Finding out you’re pregnant, planned or unplanned, can be both exciting and absolutely terrifying. It’s a very emotional time no matter what. You might be wondering what you even do once you’re pregnant, and that’s okay. We’ll be dealing with the absolute essentials here. We want to go over the things that you’ll need to do immediately after finding out you’re pregnant. Obviously, you’ll want to figure out how to tell your family and friends and start buying maternity clothes, but you have time for that. Here’s what your next steps are when you find out you’re pregnant.
Call your doctor
Of course, your first step once you find out you’re pregnant is to call your doctor! If you have a gynecologist, call them, but if not, call your primary care provider. Your doctor can help confirm the pregnancy and make sure you have the healthcare you need to keep yourself and your future baby healthy.
They’ll want to track the pregnancy to make sure everything is running smoothly. Don’t be surprised if your first visit isn’t until eight weeks, though. Even then, it might be just a meeting to go over everything you need to know. They probably won’t do an ultrasound until later unless there’s a reason to be concerned.
Start taking a prenatal vitamin
The best time to start taking a prenatal vitamin is when you first start trying to get pregnant, but it’s completely fine if you start once you’re pregnant. A prenatal vitamin helps make sure you have the vitamins and minerals you need, like iron and calcium.
This step is so important because you need to make sure you’re taking care of your body and giving it what it needs. Just be aware that taking your vitamin with an empty stomach might make you sick, so try and get down a meal or at least some crackers. Personally, when I was pregnant, I took Rainbow prenatal vitamins and some extra vitamin D.
Take time to rest
The first trimester of my pregnancy was the most exhausted I’ve ever been. It was just rough. I was tired constantly. So, do your best to really rest and get some sleep when you need it. Of course, work, home life, and possibly other kids are always going to get in the way. But just do what you can to get the rest you need. The more sleep you can get, the better off you’ll be.
Start eating well
So, we’re realistic here at Bonafide Motherhood. You’re not always going to eat perfectly. Honestly, if you’re having a rough first trimester, you might live off ginger tea and crackers. That’s okay. The most important thing is that you do your best to try and eat healthy. Make sure you’re eating fruits, veggies, and good protein like eggs and lean meat. Personally, I had the privilege of being able to see a nutritionist while I was pregnant, and it was incredibly helpful. She helped keep me on track and helped me learn a lot about food. We’ve got some easy pregnancy lunch ideas too!
Pay attention to your symptoms
Pregnancy obviously creates a lot of changes in your body. It can be scary, and the unfortunate part is that sometimes things go wrong. Make sure you’re paying attention to your body and your symptoms. If you’re in pain or something feels wrong for whatever reason, call your doctor. Even if nothing’s wrong, you’ll want to monitor your body so you can discuss anything (like extreme nausea) with your OB.
Check your insurance
Yep. This part isn’t fun. But unpleasant money-related surprises are worse. Once you’re pregnant, you need to know what your insurance does and does not cover. This is particularly important at the very beginning and at the very end. In the beginning, your OB will offer you genetic testing, and you’ll need to know if your insurance pays for that or if you’re willing to pay out of pocket.
You’ll also need to know how much your hospital stay is going to cost you and if you need to save up money for those postpartum bills. In general, make sure you know which doctors and facilities are in-network, what services are covered, your deductible, and what it will cost to add your baby to your insurance plan.
Baby stuff is expensive, and you’ll need a lot of it. Hopefully, you’ll get gifts and money to help offset that, but even if you just stick to the essentials, you’ll still need things. You don’t want to rely on others and just hope that you get everything as a gift. Make sure you can cover everything, just in case. Plus, having some savings when your baby is first born is always ideal.
There are tons of things to do once you’re pregnant, but this will give you a good head start and keep you on track. You want to make sure you’re taking care of your physical body and your emotional health. That’s the most important thing. But keeping ahead of those financial issues is also good.
Anything I missed? Comment below and let me know!
Erin Lafond is a writer, website creator, and mom. She survived new motherhood by Googling things a lot, calling her mother, and embracing trial and error. Now, she shares her knowledge with all new moms. She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and son (soon to be two sons!).