The Importance Of Prenatal Health Care
Many years ago, prenatal care did not exist. A woman went to the doctor to find out if she was pregnant, and if so, she saw a doctor or a midwife again at the time of delivery. However, prenatal care is now a must for those women who want to have the healthiest pregnancy and the healthiest baby possible. These are some reasons why getting prenatal care is so important.
A baby is most likely to be healthier when it is born if the mother has received proper prenatal care. This also helps keep the mother healthier as well. There are many changes that may need to be made during pregnancy to ensure both the mother and baby remain in the best of health. This includes eating healthier foods, getting plenty of rest, avoiding things that may be harmful, such as alcohol and smoking, and knowing which medications are safe to take during pregnancy. If a pregnant woman does not receive prenatal care, she may unknowingly harm herself and her baby simply because she does not know what to do or avoid during pregnancy.
Tracking The Baby's Development
Getting prenatal care keeps the expectant mother informed about how well her baby is developing. The OBGYN will check the baby's heartbeat, measure the mother's abdomen, and have ultrasounds performed so that the mother can have an idea of how much weight the baby is gaining and if it is developing as it should. Without prenatal care, there is no way of knowing if a baby is growing properly inside the womb.
Depending on the age, medical history and family medical history of the expectant mother, it may be necessary to have specific testing done during pregnancy. For instance, if certain health conditions run in the mother's family, such as cerebral palsy or Down Syndrome, tests can be done to determine if the baby has the genetic abnormalities that cause these conditions. Tests can also be done to determine if there are any issues with the mother's blood that may require injections to ensure the baby has a safe delivery. In situations like this, not getting prenatal care could actually risk the life of the unborn child.
Prenatal care also helps prepare the expectant mother for labor and delivery. The OBGYN will tell the mother what she can expect and if the baby will be delivered vaginally or by Cesarean section. The OBGYN can answer any questions the mother may have about labor and delivery. Giving birth to a child without this information can make labor and delivery a very scary situation. However, the peace of mind a woman gets from having proper prenatal care throughout her pregnancy makes every doctor visit well worth it.
To learn more, contact a doctor that offers prenatal care.