Five Ways To Have A Healthy Pregnancy and Baby

Armen Hareyan's picture

The recent report from the Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB) suggests that more and more women deliver babies without receiving adequate medical attention or prenatal care during their pregnancy. This obviously will severely heart the baby's health and weight. The report says that the babies will be born with a low birth weight and are likely to die.

Pregnant women should know that there is plenty of help available. There are various state programs that help pregnant women with medical care, offer support, information with health insurance and pregnancy related advice.

Rips from MCHB on Healthy Pregnancy

1. See a doctor or other health care provider from the start of your pregnancy.

2. Don't drink alcohol, smoke cigarettes or take drugs.

3. Eat healthy foods, including fruits, vegetables, low-fat milk, eggs, cheese, and grains.

4. Take good care of your health and exercise sensibly.

5. Have your baby checked by a doctor or health care provider right after birth and throughout childhood.

Questions and Answers

What is prenatal care?


Prenatal care is medical attention given to the expectant mother and her developing baby. It also involves the mother's caring for herself by following her health care provider's advice, practicing good nutrition, getting plenty of rest, exercising sensibly, and avoiding things that could harm her or her baby.

Why is prenatal care important?

Habits that may not harm an adult may still harm your baby's development. Remember that your child's health begins long before it is born. Through proper prenatal care, you can reduce your baby's risk for health problems.

Is smoking bad for my baby?

A pregnant smoker is at a higher risk for problems in her pregnancy. Babies born to mothers who smoke have a lower average birthweight, an increased rate of premature birth, and are at greater risk of death from sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), than babies of nonsmokers.

Studies show that women who quit smoking early in their pregnancies can reduce the risk of damage to their babies. Even quitting in the last month of pregnancy can help your baby by increasing the amount of oxygen available to him/her during delivery.

Will alcohol harm my baby?

There is no guaranteed safe level of alcohol consumption if you are pregnant. Any alcohol you drink enters both yours and your baby's bloodstream. Alcohol use during pregnancy may cause fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS). FAS babies may suffer from physical, behavioral, and mental problems.

Should I avoid taking medicine?

Don't take any medication without first consulting your health care provider. Even over-the-counter medication