What to expect during your baby’s arrival.
NICU Family Support

How you can prepare for the special moment

After nine months of pregnancy, the big day is finally here. If your pregnancy is healthy, it’s best to wait for labor to begin on its own—babies aren’t fully developed until at least 39 weeks. You may feel nervous about the process, but learning about contractions and the signs of labor can help you get ready.

Most women have their babies by vaginal birth, but others may need additional medical care—even if they do everything right during pregnancy. Some may experience preterm labor and preterm birth; others may have complications and need to have a labor induction or Cesarean birth to keep themselves and their babies safe.

Use our birth plan to help make decisions about your baby’s birth, like who you want to be with you at the hospital and any special traditions you want observed. Thinking about things ahead of time can help you and everyone involved know exactly how you want labor and birth to be.

Creating a community around shared experiences

Learn about some of the families who have benefited from our collective work and connect with others over what it takes to raise a strong baby.

From loss to hope: A journey through grief, pregnancy challenges, and finding strength. March of Dimes provides support for all families.

Racism in healthcare: Black women at risk. A story of ignored concerns, stroke, and the importance of self-advocacy. March of Dimes aims to end maternal health risks.

Guilt, unanswered questions, and a premature birth – Katie's story highlights the importance of supporting maternal health through March of Dimes.

We’re there for you—wherever there is for you

Learn about the programs and services in your area that are helping close the health equity gap and end preterm birth for families everywhere.


NICU Family Support®

Provides education and critical information for neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) families, family-centered care training for hospital staff, and resources to improve the patient and family experience.

Becoming a Mom/Comenzando bien®

A comprehensive prenatal curriculum presented in English or Spanish and designed for use with pregnant women in a supportive group setting.

Supportive Pregnancy Care® for Patients

An education and resources framework that enables maternity care providers to create a flexible group prenatal care program in their hospitals, clinics, or private practice.