How to Find an OB-GYN
Did you know that of the nearly 4 million women who gave birth in the United States in 2016, 77.2 percent of them started receiving prenatal care in the first trimester of their pregnancy? Prenatal care is the best way to ensure a healthy pregnancy and eventually, a healthy birth, because your doctor can track your baby’s progress the right way and catch any complications that may arise. That’s why finding the best obstetrician care is so important.
But how do you find the right doctor for you and your baby? You don’t want to trust your health and the health of your unborn child to just anyone. Let’s take a look at who an OB-GYN doctor actually is and what you should look for when determining who your prenatal care doctor will be.
What is an Obstetrician?
An obstetrician (or OB-GYN) is a doctor who specializes in a woman’s reproductive system, pregnancy and childbirth. During your prenatal visits, your obstetrician will:
- Conduct regular ultrasounds to monitor your baby’s growth and health
- Answer any questions you have throughout your pregnancy
- Help you develop a labor and delivery plan
- Monitor your health and be on the lookout for any conditions that may be a risk to you and your baby
- Advise you on your diet, exercise routine and any pregnancy complaints you have
- Monitor any medications you may be on throughout your pregnancy
If your obstetrician also has a background in gynecology (OB-GYN), she or he will be able to care for you even after having a baby. Now that we’ve answered, “what is an OG-BYN?”, let’s talk about how you can find the right obstetrician care for you and your baby
How to Find the Right OB-GYN for You
1. Make Sure the Expertise is There
Trying to find an OB-GYN doctor can be a daunting task if you don’t know what you’re looking for. Start with a list of doctors covered by your insurance or talk to family and friends to see if they have any referrals. After finding a few doctors in your area that you could see yourself going to, look for their credentials, specialties, years of experience and patient ratings. You may even want to see if any of the doctors on your list were involved in malpractice suits. This information will help you identify obstetricians who know what they’re doing and have the expertise to take care of you and your baby without any issues.
2. Learn Your OB-GYN Doctor’s Values
Think of your first prenatal appointment as an interview where the OB-GYN doctor is in the hot seat. During this initial visit, ask her questions about her attitudes and outlook on issues that matter most to you. For example, if you picture continuous fetal monitoring as a part of your birth plan, find out if she’s onboard with that. Is she flexible with birthing and delivery options, or does she have a preference she recommends to her patients? If you know you want a natural birth where you can walk around and use exercise balls to relieve the pain, will your doctor support that? It’s important to make sure your doctor’s values match yours before trusting your pregnancy and childbirth to her.
3. Ask How Your OB-GYN Doctor Handles Deliveries
When thinking about your birth plan, do you want your OB-GYN to be the one delivering your baby? Since she’s the one who took care of you during your pregnancy and built a relationship with you, it makes sense you’d want her there on the big day. But what if you go into labor in the middle of the night and your OB-GYN lets an on-call doctor you don’t know handle the delivery? Make sure you get a sense of how your doctor handles her patients’ deliveries and that it matches what you’re most comfortable with. It’s good know what kind of obstetrician care you can expect so there are no surprises on your big day.
4. Don’t Be Afraid to Communicate with Your Doctor
Your OB-GYN is playing a significant role in a very intimate part of your life, so you want to make sure you trust her. Like any healthy relationship, you need to have open and honest communication with your doctor. As you begin building a rapport with your OB-GYN, make sure you’re comfortable asking questions and voicing your concerns. It’s also important to make sure your doctor is listening to you and respecting your wishes. If you don’t feel comfortable or believe your OB-GYN isn’t listening to your wants and needs, it’s okay to request a different doctor or look for another obstetrician.
King’s Daughters’ Health Provides Expert Obstetrician Care
At King’s Daughters’ Health, we have a staff of skilled, compassionate obstetricians who provide family-centered care designed around your needs and comfort. Contact us today to learn more about our OB-GYN team. Check out our list of OB's at King's Daughters' Health.
CALL TODAY: 812.801.0856