Your questions, answered by midwives

This section gives you the answers to some of the questions most frequently asked during pregnancy. Compiled by the Tommy's team of midwives and you.

These are the questions most commonly asked of the team of Tommy's midwives during pregnancy. 

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  • By Pearl (not verified) on 5 Nov 2018 - 08:24

    Good Day, i am confused at 22 weeks i went for a scan at the hospital and it showed that the baby was a boy and at 27 weeks i went to the doctor because i was not feeling well and he did the scan and he said the baby was a girls, now i'm confused could you please assist.

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 5 Nov 2018 - 15:29

    Hi Pearl
    Only the sonographer can give you this information by what they see on scan. So if they are unsure, they may want to re-scan you to give you a definitive answer. All the best -Tommy's Midwife

  • By Dee (not verified) on 29 Oct 2018 - 14:36

    Hi - how soon after an 8wk miscarriage can we try again? The bleeding from the miscarriage has stopped (been two weeks since miscarriage and bleeding stopped six days ago). Will the next bleed be my period and we go again from that point..? Thanks in advance. So grateful you're here. x

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 2 Nov 2018 - 09:46

    Hi Dee,
    I am so sorry to hear about your recent miscarriage. Trying again after miscarriage is very personal, and essentially it is when you feel you are physically and emotionally ready. Common advice is to wait until you have had your next full 'normal' period, however there is no medical reason for this, this is to make it easier to date the next pregnancy and reduce confusion and some anxiety that this can bring.
    Best wishes
    Tommy's midwife

  • By Jenny (not verified) on 22 Oct 2018 - 16:05

    Hi. This is my first pregnancy. Should my partner attend my booking in appointment with me? He is very happy to come along but we are not sure if he needs to.
    Thanks

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 23 Oct 2018 - 13:59

    Yes, the booking appointment is arranged to take a full history from you. Both your family histories will be discussed in relation to risk for some metabolic conditions. It is also a chance for you to ask questions about the care you will be offered. The midwife will ask about your living arrangements and discuss things like smoking, alcohol consumption, diet etc. It is important for you both to be involved and for the new father to understand how he can support you and the baby. Follow-up antenatal appointments are shorter and less important for you both to attend.

  • By Magdalena (not verified) on 7 Oct 2018 - 17:29

    I am pregnant and I would like to know what I need to do now that I know I am pregnant to have a healthy pregnancy

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 9 Oct 2018 - 12:21

    Hi Magdalena, Just follow our pregnancy calender for all this information https://www.tommys.org/pregnancy-information/im-pregnant/pregnancy-calendar-your-week-week-guide-stages-pregnancy
    You can also follow us on Facebook or Instagram for all you need to know and some ideas for healthy living in pregnancy.

  • By Lisa (not verified) on 1 Oct 2018 - 12:51

    Hi, I’m 10 weeks today and I have my scan booked for the 15th which we can’t wait for, I have all of my symptoms still other than cramps, they seem to have tailed off other than the odd one, is it normal for the cramping to ease off at this stage? It’s so hard to find information online and I don’t want to be bothering the midwife at my surgery with something that is probably very norma!

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 4 Oct 2018 - 14:30

    Hi Lisa, Thank you for your comment.
    What you are experiencing is very normal, pregnancy symptoms can come and go and you still have all your other pregnancy symptoms so this is reassuring. Hope this helps, Tommy's Midwives x

  • By Rosie (not verified) on 1 Oct 2018 - 11:25

    Hi I am 5+2 (I think!) I have my first midwife appointment on the 17th October (at around 8 weeks) am I able to speak with a midwife before this appointment? This is my first baby and I’m finding myself on edge most of the time not knowing If aches and pains are normal etc I feel I need some reassurance and with 16 days to go until my booked appointment I just don’t want to be worrying as I know that’s no good!! X

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 1 Oct 2018 - 16:31

    Hi Rosie, You are not alone. This is a common concern. If our website isn't able to answer your questions you can e-mail us at [email protected]'s.org
    We have tried to answer many of the most common questions on our pages. If your question isn't on the page relating to the number of weeks you are pregnant, try the search button with a key word. We hope it is helpful. Best wishes

  • By Grace (not verified) on 27 Sep 2018 - 15:16

    Hi, I am 29+6 and only gained weight around my stomache which is a firm bump! I haven't gainwed weight anywhere else on my body and am concered im not gaining enough? A this a problem? Thanks in advance!

