Pregnancy Questions to Ask Your Ob-GynKatlyn Joy |15, May 2012
We've all been there; you are ready to ask a laundry list of questions, but as soon as the doctor knocks at the exam door, your mind goes blank. Call it white-coat amnesia, pregnancy fog or simple fatigue, but it can be challenging to remember all the things you intend to ask.
Some women may find themselves tongue-tied around medical professionals or other authority figures.
Whatever the case, the best way to ensure that you get those questions answered is to prepare. You need to plan ahead or else the questions will evaporate.
- Record your questions. When reading pregnancy books, keep a scrap paper handy to scribble notes to yourself. Carry a little notepad in your purse. If it works, use a small tape recorder in the car.
- Compile your notes the day before your appointment. If you wait until the day of your appointment something is bound to interfere so wait no longer than a day ahead of time. Make a sensible list of questions.
- If you're so inclined, go ahead and type up the questions on your computer and print out a set, one for you and one for the doctor. This may make it easier to stay on the same page, literally. Also if you have atrocious handwriting or you lose one copy, you're still good to go.
Types of Questions to Ask
1. You should ask questions about what events require scheduling before your next appointment. Is it time for your ultrasound? Do you need to get your glucose tolerance test? Pull out your calendar and write it down immediately. Don't rely on your memory.
2. Inquire about any new symptoms you've been experiencing. Some symptoms may seem random or unrelated, but only by sharing them with your medical caregiver will you know for sure what's behind the things you've been feeling.
3. Inquire about what you may expect during the period of time before your next appointment.
4. Ask about your current situation. Know how your weight is coming along. Have you packed on more pounds this week than normal. How was your blood pressure compared to last time? Did you have any sign of infection or protein in your urine culture?
5. Ask what things you should be avoiding at this point in your pregnancy. Should you watch your salt? Is your jogging routine too much for your pregnant body now? Find out what you need to stop doing.
6. Be sure and question your doctor about any concerns about your or baby's health. Is your doctor wondering if your baby is still lying in the transverse position? Did your sonogram show a placental issue? Understand any concerns, what the symptoms are and what the risks are.
7. Know what kinds of things warrant a phone call during office hours, after clinic hours and when do you need to head straight for the ER?
8. Ask questions about labor, delivery and hospital issues. You'll have loads of these as the big day looms ever closer so space the questions out over each visit.
What to Do with a Doctor Who Isn't Good with Answering Your Questions
Having a doctor that you have a strong rapport with is important. If you feel ignored, over-ruled, or patronized you're unlikely to get the type of medical care you should.
The Condescending Doctor: This doctor cuts you off mid-sentence, chuckles at your naivety and may dare an eye roll. This doctor doesn't respect your interest in your own pregnancy. The best way to handle this is to simply and unemotionally state your feelings about how you are not being listened to. If you doctor doesn't respond, look for a new doctor.
The Rusher: This doctor fits patients into his schedule clowns in a compact car. He has to keep everything moving at a hectic clip in order to stay on track. The result is a fast-talking care-skimper. This doctor won't adequately explain anything and will try to dart out before you even have a chance to answer. The best way to handle this is to be prepared with your list, have it ready to go, and offer to schedule extra time for your appointments if needed.
The Old-School Doctor: This doctor doesn't put much stock in the newest anything; studies, methods or ideas. You may spend much time explaining why you want to try something and having to convince this doc. The old-school doctor is highly experienced but may grow a bit close-minded. Show you've done your homework and are interested in knowing the pros and cons involved.
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