Antenatal care involves being seen by your midwife at regular intervals during your pregnancy to check that all is well with you and your baby. It includes being offered a range of tests , which, it is important to add, you do not have to accept.
Regular meetings with your carers also give you the opportunity of asking questions about your pregnancy and the birth of your baby and to talk over any worries or concerns you might have.
Antenatal appointments are usually: every four weeks until 28 or 30 weeks;every two weeks until 36 weeks; and weekly after that.
However, in some areas, the number of appointments is lower, it all depends on where you live.
Your first 'booking visit' takes about an hour and is designed so your carers can find out about your general health and pregnancy and to see if there's any medical help you need. Remember, you're entitled to paid time off work for the appointment.