Thinking of Starting A Family?

There are several things you need to know about before trying for a baby.

 Immunity to Rubella (German Measles)

Rubella in pregnancy can cause serious problems in the unborn baby like deafness and heart defects. Have a blood test to ensure that you are immune to rubella.

This is necessary even if you had the vaccination. You may already have had this blood test. Please phone if you are not sure.

 Cervical Smear Test

It is recommended to have a smear test every three years. Please check that you are up to date.

 Weight

Try to get to your correct weight as you will have less problems with conditions like backache during the pregnancy. It will also be easier to regain your figure afterwards.

 Alcohol

Cut down your alcohol intake before and during pregnancy for a healthier baby.

 Smoking

Give up smoking!

Smoking can cause many complications during pregnancy and it is vital that reduce the risks to you and your baby. Speak to a midwife or GP about referral to the Help 2 Quit Counsellor.

 Folic Acid (Folate)for the prevention of Spina-Bifida

Research has shown that increasing the amount of folic acid in the diet can help prevent spina-bifida (malformation of the spine). Folic acid is a vitamin that occurs in many foods.

It is particularly high in Brussel Sprouts and Broccoli. Some food like cereals have folic acid added to them. It is recommended that you take an extra 400 micrograms per day before you get pregnant and during the first three months of pregnancy. This dose is available as a tablet which you can buy over the counter.

 Liver

Liver has very high levels of vitamin A. Too much vitamin A can lead to abnormalities in the baby. We therefore advise that you avoid liver during pregnancy.

 Salmonella

Salmonella germs can cause serious illness, particularly in pregnant women. Eggs may contain salmonella. Avoid eating raw eggs and cook your eggs thoroughly.

 Listeria

This is a germ causing a severe flu-like illness. Pregnant women are particularly at risk. Listeria may be present in soft cheeses, pates and cooked/chilled meals.

To avoid any risk do not eat cheeses like Camembert, Brie and blue vein cheeses. Follow the instructions on cooked/chilled food very carefully. Make sure that it is heated through thoroughly.