The Importance Of Prenatal Care For A Healthy Pregnancy
Finding out you are pregnant can be one of the most surprising, joyous, or, perhaps, long-awaited moments of your life. You may begin to think of baby names right away, start shopping for the nursery, or imagining what your little one will look like. Amidst all the excitement, however, it is critical that mothers-to-be seek prenatal care to ensure a healthy pregnancy for both herself and the baby. The compassionate team of board-certified providers at Health Services of North Texas fully understands how overwhelming, new, and sometimes frightening that pregnancy can be and are committed to making sure patients receive the highest level of personalized, attentive care at all of their locations and for prenatal care at our Denton South Center location in Medical City Denton Professional Building.
What is prenatal care?
Prenatal care is a critical component of pregnancy that involves monitoring numerous factors to ensure a healthy pregnancy for both the mother and baby. With a variety of possible complications that can occur during pregnancy – many of which don’t produce obvious symptoms – maintaining consistent prenatal care throughout your pregnancy is essential. Some of the most compelling functions and benefits of prenatal care include:
- Track fetal growth
- Early diagnosis of fetal complications
- Monitor fetal heartbeat
- Perform ultrasounds
- Monitor mother’s physical and emotional health
- Early diagnosis of complications in the mother
- Ensure healthy pregnancy overall
- Serve as a referral resource for specialized care, pediatric care, and delivery options
How often are prenatal appointments?
The frequency of your prenatal office visits will depend on several factors, including your age, overall health, health history, and others. Generally speaking, prenatal appointments increase in frequency as the pregnancy goes on. In the first and second trimesters, appointments may be spaced out by several weeks or months, while the third trimester often entails weekly or biweekly visits. High-risk patients and those who have already received a diagnosed complication will likely have prenatal visits more often. Between regular appointments, patients will also undergo routine lab work, including a glucose test and other studies.
What to expect at first prenatal appointment in North Texas
During your initial prenatal visit, your board-certified nurse practitioner will likely perform an examination, take a thorough health history, order a sonogram, draw your blood, and answer your questions at length as the first steps in your pregnancy care. The specific details of your visit may vary depending on how far along you are in your pregnancy, your previous pregnancy history, and other factors. The entire team at Health Services of North Texas is committed to making you feel as comfortable and cared for as possible during this monumental time in your life and will take great care to monitor both you and your baby closely throughout your pregnancy and beyond. In fact, many of our patients continue visiting our North Texas primary care locations for long-term services, including birth control, family planning, breastfeeding assistance, newborn care, childhood immunizations, and more.
How much does prenatal care cost?
At Health Services of North Texas, we are dedicated to making sure all mothers and babies have the prenatal care they deserve. With that in mind, we are proud to accept CHIP and Medicaid– as well as patients without insurance – and also use a sliding scale to determine fees based on income and what affordable prenatal care means to each patient. Furthermore, we have on-site social workers available, as well as both English and Spanish-speaking staff to help our patients comfortably and confidently understand all aspects of their prenatal care and payment options. Ensuring a healthy pregnancy and delivery is certainly priceless. However, we understand that every patient has a different financial situation, and we are committed to working with you to find an appropriate care plan.
When to schedule first prenatal visit in Denton, TX
Ideally, patients should secure a prenatal care doctor as soon as they find out they are pregnant, though the first prenatal visit may not be until week 6 – 9. While scheduling the first prenatal appointment is certainly encouraged as early as possible – preferably during the first trimester – it is never too late to start seeing a doctor.
Whether you have recently found out you are pregnant or have not been in a position to see a doctor quite yet, we invite you to schedule your first prenatal appointment with our caring and experienced team at Health Services of North Texas. With convenient location in Denton for prenatal care, our board-certified providers are here to help these next nine months go as smoothly as possible with advanced prenatal care so that you can focus on all the wonderful things that go along with welcoming your new bundle of joy!