Congratulations, mama! Pregnancy can be a wonderful, yet scary time for many women. Whether this was a planned pregnancy or a surprise, your first child or your third, we are here to help you every step of the way.

Stages of Pregnancy

1st Trimester
1st Trimester Stage

Your baby’s nervous system and internal organs are developing. By the end of the trimester your baby has arms, hands, fingers, feet, and toes.

2nd Trimester
2nd Trimester Stage

Your baby’s eyes begin to move and they will develop their ability to hear and their sucking reflex. By 25 weeks your baby will have hair, fingerprints, and footprints.

3rd Trimester
3rd Trimester Stage

Your baby’s eyes will begin to partially open and they will start kicking and stretching. By 37 weeks your baby should reposition with their head toward your pelvis.

4th Trimester
4th Trimester Stage

The 12 weeks after you give birth are just as important for your health as the first three trimesters. Learn more about staying healthy after delivery.

Why do I need regular healthcare while pregnant?

Having regular check-ups with a obstetrician (OB) doctor, which is a doctor that specializes in taking care of pregnant women, is important for you and baby’s health.  Prenatal care is the preventative care you get during pregnancy and is important for monitoring you and the baby and catching any problems early on. Pregnancy can also put you at higher risk for cavities and gum disease, so it is important to continue regular dental check-ups through your pregnancy.

During most pregnancy check-ups, your doctor may check on a few of these things:

  • Baby’s heartbeat
  • Your vitals (blood pressure, urine, heart beat, temperature)
  • You may have an ultrasound around 20 weeks to check baby’s development
  • Your doctor may encourage you to get vaccinated to help protect baby from disease during the first few months of life

When to contact your doctor

Your body experiences lots of changes through pregnancy. Knowing the difference between a normal change and something that isn’t normal is important for you and baby’s health.

  • Some women have high blood pressure during pregnancy which can put them at risk for complications like preeclampsia. Preeclampsia is a very serious, life-threatening condition which can lead to death. High blood pressure can sometimes go unnoticed so it is important to have your blood pressure checked regularly.
Doctor examining expecting mother

Preparing for delivery

  • There are two main ways to birth your baby: vaginal birth or cesarean birth (also known as a “C-section”). With a vaginal birth, the baby is pushed out of the uterus through the mother’s vagina. A cesarean birth is a surgery where the baby is physically removed from the mother’s womb and is normally only performed if medically necessary.
  • Many people will attend educational classes and read materials to prepare them for childbirth and parenting. Your doctor might recommend classes for you to take.
  • Be proactive in preparing for your delivery! You can do this by making a checklist of things to do to get ready for labor and items to bring to the hospital.

Preparing for parenthood

Home Visiting Services promotes children’s brain development by sharing positive parenting techniques with families and offering developmental screenings for children, as well as service recommendations. Home visiting programs provide free support for families with young children with and without disabilities—prenatal to 36 months. 

  • Regular visits in your home to help you learn about your child’s development and provide ideas for activities to stimulate your child’s learning
  • Information to help you cope with the stress of being a parent and how to respond to your child’s developmental needs in a nurturing way
  • Developmental screenings for your child