Prenatal Care in Key West, FL
Regular medical care is essential for good health. Most medical visits are uneventful, and checking in regularly with your doctor ensures that they will spot potential problems early and plan any appropriate interventions. Doctors also serve as trusted advisors for health and lifestyle choices, helping their patients to maintain a healthy weight and stay active.
When your baby is born, they’ll see a pediatrician. As they grow inside of you, your obstetrician will keep a watchful eye on their growth and development. Prenatal care is essential medical care for both mom and baby.
If you are seeking assistance during the first trimester of your pregnancy, choose Dr. George Peterson. He can guide you through the initial ultrasounds, labs and other tests before your appointment with your obstetrician. Call us at (305) 293-9555 to schedule your first visit.
What Is Prenatal Care?
Prenatal care is the monitoring of mother and baby during pregnancy. It begins in early pregnancy and continues throughout all three trimesters until after delivery.
Why Do I Need Prenatal Care?
If you’re pregnant, seeing a doctor regularly for prenatal care is essential. Prenatal visits and testing help to ensure that your pregnancy is progressing normally. If issues arise, prenatal care provides prompt treatment and early intervention, dramatically improving our ability to help. Think of your prenatal visits as preventative care that aims to help you have a safe and healthy pregnancy.
Prenatal care isn’t just about health. During your initial visit with Dr. Peterson, he can recommend options for easing discomfort during pregnancy and can answer your questions about pregnancy, birth, and beyond.
What Happens During Prenatal Visits?
Prenatal visits provide an exciting opportunity to check in on your growing baby. Most meetings are usually under 30 minutes, but this may vary depending on who your obstetrician is.
Pregnancy is a family experience and life partners, the baby’s father, or another supportive family member or friend are usually invited to prenatal visits.
Prenatal visits also help to build the relationship between you and your provider. Your obstetrician will be with you during the powerful experience of labor and delivery. Building a relationship now can bring comfort on delivery day.
Your obstetrician will typically:
- Monitor weight gain and check blood pressure
- Measure the abdomen to determine your baby’s growth
- Check-in on your baby with ultrasound or heartrate monitoring
- Look for signs of swelling
- Provide advice about lifestyle and diet during pregnancy
- Order bloodwork or other testing
- Discuss the results of previous tests
- Feel your abdomen to determine your baby’s position (third trimester)
- Discuss how you’re feeling and recommend treatments, medications, or interventions to increase comfort or alleviate symptoms
- Answer questions or address concerns
Prenatal Testing in Florida
Many different types of tests can be performed during pregnancy. Some of these tests are only recommended for women that are at high risk for complications. Dr. Peterson will discuss the risks and benefits of each test he recommends.
This test uses ultrasonic energy to visualize your growing fetus. We use ultrasound throughout pregnancy to monitor growth and development. Ultrasound also allows us to determine the gender of baby before delivery.
A Healthy Body for Mom and Baby
5 Must Do Essentials During Pregnancy
These tips are important for protecting the health of both mom and baby.
- Take a Prenatal Vitamin – Make sure you’re getting the proper nutrition for both mom and baby.
- Get Your Flu Shot – Your provider may recommend other vaccines as needed.
- Don’t Smoke, Drink, or Do Drugs – Alcohol, nicotine, and other drugs can affect the growth and development of your baby.
- Ask Your Doctor Before Changing Medications – Your doctor needs to know everything that you’re taking during pregnancy, including medications (prescription and over the counter), vitamins, and supplements.
- Gain a Healthy Amount of Weight – Weight gain is important during pregnancy. Gaining too much or too little can negatively impact the health of mom and baby. We monitor weight gain to help you gain a healthy amount.
We will provide other relevant health and lifestyle tips during your initial visit with Dr. Peterson so that you will be well-prepared before you begin your regular visits with your obstetrician.
Frequently Asked Questions About Prenatal Care in Key West, FL
Typically, visits are scheduled monthly during early pregnancy, becoming more frequent as your pregnancy progresses. At the end of your pregnancy, you will likely visit your obstetrician at least once a week. High-risk pregnancies often receive more frequent monitoring.
Pregnancy is a time of change. We realize that you’ll have questions. If you’re a patient of Dr. Peterson’s, get in touch with any questions or concerns. We’re here for you!
We recommend that patients contact our office to schedule their first prenatal visit as soon as they realize they are pregnant. Not pregnant yet? We would love to help you prepare for your pregnancy with pre-conception counseling.