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 28 Sep 2018 - 12:01

    Hi - and Congratulations on your pregnancy!
    Its quite normal at this stage in your pregnancy to have quite a firm bump and not experience much weight gain.
    There are several different things that contribute to the weight you put on when you are pregnant. These include:

    Your baby
    The placenta
    The amniotic fluid (the water surrounding your baby)
    Your growing breasts
    The increased blood you need
    Extra fat stores
    Natural fluid retention.
    Changes in your body, such as extra fat and increased blood volume, are important for the health of your baby and the pregnancy.
    However, if you are worried about being underweight in your pregnancy or about your weight - have a read of our information pages on weight in pregnancy and also speak to your midwife.
    https://www.tommys.org/pregnancy-information/im-pregnant/weight-management/underweight-during-pregnancy

  • By Kelley (not verified) on 18 Sep 2018 - 20:41

    Hello! At my 20 week scan, the tech found a small amount of liquid in both the stomach and the bladder. They did not seem worried at all about it but did request I come back in two weeks to check them again. Should I be concerned? They didnt give a reason why they might be both filling up but they called it bilateral something.. They said it would be more concerning if it was only in one or the other? Any insight on what could be going on?

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 21 Sep 2018 - 09:55

    Hi Kelley, I don't want to downplay your concerns and I certainly understand your desire to find some answers - we all do the same, however, this could be many things or nothing. Without much more information and without follow up anyone advising on your situation will not be informed enough to make comment. Your follow up scan may find that the fluid has resolved or decreased. Try not to scare yourself with what ifs but please when you do have more information you are most welcome to give us a call to discuss on 0800 0147 800 or you can ask to speak to a consultant obstetrician in the scanning department. Take care, Tommy's midwives

  • By Ellie (not verified) on 15 Sep 2018 - 11:04

    I am nearly 8 weeks pregnant but apart from the positive tests and sore boobs I have had no other symptoms? I am booked in for a scan in 4 weeks time but I am anxious about them telling me there is no baby there. This is my first pregnancy and I am so worried that something has gone wrong, shouldn’t I be feeling a lot more at this stage? I’ve had no morning sickness or anything. Feel like four weeks is too long to wait without knowing. Just don’t know what to do - I’ve had an appointment with my midwife last week and she said it seems normal but I’m not convinced?

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 17 Sep 2018 - 10:59

    Yes Ellie, This is quite normal. Many women have no symptoms and have a normal and healthy pregnancy. Try to focus on your health and maintaining a really good balanced diet. The four weeks will go by very quickly. Take care

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 4 Sep 2018 - 05:17

    I find myself unexpectedly pregnant at 12 weeks (2 pregnancy tests a month ago must have been faulty as they were negative!) I’m now panicking as I had a heavy bleed about 6 weeks ago (only a couple of hours but lots of clots etc) and haven’t been doing anything I should have been doing eg taking folic acid etc as I didn’t know. To top it off I was given trimethoprim 3days for a UTI and have heard that this is really bad under 12 weeks! I had a viability scan that showed a baby with a heartbeat but that’s all they checked so now I’m waiting for another scan and feeling very anxious about the health of the baby. Where can I find info on trimethoprim etc and what was that bleed all about?!

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 11 Sep 2018 - 09:47

    Thank you for your message and congratulations on your pregnancy.
    Your next scan should give you more information as to the cause of the bleed but often no cause can be found.
    I would advise discussing the risks of taking Trimethoprim with your GP or midwife, however you will have a detailed scan at 20 weeks that will give you more information about your baby's growth and development.

