How to Prepare for Your New Baby

Congratulations! You just found out that you’re going to have a baby.

Right now, your mind is probably running wild with excitement and apprehension about becoming a mother. Many changes will begin to happen for you over the next nine months. There are a lot of steps you need to take before your baby arrives, which is why Associates in Women’s Health of the Mahoning Valley has prepared a list of things for you to expect throughout your pregnancy journey.


First Trimester [1]

The first trimester takes place from conception to week 13.

The symptoms you may experience are morning sickness, weight gain, tender breasts, and mood swings.

By the end of your first trimester, your baby’s body structure and organ systems are developing, giving your baby eyelids, toenails and fingernails, arms, and legs.

Steps to Take:

  1. Start taking prenatal vitamins to ensure your body is getting all the vitamins it needs
  2. Choose Dr. Hill as your OBGYN, if you do not have one chosen yet
  3. Book your first OBGYN appointment at our Youngstown, OH office to receive a pap smear, ultrasound, and blood tests to ensure that you and the baby are healthy.
  4. Start cutting down on caffeine, raw seafood, undercooked eggs, and deli meat
  5. Stop drinking alcohol
  6. Stop smoking nicotine and marijuana
  7. Start considering a pregnancy announcement and baby names


Second Trimester [1]

The second trimester takes place from week 14 to week 26.

The symptoms you may experience are congestion, swelling of the feet and ankles, weight gain, dizziness, achiness, and abdominal pain.

By the end of your second trimester, your baby will start kicking with a fully formed heart.

  1. Schedule a second-trimester ultrasound – Dr. Hill will measure your baby and check on developing organs during this ultrasound
  2. Decide if you want to know your baby’s sex
  3. Get a glucose screening - the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends that all women be screened for the condition in their second trimester
  4. Get immunized if you are pregnant during flu season
  5. Start sleeping on your side


Third Trimester [1]

The third trimester takes place from week 27 to week 40.

The symptoms you may experience are nausea, headaches, sensitivity to smells, fatigue, contractions, insomnia, lack of bladder control, and leaky breasts.

By the third trimester, your baby is fully formed with a brain, organs, and bones.

  1. Start preparing for labor by taking labor and breastfeeding classes
  2. Take a tour of the place you plan to give birth
  3. Have baby supplies ready after you are dismissed from the hospital (crib, bottles, diapers, clothes, etc.)
  4. Know what items you want in your birth bag when it’s time to give birth
  5. Make a birth plan (who is in the room, who cuts the umbilical cord, etc.)
  6. Decide if you want to receive an epidural or not
  7. Learn what to expect when your water breaks

These are the basic steps to take throughout your pregnancy to ensure your health and your baby’s health. Expecting mothers should schedule their appointment with Dr. Hill to begin their pregnancy journey!


  1. Pregnancy Tools & Resources.



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