Questions to ask doc - this is what I have so far. — The Bump
Natural Birth

Questions to ask doc - this is what I have so far.

I really want to have a natural birth and am currently reading the book Husband Coached Childbirth as well as taking the Bradley Method classes. My mom did the Bradley Method during her pregnancy with my twin sister and me and she loved it.

Now that I'm getting closer and closer and almost to the 3rd trimester, I want to come up with a list of questions to ask my doctor to make sure their practices are in line with what I want.

This is what I have so far. Can anyone think of other questions? I'm sure there are tons more but I'm drawing a blank here.

1.     Do you set a time limit on how long you will allow me to push before you move to a c-section?

2.     How long will you allow a mother to labor on her own before inducing when her water has broken?

3.     What kind of laboring equipment is available in the hospital? Stool, Jacuzzi, etc.

4.     Do you allow the mother to push in a squatting position and use the squatting bar that attaches to the bed?

5.     How late will you let me be before you want to induce? 41 or 42 weeks?

6.     Are we allowed to take pictures during delivery?

7.     Will you allow me to tear on my own and not perform an episiotomy?

8.     How long will you wait before cutting the cord? I prefer to wait until it stops pulsating.

9.     Will baby and I get skin-to-skin contact immediately after delivery assuming baby is doing well? I do not want to be separated from him unless it is absolutely medically necessary.

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Re: Questions to ask doc - this is what I have so far.

  • Those are great questions- the only thing I have to add is kind of a matter of semantics. You say "allow," "allowed" or "let me" in nearly every question. It's your body and your child, you should not have to ask permission for evidence based best practices. It also sets up a situation where an OB could say "Oh yeah, yeah that's fine" in response to whatever you're asking without really paying attention. Maybe try phrasing it like "What is your policy on xyz (ie starting Pitocin after rupture of membranes without contractions)?" You're more likely to get their real answer if they have to think about it instead of just agreeing with you.
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  • I would reword several of the questions into statements. 

    Instead of "do you allow a mother to push in a squatting position" ask " what equipment do you have that will allow me to get into the best pushing position for me?" for example.

    My GP was great.  We had friendly, casual conversations about labour and delivery (she is a mother of 4 herself).  Nice, pragmatic attitude about how everyday giving birth is and how certainly you can get the job done.

    Good luck!

    promised myself I'd retire when I turned gold, and yet here I am
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  • A few other questions you might want to ask:

    1) What is your policy on eating/drinking while in labor?

    2) Is an IV standard upon admission?  What about a Hep-lock?

    3) Intermittent vs. Continuous monitoring 

    4) What is your policy on delivery of the placenta? (for example, is it standard practice to use Pit for delivery of the placenta?)

    5) How supportive are the L & D nurses of natural childbirth? 

  • i second what honkytonk said.  that was my exact thought as well.  GL!
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  • These are great...but my take is go with the flow a little.  I didn't have drugs and when I asked about a birth plan, the dr was like, sure, you can have one...but we are going to do what you ask (as appropriate) in the moment.  I also had an episiotomy, bur it had everything to do with baby being in distress..not because of possible tearing.
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