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Pregnancy complications aren’t super common, but can sometimes be dangerous. Prenatal care can help you avoid or treat problems during your pregnancy.

How do I know if something is wrong during my pregnancy?

Some symptoms are warning signs of very dangerous pregnancy problems. Call your doctor, nurse, or midwife, or go to the hospital right away if you notice:

  • bad headaches, or ones that don't go away

  • swelling of the face, hands, feet, or ankles

  • vomiting for 24 hours

  • vaginal bleeding

  • dimness or blurring of vision

  • double vision and/or dizziness

  • spots before your eyes

  • sudden gush or steady trickle of watery fluid from the vagina

  • burning or pain with urination

  • fever or chills

  • suspected labor

  • belly pain that doesn’t go away or keeps coming back

  • rashes or sores

  • fainting

  • decreasing or no fetal movement after 24 weeks

Talk to your doctor, nurse, or midwife if you notice:

  • bleeding from the vagina

  • leaking of fluid from the vagina

  • early labor

  • you’re not gaining enough weight

  • your expected due date passes without delivery

What are signs of premature labor?

A full-term pregnancy lasts for about 40 weeks. If contractions cause your cervix to open earlier than normal — between the 20th and 37th week — it's called premature labor. Premature labor can be very dangerous.

The signs of premature labor include:

  • uterine contractions (strong tightening in your belly) every 10 minutes or less

  • constant period-like cramps in your lower belly

  • belly cramps with or without diarrhea

  • pressure in your pelvic area that feels like the fetus is pushing down

  • change or increase in vaginal discharge

  • a sudden gush of watery fluids from your vagina (water breaking)

When should I call my doctor?

Call your doctor if you notice any signs of premature labor, think you’re having a miscarriage, or if you notice any serious warning signs.

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