First neuvola appointment

Yesterday was my first neuvola appointment. It was a nice, information and long (1,5 hours) meeting with the lady who will be my nurse to go to during all things pregnancy (though, not my nurse at the hospital).

I actually found something in English that explains quite nicely what neuvola is and does. First and foremost, neuvola is broken down into two sections: maternity and pre-school aged children. Below is the explanation for the maternity clinics.

Maternity clinics provide family support, with attention to relationships and parenting. Special emphasis is placed on the role of fathers and parental responsibility. Expectant mothers normally meet with a nurse and doctor 11-15 times during pregnancy. Attending a maternity clinic is one of the preconditions for eligibility for maternity benefit.

In addition, parents take part in family and childbirth preparation sessions. Visits monitor the progress of the pregnancy and arrange for mothers to receive follow-up treatment in the event of problems. Mothers are offered screening for foetal chromosome and growth defects during pregnancy.

I learned yesterday that these neuvola visits are free! It is only the doctor visits that will cost (normal public doctor’s fee, I’m assuming). The doctor’s visits are where/when the ultrasounds will happen. As long as everything goes well during my pregnancy, I’ll only see the doctor 3 times (from my understanding). So that means the rest of the times will be with the nurse only.
Anyway, back to me and my neuvola visit. *grin* As I said the entire appointment was 1,5 hours long and we spoke only Finnish, although the nurse was willing to speak English if I needed it. (It sure is nice to know I can survive in Finnish even with pregnancy stuff!) First we just chatted a bit so she got to know me and where I’m coming from, how long we tried to get pregnant, how Mr Siili and I met, our families, etc. Then we went through the forms Mr Siili and I filled out ahead of time about alcohol and drug use, food/eating habits and our personal health-history. After that she basically just gave me tons of information.


Clockwise from top left:
Expectant mother guide (exercise), Food for two: mom and baby, A baby for us, We’re getting a baby and (spiral bound) is a book half for dad (isälle) and half for mom (äidille).

These books and pamphlets have tons of information. I’ve started reading the spiral bound one as it has what to expect week by week. There is also information about exercising and what might help relieve some pains and aches. I was told the pamphlet about food is a good one to make sure I keep around for when the baby is born and I’m breastfeeding and/or feeding the baby. So much to read and in Finnish. (Mr Siili will be happy about me reading in Finnish.)

We also made an appointment for my first doctor’s visit at 12 weeks!
OMG! It seems so crazy to think that far ahead…ok, it’s only 3 weeks away, but at the moment that seems like a huge milestone and one that won’t be here soon enough. Don’t get me wrong though, I am enjoying this time and not trying to rush it, but 12 weeks just seems like such a magic number (and also when I’m going to tell work).
I’ll have blood drawn a week before the doctor’s appointment, which will check for down syndrom and possibly other stuff. A week after the doctor’s visit, where we’ll hopefully hear the heartbeat for the first time, I’ll have my next neuvola appointment.

Every neuvola visit will check my hemglobin (140-something), urine (no white blood cells or sugar), weight (66 kg) and blood pressure (no idea the numbers, but it was good). So, I’m not to go pee before any of these visits, because I need to leave a urine sample. I didn’t know that this time, but thankfully we talked for so long that I managed to leave a sample anyway before leaving. Haha!
The only thing that has left me with a bit of “nervousness” after the meeting that wasn’t there before was her talking about possible bleeding. I know it can happen, heck, I did have any itty bit in the beginning, but her talking about it and explaining the different types, just gave me a bit of panic. I don’t want to bleed, at least not the scary amount where it looks and feels like AF or even worse. That’s too scary to think about, so I’m going to try to go back to my happily aware-unaware ways and try not to think about it too much. Other than that, the appointment was nice, I like the lady and can’t wait to learn more about my Paxlet!

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