care, her baby is three times more likely to have a low birth weight. When your doctor checks you regularly, he or she can spot problems early and treat them so that you can have the healthiest pregnancy possible.
Depending on when you find out you’re pregnant and have that first prenatal visit, you’ll have a total of about 10 to 15 appointments. In most complication-free pregnancies, you can expect to have a prenatal appointment:
- Weeks 4 to 28: Once a month
- Weeks 28 to 36: Every other week
- Week 36 until birth: Every week
Prenatal tests can provide valuable information about your baby’s health. Your health care provider will typically offer a variety of prenatal genetic screening tests, which may include ultrasound or blood tests to screen for certain fetal genetic abnormalities, such as Down syndrome.