Attend all your antenatal appointments – It is important to keep in regular contact with your midwife and doctor and go to all the antenatal check-ups and scans. They will monitor the progress of your pregnancy and if there are problems they can make sure you get the care you need.
Urine and blood tests – along with regular blood pressure monitoring and ultrasound scans, these tests can pick up early signs of medical conditions which might affect your baby.
Regular measurement of your baby’s growth – This can tell your midwife (and you) about your baby’s progress. Poor growth can indicate problems and it is important this is picked up. A baby not growing well is at risk of stillbirth.
Report any abdominal pain or bleeding – If you have pain or tenderness in your abdominal area you should contact your doctor or midwife. Acute pain or vaginal bleeding should be reported immediately. It is better to report any pain that worries you sooner rather than later.
Report any change in your baby’s movements – Your baby’s movements should gradually increase until 32 weeks when they will plateau but not reduce. If you notice any change in your baby’s regular pattern of movement, either a reduction or sudden increase you should report it to your midwife or antenatal ward immediately. The care you will receive will depend on your stage of pregnancy
Avoid infection – Some infections increase the risk of stillbirth, in particular Listeria, Salmonella, and Toxoplasmosis. There are simple things you can do to reduce the chances of being exposed to these infections. Ask for information from your midwife about what foods and activities to avoid during pregnancy.
Private scans – NHS scans are routinely offered at 12 and 20 weeks. Among the main reasons for performing these scans are to date the pregnancy and screen for Downs Syndrome or fetal abnormality. A scan to monitor growth and fetal welfare later in pregnancy is not routinely offered on the NHS, but it is becoming increasingly popular for Mums and Dads to have these checks done privately. These Clinics offer a variety of scans at all stages of pregnancy, including detailed fetal welfare assessments.
Eat Healthy – It is important to consume the right nutrients to ensure the healthy development of your baby. ‘Biggest Loser’ Amy Mac writes a healthy eating and exercise blog for Kicks Count, read more