When should I schedule my first office visit?
We would like to see you when you are approximately 8 weeks pregnant. At this time, we will confirm your pregnancy with ultrasound and a visit with one of our doctors. This visit will be scheduled anytime between 7 and 11 weeks.
How often will I be seen during my pregnancy?
Patients are seen every 4 weeks between the first trimester and 28 weeks of pregnancy. At 28 weeks, we begin visits every 2 weeks. At 35-36 weeks, we begin weekly visits.
Who will deliver my baby?
During your prenatal care, you will schedule appointments with each of our obstetricians. That way, when you go into labor or are admitted to the hospital, you will already be familiar with the obstetrician on call and she will be familiar with you. We currently have 8 female obstetricians who will take care of you.
Where will you deliver my baby?
Our OB-GYN specialists deliver babies and perform surgery exclusively at Piedmont Atlanta Hospital.
Learn more about Piedmont Atlanta Hospital.
What over-the-counter medications are safe to take while I'm pregnant?
Use medications sparingly in the first 14 weeks of pregnancy. See the complete list.
Should I get a flu vaccine while I am pregnant?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend that everyone 6 months of age and older - including pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding - get the flu vaccine each year.
Learn more from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecolgists.
How do I know when I am going into labor?
Call our office if you are at or near full term (37 weeks) and are experiencing:
- strong contractions every five minutes for an hour
- vaginal bleeding like a light period
- fluid leakage
- decreased fetal movements
What is a Bloody Show?
A bloody show is a small amount of bloody mucous seen at anytime in the final month of pregnancy. It may be anything from just mucous (plug) to a pink or red discharge. Although it is a good sign that your cervix may be softening in preparation for dilation, it does not always mean you are going into labor. It may occur within 24 hours after a pelvic examination. If this occurs you do not have to call the physician. However, if you are experiencing heavy vaginal bleeding, call your doctor right away.
What are "Braxton-Hicks" contractions?
Braxton-Hicks contractions are very mild, irregular contractions that may feel like menstrual cramps. They can occur at any time in the late second trimester (26-40 weeks). If you experience more than 6 uncomfortable pains/cramps within an hour before 36 weeks, call your dotor.
What is an episiotomy?
An episiotomy is a cut the doctor makes at the perineum and posterior vaginal wall during delivery. At Piedmont Ob-Gyn, we avoid episiotomies, unless they are absolutely necessary.
Is it normal for my hands and feet to swell during pregnancy?
Swelling of the hands, feet, face and vulva during pregnancy is common and normal in most circumstances. It does not occur in all pregnancies, and will go away soon after delivery. We will monitor you to be sure the swelling is not accompanied by high blood pressure, which can be a concern.
What is Pre-Eclampsia?
Pre-eclampsia is high blood pressure and protein in your urine. It occurs only during pregnancy and most often shows up in the third trimester, although it can occur in the late second trimester. This is a serious medical condition that can lead to seizures called eclampsia. There is no cure for this disease except for delivery. Most patients have no symptoms, but some may experience upper abdominal pain, headaches that are not relieved with Tylenol, visual spots or blurry vision. If you experience any of these symptoms, call your doctor immediately.
Can I exercise during pregnancy?
Yes, unless you have been directed by your physician not to. You should not start any new demanding exercises you were not doing prior to pregnancy. A good rule of thumb is that you should be able to carry on a conversation while performing the exercise. Walking and swimming are good options.
Can I have sex during pregnancy?
Yes, unless your doctor has told you not to.
What if I cannot feel the baby move?
Many times if you are busy you may not notice fetal movement, although there is movement occurring. If you notice no movements or decreased movements, stop what you are doing, drink something sweet like orange juice, and lie down on your left side in a quiet room. You should have 10 movements within the hour and any movement counts. If not, then call office.
Is a circumcision always necessary for my baby boy?
No. A circumcision is removal of the foreskin of the penis. It is a cosmetic (or religious) procedure desired by some parents, but not necessary for the health of the baby. We normally perform the circumcision in the hospital prior to discharge home, if the parents request it.
Are there foods to avoid during pregnancy?
- Raw meat: Avoid uncooked seafood and undercooked beef or poultry due to risk of bacterial contamination, toxoplasmosis and salmonella.
- Fish with mercury: Avoid fish with high levels of mercury including shark, swordfish, king mackerel and tilefish. Limit albacore tuna to 6oz/ week.
- Raw shellfish: Including clams, oyster and mussels can cause bacterial infections.
- Raw eggs: Raw eggs or any food containing raw eggs can be contaminated with salmonella.
- Soft cheeses: Imported soft cheese may contain listeria (soft cheese that are pasteurized are safe).
- Unpasteurized milk: May contain listeria which can lead to miscarriage.
- Caffeine: Limit caffeine intake to the equivalent of 1 cup of coffee a day.
- Alcohol & Drugs: There is no amount of alcohol or street drugs that are known to be safe during pregnancy and therefore should be avoided. Drinking alcohol or using drugs can cause birth defects, mental retardation and abnormal brain development.
Nutrition During Pregnancy - from ACOG
What should I pack for my hospital stay?
See the document below for a list of items for mom, baby, and their support person.
What should I have on hand at home for postpartum care?
Some items you may want to have on hand when you come home from the hospital include:
- Overnight maxipads with wings
- Colace stool softener
- Witch hazel foam or pads
- Nipple cream