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July 07, 2018

Doing something for the first time usually starts off with an extreme emotion - some may come off really excited because they’re about to embark on a new challenge, while others feel anxious as they fear of the consequences should things go bad. I would say the same goes for mother’s first pre-natal visit.

I remember the first time my husband and I went to the hospital for a pre-natal checkup – I was super excited because we were trying for so long, but after 1 ½ years we finally got pregnant. However, I felt the opposite during my second pregnancy as I was constantly sick and stressed from work, so I feared that my condition then would affect my 2nd child’s health.

Emotions aside, one’s pre-natal checkup is a vital process that each mother must go through to ensure optimal health both for her and the little one. Yes, it could be a daunting process because of the several tests you have to undergo, questions the physician asks (some are even personal), and of course documents you have to fill-out.  So we made compiled a few notes that you can go through so you can be well prepared for your first prenatal checkup.

 

When Should Your First Visit Be and Why

Your first visit should be around 8 weeks after your last menstrual period. The reason for this is that at around 6-7 weeks after being pregnant, the unborn baby would start having a heartbeat, therefore a visit would be ideal to avoid any future complications. The only time your prenatal visit would be earlier is due to the following reasons:

  • Vaginal bleeding
  • Abdominal pain
  • Severe nausea and vomiting 

 

What to Expect on your 1st Visit:

Upon your visit, your doctor would most likely ask the following things:

  • Whether your menstrual cycles are regular and how long they tend to last
  • When the first day of your last period was (to determine your due date)
  • Any symptoms or problems you've noticed since your last period (related to pregnancy or not)
  • Any gynecological problems you have now or have had in the past (including sexually transmitted infections)
  • Details about any previous pregnancies (if any)
  • Health history (including family health history to see any hereditary deficiencies)

You would also expect the following to be conducted on you:

  • Pap smear to check for cervical cancer
  • Blood test
  • Urine test
  • STD detection
  • Paperwork, usually cost estimation of pregnancy labor 

Your first prenatal visit should reassure you of looking forward to your motherhood journey and, with the tests and assessment of your doctor, your first big step towards your journey will make you be prepared and ready to face on further challenges and blessings down the road. As with everything, make sure to regularly visit your doctor and take your needed supplements and vitamins to ensure a better delivery in the future.