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Pregnancy and Newborns

Your First Trimester

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Fast Facts
Your newborn will have his or her first checkup right away. The medical staff will look at your child's overall health and screen for many conditions by taking a blood sample from his or her heel, says the March of Dimes. Your child will also have his or her hearing checked.
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First Trimester Screening
First Trimester Screening What is first trimester screening? First trimester screening combines fetal ultrasound and blood tests for the mother. It’s done during the first trimester of pregnancy, during weeks 1 to 12 or 13. It can help find out the risk of the fetus having certain birth defects. This includes chromosome defects such as Down syndrome (trisomy 21), or trisomy 18 or 13. First trimester screening may include: Ultrasound test for fetal nuchal translucency (NT). This test uses ultrasound to l...
First Trimester
The First Trimester The first prenatal visit The first prenatal visit is the most thorough. A complete medical history is taken, a physical exam is done, and certain tests and procedures are performed to assess the initial health of the mother and her unborn baby. The first prenatal visit may include the following: Personal medical history. This may include taking record of any of the following: Previous and current medical conditions, like diabetes, high blood pressure (hypertension), anemia, and/or al...
First Trimester Fatigue
First Trimester Fatigue Is it common to be so tired in the first trimester of pregnancy? Feeling dog tired, can’t summon the energy to do much of anything, and craving your bed? For many women, the extreme tiredness of the first trimester is quite a surprise. And it’s an especially hard transition for those who are normally go-getters with lots of energy. Women who usually need only 6 hours of sleep at night often find they need nearly double that during these first weeks of pregnancy. And, for others, ...
Folic Acid for a Healthy Baby
Folic Acid for a Healthy Baby What is folic acid? Folic acid, or folate, is a B vitamin. The word folate comes from folium the Latin word for leaf. Folate happens naturally in food, particularly in dark, green leafy vegetables. Folic acid is the synthetic form supplied in multivitamins and foods fortified with folic acid. Researchers discovered folate’s importance in preventing anemia about 70 years ago. But only in recent years have they learned of the link between folate deficiency and certain birth d...
Headaches in Early Pregnancy
Headaches in Early Pregnancy Nearly all women have occasional headaches, but having a headache in pregnancy is not fun. And, managing headaches is especially tricky in the first trimester when you should avoid many medicines. Whether your headache is from tension or is a full-blown migraine, there are some things you should know. What causes headaches in pregnancy? The exact cause of a headache isn’t always clear. In the first trimester, changing hormone levels and blood volume may play a role. A dull, ...