If there are no problems with your pregnancy, you'll probably see midwives for most of your care. Your midwife may refer you to a hospital doctor (obstetrician) if you need extra care during pregnancy, for example if you are having more than 1 baby.
In some areas you will see the same midwife at most of your appointments. In other areas, the midwives work in teams so you may not see the same person at each visit.
Read more about what to expect from your antenatal care.
How many antenatal appointments will I have?
If this is your first baby, you will usually have 10 antenatal appointments.
After your booking appointment at about 10 weeks, you will usually have these appointments:
- in your second trimester, in weeks 14-16, 25 and 28
- in your third trimester in weeks 31, 34, 36, 38, 40 and 41 (if you haven't given birth before 40 weeks)
If you have already had a healthy pregnancy and baby, you will have 7 appointments. As well as the booking appointment, you will usually have these at 14-16, 28, 34, 36, 38 and 41 weeks.
You may have more or longer appointments if you have had a previous pregnancy complication or loss or if you have a medical condition or would benefit from extra support.
As well as these appointments, you will be offered 2 ultrasound scans at 11-14 and 18-21 weeks. You may be offered extra scans if you need them, for example to check your baby’s growth. Like all the other tests and procedures, you can choose whether to have the scans on offer.
How long will my antenatal appointments take?
The first antenatal appointment is known as the booking appointment and takes the longest - it can be up to an hour.
After this, your appointments will be shorter. They will take about 20 to 30 minutes if your pregnancy is uncomplicated. In some cases appointments before you might run over however so be prepared to wait for longer.
Who will I see during my pregnancy?
The team of people looking after you during your pregnancy is made up of different specialists. You’ll meet some or all of the following people at your antenatal appointments.
A midwife is a health professional who looks after pregnant mothers and birthing people and their babies during pregnancy, labour and after the birth. If you have a low-risk pregnancy, midwives will do most of your antenatal care.
You may see your midwife or midwifery team at home, at your GP surgery, health or family centre or in hospital.
Your GP will carry on looking after your general health when you are pregnant. They may also do some of your antenatal care if you choose, and see you and your baby after the birth.
Student midwife or doctor
Student midwives or medical students often work with and watch qualified staff as part of their training. Speak to your midwife if you’d like to find out more about how they will be involved in your care.
This is a hospital doctor who specialises in treating complications during pregnancy, labour and after the birth. Obstetricians work alongside midwives.
This is the person who does your ultrasound scans.
You may see a physiotherapist who is trained to help you cope with the physical changes during pregnancy, birth and afterwards. They can show you how to look after your body during pregnancy. They can also give you advice and support to help you recover after the birth.
Your health visitor is a nurse or midwife who specialises in improving health and wellbeing after the birth of your baby. They will support you with caring for your baby from birth until 5 years old. They may contact you before the birth to offer support and will visit you at home shortly after your baby is born to support you with feeding the baby, as well as checking your health after the birth. They will tell you about local baby clinics and support services. Health visitors work in a team with other professionals, such as nurses, and nursery nurses.
Family nurse practitioner
Some areas have specialist midwives or nurses who support young people expecting their first baby. They offer support at home or in children’s centres from pregnancy until the child is 2 years old.