Prenatal Checkups and Finding the Right Specialist
Finding the right specialist to oversee and monitor the health of both mother and baby is extremely important. Prenatal checkups are usually scheduled monthly for the first seven months and then advance from twice a month to weekly just before the expected birth. All qualified obstetricians have proven their knowledge through extensive testing and certification procedures, but discerning the best person for you and your baby may take some thought. Women usually begin their journey of finding the right specialist by consulting with friends and relatives for recommendations. While this is an excellent idea, it is wise to remember that all women and pregnancies are different; therefore, several other factors should be considered before making a final choice.
Check out the office or clinic of the specialist you are considering to make sure it is comfortable, clean, outfitted with premium equipment, and has a professional, friendly staff. It is also a good idea to evaluate the local hospital in which the specialist practices. The hospital should be one that has a modern obstetrics unit and is conveniently located both to the patient and the doctorís office. When a baby decides to arrive, minutes can be very important.
Another step pregnant women can take towards finding the ideal specialist is to schedule an interview before the first prenatal checkup. During this meeting, the expectant mother can discuss the obstetricianís philosophy concerning medical interventions and pain management. Questions about health history and expectations could also be addressed. Because it is so important for a woman to feel confidence in her specialist, this is the time to ask about his or her years of experience and number of healthy deliveries. This visit will also allow the expectant mother to determine if the doctorís personality and mannerisms are a good match for her.
Some women choose to explore the possibility of working with a midwife or to facilitate the delivery. Some midwives are comfortable helping women plan a home delivery (http://www.i-am-pregnant.com/encyclopedia/Birth/Home-Birth), or planning a birth without the use of pain medication, and just as much care should be taken in selecting the right midwife as the right physician to watch over the pregnancy and delivery.
Being able to communicate comfortably with the specialist you choose is important because prenatal visits include not only internal and external examinations, blood work, and urinalyses, but they are also an opportunity to express concerns and learn about nutrition and genetics. The specialist-patient relationship is one that often can last through multiple pregnancies.
Clearly, finding a specialist should a careful, thoughtful process. The obstetric specialist is an important partner in one of the most thrilling moments in life, and his or her care can dramatically affect the pregnancy and delivery experience.