3304 Masonic Drive, Suite 4001| Alexandria, Louisiana 71301

Patient Education

Good Health Before Pregnancy: Preconceptional Care

Pregnancy is a major event. If you plan for it, you can make wise choices that will benefit both your health and that of your baby.

A Preconceptional Visit

If you are planning to become pregnant, you should let your doctor know.

Special Concerns


Your doctor may ask about your family life, work and lifestyle to learn of any behaviors and exposures that could be a risk.

Keeping Fit

Good health depends on both a proper diet and exercise.

If you need to lose weight, you should do so before pregnancy and again after giving birth.

Planning for Support During Pregnancy

Pregnancy may put a lot of demands on you and your family. As you plan your pregnancy, talk with your family about it.

Also, having a baby can cost a lot. As part of your plans, find out whether your health insurance pays for the cost of prenatal care, birth and well-baby care.

Find out how much time your employer allows for maternity leave for pregnancy.


Becoming a parent is a major commitment filled with challenges, rewards and choices. Make a few changes now: keep fit, eat wisely, avoid things that could be harmful, and visit your doctor.

This excerpt from ACOG's Patient Education Pamphlet is provided for your information. It is not medical advice and should not be relied upon as a substitute for visiting your doctor. If you need medical care, have any questions, or wish to receive the full text of this Patient Education Pamphlet, please contact your obstetrician-gynecologist.
To ensure the information is current and accurate, ACOG titles are reviewed every 18 months.
Copyright© March 2003 The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists