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Family-dynamics

Who's who in the world of pregnancy?

You'll meet more professionals than you can shake a stick at and it can be confusing.

They're all there for the two of you and your baby, so learn who they are and what they do so you can get the best out of them.

You'll meet more professionals than you can shake a stick at and it can be confusing.

whos who

Midwife
Say hello to your new best pal – the midwife. She's going to look after things right through the pregnancy, keeping an eye on what's happening. She'll answer any questions you both have, listen to your worries and give you good advice.

The hospital midwife
You'll see a hospital midwife each time you go to an ante-natal appointment. She'll look after things during the labour and probably deliver the baby.

The community midwife
In some areas local GP practices have midwives who might well visit you at home before the birth. They can provide further care and all sorts of useful practical advice when you get back home with your precious little bundle.

Obstetrician - looks after ladies
Pregnancy isn't an illness and doctors only get involved if there are problems that need extra special care. An obstetrician is a doctor specialising in the care of women during the whole process.

Paediatrician - looks after babies
This is another doctor, but specialising in the care of babies and children. Again, you'll only see a paediatrician if the baby has a special health problem, or if the labour has been difficult.

Health visitor
A specially trained nurse who's concerned with the health of the whole family. You'll meet the health visitor about ten days after the birth, when she takes over from the midwife and becomes your new new best pal. She'll give you all the advice and support you want.

All sorts of other professionals

Obstetric physiotherapist
She's going to feel like she's gone five rounds with Joe Calzaghe (actually, she might have preferred to have done just that) and this professional will offer practical help and advice about getting her body back to normal.

Dieticians
Having a new baby in the house is often the time when a lot of people start looking seriously at their own diets. Plus it's important for mum to get the right nutrients for herself and Baby while she's breastfeeding. You'll be able to talk to a dietician and get some solid practical advice.

Who's who in the world of pregnancy?