Preconception Consultation: What You Need to Know
We understand you want the safest and healthiest pregnancy possible to provide the best growth environment for your baby. However, sometimes the best beginnings occur before birth and even before conception. By scheduling a preconception consultation, you’re preparing your baby for its best possible outcome. You’ll have a chance to discuss your current health, OB history, medications, and social risks that may affect your fertility or early pregnancy. In addition to getting physically prepared, meeting with your doctor will also help you prepare emotionally.
Who should have a preconception consultation?
Preconception consultation is suggested for anyone who plans to become pregnant to get the tools and information necessary for a healthy, smooth pregnancy and prevent any risks or issues from developing. Women who have preexisting medical conditions, in particular, should consider booking a preconception consultation due to potential risks associated with specific medical histories.
Your consultant will be able to pinpoint the specific requirements needed for your body and the health of your future baby. The first eight weeks of pregnancy are essential for the human life growing inside of you as most of the baby’s organs and body systems have begun to form. Your health and nutrition will directly affect your baby’s development in these early weeks, so you want to make sure you are taking the necessary steps.
How should I prepare?
Once you’ve booked an appointment, the rest is easy. You will be asked various questions during your consultation to ensure that the doctor knows every bit of information needed. Your doctor will take this information to assess any possible risks, requirements, or special procedures to take. Here’s a checklist of some of the information you’ll need to collect beforehand:
- Birth control you currently use: The doctor will let you know when to stop and how long to wait before trying to get pregnant
- Menstrual cycles: This will be useful for a discussion on fertility
- Diet and lifestyle habits: A Maternal-Fetal Medicine (MFM) specialist can advise you of any dietary changes needed to ensure your baby’s best outcome
- Any current medications: Your doctor may suggest that you stop taking some medications as they could prove to be harmful to the baby
- Existing medical conditions: Inform your doctor of any mental or physical health conditions to ensure you receive the best treatment plan before, during, and after your pregnancy
- Family medical history: Sometimes health issues can skip a generation, so you want to make sure to avoid or prevent all possible risks by disclosing as much family medical history as possible — and be sure to mention any twins in your family since they can sometimes be hereditary
How will preconception consulting benefit me?
Preconception consultation is an excellent idea for any woman planning to become pregnant. It is an especially good idea for first-time mothers or women with preexisting medical issues. By being as healthy and prepared as possible before conception, you’re giving your baby its best chance to grow and develop properly.
If you are possibly carrying a genetic condition that could affect the fetus, this is when the consultation will be extra beneficial. You have the freedom to ask any questions and gain additional knowledge about your current situation. If your pregnancy has any chance of being high-risk or complicated, meeting with a doctor such as Dr. Stanley-Christian of Unity Maternal Fetal Medicine in Clermont, Florida, can be highly beneficial. Dr. Stanley is a triple board-certified OB/GYN and genetics expert with 25+ years of experience.
Without a clear plan in place, you could encounter unexpected issues with conception or even the pregnancy itself. It’s time to let go of the confusion in deciding whose advice to follow. Seeking professional advice from an expert is the best choice you could make in this season of life. It’s easy to want to do everything yourself and feel like a “wonder woman,” but there is no shame in seeking guidance and assistance from an expert because your baby deserves it, and you deserve it.
At Unity Maternal Fetal Medicine, you’ll gain access to educational resources, genetic carrier testing, and diagnostics to help you start your journey feeling informed and empowered. When you book a preconception consultation with Unity, you can rest assured we’ve covered every base and that you’re as prepared as possible to start the family of your dreams.