Baby on the Brain: Your Healthy Body Preconception Checklist

See the Dentist

Keeping a healthy mouth is linked to your fertility and can also affect your pregnancy. It takes women with poor oral hygiene longer to conceive than their healthier counterparts. Once you're pregnant, that trip to the dentist translates into an easier pregnancy. Periodontal disease has been linked to preterm labor, bacterial infection and low birth weight.

See your dentist before you're ready to toss out the birth control. Complete all your necessary dental work before hand, and then you'll have a great start for a healthy pregnancy!

Reduce Stress

Stress levels affect getting pregnant. Start out now on your stress-relief program. Whether your idea of relaxation means yoga, a walk, meditation or a good game of soccer, make it a habit. Your body and mind will thank you now and your whole family will appreciate your efforts in a few year.

Start Taking Folic Acid

Some care-givers suggest you start taking prenatal vitamins when you're ready to try for a baby. Others think that you should take a folic acid supplement and skip the prenatals until you that positive pregnancy test.

Prenatal vitamins differ from a normal multivitamin. They're tailored to the specific needs of pregnant women and their growing baby. While pregnancy vitamins help ensure a healthy early pregnancy, they might contain substances that harm the health of a non-pregnant woman.

Build Your Family History Tree

A record of your family's health history that focuses on medical problems can help uncover a pattern of undiagnosed birth- or pregnancy-related problems.

The goal is to help make you aware if any hereditary birth defects run in the family. A perk could be learning more about your family and having a handy list for your baby announcements one of these days.

Schedule a Pre-Conception Checkup

At the appointment, your doctor will suggests test and discuss topics that help you get ready, both physically and emotionally for this life-enhancing event -- a new baby.

You'll probably talk about genetic disorders, sexually transmitted disease, blood types, diet, folic acid, fitness, habits, environmental or work hazards and the basics of trying to conceive.

Getting pregnant is the start of that wonderful journey of parenting a child. Are you ready to get ready? Print out our preconception checklist and get started!