Questions You Should Ask Your Midwife
If you have already been to a prenatal doctor’s visit, then you probably can relate to this scenario. You get very nervous before the visit wondering what will happen and then once you hear that precious little heartbeat, the nerves end up going away. The problem is, once that is over, you completely forget everything that you were going to ask because you are too busy floating on cloud 9. It certainly doesn’t help that your “pregnancy brain” is in full force too!
This is where it comes in very handy to bring a list of questions along with you. Don’t tuck them away in a pocket or stash the list in your purse either…you will forget it there too! You need to have it in your hand the entire time so that there is no chance of forgetting whatsoever.
Now that you are prepared to bring your list and are sure you won’t forget it this time, what kind of questions should be on that list? Well, pretty much anything and everything you could possibly want to know. No question is a dumb question, especially where you and your baby’s health is concerned. Don’t assume that the doctor is going to bring up any of your questions or answer them on his/her own either. It is up to you to make sure you get the answers you need. Here are a some examples that will help get you started or jog your memory on what you want to ask.
- Do you take my insurance? How much will it cost and what are my out of pocket expenses? Are there any upfront payments?
- How big is the baby? How accurate are the size estimates?
- Am I gaining too much/too little weight? How much should I be eating/drinking?
- What foods/drinks should I avoid during pregnancy?
- What medications are safe during pregnancy?
- What types of exercise are safe during pregnancy? When should I stop exercising
- Is it okay to have sex during my pregnancy
- Is this pain I’m feeling normal? What sort of pains are considered normal/abnormal
- Is this discharge / spotting normal? How do I know if I’m leaking amniotic fluid?
- At what point should I start counting baby movements? How long is too long between movements?
- Are these sensations I’m feeling normal? (dizziness, rapid heartbeat, extreme fatigue, etc)
- What prenatal tests are given during pregnancy? What are they for and why are they necessary?
- At what point do you perform an ultrasound? How many ultrasounds will I be given?
- What were the results from my test? (If you’ve recently had any tests done out of the office in between visits, remind your doctor. They may have the results in your file and forget to give them to you.)
- What are your thoughts on VBAC’s? (Vaginal birth after Cesarean)
- Who and what number should I call if I have an urgent question after hours?
- What is the procedure when I go into labor? Do I call you first or do I go to the hospital? At what point during labor should I call you or go to the hospital?
- What happens if you are not available when I need to deliver?
- How do I know if I’m in labor or not? Signs of Labor
- What is the difference between Braxton Hick’s contractions and the real thing? How can I tell?
- What are your feelings on inductions, c-sections and/or episiotomies?
- Are you or the hospital equipped for preemie deliveries? What type of neo-natal care is available?
- What type of pain relief for birth is there and what are their effects on me and the baby?
- What type of birthing methods do you or the hospital allow?
- Who do I give my birth plan to before the delivery?
- What/who is/is not allowed in the delivery room? (cameras, video cameras, children, etc) Some doctors do not allow video cameras, so be sure to check ahead of time.
- For midwives…Do you allow home births?
- When and how do I schedule a hospital tour?
Anytime you have any concerns, don’t be afraid to call up and ask your doctor/midwife. You shouldn’t feel like you are going to bother somebody if you have a “silly” question. They hear “silly” questions all the time and are used to hearing all sorts of things. It is their profession and they are working for you….don’t forget that.