Pregnancy and Childbirth Preparation
Choosing to have a baby is one of the most exciting decisions you’ll ever make. For some women, getting pregnant happens quickly and without a lot of planning. However, it’s also common for conception to take longer and require more strategy.
It is often difficult to know exactly when ovulation is going to occur during a woman’s 28-day menstrual cycle. Here are some things to remember:
- Doctors recommend that couples who are trying to have a baby have intercourse between days 7 and 20 of a woman’s cycle.
- Studies have shown that having intercourse every other day or every third day works just as well as every day in order to become pregnant.
- Sperm can live inside a woman’s body for 3-5 days. However, a released egg only lives for 4 to 12 hours. The highest pregnancy rates have been reported when fertilization occurs within 4 to 6 hours of ovulation.
If you are trying to determine the best days to conceive, an ovulation predictor can be useful, such as an ovulation calculator, particularly effective for women who have regular menstrual cycles. Women who have irregular menstrual cycles may want to consider an ovulation prediction kit.
Signs of pregnancy may include:
- A delayed or missed period
- Swollen and/or tender breasts
- Frequent urination
- Darkening of the areolas
- Food cravings
Each woman experiences pregnancy differently, and associated symptoms can vary widely. One of the most common pregnancy symptoms is morning sickness, which usually occurs only during early pregnancy months but can last a whole pregnancy.
Pregnancy tests are available over the counter if you suspect you might be pregnant. Or, plan a visit with your provider and begin prenatal care.
Trying for a second pregnancy after a preemie?
Read important care tips here.
Classes and support
Throughout your pregnancy, we’ll guide you through childbirth preparation, labor (Lamaze) classes, available delivery options, cesarean births, and newborn and postpartum care available. Classes are held in many locations across the region including Tacoma, Federal Way, Enumclaw, Bonney Lake, Black Diamond and the surrounding plateau communities, Auburn, Kent, Des Moines, Fife, and Highline.