Happy New Year—Happy New Baby!
New Year’s is all about new beginnings—the perfect time to plan for a healthy pregnancy if you're thinking of having a baby. The more you know, the healthier you and your baby will be.
January is Birth Defects Prevention Month—a time to increase awareness of birth defects and what can be done to prevent them. Planning ahead and getting good prenatal care can help you have a better pregnancy and a healthier baby.
Genesis Babies—We're Here to Help
Genesis can help you before, during and after your pregnancy. We deliver hundreds of babies each month and and have the expertise to help you have a successful pregnancy and a healthy baby. Visit our Davenport and Illini Birth Centers to experience the tender loving care we’re famous for.
Learn more about our pregnancy and birth services at Genesis>>
Use our Pregnancy Health Calculators to help throughout your pregnancy>>
Did You Know?
- 50% of pregnancies are unplanned.
- One out of every 33 babies in the U.S. is born with a birth defect.
- Many birth defects can be prevented.
- Taking folic acid before and during pregnancy can help prevent major birth defects of the baby’s brain and spine.
- Poorly controlled diabetes during pregnancy can increase the chances of birth defects.
Get Smart Before You Get Pregnant
It’s a good idea to consult with your doctor and begin preparing even before you get pregnant.
- Start taking a daily multivitamin with folic acid (400-800 mcg) for at least a month before getting pregnant (or as directed by your doctor). Folic acid can help prevent birth defects.
- Make sure your vaccinations are up to date.
- Get medical conditions such as diabetes, asthma, obesity or epilepsy under control.
- Avoid alcohol, smoking, and other drug use.
- Prevent infections. Avoid germs, toxic substances, chemicals and cat and rodent feces. Wash hands regularly.
You may also want to consider genetic testing and counseling before you get pregnant if you have a family history of genetic conditions or have had problems with pregnancy in the past.
(Source: U.S. Department of Health & Human Services; the National Women’s Health Information Center)
Now That You're Pregnant
Ideally, prenatal care should begin even before conception, but it becomes crucial as soon as you think you’re pregnant. Women who get good prenatal care have healthier babies and are less likely to deliver prematurely.
- See your doctor as soon as you think you're pregnant and regularly throughout your pregnancy.
- Take a daily multivitamin with folic acid (400-800 mcg or as directed by your doctor). Folic acid can help prevent birth defects.
- Check with your doctor before starting or stopping any medication.
- Talk with your doctor about prenatal tests and newborn screenings.
- Eat healthfully and stay hydrated. Learn about foods to avoid during pregnancy.
- Stay active—it can help you have a healthier pregnancy and an easier delivery. Ask your doctor if you have any problems that would restrict your exercise.