It's positive! Now what?
Dr. Kim Perttu, Family Practice/Obstetrics shares the importance of comprehensive prenatal care.
If you’re pregnant or planning to have a baby in the near future, you’ve probably thought a lot about how different your life will be after your little one arrives, and what you’ll do to care for your baby in the months after you deliver.
However, caring for your baby actually begins before their birth, and it includes paying attention to your health and wellbeing throughout your pregnancy. Comprehensive prenatal care plays an integral role in keeping you and your baby as healthy as possible.
"As a physician specializing in family practice and obstetric, my goal is to ensure you and your little one stay as healthy as possible as your pregnancy progresses by offering comprehensive prenatal care," explains Dr. Kim Perttu.
What is comprehensive prenatal care?
"I recommend comprehensive prenatal care including regular check-ups. These visits help me stay informed and able to monitor your health and the health and progress of your unborn baby."
During your visits, I will provide care including any needed exams, screenings, and lab tests to promote early detection of pregnancy-related complications, make sure you’re getting the right nutrients for you and your baby, and monitor your baby for birth defects.
Other prenatal care may also include:
- Nutrition and diet counseling
- Pelvic and breast exams
- Blood pressure and pulse checks
- Growth measurement of your baby
- Blood testing
- STD screening
- Sonograms and ultrasounds
I will also work closely with you and discuss ideas for your labor-and-delivery plan, and I’m happy to answer any questions or concerns you have that come up along the way.
What are the benefits of comprehensive prenatal care?
The benefits of comprehensive prenatal care involve making sure you and your baby stay as healthy as possible throughout your pregnancy and delivery. Some of the many benefits include:
- Checking nutritional wellness, which promotes normal development
- Providing emotional support and reducing pregnancy-related anxiety
- Guarding against potential complications, like preeclampsia or low birth weight
- Managing existing health conditions, such as diabetes or high blood pressure
- Working with you to ensure you have an effective birth plan
- Monitoring your progress to ensure any issues are discovered and addressed early
How do I start comprehensive prenatal care?
If you’re not pregnant yet but planning to become so, I recommend scheduling a preconception appointment so I can check for any underlying conditions that may affect your pregnancy or ability to conceive.
If you know you’re pregnant, I suggest to schedule a prenatal visit with me as soon as possible to confirm your pregnancy and begin ongoing comprehensive care. Most prenatal care appointments happen according to the following timeline:
- Through week 31, every 4-6 weeks
- Weeks 32-37, every 2-3 weeks
- Week 37 through delivery, every week
We want to help you do everything possible to keep yourself and your baby healthy by taking advantage of the many benefits of comprehensive prenatal care. I welcome the opportunity to care for you and your growing family.