Dad-to-be pregnancy calendar

The essential pregnancy milestones a dad-to-be needs to know

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  • Dad-to-be pregnancy calendar

    Finding out your partner’s pregnant is an exciting moment. You may think that you’ve got nine months before there’s much that you need to do. Think again!

    There are lots of pregnancy milestones that affect dads too so you’ll want to find out what to look out for and when and how you can get involved.

    Dad-to-be pregnancy milestones

    Week 2-4: Finding out the news

    Week 8: First antenatal appointment

    Week 12: First scan

    Week 17: Boy or girl

    Week 20: Second scan

    Weeks 21 and 22: First kick and baby talk

    Week 25: Paternity leave

    Week 28: Antenatal class

    Week 35: Birth plan

    Week 36: Plan your hospital route

  • Week 2-4: Finding out the news

    So you’re going to be a dad? You’ll probably be feeling all sorts of emotions and no doubt you’ll have lots of questions. You may wonder whether you’re ready and whether you will be a good dad, but don’t worry these are all normal feelings.  

    Sadly 1 in 4 pregnancies end in miscarriage within the first 12 weeks, so you and your partner may prefer to wait until the pregnancy passes this stage before making any public announcements. There are a few things your partner can do to avoid giving the game way in the first 12 weeks

  • Week 8: First antenatal appointment

    Antenatal care is the care you and your partner receive from healthcare professionals during the pregnancy. You will be offered a series of appointments, with the first taking place around 8 weeks. It’s useful for you to go to the first appointment as the doctor of midwife will need both of your medical histories, and it’s important to know any medical conditions that run in the family. 

  • Week 12: First scan

    The first ultra sound scan can be exciting and also nerve wracking for both you and your partner. You’ll see your baby and its heartbeat, and the scan will check your baby’s measurements, position and growth. If you’d like more information find out what else you can expect to find out.

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  • Week 17: Boy or girl

    There are lots of old wives' tales on predicting the sex of your baby, so you can try and guess for your self. But if you actually want to know then your baby’s sex can be determined after about 16 to 17 weeks and you can find out at the 20 week scan. You and your partner may be excited to find out what sex your baby is, or you may want to wait until the birth. Either way it’s good to bear in mind that doctors can sometimes get it wrong.

  • Week 20: Second scan

    The second ultra sound scan, which takes place around 20 to 22 weeks, is also called an anomaly scan. You will see your baby again, and the sonographer or midwife will look closely at your baby and your partner’s uterus. It is used to check lots of things, like the due date, your baby’s heartbeat and growth. Find out more information on what else you will find out at the anomaly scan.

  • Weeks 21 and 22: First kick and baby talk

    You baby will be starting to get more active, moving, kicking, stretching and punching.  You should start to feel your baby kick if you place your hand on your partner’s tummy. Try patting your partner’s tummy or talking to the bump. This might encourage your baby to kick. Get talking to your baby as babies can more easily pick up deeper male voices than higher pitched female voices. If you’d like to know more about what your partner is experiencing then check out our guide to fetal development at week 21.

  • Week 25: Paternity Leave

    Now’s the time to start thinking about paternity leave, and there are a few things that you need to do in order to make sure that you qualify. For example, you must tell your employer in writing 15 weeks before the beginning of the week of the baby’s due date. Make sure you find out what other things you need to do in order to qualify for paternity leave.

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  • Week 28: Antenatal class

    As a dad-to-be you’ll probably want to join your partner at antenatal classes and there are lots of reasons why you both should go. There usually run for about 8 weeks in the last three months (the final trimester). They help you prepare you both for childbirth and get you to think about important aspects of labour for your partner, like pain relief.

  • Week 35: Birth plan

    It’s good for you to get know what your partner’s birth plan is, so you are clear what your and your partner wants. Make sure the birth plan answers the important questions, like do you both want a hospital delivery? What sort of pain relief does your partner want? It’s also good to write a list of emergency numbers including friends and family so you have them to hand.

  • Week 36: Plan your hospital route

    Full term is 40 weeks, but lots of babies arrive early or late. Make sure your partner can contact you easily, pack a hospital bag early and work out the quickest route to the hospital and a back-up route should the quick route be blocked.

Last updated on 19 April 2012