Is it time for your daughter to make her first OBGYN visit? An OBGYN, or obstetric gynecologist, is a medical professional whose focus is women's health, specifically the female reproductive system. All women need to see an OBGYN once they reach a certain level of maturity and will need to continue making regular appointments for…
How Often to See Your OBGYN During Pregnancy
Your OBGYN is someone you should rely on throughout your pregnancy. This professional is not only critical for your health and wellness but your developing baby as well. Pregnancy brings many challenges and even potential complications. You cannot afford to spend the next nine months without your doctor’s guidance and monitoring. It is also critical that you visit the appropriate number of times throughout your pregnancy.
What the OBGYN will do
While a primary care physician can diagnose and treat conditions at all points of life, the OBGYN has a specific focus. This doctor will care for a woman’s reproductive and pregnancy issues. From the time a pregnant patient first comes into the office, this doctor will begin to track the baby’s development. The OBGYN will also make sure the mother-to-be is healthy and strong to carry the fetus. The doctor will prescribe medication as necessary and conduct tests (including ultrasounds). The OBGYN even provides counsel and advice so the woman can take good care of herself.
The first visit
Women can see an obstetrician/gynecologist for various issues throughout adulthood. A woman may want to see this doctor for pap smears to check for cervical cancer. She may have questions about fertility or birth control as well. When it comes to pregnancy, a woman should make her first appointment at about eight weeks. At this appointment, the doctor will ask the woman about her health and wellness history. There will also be a discussion about taking prenatal vitamins and managing discomfort and hormonal changes.
From week eight through around week 30, the expectant mother should see her OBGYN once a month. Checkups will include ultrasounds to diagnose the health of the baby and hands-on examinations of the woman. The mother may also have blood tests and will provide urine samples during these visits to check on the overall health of her body. The doctor and patient will talk about concerns and pregnancy challenges as well.
The final two months
During the last eight or nine weeks of pregnancy, appointments will change in frequency. Instead of monthly visits, the pregnant woman should stop by the office every week or two. The doctor will prepare her for delivery and will make sure the baby is in the right position for birth. The doctor will also closely monitor the baby’s vital signs to make sure everything is looking good.
At any time in between appointments, the woman should feel comfortable calling her doctor for help if she has any troubling issues. These may include severe abdominal pain, bleeding or lack of movement from the baby. Most offices can accommodate same-day emergency appointments. Depending on the issue, the doctor may send the woman to the ER.
It is not a wise idea to procrastinate making an appointment with your OBGYN when you are expecting. You need to be as healthy as possible so your baby can have the nutrients and healthy environment to grow and develop. You also need the strength to endure the rigors of pregnancy. Make and keep consistent appointments from the beginning through the end of these nine months.
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