There is a lot you can do and some tests you can take before you get pregnant to improve both your chances getting pregnant as well as your chances having a healthy baby.
Most couples follow the famous slogan "Just Do IT" when trying to conceive. What most couples do not realize is that there is a lot you can do before you get pregnant to improve both your chances getting pregnant as well as your chances having a healthy baby.
For one, taking folic acid and starting it 1-2 months before conception decreases your risk of a miscarriage and decreases your risk of having a baby with a congenital malformation.
Going to see your doctor for a periconception visit is an important first step. Your doctor will take a history and examine you. In addition there are some tests you may want to take prior to getting pregnant.
When you first see your doctor for a prenatal visit there are a lot of tests being done. We recommend that women who TTC consider having the following tests BEFORE getting pregnant:
- Pap Smear
- TSH (checks thyroid)
- Sperm analysis
- Postcoital test (PCT)
- Check Ovulation with the basal body temperature curve (BBT)
- Cycle Day 3 tests if problems with TTC
- Hepatitis A
- Hepatitis B
- Vaginal tests for GC and Chlamydia
- Rubella titers
- Chickenpox titers
- Parvovirus B-19 (Fifth Disease) titers
- Cytomegalovirus titers
- Toxoplasmosis titers
- Type and Rh both partner's blood
- CBC and hemoglobin electophoresis
- Genetic screening (based on ethnicity): Sickle Cell Screen, Thalassemia Screen, Jewish Genetic Diseases