How should I prepare to get pregnant?

Answered by Phillip Nicastro

To prepare for pregnancy, it’s important to make a plan and take action. Here are some steps you can take to prepare yourself for a healthy pregnancy:

1. See Your Doctor: Schedule a preconception visit with your healthcare provider. They can assess your overall health, discuss any pre-existing medical conditions, and provide guidance on how to optimize your health for pregnancy.

2. Take 400 Micrograms of Folic Acid Every Day: Folic acid is a B vitamin that helps prevent certain birth defects. Start taking a daily supplement of 400 micrograms of folic acid at least one month before you start trying to conceive.

3. Stop Drinking Alcohol, Smoking, and Using Certain Drugs: These substances can have harmful effects on your fertility and the health of your baby. Quitting smoking and avoiding alcohol and drugs can greatly improve your chances of a healthy pregnancy.

4. Avoid Toxic Substances and Environmental Contaminants: Minimize your exposure to harmful chemicals, such as pesticides, cleaning products, and certain household items. Consult with professionals if you work in environments that may expose you to harmful substances.

5. Reach and Maintain a Healthy Weight: Being underweight or overweight can affect your fertility and increase the risk of complications during pregnancy. Aim for a healthy weight by following a balanced diet and engaging in regular physical activity.

6. Learn Your Family History: Understanding your family’s medical history can help you identify potential genetic risks for you and your baby. Discuss any concerns with your healthcare provider and consider genetic counseling if necessary.

7. Get Mentally Healthy: Pregnancy can bring about emotional and psychological challenges. Prioritize your mental well-being by managing stress, seeking support from loved ones, and considering counseling or therapy if needed.

Remember, everyone’s journey to pregnancy is unique. It’s essential to consult with your healthcare provider for personalized advice based on your individual circumstances. They can provide specific recommendations based on your medical history and any potential risk factors. Taking these proactive steps will help set the stage for a healthy and successful pregnancy. Best of luck on your journey to parenthood!