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Antenatal appointments and tests explained

As soon as you find out the wonderful news that you are pregnant, first thing’s first (after some of the excitement has slightly subsided) you will need to let your GP know. So, get yourself booked in with your doctor as they can then refer you to a midwife for your ‘booking appointment’ and first scan at around 12 weeks. There can often be a bit of a waiting list so it is best to get this arranged as soon as you can.


From what might feel quite early on in your pregnancy you will be offered a number of antenatal appointments and tests with a midwife or on occasion a doctor specialising in pregnancy, also known as an obstetrician. These appointments are not only fantastic in putting your mind at ease but will also help to ensure that you have a healthy pregnancy as they will be keeping a check on the health of both you and your baby-to-be. These sessions provide lots of opportunity to ask questions (and questions you will have a plenty!). You will also be given lots of useful information and advice during this exciting time. And, if it’s your first baby then you will have slightly more antenatal appointments, on average about 10 in the run up to your due date.

It will always be down to you as to whether you say ‘yes’ to particular tests offered to you, however, remember that these tests are offered for a reason. Many will provide your midwife and / or doctor with key information so that they are able to provide you and your baby with the best possible care during your pregnancy. Some test results may even help you to make certain choices during pregnancy.


Don’t forget that if you are in employment then your employee must legally offer you paid time off work to attend your antenatal appointments and classes. Lots of antenatal classes tend to run of an evening, so make sure you take someone along with you for support.

Alexis and Beccy are the duo behind The Mother Box – a complete package of pregnancy, birth and postnatal gifts, courses and workshops carefully created to nurture, heal and empower new mums.

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