What happens at a prenatal check-up?
During prenatal care, a midwife or health worker will ask about past pregnancies and births, including any problems, such as a lot of bleeding or babies that died. This information can help you both prepare for similar problems in this pregnancy.
A midwife may also be able to:
- make sure a woman is eating well enough and suggest ways for her to eat better food, if necessary.
- give iron and folic acid tablets, which help prevent anemia and birth defects.
- examine the mother, to make sure she is healthy and that the baby is growing well.
- give vaccinations to prevent tetanus, a disease that can kill both mothers and babies.
- give medicine to prevent malaria if it is common in the area.
- give tests for HIV and syphilis, along with other sexually transmitted infections.
- give medicines to prevent a woman's HIV from spreading to her baby.