To have the best birth possible, you would certainly need to choose the right care provider right from the early stages of your pregnancy. Picking a care provider or a team of care providers would help you get the kind of support and guidance you need during this time. Your basic pregnancy care team would consist of an OB/GYN, a prenatal specialist if your baby has been diagnosed with a particular condition and an at-home care provider like a doula who can assist you in preparing your home and mindset for the birth. However, before you secure the service of a care provider team, there are a few essential questions that you need to ask them.
Most top of the line and highly recommended care providers for pregnancy are also the most highly sought after. This means that the best care providers in your region may not be freely available when you want them and you may need to make prior appointments to secure their services. For doulas and at home care providers, you would need to ask them if they would be available around a week prior to the due date and if they would be willing to come in should you go into labor before time. Securing appointments with OB/GYNs would be a lot tougher though you can ask them if they would share your case history with another OB/GYN should they not be available to help your deliver when you go into labor. Also, you would need to ask them how open they would be to your inputs, desires and suggestions regarding the birth plan etc. to ensure that issues do not arise later on.
Ask what standard routine practices they would pursue in labor
To make sure that your care provider and you are on the same page regarding the birth plan, you need to ask them about their stance and opinions on important childbirth challenges like separating mom and baby, direct pushing, restricting movement, restricting mom from drinking and eating freely, induced labor, episiotomy, administering epidurals, electronic fetal monitoring and C-sections etc. to see whether you and your care giver agree on important aspects of the pregnancy and birth.
Ask what role they see in identifying your and your baby’s unique needs
Each pregnancy, labor and birth is unique which means that even if your care provider has a lot of experience in their field, caring for you and your baby would provide them with a fresh set of challenges. This is where it becomes all the more important to ask your care provider beforehand what role they see for themselves in indentifying and responding to you and your baby’s unique needs. Someone who is too rigid about their methods would not be as open to your suggestions and desires while someone who doesn’t have a set of plans for situations at all would not be too much help in case of an emergency.
See if they are comfortable with one-on-one support and additional care providers
A lot of care givers are not comfortable working with other care providers. For example, an OB/GYN might not be too comfortable with you consulting a number of other specialists especially if they provide the same kind of services. At home care givers, maternity center workers, maternity health workers and doulas may also have their own preferences about working with additional team members especially if they have a particular style of working and appear rigid or inflexible in their approach. It would make your life a lot easier if you ask them their opinion on working with others as this would allow you to make a more informed decision about whether or not you want this particular person in your team of care providers during pregnancy.
With OB/GYNs, ask what their C-section rate is
For an OB/GYN, a high rate if C-Sections suggest that they prefer to perform a caesarean delivery even if the birth could have been facilitated naturally. However, an extremely low rate of C-Sections may also suggest that the practitioner does not have sufficient experience in performing these surgeries which could become a problem for you should you require one.
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Alia is a writer/blogger and a guest blogger for Mom at Last. She loves writing, traveling and reading books. She contributes on ReputationChanger.com
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