Pregnancy is an exciting time, but it can also be scary for you, as you experience new feelings and you worry about your developing child. With the obstetrics team at Capital Women’s Care - Bethesda, your questions will be answered. With two board-certified obstetricians, Dr. John Gschwend and Dr. Deena Kleinerman, and a certified nurse-midwife, Kimberly Severn, you and your pregnancy are in good hands. If you live in or near Bethesda, Maryland and think you may be pregnant, it’s time to call the office to schedule your initial consultation.
If you think you may be pregnant, start by looking for signs and symptoms of early pregnancy. The most obvious sign is a missed period accompanied by:
If you’ve already missed your period, or if it’s a few days late, take an at-home pregnancy test. If your results are positive, congratulations. Look at the calendar and see when your last period started. That is the official first date of your pregnancy (even though you weren’t pregnant then). Count forward 40 weeks to find your due date.
Call your obstetrician and let the office know the date of your last period and that you had a positive home pregnancy test. Your first OB appointment should be for some time between 4-6 weeks into your pregnancy.
To ensure your health and the healthy development of your baby, you need regular checkups throughout your pregnancy. These appointments allow your doctor to monitor yours and your baby’s health, to screen for specific conditions, and to counsel you on preparing for labor, delivery, and motherhood.
You’ll see your obstetrician once a month through week 28. During weeks 28-36, you should see the doctor every two weeks, and after 36 weeks, your appointments should be weekly.
If you have a high-risk pregnancy, you may need to schedule more frequent appointments with your doctor.
At your first pregnancy appointment, your obstetrician reviews your medical history, performs a full physical exam and requests blood work. Also, you should expect your doctor or nurse-midwife to:
As the weeks go by, your visits may also include checking the heart rate of the fetus, examine the fetus and measuring your abdomen, or completing an ultrasound to determine a more accurate due date.
If you’re pregnant or thinking about becoming pregnant, call Capital Women’s Care - Bethesda today or go online to schedule your first appointment.