Pregnancy/Postpartum Health & Safety Information
New & Expecting Families:
There are many health and safety tips to consider before, during, and after pregnancy. The best place to get this information is from your prenatal care provider. Early (within the first trimester) and continuous (no skipping visits) prenatal care is vital to the health and safety of you and your unborn baby. So is attending your postpartum visit(s).
The following health and safety tips do not include everything you need to know, but the FIMR team felt these specific topics were important to emphasize to the public. We encourage pregnant individuals, as well as their support systems, to review this information, know the important warning signs, and talk to their doctor about any health concerns.
If you work professionally with new and expecting families, we encourage you to have the handouts in this list available to your clients. Management of blood pressure issues during and after pregnancy have come up frequently in our reviews. Even if you do not provide medical care, knowing important resources and warning signs can assist with getting your clients the help they need.
1. Pre-pregnancy Planning: Did you know, a healthy pregnancy and baby starts before you get pregnant? This includes managing your weight and any chronic conditions, as well as making other healthy lifestyle choices. If you are thinking about getting pregnant, review this pre-pregnancy checklist from the CDC.
2. Folic Acid helps prevent birth defects. Be sure to take at least 400mcg every day! Read the Folic Acid PDF from the Indiana Department of Health for more information.
3. Preeclampsia Warnings: According to the CDC, preeclampsia occurs in 1 in 25 pregnancies in the United States. This is when your blood pressure is suddenly high and there is protein in your urine after 20 weeks gestation. Recognizing the signs early can help save your life and prevent preterm delivery. Read the Preeclampsia Infographic from the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology to learn more.
4. Post-birth Warning Signs: The body experiences lots of changes during pregnancy and postpartum. We want to make sure you know the warning signs that indicate when additional care is needed. Review the post-birth warning signs from the Association of Women's Health, Obstetric, and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN) so you will know what to do to keep yourself safe and healthy. It is available in various languages.
5. Postpartum Depression: Not everyone experiences postpartum depression but for those that do, we want you to know that it is a normal, hormonal response and there are trained professionals ready to help you at the National Maternal Mental Health Hotline. You can call or text 1-833-852-6262 at any time of day/night for free, confidential support in English or Spanish.