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Before Pregnancy

Thinking about getting pregnant or trying to conceive? UPMC Health Plan is here to help you get off on the right foot. Our maternity coaches can help you prepare an action plan that can give you a better pregnancy experience. Here are some tips to get started:

See a doctor. Talk to your doctor about health problems you have now or have had in the past. If you are receiving treatment for a health problem, your doctor might want to discuss management options. Weight, blood pressure, certain medications, chronic conditions such as diabetes, and many other factors can affect your ability to carry and deliver a healthy baby. (1)

Eat right. That means a balanced diet complete with protein, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and a certain amount of sweets and fats, as recommended by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). (2)

Take folic acid. Folic acid is a synthetic form of folate, a B vitamin that can help reduce the risk of serious birth defects that affect the brain and spinal cord. These defects can occur in the fetus even before the mother knows she is pregnant. For this reason, the FDA recommends that all women of childbearing age take folic acid supplements. (3)

Quit smoking, drinking, and taking drugs. Nicotine, drugs, and alcohol can have negative effects on an unborn fetus. (4)

Call 1-866-778-6073 now to find out how a UPMC maternity health coach can help you.