Prenatal Visits: The Second Trimester

December 19, 2010

In your second trimester you'll visit with your doctor or midwife once a month or every four weeks. You may visit your health practitioner more often if there are complications, if your pregnancy is high risk, or if you've undergone extensive fertility treatments.

Gathering Information--OBGYN Health Care

During this trimester your health practitioner will do a great deal of information gathering. Your chart will be reviewed at each visit and there'll be a follow-up on any issues or concerns from previous prenatal visits.

You'll be asked if and when you feel your baby move. Your practitioner may want to know how often you feel the baby move, but this question won't be asked until further in your trimester and closer to the third trimester. Be sure to tell your doctor about any vaginal spotting or bleeding or leaking fluid. Vaginal spotting or bleeding may mean nothing and it's not uncommon to experience this during pregnancy, but it's a good idea to monitor any bleeding. Leaking fluid is a concern and could indicate a rupture in the amniotic sack which increases the chance of infection to your unborn baby. Your practitioner will also ask you if you've experienced any contractions.

You'll be asked how you're feeling overall physically and emotionally. If you're feeling emotionally overwhelmed, it's just as important to let your practitioner know this as it is to let her know of any physical problems. Feel free to bring up any questions or concerns you have.

Pregnancy Weight Monitoring

Some practitioners differ in what they consider a healthy weight gain and how closely this should be monitored during pregnancy. The amount you gain will depend on your pre-pregnancy weight and height or if you're carrying multiples or a singleton.

In our weight-obsessed society, the monthly weight check-up can be nerve-racking. Some women hate seeing numbers creep up to levels they've never been before. Try getting on the scale backwards if seeing the numbers go up is difficult for you. You can also tell you practitioner you don't what to see the numbers and most will accommodate unless there's a concern about your weight gain (or lack of it).

Baby Monitoring, Mom Testing and Ultrasounds

Your baby's heartbeat will be checked and the fundal height of your belly will be checked by tape measure to monitor the baby's growth. Testing options will be offered and discussed with you and you can choose whether or not to have them done. For example, you can test your baby's risk for Down syndrome. An ultrasound will be ordered and performed. Glucose screening tests will be done to check for the risk of gestational diabetes.

 

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