214 chapter 10: Pregnancy
Make a birth plan
Even though it can be difficult for women with disabilities to get the medical
treatment they need, every pregnant woman should make a birth plan. You should
begin having prenatal (also called antenatal) checkups as soon as you think you are
pregnant. If possible, try to find a midwife, doctor, or other health worker you trust,
and take a friend or family member with you when you go for your first checkup.
Together you can talk about any possible problems that may happen, what can
be done about them, and where you can get the best advice. You can use this
information to help make your birth plan. For example:
• Which will be the safest place for you to have your baby: at home, a birthing
clinic, or a hospital?
• Will you have transport to a hospital or clinic if you need it?
• If you take medicines regularly, will they have any effect on your developing
baby? You may need to change some of the medicines you
take to others that are safer in pregnancy. This is especially
true for anti-seizure medicines (see page 231).
• Will your disability affect your health while you are
pregnant, or the health or development of
I will help you while
you are pregnant to
make sure you get
what you need.
• Is your disability likely to cause
problems during labor or delivery?
• Can complications be prevented
or treated safely?
• Do you know how to stay
healthy during your pregnancy
(eating well and exercising)?
How to know when a baby is due
Add 9 months plus 7 days to the
date when your last normal monthly
bleeding began. Your baby will
probably be born any time in the
2 weeks before or after this date.
A Health Handbook for Women with Disabilities 2007
A woman can know
when her baby will be
born by counting the
passing of 10 moons
since her last period.