Importance of Continued Pre-Natal Care
The goal of prenatal care is to monitor the progress of your pregnancy and to identify potential problems before they become serious for either you or your baby.
- Toward the end of your third trimester, if you are low-risk with a normally progressing pregnancy, you'll likely be seeing your healthcare provide once a week.
- A woman with a chronic condition or high-risk pregnancy may need more frequent visits.
Talking to Your Healthcare Provider
Your body has been going through several changes throughout your pregnancy. And with labor and delivery approaching, it is normal to have lots of questions.
- Sometimes it might feel awkward to talk to your healthcare provider — especially when your symptoms or questions might feel embarrassing or personal, or if you think you are worrying too much.
- Remember, your healthcare provider has probably already heard the same questions from other patients — and the most important thing is for you to feel comfortable and informed as your big day approaches.
- Your health appointment is confidential. Your healthcare provider can't tell anyone else what you say without your permission. It is okay to tell your provider if you smoke, drink alcohol or take any drugs, or if anyone in your life hurts or scares you.
Your healthcare provider needs to know all about you and your lifestyle so that he or she can give you and your baby the best possible care.
Keep Your Healthcare Provider Informed
It's important to keep your healthcare provider informed throughout your pregnancy — including during your third trimester. Let him or her know if you experience any of these symptoms:
- Pain of any kind
- Strong cramps or uterine contractions at 20-minute intervals
- Vaginal bleeding or leaking of amniotic fluid
- Dizziness, fainting or shortness of breath
- Palpitations or tachycardia (rapid beating of the heart)
- Constant nausea and vomiting
- Difficulty walking
- Edema (swelling of joints)
- Decreased activity by the baby
And always remember: there is no such thing as asking too many questions or voicing too many concerns. The goal for you and your healthcare provider is your safe and happy pregnancy!