Ask Avera: Preparing for pregnancy

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(KSFY) - Are you an expectant parent or hope to be soon? There are things you can do before and during pregnancy to help ensure you and baby are as healthy as possible.

OB/GYN Dr. Kimberlee McKay is one of our Ask Avera experts. She says when you first find out you’re pregnant, see a doctor right away and don’t panic.

Dr. McKay suggests starting to take prenatal vitamins three months before pregnancy.

‘You also want to make sure you’re up-to-date on any vaccinations like your MMR vaccine that protects from measles. And then if you’re on medications, which a lot of women are on medications, whether it’s for asthma or seizures or diabetes, you should plan with your doctor what you’re going to do with those medications to make sure that they’re safe in pregnancy,” said Dr. McKay.

Dr. McKay says medications can be complicated when it comes to pregnancy.

“In general, in the first trimester, you always want to talk with your physician. At Avera, we have a long list of mediations that are safe in pregnancy. Later on, sometimes in the second and third trimesters which is 14 weeks and beyond, there are medications you can take. Advil is one that you can take after 14 weeks, but we recommend using it sparingly,” said Dr. McKay.

Dr. McKay says to consult with your doctor if you have any questions.

If you have a question for one of our Ask Avera experts, email Tess at