Pregnancy, Childbirth, and Newborn Care
Time for a healthy beginning. Find information and support — and gain confidence — every step along your exciting journey.
Before: What If I’M Trying To Get Pregnant?
Knowing when you’re fertile is the best way to help you get pregnant. Try this interactive tool to help you know your fertile days.
You can also optimize your health before you get pregnant. Consider a class or health coaching to quit tobacco, lose weight, or manage diabetes. Check the Healthy Living catalog.
I Just Found Out I'm Pregnant! Now What?
You’re about to start a wonderful journey. And you’re likely to have lots of questions along the way. Questions like:
- How your body is changing
- Your developing baby
- Options during labor
- How to get ready for birth
A library of more than 100 pregnancy and childbirth videos is available to answer your questions.
How Do I Take Care Of My Body So It Can Nurture My Baby?
The most important thing at this special time is to prepare and take care of your body. Some of the ways you can prepare your body for nurturing a baby include:
For timely suggestions, check out what’s happening to your baby and your body, week by week.
How Will My Body Change?
Pregnancy brings about changes to your body. Learn more about common symptoms and discomforts, like:
During: How Can I Have A Healthy Pregnancy
Most women expect to gain some weight during pregnancy. But too much can cause problems. These include gestational diabetes, a larger baby, or delivery complications.
Watch this video for info about what you should eat, how much weight you should gain, and if and how you should exercise while pregnant.
If you’re a Kaiser Permanente Northwest member, you can participate in wellness coaching at no cost to you. You’ll get support setting and achieving your diet, exercise, and weight gain goals during pregnancy.
These resources offer helpful info:
Some women develop gestational diabetes while pregnant. But with treatment, most women who have it are able to control their blood sugar and give birth to healthy babies.
- Diagnosing gestational diabetes
- Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) during pregnancy
- Home treatment
- Healthy eating during pregnancy
- It’s never too early to prevent diabetes
How Do I Plan For Childbirth?
Every pregnant person’s experience of labor and delivery is different. But there are a few simple steps every person can take to prepare for this life-changing experience. Understanding the process and being as prepared as possible will help you feel more relaxed and in control.
- Plan what to bring to the hospital
- Explore labor and delivery info
- Review new baby essentials
- Interactive tool: What is your due date?
If you’re a Kaiser Permanente Northwest member, you can also:
- Take a Preparation for Birth class
- Complete a prenatal questionnaire
- Create a birth preferences plan
- Choose a doctor for your baby — Eugene and Portland area
- Review the “Baby on the Way” book you were given at your first appointment. It’s also available online.
Learn more about Kaiser Permanente’s prenatal commitment to you and the support you will receive from our expert staff.
Birth Tours And Maternity Care
A hospital birth tour provides information about your birth experience, from admission to discharge. You will also have the opportunity to see your hospital’s labor, birthing, and family rooms.
If you are a Kaiser Permanente Northwest member, get details for a tour at:
- Kaiser Permanente Sunnyside and Westside medical centers
- Legacy Salmon Creek Medical Center
- Salem Hospital Family Birth Center
You can take a tour in person or online. For online, check out the Sunnyside and Westside presentations.
Learn more about maternity care – including where to go for care, what to expect on your delivery day, and information for family and friends – at:
What If I Have Other Questions?
What Can I Expect During Labor And Delivery?
Giving birth is a scary, exciting, and thrilling experience. Being prepared is the key to having a good experience.
Learn about labor and delivery, including:
- Signs of labor
- C-section (cesarean section)
- Vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC)
- Postpartum: First 6 weeks after childbirth
While every labor and delivery is different, they all have three stages. Learn more about the 3 stages of labor and delivery.
If you’re a Kaiser Permanente Northwest member, get to know your:
- Labor and Delivery Care Team — Eugene and Portland area
- Baby’s Nursery Care Team — Portland area
After: Caring For Your Baby
Once your baby is born, take time to enjoy and savor every beautiful moment.
You may feel a little anxious about caring for your newborn. You may want to:
- Watch videos on the basics of newborn care.
- Understand the newborn hearing screening process.
- Watch a video about newborn cues–what your baby is trying to communicate.
- Learn more about the postpartum period and how to care for your baby.
When your baby sends signals that she’s hungry or full, it’s important to respond promptly — and in a way that’s warm and loving. This is called “responsive feeding” — watch a video or read a handout about it. When your child is a little older, watch this video about infant feeding and introducing solid foods. You can also read these tips for introducing solids.
Kaiser Permanente Northwest members can also:
- Take the helpful “Tool Kit for New Parents” class. You can view the booklet here.
- After pregnancy and birth, learn about things you can do to address some changes to your body, such as posture, bowel changes, and back pain. Female Kaiser Permanente Northwest members can take a free webinar, “My Body After Baby.” To register, call 1-844-394-3972.
What Should I Know About Breastfeeding, And Breast Health After My Baby Is Born?
Your breasts will go through many changes throughout pregnancy, and well after labor and delivery. Learn more:
There are a few guidelines that can help you get the nutrition your body and your baby need while you’re breastfeeding.
If you’re a Kaiser Permanente Northwest member, you can attend prenatal and postpartum breastfeeding support groups.
Remember to take care of yourself by having a healthy lifestyle and getting all recommended health screenings, including a mammogram to screen for breast cancer (information in English, Spanish, and Russian).
Caring For Yourself
It’s also important to take care of yourself as well as your baby. Use the postpartum plate method to be sure you’re following a healthy eating plan.
Whether or not your period has resumed, the possibility of becoming pregnant exists at any time. Unless you want to become pregnant, use birth control (contraception). If you are not currently on a birth control method, use condoms to avoid pregnancy. To learn more about your options, visit kp.org/birthcontrol or watch these videos:
What If I Start To Feel Stressed?
Remember, your well-being is affected by both your mind and your body. It’s important to take good care of each to have complete health. Learn how to care for the whole you.
Depression can occur after your baby is born. This is called postpartum depression. It’s common and treatable:
- Please watch this fotonovela: New Baby and Feeling Depressed?
- Por favor vea esta fotonovela: Con bebe nuevo, pero deprimida?
Kaiser Permanente members have acess to digital mental health and wellness tools at no charge. Check out this page for the Calm, Ginger, or myStrength apps. You also can call a health coach for 6-month subscriptions to Headspace, Whil, SilverCloud, Woebot, or Thrive.