    Tommy's Midwife

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 20 Jul 2018 - 22:35

    I am 16 weeks. I received a letter with my DS results, everything seems ok apart from PAPP-A. I have scored 0.31. On the letter it says this is too low and will need an extra scan at 28 weeks.. As there was no other information I searched online and now I have read all the horror stories, now I can’t stop worrying. Is there any help out there, what can I do?

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 23 Jul 2018 - 16:10

    Hi, Thanks for your comment. It is very difficult when you are given results that you don't understand, I can only assume that all the other tests were normal so this test in isolation is insignificant. PAPP-A is a protein produced by the placenta. It is measured as part of the combined screening test and results are calculated to give you a chance (or risk) that your baby has a chromosomal abnormality. Please remember that this is a screening test and is not a diagnostic test. Further diagnostic testing is usually offered if you have concerns. There is also some research suggesting that low PAPP-A is associated with increased complications in pregnancy which is why you will be monitored with extra scans. This result in isolation is by no means conclusive and you have every reason to believe that you will have a normal pregnancy with a healthy baby. If you need more information please contact us on 0800 0147 800. We have a midwife answering the phone Monday to Friday 9-5pm.

  • By Haya (not verified) on 3 Jul 2018 - 12:40

    My last period date was 5 may...
    Did my pregnancy strip test and it was positive...
    How many weeks am I?
    Secondly is it safe to do facial bleach for me these days?
    TIA

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 4 Jul 2018 - 15:48

    Hi Haya
    Using your LMP date of 5th May, you would be no more than 8 weeks and 4 days pregnant today. Congratulations!

    If you are worried about using bleaching products for your body hair, you can give yourself peace of mind by not using them during the first trimester. You may want to remove the hair instead, by shaving, waxing or using a cream. You can always go back to bleaching after your baby is born.

    If you choose to bleach your facial or body hair during pregnancy, follow these safety steps:
    Read the manufacturer's instructions on the packet carefully before applying the bleach.
    Don’t use the bleach on swollen or broken skin.
    Always do a patch test on a small area before you use the bleach, even if you used the product before you were pregnant. Your skin can become more sensitive during pregnancy and the bleach may irritate your skin. Stop using it immediately if you have any kind of reaction to it.
    Make sure the room is well aired. Hair bleach can have a strong smell that you may find unpleasant, particularly if you’re feeling queasy.
    Don't keep the product on your skin any longer than is necessary. Leave it on for the minimum time suggested on the instructions.
    Take good care of yourself
    Sophie,Tommy's Midwife

  • By Melissa (not verified) on 1 Jul 2018 - 10:51

    Hello I have had a child removed in 2012 then I had another baby in 2013 who was on cp plan I was in a mother and baby unit and passed my assessment this was due to dv the man has never seen my daughter as I left when I was 6 weeks pregnant he is in prison for a serious crime now and I have a new partner and am currently pregnant will ss get involved again they closed the case a few years ago and will midwife know about my past

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 2 Jul 2018 - 13:56

    Yes, It is very important that you are honest with your midwife. She and social services are there to support you and ensure that your baby is in a safe environment. If you are now in a safe relationship there is no reason to keep this information from ss. Take good care of yourself

  • By Faith (not verified) on 27 Jun 2018 - 17:23

    My last periods were on may 25th to 28thi missed my June periods and went for a pregnancy test a days later and it was confirmed that am pregnant how many weeks am I?

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 29 Jun 2018 - 09:39

    Dear Faith,
    From your dates if you have a regular 28 day cycle then you are about 5 weeks pregnant. If you are not already, we would advise that you are taking a folic acid supplement and when possible to contact your GP to arrange a referral to maternity services.
    Best wishes
    Tommy's midwife

  • By Happiness (not verified) on 7 Jun 2018 - 10:16

    I am 21wks pregnant, I don't discharge and I was told iav a tumor. And my baby is breech, is dis normal??

