If you suspect they are pregnant you can check this with a home testing kit which can be obtained from the pharmacy. Positive pregnancy testing can also be conducted within McCormicks Road Family Medical Centre by urine or blood testing.
Your Initial GP Consultation
Once you know that you are pregnant it is important to make an appointment with your GP. This first appointment will normally take place when you are between 5 to 9 weeks pregnant (as determined by your last menstrual period). At this consultation the following may be discussed:
Whether you wish to continue with your pregnancy. If not your doctor will discuss the options available to you.
Any medical problems you may have such as high blood pressure, diabetes, allergies and the implications of any medication you may currently be taking.
Your past history of pregnancies if any and any problems associated with them such as miscarriages, premature births or very large or very small babies.
Aspects of your personal care including smoking, drinking, exercise and diet.
The consultation will help us to assess the relative risks of your pregnancy to yourself and your baby.
As infants start to move and communicate, their medical needs may change. Common issues rose by parents of infants or toddlers include: hearing and speech development, movement and motor development, behavioral issues, sleep and night terrors and diet.
Common medical conditions seen in infants include: rashes, croup, asthma, ear infections, constipation, bacterial skin infections, eczema, tonsillitis, viral respiratory tract infections.
The vaccination schedule for infants includes immunizations given at 18 months and at 4 years. At their 4 year vaccination appointment the opportunity is taken to discuss the child?s overall health. This is the last formal appointment on the schedule before starting school. Height, weight, hearing, development, behavior, diet and activity levels are the focus of this visit. Generally a double appointment is made so that each of these areas can be addressed.
Initial Antenatal Care
If everything indicates a healthy uncomplicated pregnancy you will normally be referred to your nearest hospital for antenatal care.
You may request to go elsewhere if you have a preference.
If early potential problems are diagnosed we will refer you to an obstetric or medical obstetric team. Early scans can also be arranged.
Antenatal Care at 12-14 weeks
An ultrasound is offered at 12 ? 14 weeks and a blood test is performed at this time also. This scan together with the result of the blood test identifies the risk of the baby being born with Down?s syndrome.
Around this time also you will have an appointment with a midwife to discuss the pregnancy so far and your ongoing antenatal care. She will advise you on lifestyle issues, (see later) listen to the baby?s heartbeat and answer any questions you may have.
She will also provide you with details of the plan you will receive covering your further antenatal care including:
- An ultrasound scan of the baby at 20 weeks.
- Routine blood tests and screenings.
- Routine GP or Community Midwife appointments up to the birth of your baby.
Routine Antenatal Appointments
These will be identified in your care plan and will be at your surgery either with the GP or a midwife. However if you develop complications in your pregnancy these are likely to take place at hospital. Routine appointments last for 10 minutes and involve check on:
- Your blood pressure
- Testing you urine for sugar, blood and protein (which if present could indicate potential problems)
- Your stomach for an estimate of the size of your baby and to check the baby is growing and which way it is lying (head or bottom down)
- Baby?s heartbeat
You can ask questions about the health of your baby and it?s delivery at these appointments.
You will also receive your own obstetric notes to take to all antenatal appointments.
These notes are important to always carry with you especially if you are away from home and need routine or urgent care.
They will inform any doctor or midwife of your condition. You will receive these normally after your second scan.
The Delivery Of Your Baby
You will probably have attended antenatal classes to learn about aspects of your pregnancy and what to expect when labor starts.
When you feel that labor is beginning you need to contact the delivery suite to discuss whether you would be better to stay at home for a while.
Every labor and delivery is an individual experience so if you have any specific questions regarding your pregnancy then discuss this with your GP and midwife.
After The Birth Of Your Baby
The GP will be notified of the birth of your baby by the hospital or midwife. The community midwife will visit you at home over the first few days to check on you and your baby?s health and advice on issues such as feeding.
If you have any postnatal problems which cannot be dealt with by the midwife then your GP will be happy to see you Health visitors attached to the surgery will begin to see you and your baby about 2 weeks after the birth.
Your GP will see you for this check about 6 weeks after the baby is born. We will try and answer any questions relating to the birth and any areas of concern following the delivery.
We will check that abdominal muscles are coming back together and discuss contraception and smear tests.
Most women usually want to ask questions about their new baby relating to sleeping, feeding, winding etc and we are happy to discuss these as well.