You will mainly be under the care of a midwifery team throughout your pregnancy. Most women should have a named midwife who will oversee your pregnancy care. You may also require the care of a Doctor if your pregnancy is deemed more complex or you have pre-existing health conditions.
Your midwife will check your blood pressure, dip your urine and ask about your growing baby at each antenatal appointment.
Your schedule of appointments will vary depending on your individual circumstances and this will be discussed with you with your midwife at the initial appointment. You will usually be seen routinely every 2-3 weeks, depending on your pregnancy needs.
At Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust we follow the Perinatal Institute Gap and Grow Growth Assessment Protocol, this will be discussed with you on an individual basis. See more about pregnancy appointments here.
Non-pregnancy related care will still be provided by your GP or specialist team.
The Health Visiting team will also be in contact with you towards the end of your pregnancy and once your baby is born to continue your community care.
8-10 Weeks of Pregnancy - Booking
Most women see a midwife by 10 weeks of pregnancy. This first appointment is called a ‘booking appointment’ and the midwife will take your history and give you your pregnancy information.
Your community midwife will:
- Review your history and plan of care
- Ensure your dating scan and combined screening are booked if you would like these tests
- Check your blood pressure
- Record your weight, height and body mass index
- Make any necessary referrals to hospital or other specialist services
- Offer carbon monoxide screening to all women
- Outline the plan for your antenatal care
- Complete your personal hand held maternity records which are kept by you and in which all of the care you receive during your pregnancy will be documented.
11+2 - 14+1 Weeks of Pregnancy - Dating/Combined Screening Ultrasound Scan
The dating/combined ultrasound scan is usually offered at around 11 to 14 weeks. It is quick and takes only about 20 minutes. The purpose of this scan is to measure the size of your baby to accurately confirm the due date. This scan can also be used, in combination with a blood test, to assess the likelihood of your pregnancy being affected by Down’s Syndrome and other chromosomal abnormalities.
For more information on screening tests for you and your baby visit our Screening in Pregnancy page.
18 – 20+6 Weeks of Pregnancy - Anomaly Scan
The anomaly (abnormality) scan is performed at around 18 – 20+6 weeks of pregnancy. This will provide a detailed examination to check the baby is developing normally. We also check your baby’s growth, the position of the placenta and the amount of fluid around the baby. Occasionally it is not possible to obtain all the views of baby and a second scan will be offered to complete the anomaly scan by 23 weeks. If the scan shows a possible problem, you will be referred to a specialist to confirm findings and where necessary discuss the options available to you. It is important to remember that not all abnormalities will be detected on ultrasound scan.
28 Weeks of Pregnancy - Blood Tests/Anti-D
At 28 weeks of pregnancy we routinely test your blood to check your iron levels. You may need to take iron supplements during your pregnancy to keep your Haemoglobin (iron) at the desired level for birth. More information about Vitamins in pregnancy can be found here.
If you have a Rhesus negative blood group, you will be offered an Anti-D injection at this time of pregnancy. More information about Anti-D can be found here.
34-36 Weeks of Pregnancy - Birth Wishes Discussion
During your pregnancy you would have been asked to think about where you may want to give birth. At Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust you have the options of homebirth, birth in a Birth Centre and birth in a Hospital. Towards the end of your pregnancy your midwife will go over your pregnancy to help you decide where you will be suitable to have your baby. More information about your choices can be found here.
This appointment is an opportunity to talk about your wishes for labour and birth, including pain relief, Vitamin K for your baby and infant feeding. For more information about the ways in which you can enhance your labour and birth, please visit our Birth Optimising page.