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 8 Jun 2018 - 12:38

    Hi Happiness,
    It is nothing to worry about that you are not having any discharge in this pregnancy, it varies for every pregnant woman and does not mean that there is anything wrong at all.
    It is also very normal for your baby to be breech at this stage too, they have plenty of room to move around and your baby is very small and will change position easily. It is not until you are 36 weeks that we need to check the baby's position and make a care plan if your baby is still breech.
    You also mention you have a tumour, I am sorry to hear this and hope that you are getting the medical support that you need, do see your doctor if you are unsure of anything.
    Best wishes
    Tommy's midwife

  • By Charlie (not verified) on 28 May 2018 - 12:11

    Can I swim in my parents outdoor pool to cool down in this hot weather?

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 29 May 2018 - 15:19

    Hi Charlie
    Yes, swimming is very good for you and baby. If the water is very cold then please get in and swim a bit to warm yourself up at the start. I don't want you to come out with hypothermia :) Have a look at the link below about swimming in pregnancy https://www.tommys.org/pregnancy-information/im-pregnant/exercise-pregnancy/what-kind-exercises-can-i-do/swimming-pregnancy
    Enjoy your dip!
    Sophie,Tommy's Midwife

  • By Mary (not verified) on 5 May 2018 - 14:46

    Hi, I did my first ultrasound today and it was 17weeks+3days but the thing is it indicates that the the fetal is breech. Is it normal

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 10 May 2018 - 11:06

    Hi Mary
    At 17 weeks, that baby can be in any position it wants to be! It is likely to change position about 10 times a day as it has plenty of space to move around while it is still small. We are only concerned if baby is still breech after 36-37 weeks gestation.
    So no need to worry at all!
    All the best Sophie,Tommy's Midwife

  • By Anonymous (not verified) on 10 Apr 2018 - 11:36

    After a previous miscarriage I had an early pregnancy scan at 8 weeks as was unsure of dates as no period in between miscarriage and new pregnancy. Turns out there are two babies measuring the same size and with heartbeats. I am terrified of losing on or both babies, now have booking in appointment for when I will be 10+5, can the midwife listen for heartbeats then? I know she can't always find them but if she could it would help my anxiety alot. I hope I dont have to wait too long after booking appointment for the 12 week scan!

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 10 Apr 2018 - 14:54

    Hi there. I completely understand your anxiety after a loss and you are not alone in feeling this way. However it is almost impossible for the midwife to find the fetal heart beat of each twin with a handheld doppler much before 16- 18 weeks. Even at 16-18 weeks, it might be tricky and so this can take a while for the midwife to find each twin and ensure that each twin has been heard. You will see and hear the heartbeats on ultrasound scan as well which you will find reassuring and also enjoy. The midwife may use a pinard to locate each twin before using the handheld device for you to hear too. It would be good for your midwife at booking to be informed of your anxiety so that she can book you more appointments for extra support. You will have more scans having twins also throughout pregnancy. If you wish to talk anything through, then please do call us on 0800 0147800
    All the best
    Sophie, Tommy's Midwife

  • By Jen (not verified) on 4 Apr 2018 - 21:23

    I'm 6 +4 and all my symptoms disappeared about 5 days ago I had sore boobs and twinges in my stomach and.now nothing. Suffer from anxiety and really worried something has happened but won't know for another 5 weeks. I have read about a missed miscarriage where you don't bleed and feel this might be happening to me. I think about it all day and night and can't seem to switch off and rela because I know something's not right.

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 6 Apr 2018 - 12:09

    Hi Jen,
    I am so sorry to hear that you are feeling so anxious and this is keeping you awake at night. If you have had a sudden loss of symptoms and are feeling this way then do see your GP for a review. Please know that we are here to support you also, if you would like you can email us [email protected] or call us on 0800 0147 800, we are here Monday to Friday 9-5pm for advice and support.
    Best wishes, Tommy's midwives

  • By Salma (not verified) on 30 Mar 2018 - 16:40

    Hi am five weeks and my first ecography will be on the 12. I eat well and sleep well. But am no longer having my symptoms like headache and body temperature. But my boobs are sore. If i don't have symptoms is everything alright? I also see alot of pregnant women mention implantation bleeding...I dint have any of that.

