The first appointment
Around week 8 of the pregnancy you will have an intake appointment. We’ll discuss your health and your partners health to estimate if there might be any risks during the pregnancy. Off course we give you all the information you need for this period. Especially we’ll inform you about prenatal screening. We will plan the first ultrasound appointment during the intake.
Follow up of the prenatal care
During the pregnancy you will visit us with an average of 14 times. We provide you from medical checks like measuring your bloodpressure and we’ll check if the baby grows well. We give you all the information you need about being pregnant, but we will also support you in preparation for the delivery and the first time with your baby.
During the intake, we will inform you about several tests to check the health of your baby. We can tell you more about a NIPT (not invasive prenatal test), combinationtest and anomalyscan. The NIPT and combinationtest are meant to screen specific on chromosomal diseases. With the anomalyscan around week 20 of the pregnancy we can screen the baby on physical abnormalities. You can choose to do these prenatal screening tests or not, we will inform you and discuss this with you during the appointments.
A healthy lifestyle is very important during the pregnancy. It will help giving your baby a healthy start and you will stay as fit as possible! We will inform and support you if you want. We can also refer you to a dietician, physiotherapist, psychotherapist or quit-smoking-coach.
The average gain weight is 11-16 kgs during the pregnancy. If you gain more weight, then it might be hard to lose this weight after the pregnancy. We will discuss a healthy diet during the intake. If you have specific questions that we cannot answer, or you need more support around a healthy diet or gaining weight, we can refer you to a dietitian.
- Use folic acid 4 weeks before you get pregnant until at least week 10 of the pregnancy. This gives a lower change on neural tube defects for the baby. Besides folic acid we advise a vitamine D supplement during the entire pregnancy. A multivitamine for pregnant woman contains enough vitamine D and folic acid. You can also use a combine vitamine with folic acid and vitamine D.
- Eat healthy and variable, so you and your baby will not get short in vitamines.
- Eat at least 250 grams of vegetables and 2 pieces of fruit. Wash these well.
- Drink at least 2 liters of water.
- Don’t eat to much salt, 6 grams a day is the advised maximum.
- For the brain development it’s important to eat the right fatty acids. You can get these by eating fat fish 1 to 2 times a week.
- Inform us about a diet, for an example a vegan or vegetarian diet.
- If you need more support around healthy food or gaining weight, contact a dietitian. She can also answer specific questions.
- Keep on moving! Move at least 30-60 minutes a day. For an example cycle, take a walk or a swim. Keep exercising like you did before you were pregnant, maybe with some adjustments.
- Don’t drink alcohol, this can affect the brain development of the baby or cause a miscarriage. Even one glass can cause damage.
- Don’t eat for two, this is unnecessary.
- Don’t consume raw meat, raw fish, vacuum-sealed fish, raw eggs and raw milk. These can contain bacteria like Toxoplasmosis and Listeria. These can cause miscarriages, premature deliveries and congenital defects. If you want to eat vacuum-sealed fish, heat it first. Toxoplasmosis can also be found in cat feces, so wear gloves when you work in the garden or change the litterbox.
- Don’t eat predatory fish, they contain a lot of mercury and might contain harmful substances (tuna, eel, pike, king mackerel or shark).
- Limit your intake of liver products (to one slice of bread with liver a day).
- Limit your caffeine intake to 200 mg a day. One small cup of coffee contains around 85 mg of caffeine, a big cup of black tea 60 mg and a glass of coke 35 mg.
- Don’t eat products that are past their expiration date.
- Don’t follow a diet to lose weight during the pregnancy.
Smoking, alcohol and drugs
Smoking, alcohol and drugs have a negative health effects for you and your baby. That’s why we strongly advise to not use any of these.
Smoking is a strong addiction. When you smoke, we will discuss if you want to quit smoking and we will make a plan how we can support you in the best way.
Alcohol can have a strong effect on the brain development and cause damage. That’s why our advise is to not even drink a glass. This can already have an effect.
When you just got pregnant and you use medication, then discuss this with us or the general practicer as soon as possible to see if you can use this medication safely. Paracetamol is well researched and safe to use during the pregnancy. You can have 6 tablets of 500 mg a day if this is necessary. Use the standard paracetamol without codein or coffein.
If you used to do sports before the pregnancy: keep on going during the pregnancy! It’s scientifically proven that woman who are doing sports have less complaints during the pregnancy, a better placenta blood flow, gain less weight (differences till 7 kgs!) and a quicker recovery post partum. After 12-16 weeks you have a risk on a abdominal trauma, so avoid sports like skieing and ball sports.
The sauna is a lovely place to relax. There’s not much research on what the heat can do on the development of the embryo in the first 3 months. That’s why we advise to avoid the sauna in the first trimester. You can safely go in the second and third trimester. Listen to your body and don’t sit to high. We disapprove the infrared sauna.
Having sex in the pregnancy is no problem. Your baby is well protected in the uterus and won’t notice this. You can’t get a miscarriage of having sex. It can be that your libido is lower in the first trimester because of the tiredness and nausea. This is normal. This will return during the second trimester when you get more energy. It’s true that sex can start your contractions around your due date. This is because your body releases the hormone oxytocine during an orgasm: the same hormone that causes contractions. We don’t recommend sex when you lose amniotic fluid (because of a higher change of an infection), when you have bloodloss or when you have a placenta praevia (we will tell you this explicit after the ultrasound when this is the case).