Helpful questions as you select an Obstetrician or Midwife to deliver your baby
One of the most important choices you face as you consider or enter into a pregnancy is the selection of a provider. As you evaluate options for the type of clinician you want to care for your during your pregnancy and through your delivery, it is important to consider what you want from your birth experience. The choice between an obstetrician and a certified nurse midwife can be an extremely personal decision, and Beth Israel Deaconess - Plymouth is prepared to support women who make either choice. The important thing is that you feel your physician or midwife is a good fit with your personality and philosophy about childbirth.
You also have the responsibility to learn and question as much as possible about labor and delivery through classes, your physician or midwife, and research in order to make informed choices concerning your birth experience.
Sample Questions for your Physician or Midwife
The following are examples of commonly asked questions you may want to raise with your physician or midwife:
Once I think that I am in labor:
- What will happen if I go to the hospital thinking I am in labor and it turns out to be a "false alarm?
- What to ask your provider:
- When do I call?
- Whom do I call?
- Where do I call?
- If you are not available for my delivery, what the names of other physicians/midwives in your call group? Will I have a chance to meet them at a prenatal appointment, or only when I am at the hospital?
- Once I am admitted:
- After the routine fetal monitoring, will I have to be continuously monitored or can I be monitored intermittently?
- If I choose to have medication but do not want an epidural, what available medications do you recommend?
- What is your opinion about:
- Activities or positions during labor such as walking, showering, bathing, rocking or lying on my side?
- Artificial rupture of membranes?
- The use of Pitocin?
- Positions for pushing and delivery including alternative birth positions like squatting?
- Length of pushing stage?
- Episiotomies, perineal massage or hot compress?
- The use of a vacuum or forceps for delivery?
- I had a Cesarean section in the past. Will I be able to deliver vaginally this time?