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 4 Apr 2018 - 10:22

    Hi Salma
    Pregnancy symptoms can come and go. Some women never experience any pregnancy symptoms at all, whilst others seem to never be rid of them. Every woman and every pregnancy is different. Please do not be worried. If you wish to call and speak to us in detail about this, please call us on 0800 0147800.
    All the best
    Sophie, Tommy's Midwife

  • By Baby (not verified) on 21 Mar 2018 - 11:48

    I am in my second trimester and all my cramps have now gone from first trimester. I can't feel my uterus stretching no more and have had no pains, I, worried as they say that I'm your second trimester you feel the uterus stretching. I'm 14 weeks

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 21 Mar 2018 - 12:41

    Hi,
    Please try not to worry, not every pregnant women gets stretching pains, and for some they are earlier or later. You should have had a scan in the last couple of weeks, if this has not happened then please contact your midwife straight away. Pregnancy symptoms can come and go throughout the pregnancy, but any concerns then do check in with your midwife for advice.
    Best wishes, Tommy's midwife.

  • By Debi (not verified) on 19 Mar 2018 - 20:08

    I am currently 6 weeks and 6 days and saw my gp today. I have been offered my booking in appointment in 6 weeks time and concerned that it is so late.
    I also have a history of depression. Does that sound right?

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 21 Mar 2018 - 09:58

    Hi Debi,
    Ideally your booking appointment should be between about 8-10 weeks of pregnancy so this is later than advised. It is important that you are seen in time to be able to discussed screening options and to get booked in for a scan before 13+6 weeks. It maybe worth just ringing the antenatal clinic of where you are booked and discuss with them to see if they have an earlier slot or put you in touch with a community midwife who maybe able to do it sooner. With regards to your history of depression, if you are on any medication then it is important to be reviewed and discuss anything that you maybe taking. You should also have the opportunity to discuss your mental health and any support options that are available to you. If you are feeling low or depressed in the meantime then please do not hesitate to see your GP to discuss support for you.
    Best wishes, Tommy's midwife.

  • By Debi (not verified) on 21 Mar 2018 - 23:38

    Thanks. I manage my moods with cbt techniques quite well but obviously want to keep an eye on any changes.

    I rang the GP and they have now offered me an earlier appointment. I am not happy with how my gp has handled things so far but feel more comfortable advocating for myself. It's great to have this resource for support too.

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 22 Mar 2018 - 15:41

    Hi Debi,

    It's great to hear that you have been offered an earlier appointment and that you have a strategy to manage your moods, CBT can work really well. Thank you for your positive feedback, please let us know if there is anything more we can do to improve our service and the support we provide. Best Wishes, Tommy's Midwives x

  • By Cindy (not verified) on 7 Mar 2018 - 22:47

    Hi, I’m 30 weeks pregnant with my 2nd baby, I’m really bad at worrying about everything and about every possible thing that could happen. I’m scared this may affect my baby! Is this normal?

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 9 Mar 2018 - 10:36

    This is very common but there are some small things that you can do to reduce your anxiety. Make sure that you eat well and add some exercise to your regime each day. This helps to increase the endorphins which can give you a sense of well being and reduce anxiety. You can also try techniques like yoga, pilates or mindfulness to help you focus the mind. I hope that one of these will be good for you. Best wishes

  • By Amanda (not verified) on 3 Mar 2018 - 22:12

    Hi I’m 5 weeks pregnant and when I went to the toilet had a discharge not red blood or brown was in between got lower back pain not abdominal pain as of yet is that the start of a miscarriage

  • By Midwife @Tommys on 5 Mar 2018 - 13:34

    Hi Amanda,
    It does not sound like anything to worry about at the moment. An increase in discharge is very common in pregnancy. If you do not have any pain or bleeding then this is reassuring. If you have any itchy down below then this maybe a sign of thrush so if this is case then you can see your GP or pharmacist for advice. Best wishes, Tommy's midwives

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